Worldpay from FIS – a top global fintech provider – recently released a joint report with Crypto.com covering attitudes around cryptocurrency as a medium of exchange. It found huge interest among both merchants and customers in using cryptocurrencies to transact in 2022.
Consumers ‘Hungry’ for Crypto
According to the report, titled “Crypto for Payments”, there is currently a ~10X disparity between customers and merchants transacting in crypto. Whereas 40% of customers would like to use their crypto to buy things, only 4% of merchants actually accept it. By contrast, 60% of both customers and merchants showed interest in using/ accepting crypto this year.
However, real adoption is likely to be much slower than that. Crypto’s steep learning curve and the complexities of coordinating these new payment systems among internal teams will prove burdensome challenges for institutions. Should they be overcome, the report claims that merchants can benefit from lower transaction fees and dispute costs while appealing to a broader customer base.
A possible contributor to the customer-merchant disparity is the price volatility that cryptocurrencies are prone to. Merchants may be hesitant to sell their products for these assets for fear that their value may drop substantially the next day.
As such, solutions like Visa and Mastercard’s prepaid crypto cards have emerged. Users may load these cards with crypto, and use them to purchase products anywhere the payment processors’ traditional cards are accepted. Each will convert users’ funds to fiat currency on the back end, before placing them in the merchant’s account.
At present, 65% of crypto.com members use the crypto.com Visa card, clearly demonstrating customer-side demand for crypto purchases.
The study specifically surveyed 110,000 Crypto.com customers and 1.5M+ WorldPay from FIS merchants. A similar study conducted by Visa found that 25% of small business owners plan to accept crypto this year.
Where is Interest Most Concentrated?
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the report found that merchants are most interested in accepting USDC and large-cap cryptos for payment. Customers felt the same way, but with additional interest in using crypto.com’s native Cronos token – though that’s likely due to biassed sampling.
Among industries, merchants of luxury goods showed overwhelming interest in accepting crypto for payment (80%). Customer interest was more balanced between market sectors, showing a bit more interest in using crypto for travel – though merchants appeared least accommodative in that space.