North American PaymentsInsights, U.S – Subscription Services and Bill Pay: Card Payments Dominate


Digital Payments Dominate Subscriptions and Bill Payments

Mercator Advisory Group’s latest survey report reveals that consumers opt for digital payments as the most convenient way to pay for subscription services and bills.

Published on: May 28, 2020
Author: Peter Reville
Alternate Point of Contact: Amy Dunckelmann

Mercator Advisory Group’s most recent consumer survey report, Subscription Services and Bill Pay: Card Payments Dominate, from the 2019 Technology Survey of the bi-annual North American PaymentsInsights series, examines U.S. consumers’ current use subscription services and methods for paying their bills.

The report, which is based on an online panel survey administered to 3,006 U.S. adults in November-December 2019, presents results from questions exploring how adults in the United States use and pay for “box of the month” clubs and online subscription services. It also explores the ways consumers pay their bills and the increasing importance of digital bill payment.

Regarding subscription services in the U.S., consumers are about twice as likely to subscribe to an online subscription service as to subscribe to a “box of the month” service (59% vs 23%). Interestingly, a relatively large portion of American adults (38%) do not subscribe to either type of service.

When it comes to paying bills, the majority of consumers (6 in 10) are currently paying at least some of their bills electronically through either automatic billing or bank account withdrawal. Consumers are paying bills in equal proportion through electronic bill pay via their bank, their biller, or bill pay service.

“This report explores two very important aspects in the payments ecosystem—subscription services and bill payment. Electronic payments play a very large role in both of these areas, and it is important to understand the payments dynamics of both,” stated the author of the report, Peter Reville, director of Primary Research Services at Mercator Advisory Group, which includes the North American PaymentsInsights series.

This report in slide form is 58 pages long. 


Highlights of this report include:

  • Current and past membership in various types “box of the month” clubs and online subscription services
  • Satisfaction with these services
  • Method of payment for each of these services
  • Current and preferred methods used to pay bills
  • Reasons for preferred payment method
  • Payments types used to pay bills
  • Perceptions on bill payment and clearing times
  • Importance of notification of bill payment



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