A Look Into The Continent’s Preferred Payment Methods

Europe 2021:

A Look Into The Continent’s Preferred Payment Methods

December 1, 2021

As an online retailer it is always imperative to remain informed about the different preferences customers display in a given year or season. This week we will delve into the preferred payment methods Europeans displayed in the year 2021, and how adapting to individual markets might give your business a boost.

According to Ecommerce News, there is an abundance of online payment methods in Europe, from digital wallets to local bank transfer systems, the best strategy is to tailor your payment methods according to the market you are trying to enter and adapt your checkout page as needed.

Research from Payvision shows that e-wallets are Europe’s preferred payment method when shopping online, as 44 percent of consumers tell they use this. Payments by card are a close second, with 42 percent, followed by PayPal (32 percent).


The preferred payment methods in Europe are led by digital wallets at 44%, closely followed by card (42%), PayPal (32%), local payment methods (11%), pay on delivery (11%) and at last, Apple/Google and Samsung Pay at only 3%.

Payment methods vary from country to country as well, and Payvision also revealed a list of individual countries’ preferences.

The United Kingdom

According to Payvision, the UK favors Visa and Mastercard at 50%, followed by digital wallets (44%), local bank cards (27%), direct debit (19%) and at last, bank transfers at 8%.

According to the research, online shoppers in the United Kingdom average at 2-3 credit and debit cards per person. Among these methods, Visa and Mastercard are the firm favorites.

The Netherlands

The Netherlands’ preferred payment method by far is a local bank transfer system used by all Dutch banks called iDEAL. According to the research, 83% of buyers prefer this payment method, followed by digital wallets at 28%, Visa and Mastercard (16%), virtual cards and e-money (14%) and at last, bank transfers at 13%.


Digital wallets are king in Germany at 53%, followed by invoice (42%), bank transfer (29%), direct debit (21%), local bank card (19%), vouchers and gift cards (17%), and at last, Klarna, a Swedish financial company, at 17%.


The leader in Belgium is Bancontact, a Belgian payment method that is offered by local and foreign ecommerce companies at 53%, followed by Visa and Mastercard (44%), digital wallets (28%), Maestro, a debit card tied to Mastercard at 25%, and at last mobile banking apps at 21%.

According to Ecommerce News, this is a good market to get in as a foreigner, as almost 50 percent of Belgians choose to buy online from merchants based in other EU countries.

Italy and Spain

Digital wallets lead in Italy at 53%, followed by Visa and Mastercard (41%), prepaid cards and e-money (40%), cash on delivery (15%), and at last gift cards and vouchers at 10%.

In Spain, PayPal is first at 50%, followed by debit card (44%), credit card (27%), cash on delivery (19%) and at last, virtual cards and e-money at 8%.

According to Ecommerce News, for Spanish shoppers the most important factor is how secure the payment method is. So if you are trying to expand to Spain, you need to emphasize how secure your shop and payment methods are.


Once again we see digital wallets leading at 46%, followed by Visa and Mastercard (44%), local bank card (38%), bank transfer (8%) and at the very last, virtual cards and e-money at 7%.

France likes to have variety at checkout.

Almost a quarter of online shoppers in France prefer to shop on an ecommerce website that offers alternative payment methods

As an online merchant, keeping yourself informed on the different payment methods offered and their popularity in any individual country is extremely important. Keep tuned for more news on the European and global market.

Want to learn more? Check out Ecommerce New’s full write-up of the study here.

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