Many foodservice trends have emerged or at least accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic, and among them is the increasing volume of contactless transactions.
As consumer behaviour has dramatially shifted in line with both preference and necessity over the last 12 months, far more Canadians are shopping online. Those who are still heading to bricks-and-mortar establishments are increasingly seeking contactless transactions as part of a wider contactless experience.
Contactless transactions have numerous benefits, and were not exactly unheard of before the pandemic. In fact, they were already widely popular, due in no small part to the vastly increased efficiency and ease of payment that they offer.
However, in COVID-19 times, there are also significant health benefits that come into play. Cash transactions, and even cashless payments before the pandemic, entailed high touchpoints like the physical handling of cash or the use of widely shared touchscreens. As such, the demand for such options has soared.
This is shown clearly by a recent survey from Moneris, which found that the volume of credit and debit card contactless transactions in Canada grew by 32 per cent year over year by the third quarter of 2020.
By the time the start of 2021 rolled around, the survey says, contactless payments represented about 60 per cent of overall transactions across the country.
The study also found that from June to September 2020, the hospitality industry were severely impacted by the pandemic, with a decrease in spending volumes of nearly two-thirds (almost 62 per cent).