As we continue dealing with a recessionary climate caused by the global pandemic, consumers with damaged credit scores are looking for ways to restore their creditworthiness while also getting access to desired products and services by means other than traditional credit.
Bringing these spenders back into the credit ecosystem also benefits merchants in a big way. “The Second-Chance Consumer: How Buy Now, Pay Later Payments Create New Merchant Opportunities,” a PYMNTS and Sezzle collaboration, surveyed more than 7,000 U.S. consumers to see how buy now, pay later (BNPL) alternative credit options are giving the credit-challenged new access to credit via installments, creating new customers for merchants in the process.
Researchers found that second-chance consumers “are hesitant to add to their debt burden, even if credit is available,” with 42% of those who don’t have a credit card responding that they don’t want one, “because they believe it encourages spending.”
And these are, in many cases, perfectly good retail customers with spending power. The study states that among second-chance consumers, “65% earn more than $50,000 per year, with 30% earning above $100,000. The average second-chance consumer is 44 years old and has a FICO score of 662 — just 38 points shy of what usually is seen as a ‘good’ credit score.”
BNPL is skyrocketing in popularity, but merchants still need to drive awareness of this payment option, with second-chance consumers an attractive group. Per the study, “73% of second-chance consumers who have used BNPL in the past or would use it in the future agree with the statement that seeing BNPL as an option “makes me more likely to shop at retailers that offer BNPL.”