In December, I predicted that 2018 would be the year that sees contactless charity payments go mainstream – you’ll be able to tap to donate for your poppy, daffodil or geranium badge, and I think it can’t come soon enough. In an increasingly cashless society, and with contactless payments now accounting for more than half of all transactions under £30, I’m hopeful that charities will be able to better harness the power of the casual donor.
We know from consumer psychology the benefit of being mentally and (in this case crucially), physically available – i.e. making donation decisions as easy as possible.
Having a contactless box/bucket will not only save us the faff of fumbling around for an acceptable number of coins, but also allow charities to set default amounts and round up the average amount collected. A number of contactless collection pilots last year showing promising results; donations increased, and they received a positive reception from passers by – a nice change from the awkward dance to avoid a poor chugger.
Yes, there are risks to the tap-happy culture we seem to be heading towards – contactless payments have been blamed for an increase in consumer debt, and removes you further from the transaction. The designers of Apple Pay, contactless, etc have done the hard work and created a system that reduces the pain of parting with your cash, and makes it almost irresistibly easy. Let’s put it to good use.