GfK Ukraine research on payment habits of Ukrainians: what are the conclusions business should do?

A week ago Unit.City hosted an awesome PayTech Ukraine conference, which seemed to have the entire payment services market in it. There were a lot of interesting reports (including the insides about our electronic wallet LeoWallet), I can’t tell about all of them right away. But one seriously hooked me. Lydia Kulyba from GfK Ukraine spoke on concrete examples and figures about how Ukrainians are increasingly transferring for non-cash payments.

It doesn’t make sense to retell the research. But it’s very necessary to draw conclusions from it — to everyone who works with payments.

Two large audiences as two stages of scaling a financial product

The presentation uses an interesting method of audience segmentation, which I would call «hybrid». Why hybrid? Because it includes both an indicator of age and an indicator of average income. This method distinguishes two categories of payment service consumers:

  • Affluent — Ukrainians from 25 to 50 years, whose income is in the range from 15 000 to 20 000 UAH per month. I prefer to rate the lower threshold at 10,000 UAH, but a lot of it depends on the product. This is an «understandable» audience to us of people who are already «in it». With You must begin the development of our product with this people.
  • Mass — Ukrainians from 16 y.o. and older, living both in cities and in villages. There is no financial sampling. This is a wide audience, which you need to switch to after sufficient saturation in the Affluent segment.

Affluent are your «target» at forming the core audience of your financial product. But not without difficulties: 93% of the audience already have a debit bank card (mostly salary projects) and 62% have credit cards. To impress such a user, you need to try harder. This is you and me, our friends and relatives. They were waiting for the first mobile bank in Ukraine to appear, they are actively paying for goods and services not mostly with a bank card, but with the smartphone in which this card is added.

Conclusion: Affluent users are the most valuable asset of any payment product — because if they use it, then it is really useful.

Mass are those with whom it is necessary to work correctly. Only 64% own any payment card, there is room to grow. Credit cards — only 16%. This is not a blue ocean, but a very confident field for maneuver. For example, pension cards occupy a significant share here — which means that you can create interesting offers for this audience. These are both our parents and school graduates, freshmen of high schools, civil servants, young specialists who have just begun their careers. Those who have not yet taken a big place financially, but this doesn’t mean they don’t have needs.

Conclusion: Mass users are your growth potential. Divide into segments and cover it with valuable offers.

Credit cards are the main driver of online payment growth

I make a conclusion immediately in the subtitle. 62% of affluent consumers have credit cards. At the same time, 90% of them pay online. Meanwhile 55% of 16% credit card holders in the Mass segment make online payments (33% for debit card holders).

Obviously, credit cards give the customer a sense of freedom and opportunity. This feeling is pushing for more active online payments, the transition to cashless. That is why the more benefits you give the customer, the more credit money he/she will spend.

What is in the way?

Among the main obstacles to non-cash payments, GfK Ukraine cites a group of reasons, one way or another connected with mistrust: threats of fraud, malfunctions, suspicion of financial institutions etc.

You can and should work with this — after all, the payment for the utilities and mobile accounts has already been firmly entrenched in card payments, moreover, in both segments. Therefore, it’s important to understand, what everyday problem the customer wants to solve and give him / her a solution of this problem.