FNB reveals upsurge in consumer spend

FNB data is showing an upsurge in customers who are spending on various things and activities from the comfort of their homes. A year since our country went into lockdown, the data sheds light on how customers are splurging on home delivery, video and music streaming apps for convenient access to services. This has subsequently led to a booming usage of platforms like Mr D Food, Netflix, Showmax, iTunes, and Spotify.

Raj Makanjee, CEO of FNB Retail and Private Banking says, “The pandemic has accelerated the use of digital platforms and home delivery services for a safer and convenient exchange of goods, services and payments. As a pioneer of digitised and unassisted financial services, we are in a position to support our customers by making it easier for them to pay for goods/services and manage their money via our trusted platform. While some banks charge ‘international processing fees’ when customers use global streaming services like Netflix or iTunes, our customers are not charged additional fees. In addition, we support our customers with free monthly data via FNB Connect, eBucks Rewards at retailers like Mr D Food as well as our selection of safer digital and card payments.”

The sentiment is echoed by CEO of FNB Card, Chris Labuschagne, who says one of the most preferred payments methods for subscriptions and online purchases is their Virtual Card on the FNB and RMB Private Bank apps. Something most people are using to drive this trend is FNB’s Virtual Cards which have a cool security feature that changes the CVV number limiting the chances of fraud without affecting the monthly or annual renewal of one’s subscription.

Labuschagne continued by mentioning that the need for innovative platform payment solutions is supported by the fact that more than 200,000 FNB Virtual Cards have been activated since launch in January this year with total spend values approaching R200m.

Some of the prominent trends from FNB’s data include:

Home delivery

While FNB data shows that the Uber app is still the most used delivery app, Mr D Food recorded the most increase in usage, with a 140% increase since the start of lockdown. When the Bank compared the number of customers who spent on Mr D Food in the month of March 2021 versus March 2020, it saw a 98% increase. There was no major change in the average amount that each customer spent on take-out food before versus after the start of lockdown.

Video subscriptions

Spend on major streaming platforms Netflix, Showmax and Amazon Prime increased since lockdown. The average number of customers who paid for subscription with Netflix increased 64%, Showmax increased 78% while Amazon Prime increased 50%.

Music subscription

Overall, music related subscriptions increased with Apple iTunes up 18% per month on average. Usage of Spotify increased the most by 83% and the move from Google Music to YouTube Music saw a 188% jump in monthly subscriptions to YouTube.

“Individually, customers are not necessarily spending more on any of these categories, however adoption is certainly growing across our base. There is clearly a significant shift in consumers’ appetites and choices, based on where people choose to spend their money. As part of our journey to support customers in their money management journey, our trusted platform capabilities are scaling quickly as we expect digital adoption to continue,” concludes Labuschagne.