A survey highlighting the impact of digital platforms has revealed that Kenyans prefer to use cashless payments to conduct business more than South Africans and Nigerians.

The survey, released by global digital payment solutions provider Visa, showed that approximately (71 percent) of businesses in Kenya use cash as a means of payment, compared to higher use of cash by businesses in South Africa (91 percent) and Nigeria. (94 percent).

According to the study, the lower use of cash among Kenyan businesses is reflected in the high preference for mobile wallets (56 %) compared to Nigeria (14 %) and South Africa (7 %).

The study highlighted that the high use of digital payments in Kenya was concentrated in the food, entertainment, tours and accommodation, agriculture, transportation and delivery, and professional services sectors of the economy.

“Cash is the most used option in all markets, although relatively lower in Kenya. Mobile wallet payments are the most widely used and preferred in Kenya. Using a personal account for business payments is also common in Kenya. Bank transfer is widely used in Nigeria,” the survey stated.

It added that 69 percent of Kenyan businesses said digital payments (mobile money transfer, card payment, contactless cards and bank transfer) have had a positive impact on their business as they can easily track expenses and revenue, allowing for fast transactions and reducing errors in exchange.

The adoption of mobile money payments in Kenya has been on the rise following the Central Bank's push for the service in recent times. Last year during the pandemic, the Kenyan government issued a directive through the central bank, instructing commercial banks and payment service providers to suspend charges on all transfers from mobile money wallets and bank accounts.

According to Visa, the impact of the introduction of digital payments for companies is positive, but the study shows room for improvement in adoption. The survey found that 83 percent of respondents who adopted digital payments experienced an improvement in income. At the same time, 55 percent of business owners plan to increase investment in new technologies.

Source: Business Insider Africa