Morning musings – this time it’s all about impulse buying

Morning musings – this time it’s all about impulse buying

Mornings with the YourCash Marketing team normally starts with a pot of coffee and scouring the internet for news on cash and ATMs.  As we nursed our coffee mugs this morning…we began to discuss the recent information from Payments UK where they’ve shown that whilst cash was used less in 2015 than previous years, it still maintains its pole position when it comes to spontaneous purchases and we wondered what was deemed a spontaneous purchase?

Can you believe that there were 30 billion spontaneous purchases in the UK last year and over 16 billion of them were made in cash…but why was it that cash is so popular when it came to buying on impulse?

We decided that a true impulse purchase was one where little consideration had gone into it and there’s an element of immediacy around it…and probably it’s got a nominal value (we thought less than £10 was about right…we might be wrong!) and based on the data from Payments UK, it would seem that the retail environment (not including supermarkets) saw a whopping 32% of all cash impulse purchases last year and if you added in the supermarket element, 53% of impulse purchases are made in the retail space.

Having over 50% of the impulse purchase market, we concluded that whilst card and contactless payments are on the increase – and we’re aware that this is a trend that will continue going forward, there is a genuine value for readily available cash in the retail space.

So does cash have a limited future?  We don’t think so, the value of cash will ebb and flow as people need it.  If we do go into recession post Brexit, then cash will be key to help us budget and manage our bills and if we remain buoyant, cash may take a back step, but there is still a genuine love and need for cash in the UK and don’t forget we have the launch of the new £5 polymer notes in September.

Whether you are a cash lover or hater, it is here to stay and will continue to be a relevant payment choice for a number of years to come, so just in case of that spontaneous purchase, or in the unlikely event that the power/broadband/electricity goes down and you’re in a cash only situation…it’s worth a quick visit to an ATM to get that emergency £10…you never know when you might need it!

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