South Africans appear to be growing more comfortable with contactless payments

The annual shopping event that is Black Friday morphed into Black November this year with many retailers offering specials on products throughout the month.

Despite these long-tail sales, spending on Black Friday was still a watershed for the likes of FNB and Standard Bank.

Spending among FNB customers was up 19 percent year-on-year and the bank processed over over R2.5 billion in transactions by FNB card holders.

“During this year’s Black Friday, we recorded a peak of 490 transactions per second, an improvement compared to 2020 but on par with volumes processed in 2019. In the last 3 years, Black Friday has been the biggest shopping day of the year in South Africa, and we expect this trend to continue considering the effort that retailers continue to make to attract willing buyers,” explains chief executive officer of FNB Merchant services, Thokozani Dlamini.

Meanwhile, Standard Bank says that card transactions increased by 17 percent compared to Black Friday 2020. The average value of transactions also climbed up by 13 percent.

Furthermore, Standard Bank saw contactless card payment increase 100 percent compared to the same period last year.

“It’s great to see that our customers have embraced innovation and have adopted contactless payments to transact seamlessly. This feature is increasingly popular simply because it makes the process of paying with your card much quicker,” says head of card and payments at Standard Bank, Nelisa Zulu.

Looking at virtual cards, this payment solution is quickly gaining popularity among FNB customers according to CEO of FNB Card, Chris Labuschagne.

“We’re also delighted to see many of our customers using our wide range of convenient and safer payment alternatives, such as Virtual Cards and Apple Pay. While Black Friday is usually the peak shopping period, Cyber Monday has been equally popular in recent years. As a result, we expect to see customers taking advantage of any specials on tech or digital products,” said Labuschagne.

Standard Bank provided a bit more insight stating that it saw a 61 percent increase in transactions that use a virtual card. Customers of the bank appear to feel more comfortable with this payment solution compared to a year ago because the average value on virtual card transactions increase by 28 percent.

It’s good to see contactless payment solutions becoming so popular and we hope to see more solutions that cater to even more South Africans in future.


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