The world is going cashless and PayPal is leading the way

Some of the more optimistic estimates believe that the west is heading for a cashless society by 2022. Others predict that it will happen within a decade. Either way, the days of paying for things with paper and coins are soon to be behind us, as the world moves towards more efficient and forward-thinking methods of performing transactions. Systems like PayPal have driven the progression towards this future and are now well-placed to benefit from it.

PayPal is now one of the globe’s most trusted payment platforms

For almost 15 years, PayPal spent its early existence as the main payment system for transactions on eBay. The platform was able to gain a solid reputation during this time, as eBay was one of the world’s largest and most trusted eCommerce sites. PayPal effectively piggybacked on the success of eBay until it reached a point where its owners realised it could function as its own entity. It was spun off from eBay in 2015, and in the five years since it has undergone an impressive rise towards global domination.

In 2021, PayPal was ranked at number 134 in the Fortune 500 list of the most lucrative corporations in the USA. It can now be used in more than 200 countries; it handles a vast array of currencies and is integrated with hundreds of banks around the globe. It can be used as a method of making international transfers, but it can also act as a system for day-to-day payments.

Just as showing the logos of Visa and Mastercard were once the gold standard for a business’s legitimacy, the PayPal symbol is always featured prominently on sites that want to prove their credibility. It’s particularly prevalent in the gaming industry where companies need to form instant connections with players.

In sectors where players are spoilt for choice, such as iGaming, players often turn to comparison sites to assist with their selections. When looking through the best online casinos, they may be swayed by the bonuses on offer at the different sites. Alternatively, some players look out for recognised payment methods like PayPal.

Options like Wise set to challenge

The main driving force behind the decline of cash payments is the fact that more transactions than ever are occurring online. The eCommerce industry was worth $4.28 trillion in 2020, and it is expanding every year. When making purchases at these sites, cash on delivery is available sometimes, but most users find it more convenient to pay online.

Even brick and mortar businesses are turning to digital payment methods, thanks to the greater availability of the internet around the world. More than 80 per cent of the world’s population carries an internet-ready smartphone now, meaning that they can easily use online payment methods to perform transactions when out and about.

PayPal has inspired a variety of other payment systems that are challenging it and helping to drive society towards a cashless future. Wise is one of the strongest contenders now, especially when it comes to international transfers. Users typically pay low fees to move money around, and international payments only take a few seconds. Users can also set up bank accounts in different jurisdictions, which is an ideal solution for online businesses that operate in numerous countries.

Cryptocurrencies are also gaining mainstream attention

The rise of cryptocurrencies in the mainstream is another indicator that society is getting used to the idea that virtual payments are the future. Bitcoin and several of its rivals completely bypass the need for banks, which is part of their appeal. Some countries are beginning to recognise crypto as the official currency, highlighting how more people than ever are beginning to accept that the future lies in digital payments. If the metaverse is to take off, it will allow people from all over the world to exist in a shared space. In this scenario, a universal cryptocurrency could be the ideal way to pay for things.

Cash is an antiquated method of paying for things. It’s inconvenient, unhygienic, and it can’t be used online. Digital payments are going to be ubiquitous soon, and future generations are likely to baulk in disbelief when someone tells them that people used to use paper and metal to buy things.