Next year will be full of complex challenges for pay-now product experts, as the last decade has been. Indicators suggest that less effort will be wasted on legal entanglements and arbitrary requirements and more thought and effort will be focused on improving the user experience, improving payment security, and solving real payments problems.
Mercator Advisory Group projects the main engines of growth for credit card issuers and networks will continue to run in 2016. Consumer spending, driven by an improving economy and growing appetite for debt, will continue to increase. Regulatory impediments and legislative distractions will likely lessen as the 2016 presidential election nears (though alarming rhetoric is guaranteed to increase).
Mobile wallets and the constant pressure for greater security and lower costs across all payment forms will be the primary strategic drivers for market incumbents in 2016.
New regulations and technology will reshape the rules for the prepaid industry in 2016, but payments providers can’t put their businesses on hold waiting for the rules to be written.
Mercator says this is what to watch for in 2016: implementation of eight technologies important for payments: biometrics, wearables, Bluetooth low energy (BLE), machine learning, broader utilization of the mobile operating system, payment APIs, tokenization, and private blockchain.
The research company also notes 2016 and beyond look very promising in opportunities for commercial cards and electronic accounts payable, but these are merely products. Among banks that provide commercial and enterprise payments services, the real points of differentiation that will determine the winners in the years ahead are the other aspects of the ecosystem”both emerging, such as mobility and big data and optimizing digital navigation, and old school, such as relationship management.
Finally, disruption across the payments industry is a global theme. Disruption comes in many forms. Globally, threats of disruption are coming not only from new entrants and nontraditional service providers but also from the development and reconfiguration of technologies. While some disruption will prove challenging to incumbents, it also provides an opportunity for established service providers to embrace change and develop strategies that will lead to sustainability over the long run.
For data, background and forecasts on Payments & 2016: Search CardWeb.com’s CardFlash® Library of more than 58,000 archived articles; Access CardWeb.com’s CardData® for current and historical Performance, Portfolios, Profiles, etc. Visit RAM Research® (ramresearch.com) for quarterly and annual forecasts covering more than 150 payments metrics. [complimentary or deeply discounted access to CardWeb.com subscribers].
Additional database resources include CardWeb.com’s CardExecs® – comings & goings of payments movers & shakers; CardWeb.com’s CardWatch® – ears & eyes on marketing globally (57K items); and CardWeb.com’s CardPixes® – form & function of card design (7K items).