GERMANY | A recent survey by market research firm Forsa has showed that in Germany payment on account is the most commonly used payment method for online shopping. 58% of customers buy online but do not pay immediately. This is followed by online payment service providers (52%) and direct debit (46%). Lagging far behind is the credit card (34%).
In a similar survey in 2007 Bitkom was able to announce a very different message: “Direct Debit is the most used payment method”. Then only one in ten paid using dedicated online payment systems. At that time, PayPal and the like occupied fifth place behind direct debit, payment on account and credit cards. “Payment services designed specifically for the Internet are important”, said Bitkom President Dieter Kempf. “For online purchases, tailored solutions provide both buyer and seller with a high level of security.”
The reason why payment on account is still popular is possibly due to the fact that the customer wants to inspect the goods before payment. By this means a convenient solution for the customer is created; but for the dealer, it entails a comparatively high risk of default. However, customers express a very firm belief in this preference. In addition to the actual use, Forsa also asked about the ideal payment solution. Again, payment on account is at the top with 42 per cent, followed by the other payment methods in the order mentioned above already.