SMEs worry over low coverage of the four e-payment providers and hope for further promotion
Complicated distribution method becomes one of the obstacles towards e-payment popularity
HONG KONG, June 24, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — The government is going to issue $5,000 electronic consumption vouchers to Hong Kong permanent residents soon. Mojodomo Holdings Limited, a local start-up loyalty marktech platform, announced the results of "Survey on Hong Kong people’s view on using the $5,000 electronic consumption voucher" today. The survey shows that nearly 80% of respondents will choose Octopus and Alipay HK to collect the voucher. Two-thirds of the consumers intend to use the voucher to purchase other cash or shopping coupons. Moreover, over 40% of the citizens plan to use the consumption voucher for purchases exceeding $5,000.
(Left) Mr. Dennis SHI, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Mojodomo Holdings Limited, Ms. Eleanor LAM, Managing Director, NuanceTree Limited, Ms. Honnus CHEUNG, Co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer, Mojodomo Holdings Limited, Mr. Simon HUI, CEO of ecHome, and Mr. Leon LAI, Co-founder of MyDress have group photo.
Mr. Dennis SHI, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Mojodomo Holdings Limited, believes the Consumption Vouchers Scheme will foster the popularity of electronic payment technologies and encourage more public and local merchants to adopt electronic payment systems. Hence, the scheme will accelerate Hong Kong’s development as a smart city. However, regarding the latest consumption voucher scheme, majority of SMEs consider the doling out and usage of consumption vouchers complicated. The distribution methods vary between Octopus and the other three e-payment. It may cause inconvenience and confusion, especially for the elderly. The industry suggested the government can unify the distribution method so that citizens can be more open to e-payment. The community also suggested the government include more e-payment methods such as virtual bank.
Two local SMEs, Mr. Simon HUI, CEO of ecHome, and Mr. Leon LAI, Co-founder of MyDress, shared their difficulties and the corresponding solutions regarding this consumption voucher scheme at the press conference. Both merchants show their concern over e-payment, considering the expensive handling fees, deferred income, etc. Although most of the e-payment providers have agreed to waive practicable installation or handling fee for local merchants (especially SMEs), they still need to reconsider the operation costs once the scheme ends.
MyDress, an online shopping platform, only accepts credit cards (including Tap & Go) and PayMe as payment methods currently and has not adopted the remaining three stored value facility operators announced by the government. MyDress claimed they would specially set up new e-payment methods for this occasion. The other SME, ecHome, a home appliance product seller with dozens of branches, has already adopted all four e-payment operators in its stores and hopes this scheme will positively impact their business and the local economy.
The survey was conducted by NuanceTree Limited, an independent market research company, and successfully interviewed more than 1,000 Hong Kong citizens aged 18-64 on the Internet to investigate their expected spending habits, behaviour, product categories, etc.
Most respondents will redeem through Octopus and merchant coverage is the most concerning factor
In this survey, 98% of citizens stated that they would use the government’s $5000 electronic consumption vouchers. 59% of the respondents will redeem through Octopus, which accounts for the most among all four operators of store value facility, followed by Alipay Hong Kong (26%). They believe that Octopus is the fastest and most convenient payment method. Meanwhile, only 7% and 4% of respondents choose WeChat Pay HK and Tap & Go. Citizens are more concerned about the simplicity of consumption vouchers usage than the registration and redeem procedures. Likewise, merchant coverage is a main source of concern for 54% of respondents.
The majority of the respondents will spend on food and electronic devices, Nearly 70% of the respondents wish to purchase other cash coupons
In terms of product categories, more than half of the respondents plan to use the voucher to purchase food, 42% to purchase electronic devices, 41% and 36% to buy household goods and apparel, respectively. More than two-thirds of respondents wish that the voucher can cover other cash or shopping coupon and thus be saved for delayed consumption. However, Gen Z respondents, aged 18 to 24, prefer immediate use of consumption vouchers and are less likely to convert consumption vouchers into other shopping vouchers.
Electronic vouchers effectively stimulate local consumption as over 40% of respondents plan to spend more than $5,000
In terms of the total consumption amount, 41% of citizens intend to use consumption vouchers for significant purchases exceeding $5000; electronics and home appliances are the most common items. Moreover, young people under 40 have the highest tendency to overspend. More than half of the respondents who choose to redeem with Alipay Hong Kong tend to spend more than $5000.
The consumption pattern of the senior citizens arouses safety issues
Among all 18-64-year-old interviewees, 69% need to assist seniors (average 70 years old) with the registration, receipt and use of electronic consumption vouchers. The majority of those interviewed expressed an interest in using vouchers for the elderly, and healthy food suits their demands in addition to everyday basics and meals. According to the survey, up to 80% of senior citizens prefer to use Octopus as a payment platform. Octopus stated earlier that they would not separate electronic consumption vouchers and the balance accounts; users could use consumption vouchers for regular expenditure; and hence, it may bring about the risk of theft, especially for seniors with a physical Octopus card.