Is There a Payment Generation Gap?
I was recently reading a blog post from a LinkedIn connection about how Gen Z Consumers Shop. I’m not really interested in how they shop, but I thought it might provide some insight into how they pay. Interestingly enough, embedded in that article was a link to another blog post about how different age groups prefer to pay. Now we’re on to something!
Coincidentally, if you’re as confused as I am about Gen X, Gen Y, Millennials, and Gen Z, here’s a great explanation. What will the next generation be called? Gen AA? That’s a little spreadsheet humor…
Relevance to Your Utility
What is the relevance of all this to a utility? I think it boils down to knowing your customer demographic. If you serve a primarily aging Baby Boomer customer base, you probably still see lots of check payments, so you might want to consider some type of remittance processing system. Similarly, if your customers are more likely to have a landline phone than a computer at home, an IVR system may make more sense than online bill pay. On the other hand, if your customer demographic is younger, you probably see more use of online payments, either initiated through your customer’s bank or from your website. And, of course, you want to offer bank drafts for all age groups!
Consider Your Options
The point of all this is so you can keep in mind your customer base when deciding what payment options to offer. Even though you personally might never use a particular payment method, it doesn’t mean your customers won’t.
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Authored by: Gary Sanders, Senior Consultant