We may get a sense of satisfaction from doing so, but no one really likes paying bills. That’s doubly true if the bill pay experience is outdated, outmoded and out of step with expectations.
Consumers want to simplify their monthly bill pay obligations now more than ever, and see digital channels as the better, smarter faster way to do it, as 85% of consumer already are using digital bill pay. Many are even willing to pay a small convenience fee for the service.
For the PYMNTS study Streamlining Bill Payment: How Frictionless Experiences Drive Customer Engagement, we surveyed close to 3,000 U.S. consumers about bill pay preferences and the appeal of digital billing for millions of people, with an eye on improving existing bill pay options.
Ease, convenience and speed win when it comes to bill pay, and that means digital. Those that aren’t yet using it want to, and those who already pay digitally want it done better.
Per the study, “consumers value convenience when paying recurring monthly bills, and this most likely drives satisfaction levels across various payment methods. Close to half (41%) of consumers cite ease and convenience and 23% cite faster and instant payments as the most important reason to choose a digital channel.”
According to PYMNTS research, 40% of respondents say they are “very” or “extremely” interested in an improved billing experience, and dispute resolution is one key area.
It comes down to customer satisfaction, and “how a service provider resolves billing disputes affects customer satisfaction. Mobile phone bills (9%) are the most frequently disputed services, followed by cable TV and internet services (7% for both).”
“Satisfaction with dispute resolution is high,” the study states, “yet 33% of respondents express dissatisfaction with the slow processing of disputes. Close to one-quarter complained of lack of transparency and lack of early notifications.”
51% of consumers who are “very” or “extremely” interested in a digital bill pay option are willing to pay for the service.
Consumers don’t love convenience fees tacked onto digital bill pay features they feel should be free, yet a startlingly high percentage will pay a fee to experience streamlined certainty in bill pay.
Per the study, “The willingness to pay a fee for an improved billing offering increases to 51% among consumers who are ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ interested and thus see value in such a service,. Highly interested consumers who pay recurring bills for consumer loans (54%) and cable TV (51%) are the most likely to say they are willing to pay for an improved billing experience.”
The most willing to pay such a fee are of mobile phone users (46%) and home internet users (49%). Consumer loan (64%) and cable TV (53%) users are the most likely to want it for free.