Card processor sees increased buying during Cyber Monday

JOHNSTON — Information from a debit and credit card processor located in central Iowa confirms the trend that sees more Christmas shopping moving online.

The SHAZAM network is located in Johnston and spokesman Patrick Dix says they found Black Friday transactions increased by 3.5%. He says type of card used for those purchases caught his eye. “The big headline for us is sort of the move toward debit cards,” according to Dix. “I think you have a generation of folks who grew up in the Great Recession, and watched their parents struggle with debt and just are more inclined to use debit cards.”

The debit cards take money directly from your account instead of building a balance you have to pay later with a credit card. The amount spent for each Black Friday transaction went up 12% to around $28. “On volume — this was not an extraordinary day — I think that speaks to the idea that Black Friday is continuing to move toward more of a prelude to Cyber Monday,” Dix says.

He says you can tell retailers have realized that on-line shopping continues to grow. “You know there are still some people who like to go to the brick and mortar stores and get gifts. But I think a lot of the hype that you see and a lot of the messaging around Black Friday, really moves you toward Cyber Monday,” he says. Transactions for Cyber Monday were up 14% and the average purchase amount was up four percent.”I think it reflects the increased emphasis and really the move toward folks shopping on-line,” Dix says.

People spent an average of $27 on Cyber Monday. Whether you shop on-line or in a store — Dix says there’s not clear cut choice of how people will pay. “It depends what kind of consumer you are. It depends where you are financially. I think it’s really up to the consumer to make the choice that’s best for them,” Dix says. ” Some people like shopping with cards that give them rewards — and so a lot of those folks are credit card shoppers. But there are folks who really stick to a budget and they really will shop with what they have.”

He says they did see an increase in the number of digital wallet transactions done without a card. “Certainly I think there is a move toward more people using things like Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Google Pay,” Dix says. Dix says this is also a generational issue as those who are more used to using their electronic devices begin to have more income to spend.