21 December 2022, 9:45 (CET)

PAYMENT-LOOK BACK:

Why A2A payments are still on the rise after 2022

Just a few short years ago, when we saw the arrival of PSD2 and open banking, it was still uncertain what their impact on the payments industry would be. Now, as we near the end of 2022 and PSD3 is on the horizon, there can’t be any doubt.

60 markets 1 across the world now feature functioning real-time payment infrastructures, with Peru, New Zealand, Indonesia and Canada having launched theirs this year. And the UK’s HMRC gave A2A payments a seal of approval by integrating them into the self-assessment process, generating 3.86 million 2 new Open Banking payments in January 2022. Among European consumers, as of June, 46% had made an instant bank transfer in the previous three months, and 81% say they are ‘likely’ to make an A2A payment in future.3


In this blog:

  • A2A payments are on the rise, and for good reason!
  • How the challenges of 2022 have helped A2A payments even more
  • How to choose an A2A payments provider in 2023

A2A payments are on the rise, and for good reason!

Security

As the evolution of digital payments gets faster, security measures aren’t always able to keep up. The card industry, for example, faces $400bn in losses4 this decade due to fraud. With A2A payments powered by open banking, businesses and consumers can rely on multi-authentication, automated credit checking, and risk engine technology to avoid both deliberate and accidental fraud.

Convenience

A2A payments represent an obvious improvement for both sides of a transaction. The appeal of instantaneous payments and transfers, fast reconciliation, and doing away with intermediaries and card charges are all strong incentives. For the subscription e-commerce market, which has nearly doubled in value in 2022, eliminating the need to periodically re-enter information is a small improvement that makes a major difference to both consumers and companies.

Regulation and Adoption

Open banking made A2A payments possible, but new initiatives are happening all the time. The European Payments Initiative (EPI) was founded in 2020 with the aim of creating a pan-European payment system to rival Mastercard and Visa. The EPI coalition already consists of 31 banks in seven EU countries, and currently deals with 65% of all European payment transactions. Crucially, in 2022 they’ve made a growing case for basing their unified European payments solution on A2A payments.

How the challenges of 2022 have helped A2A payments even more

A variety of favourable circumstances have helped account-to-account payments move closer to the mainstream in the last five years, but with a series of crises in 2022, and more on the way, people across sectors are understandably worried. When it comes to A2A payments, however, some of the issues the world is facing may actually help the transition.

1) Covid-19

The Covid-19 pandemic changed a lot of things, and payments were one of them. Between 2020 and 2021 consumers made fewer purchases, but those they did make were larger, and due to economic uncertainty they became more likely to choose debit over credit. As the world deals with the tail end of the pandemic the trend looks to continue, and A2A payments are proving to be the most effective debit payments system available.

2) Energy Crisis

Both companies and consumers are facing a raft of challenges as the energy crisis continues to bite. But by offering customers a new, real-time, secure and convenient way to pay, energy retailers can offer a lower cost-to-serve and remove the commission fees typically associated with payment transactions. In 2022, A2A payments offered the energy sector a compelling alternative to traditional pay-as-you-go or pay-on-bill arrangements.

3) Inflation

Inflation is having a devastating effect on SME cash flow, which is the number one cause of small businesses failing. In fact, a recent study shows that 88% of SMEs5 are experiencing an impact on their bottom line due to inflation. That’s why many of them are looking to A2A payments to bypass traditional card rails and interchange fees, and another reason A2A is the payment method of the moment in 2022.

How to choose an A2A payments provider in 2023

In good times and bad, it seems that A2A payments are here to stay. In fact, it’s predicted that they’ll account for 20%6 of all e-commerce payments by 2023, surpassing both credit and debit cards. To make the most of this consistently growing trend, though, it’s important to find the right provider. Here are questions you should be asking when looking to integrate an A2A payments solution:
What unique features does the provider bring to the table?
How easily does the payment processing software integrate with your business?
Do they offer a clear and transparent fee structure?
Are their solutions compliant across Europe and the UK?
How quickly can they provide Reconciliation and chargeback status updates?
Can they provide a balance check?
Are they GDPR compliant?
Can they identify the account holder for reduced fraud?

Final Thoughts

Open banking and A2A payments have been on the rise since the introduction of PSD2 in 2015. With PSD3 legislation expected to be drafted by the European Commission in 2023, we can expect another significant jump in adoption. For more information about PSD3, you can read our guide here. And to find out more about how A2A payments can simplify your payment processes, improve customer experience, reduce operational costs, protect you from failed payments, and help your business face whatever 2023 brings, get in touch today.

1 Gam, Boaz: payneteasy (2022, 14. Septmeber): A2A Payments Overview: Market Position & Latest Advancements, [online]
https://www.economist.com/leaders/2017/05/06/the-worlds-most-valuable-resource-is-no-longer-oil-but-data [06.12.2022]

2 FinanceMonthly: What’s Next In The Explosive Growth Of Open Banking Payments?, [online]
https://www.google.com/url?q=https://www.finance-monthly.com/2022/05/whats-next-in-the-explosive-growth-of-open-banking-payments/&sa=D&source=docs&ust=1671459156962280&usg=AOvVaw0bPbYjlE92ruX1rkTBvGJc [06.12.2022]

3 Duncan, Elli: OpenBankingExpo (2022, 09:June): New research finds European consumers mostly favour A2A payments over cards, [online]
https://www.openbankingexpo.com/news/new-research-finds-european-consumers-mostly-favour-a2a-payments-over-cards/ [06.12.2022]

4 Mullen, Caitlin: PAYMENTSDIVE (2021, 14. December): Card industry faces $400B in fraud losses over next decade, Nilson says, [online]
https://www.paymentsdive.com/news/card-industry-faces-400b-in-fraud-losses-over-next-decade-nilson-says/611521/ [06.12.2022]

5 Wood, James: PAYMENTS INDUSTRY INTELLIGENCE Payments Cards&Mobile (2022, 16.June) : SMEs are turning to FinTechs to cut the cost of payments, [online]
https://www.paymentscardsandmobile.com/smes-are-turning-to-fintechs-to-cut-the-cost-of-payments/ [06.12.2022]

6 MAGAZINE PAYSPACE (2022, 09.September): A2A payments: market presence and forecasts, [online]
https://payspacemagazine.com/fintech/a2a-payments-market-presence-and-forecasts/ [06.12.2022]

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