“Zelle, a Venmo for the rest of us” would have served well as a subtitle for this article outlining the pending bank-backed person-to-person fund transfer system due out later this year. While cash remains present in most American wallets, the ease and utility of sending exact portions of split bills to the groups “underwriter” removes the rounding that sometimes favors certain parties. It has become a mainstay in our language in a manner of fashion.
Besides its no-fee approach, Venmo, despite a nearly nonexistent advertising budget, has managed to join the exclusive club of companies whose names become verbs. Drop by any coastal city coffee shop and you’ll hear phrases like, “OK, your share is $8.35. You wanna’ Venmo that to me?”
Mercator Advisory Group agrees with the assessment that the bank aligned Zelle system will appreciably broaden the access and appeal of the p2p transfer market, introducing a wider audience to its use. The traceability and memorandum aspect of Zelle and its precursor, will have a profound impact the check market the Boomer generation that may still write checks not just to friends and family, but also when contributing to causes and local charitable fund drives. We do expect many FIs that decide to participate in Zelle will need to invest in some consumer education efforts, but the return in cost saving will be rapidly recognized.
Overview by Joseph Walent, Associate Director, Customer Interactions Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group
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