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Amazon Pay's plans to win over the Indian digital payment market

Amazon Pay’s play for the Indian consumer's wallet

In a cluttered digital payment market, Amazon Pay is attempting to change Indian consumer behavioiur and move it away from cash.

The Indian financial sector has become fiercely competitive, as new online banking brands and fintech race to capitalize on the digital transformation of the category. Amazon Pay recently launched a major campaign to make its mark. The Drum takes a peep into the brand's strategy going forward.

A cashless future

Over the last few years, and especially post-pandemic, digital payments have become an integral part of everyone’s lives. However, India continues to be a cash-driven market and as per a recent survey by the Reserve Bank of India, 54% of respondents would choose cash for making payments, while close to half preferred receiving cash for regular expenses.

“The preference for cash is driven by the lack of awareness and prevailing myths about digital payments among customers and merchants”, according to Abhishek Mahapatra, director of consumer comms, Amazon India.

In such a scenario, many players like PayTm, GPay (from Google), RuPay and Amazon Pay etc have been pushing their offerings. Amazon Pay has launched its digital-led campaign #AbHarDinHuaAasan (Now every day is easier) to highlight the convenience and safety of digital payments on the platform.

Behind the campaign

The film highlights the story of a marketplace told with a background voice with use cases around shopping in a marketplace or online, recharges and utility bills, payment to delivery personnel, and more included to showcase the convenience of payments through Amazon Pay.

"The just-launched Amazon Pay campaign is as much a category-building campaign as it is about building the brand itself, as it describes how customers can use digital payments with ease, whether they shop in marketplaces or online, recharge their phones or pay other utility bills, etc", shares Mahapatra.

The campaign captures various perspectives and stories to depict the everyday nature of digital payment options and to further strengthen the sense of trust around digital payments and drive adoption.

Aditya Mehendale, group creative director, Schbang, “the brief was to tell the story of how easy it is to use Amazon Pay and how every individual from different ages and walks of life came together to use Amazon Pay.”

"The idea behind the campaign is to bring out the simplicity, convenience, and positive impact of digital payments for customers and focus more on the merchant through a variety of day-to-day situations," Mehendale adds.

The film speaks about how each person in the marketplace is busy with transactions while the visuals speak about the ease of transaction with Amazon Pay whether it be with the milk vendor, at a snack stall, or even at a retail shop.

The USP of the campaign and the product

Mehendale believes the campaign stands apart from the rest because the industry players have been building their campaigns around being quick, fast, reliable in short films. In contrast, the Amazon Pay film is a long-form film that narrates the story of a marketplace that can be found across the country in every city and is a curation of a host of multiple stories.

"From a product point of view, Amazon Pay caters to diverse customer preferences across cash habituated, new-to-credit, digital-native, and credit-served customers through many unique features such as buy now pay later, cash deposit at doorstep, pay with Alexa, co-branded credit card, gift cards, UPI, auto-insurance and Smart Stores", says Mahapatra.

Tier-two and tier-three towns as the growth drivers

No longer is digital payment only a big city phenomenon, rather it has been getting an overwhelming response from customers and merchants in tier two and three towns.

Mahapatra, shares, “Over 75% of our customers using Amazon UPI have come from tier two and three cities in the last year. Moreover, during the recently concluded Amazon Great Indian Festival 2021, 75% more customers used Amazon pay products to make shopping purchases from tier two and three cities.”

On the merchant side, it currently has over 7mm Amazon Pay merchants across 350+ cities and towns in India, a testimony of growing acceptance of merchants to opt for digital payments and use Amazon Pay as their preferred payment partner, he adds.

As the competition for digital payments heats up, it will be interesting to see how one of the most ubiquitous brands with a footprint in multiple categories like Amazon will resonate with the savvy Indian consumer.

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