, Singapore
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How are Singaporean businesses adapting to cashless trends?

About 31% of consumers in Singapore do not carry wallets any more.

Over half of Singaporean consumers or 56% are ready to ditch a purchase if they cannot pay in their preferred way, according to the Adyen Index: Retail Report 2024.

Traditionally dominated by cash and physical cards, the report revealed that 31% of Singaporean consumers now do not even carry wallets, opting instead for contactless options such as tapping their phones or QR code payments. 

QR code payments have surged by 31% annually in Singapore, outpacing the global average of 11%.

About 34% expressed the desire for retailers to leverage technology to expedite in-store shopping, whilst 51% advocate for more self-checkout alternatives.

Still, only 24% of retailers accept digital wallets, and 16% support buy now, pay later options, both online and in-store.

Moreover, only 18% have implemented self-checkout facilities and 21% utilise mobile point of sale (mPOS) solutions to enhance customer service efficiency. Similarly, online payment experiences are subpar, with 19% of Singaporean retailers offering one-click checkouts.

“Given the speed of customer adoption, it’s not surprising that Singaporean businesses continue to play catch-up,” the report said.

Meanwhile, businesses embracing social commerce are seeing growth, with 81% reporting increased revenue. At least 51% Singaporean consumers have shopped on social media in the past year, spending an average of S$227.50 per transaction.

The demographic breakdown of social media shoppers in Singapore revealed that 66% are Gen Z, 46% are Gen X, 64% are Millennials, and 34% are Baby Boomers. Additionally, 5% to 14% of shoppers across various age groups were first-time buyers on social media platforms.

The report encouraged businesses to introduce MPOs systems to accept payments from anywhere within their stores, reducing queues and empowering staff to engage proactively with customers. 

It added that leveraging network tokenisation enhances card authorisation rates for returning customers, a practice adopted by only 21% of Singaporean businesses currently. 

ALSO READ: Why BNPL is booming in Southeast Asia

Smart optimisation tools also facilitate the routing of payments through networks that offer the lowest costs and highest approval rates, whilst payment data can be utilised to incentivise online shoppers based on their in-store purchasing behavior.

“Retailers are, more than ever, looking to maintain differentiation whilst ensuring efficiency,” said Alex Rhodes, Global Head of Unified Commerce at Adyen. 

“They must juggle this in an increasingly complex environment of changing regulations, new payment methods, new technologies like AI, new global competitors, and new business models,” he said.

Additionally, Rhodes said retailers must manage multiple channels seamlessly, from brick-and-mortar stores to e-commerce, mobile, and social platforms, whilst maintaining a consistent customer experience. 

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