In recent years there has been a greater and greater push toward becoming a cashless society – even more exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, this is a non-starter for two reasons. One is that there are still millions of Americans who are either unbanked or underbanked in the U.S. When consumers only have the ability to pay in cash for goods and services, businesses who go solely digital are discriminating against a great swath of consumers.
Second, cash is still widely used for paying for goods and services. According to the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, cash is still widely used.
In their 2020 Findings from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice, the FRBSF found that:
- Consumers used cash for 26 percent of all payments, consistent with the finding from 2018
- Cash is used heavily for small-value payments, about 47 percent of payments under $10
- The share of cash use across all age cohorts was generally unchanged
- 87 percent of non-bill payments were made in-person, and cash was used for 35 percent of those payments
ATMs to the Rescue
With cash still so popular the question then becomes how to cater to customers who need readily available access to cash. That’s where ATMs come in. In the age of go, go, go, customers want to be able to merge several errands into one. ATMs can help. No longer are ATMs solely for withdrawing cash. Some ATMs now have the ability to accept deposits, take payments for bill pay, make credit card payments, and much more.
Technology is advancing rapidly and this allows some ATMs to provide live customer servicing with representatives on hand to answer questions about your account.
As ATMs become more advanced, we are sure to see more and more servicing opportunities all in one place – making ATMs an even more essential part of our communities.