Is Request to Pay a new challenger to established payment methods?

A survey by Icon Solutions has found the Request to Pay payment method is expected to challenge current payment methods such as direct debit and payment cards in the near future.

Request to Pay is a payment method that allows payees to initiate requests for payments within a secure messaging channel.

The survey – titled Demystifying Request to Pay: An Industry Perspective – harvested opinion from over 50 industry stakeholders to understand customer demand, key use-cases and the path to widespread adoption.

The study found that 87% of respondents view Request to Pay as a good alternative to direct debits while 71% said they expected Request to Pay will reduce merchant dependency on payment cards. Meanwhile, 67% of respondents identified bank readiness as the key roadblock that is impacted the adoption of Request to Pay, with the limitations of existing technology and lack of clear strategy also seen as key inhibiting factors.

Up to 73% of respondents said they saw the most demand for Request to Pay services from large corporate companies. Respondents stated that they are planning to leverage Request to Pay to diversify product roadmaps.

However, it was found that few survey respondents had launched Request to Pay services to date with Request to Pay not featuring on the short-term roadmaps for many.

Icon senior payments consultant Louise Shorthouse said, “Make no mistake, the industry expects Request to Pay to have a lasting impact on the future of banking and payments. The potential to deliver more flexibility, choice and control to corporates, merchants and consumers – while reducing costs – offers a real alternative.

“For example, Request to Pay opens the ability to circumvent traditional card rails and drive consumers towards cheaper account-to-account (A2A) based payment options at the point-of-sale and provides an alternative to direct debits that gives customers more flexibility in how they pay bills and manage their finances. If we consider the massive transaction volumes involved, it seems inevitable that Request to Pay will change the way we pay.”

Icon strategy director Toine van Beusekom added, “Despite the undoubted potential of Request to Pay, technology transformation programmes remain notoriously difficult. Identifying a pragmatic path to upgrade existing technology estates, in tandem with a clear strategy that is aligned with broader business objectives, will be critical to accelerating bank support for Request to Pay services and remaining competitive in the long-term.

“But with banks already at the limits of their technological and strategic capacity, trusted third-parties promise to play an important role in filling the resource gap to help banks realise the huge opportunities presented by Request to Pay.”

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