It takes more than convenience to woo credit card users

December 02, 2021

Consumers want more than just a great interest rate when they choose a credit card issuer, PYMNTS research has revealed. Three out of four consumers consider user experience features such as cash back rewards, better data privacy protection and credit-building tools.

This is just one of the key findings revealed in The Convenience Catalyst: How Customer Experience Features Drive Credit Card Usage, a collaboration between PYMNTS and Elan (a division of U.S. Bank), which examines how consumer preferences drive credit card choice and usage patterns. The report is based on insights drawn from a census-balanced survey of 2,094 adult American regular credit card users conducted between Sept. 15 and Sept. 24. The report found that many consumers use credit cards to manage debt, cash flow and increase their credit scores.

"Approximately 40% of credit card users are highly demanding in the features they consider central when choosing a credit card."

More key findings from the study include: 

In the last 12 months, 168 million consumers have used a credit card, and 137 million have done so in a way that they have balances due month after month (we call them regular users). These consumers accumulate 80% of credit cards and 96% of credit card debt in the United States.

Many consumers consider carrying a balance a relevant financing alternative for managing their expenses. Half of credit card debt is likely to be revolved in any given month, and just four out of 10 regular card users say they pay their balance in full month after month.

Approximately 40% of credit card users are highly demanding in the features they consider central when choosing a credit card. Consumers in financial distress and with children are the most likely to want extra features, such as credit building options.

Research shows that 75% of active users who are parents cite credit-building tools as a key factor when deciding between cards. Active credit card users who are parents are also the most likely to carry balances from month to month.

To learn more about the role of user experience in consumer credit card choice, download the report.

This article originally appeared on on December 2, 2021.

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