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Women prefer cash for retail payments; digital adoption high among younger generation: Survey

Women prefer cash for retail payments; digital adoption high among younger generation: Survey

Published:08 March 2022

For most women, cash is still the king when it comes to making payments at retail outlets, even as those in age group of 21-30 years are the most adept digitally, according to a survey.

New Delhi | For most women, cash is still the king when it comes to making payments at retail outlets, even as those in age group of 21-30 years are the most adept digitally, according to a survey.
Cash continues to dominate the payment space among women as more than 60 per cent preferred dealing in cash, followed by UPI QR and cards, as per the 'PayNearby Women Financial Index (PWFI)' survey released on Tuesday.
Digital payments and branchless banking network PayNearby partners with neighbourhood retail stores to provide digital and financial services to the local communities.
In the second edition of the pan-India survey covering over 3,000 retail stores across the country, recording financial transactions of women, PayNearby said more than 58 per cent of female customers preferred the Aadhaar enabled AePS to avail basic banking services.
More than 75 per cent of the retailers said women in 21-30 years age group were the most digitally adept, with over 50 per cent of this age bracket owning a smartphone and accessing digital content through it.
This was followed by the age group 31-40 years.
In the remittance driven urban and metro centres, the 20-30 years group contributed to nearly 25 per cent of women consumers, showcasing the growing trend of young women getting integrated into the workforce.
Cash withdrawals, mobile recharges and bill payments were the top three services used by women customers at the retail touchpoints. At urban and metro locations, money remittance services by them also saw good adoption.
The transactions were primarily conducted by young working women belonging to the age bracket of 21-30 years (45 per cent) and 31-40 years (25 per cent).
In the withdrawal market largely driven by tier III and rural regions, majority of the transactions conducted by women were in the age bracket of 31-40 years (65 per cent), PayNearby said.
About 78 per cent of women in tier III and rural markets availed cash withdrawals. Overall, Rs 1,000-2,500 was the most preferred range of withdrawal for women across the country, it said.
Over than 75 per cent of the women operated their bank account themselves, even as 20 per cent admitted to their husbands operating their bank accounts.
On the post-pandemic scenario, it said there is now a growing awareness among women to save for medical emergencies and rainy days. More than 40 per cent of those surveyed indicated 'bachat' (savings) as a priority.
Formal saving instruments, though, continue to see thin adoption, with less than 15 per cent aware of these instruments. Penetration of evolved services such as insurance (less than 5 per cent) also continues to be low.
"Whether it is our women force or the large underserved rural economy, it is important for us to measure the digital index across segments, to put in place appropriate actions wherever necessary.
"It is heartening to see a growing trend of young women in the age group of 20-40 years, actively consuming digital financial services across retail stores in the country," said Anand Kumar Bajaj, founder, MD and CEO, PayNearby.
He said if more women start using digital payments, it will help drive up overall account ownership in the country.
On top saving goals, the surveyed women preferred child education, followed by saving for medical emergency, buying house and owning gold.
As per the survey, 55 per cent of women indicated Rs 500-750 as their preferred range for monthly savings.


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