It is a simple fact – we all spend a huge amount of time online these days. Web-based services have become crucial to our work, entertainment, and how we shop; while they have had a major impact on the activities of many businesses as well.
Some people might assume that it is primarily larger organisations that are benefiting from new technology and digital innovations. However, that is not necessarily the case. In fact, Visa has revealed how it is on a mission to ensure that small businesses across Europe – including in Romania – get access to such capabilities.
Moving with the times
At the start of March, the payments organisation revealed how around 100 partners from across the continent have joined its Where You Shop Matters initiative. The concept has been created to ensure small businesses move with the times and Visa is aiming to help eight million companies in Europe future-proof their operations.
The company’s press release outlined some of its efforts so far, touching upon developments like its work with governments in a range of countries. Visa has also joined forces with online platforms to ensure small firms can easily create an online presence, while it added that Tap-to-Phone technology is helping thousands of businesses in countries including Romania, the Czech Republic, and Poland. The service turns mobile devices into payment terminals.
Finding new and innovative ways to pay seems to be a crucial issue right now, as Visa’s own research found that there has been a significant increase in online sales in countries across Europe. In addition, it added that eight out of ten transactions are contactless.
A greater interest
The update on Visa’s initiative has come at an interesting time, particularly as other studies have suggested that digital payments and services are getting more and more attention in Romania.
At the end of February, we reported on the Tech Trends 2021 study by Starcom Romania. The research suggested that older generations in the country had started to take a greater interest in digital services, with people over 45 embracing online payments and platforms across 2020. It also revealed that e-commerce apps had proven popular in the past 12 months, while banking apps were referenced as well.
The findings have come several years after another study suggested many Romanians were keen on the idea of going cashless. Back in 2017, Romania-Insider.com revealed how a study by ING found that 38 percent of people in the country would go cashless if they had a choice. This was higher than the European average of 34 percent.
Embracing the idea
So, while consumers appear to be interested in digital payments and money management tools, which business sectors are embracing the idea?
Some fascinating examples can be found all over the globe. For instance, it is interesting to reflect on the brands that now support GooglePay. The service is available in a host of countries including Romania and it has been adopted by many types of businesses. For example, if you were to visit the UK, the official site reveals how you could use it in supermarkets, on public transport, and in restaurants. Another sector that has not been shy in embracing new digital payment methods is the online casino world. As VegasSlotsOnline.com outlines, for example, top sites in that sector tend to support a range of payment options, with e-wallets like PayPal featuring prominently. It adds that such digital payment tools have become popular with players across the world, while it even devotes an entire section of its site to the casino platforms that accept PayPal.
Last year, it was also revealed how some businesses in Romania have even embraced payment technology that uses biometric facial recognition. PayByFace explained that its services had been adopted by Up Romania, so meal and gift cardholders could use the option. It added that its system had also been introduced in Tucano Coffee shops in Bucharest.
An intriguing time
All in all, it is an intriguing time in the world of payments. The way we pay for many things is changing and we have a range of options at our disposal.
It is welcome to see Visa working in Romania and other countries to ensure small businesses are up to speed on digital services. It will also be fascinating to see how matters evolve in the months and years ahead.