Wallets will continue to evolve by incorporating new features to facilitate everything from credit to investment.

After a period of strong adoption, e-wallets will take a step further in addressing consumer needs, by incorporating everything from invisible collection to investment management solutions. 

From their beginnings as a relatively simple channel offering perhaps a debit card or savings account, wallets will continue to diversify on the road to becoming robust media and super apps. 

We list the key trends for this sub-sector in 2022 that are essential for driving growth, what capabilities must be added and which customer needs must be satisfied.

  • Invisible and Contactless Payments

Digital payments are booming with high usage figures worldwide. Cash is forecast to account for only 13% of payments globally by 2024, according to a payment trend study by Capgemini.

This represents an opportunity for the industry to remove more barriers to making purchases. 

Invisible payments facilitate user operations and result in fewer abandoned shopping carts and greater efficiency in physical stores.

A typical online transaction involves steps such as entering the user’s name, card details, address, and so on. In the store, the user also needs to remember their PIN code and even present a physical ID in some cases.

Eliminating some of the steps in the purchase process ensures more successful transactions; for example, enabling the mobile wallet to simply be read by a POS terminal with a QR code, and the purchase is complete. 

Solutions such as Apple Pay or Google Pay store user identification data as well as a tokenized version of your card, which lets you use mobile devices to pay without entering any information. It makes payments seamless and improves merchant conversions.

  • Fast Credit Approvals 

Virtual wallets are also opening the door to personal loans to complete e-commerce and physical stores purchases. 

But how do you grant fast and convenient credit through wallets? By monitoring users’ activity—both inside and outside the wallet. 

Consumers can authorize the bank to track their movements on other platforms to collect data needed to build a consumption profile. The bank can also provide a credit card with a conservative spending limit that can be raised to the extent that the customer is using it and making repayments on time. 

Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL), which has the particularity of splitting purchases to give the user greater flexibility, is another credit model that will make an impact in 2022. A BNPL solution that can be accessed through the wallet could have great potential.

Nothing is more convenient for a buyer than paying how and when they want, and having an intelligent financing option makes the difference between whether a transaction is effective or not. 

  • Financial Investment Instruments 

Wallets permit access to all kinds of financial products designed to help consumers achieve their life goals. 

In this regard, banks are expected to add new wealth-management tools to their wallets in 2022, allowing users to make fixed or variable income investments with great ease. 

It’s a good idea for these solutions to be accompanied by virtual advisors who guide users through the complexities of the stock market in a didactic way. Special attention should also be paid to customer profiles, in order to offer clients a combination of instruments that provide good returns but with controlled risk, especially for beginners.

In addition, the wallet must allow the return on investment to be monitored, as this will provide greater transparency and credibility.

  • Credit and Debit Cards, but Digital

Another trend for this year is wallets accompanied by virtual cards.  

Unlike plastic, the virtual card is a set of sixteen digits and a CVV code randomly generated by the software. They can be credit or debit cards.

The exciting thing about hosting a virtual card in an electronic wallet is that it can be used to make purchases remotely and is very good at preventing fraud, thanks to the fact that once the random number is used, it can be deleted and replaced by a new one.

At the same time, institutions can add controls to the cards that limit where they can be used, how much can be spent, and even allow them to be activated or deactivated. 

In short, competition in financial services will continue to heat up in 2022, with the focus on developing convenient digital bank with an excellent user experience. But that won’t necessarily be enough: the most popular wallets will be those that are most comprehensive and those that offer the best features to their customers. 

Andy Tran