Three Reasons Your Customers Spend More When Shopping with a Credit Card

Posted: 7th October 2016 09:49

These days, a lot of consumers use credit cards, whether because they find it a more flexible and convenient way to manage their finances, because they need to buy things now that they want to pay for later, because they are building their credit ratings, or because they like the rewards that can come with using a card. Equally, as so many people like this option as a way to pay, a huge range of companies and shops now accept card payments, even smaller, independent retailers who are able to implement affordable transaction solutions like those found at

However, allowing people to pay by card actually does more than give your customers what they want in terms of options. It has also been shown in numerous studies to increase how much a customer is likely to spend, if they are going to pay by card rather than cash. Here, we look at three of the reasons why people are inclined to spend more money when they shop on credit:

Less Spending Restriction

If you pay by cash or even a debit card, you can only spend money you physically have, and this can sometimes be less than you could technically afford if you are in a bad cash flow situation. Many of us have been there – those few days before pay day when money is tight every month at the start of your career, or for business owners, when you may be broke because you are waiting for a large impending payment from a client. When you use a credit card, you can effectively spend the money you are waiting for without worry, and so rather than tightening your belt during low cash flow periods, you can continue to spend normally, with only your credit limit as a restriction. As you might expect, this means people spend more in shops during times when, if they had to pay cash, they may not be shopping at all, or would be being very frugal.

Less Psychological Impact at Handing Over Payment

If you are at the supermarket and you pick up some extra things, some impulse buys or some luxuries, you may feel guilty about them when you hand over the cash. However, when you pay by card, the psychological impact is less, as you don't leave feeling the physical loss of the money in exchange for the things you bought – you just leave with your stuff. It may sound strange, but not having to hand over 'real money' has been shown again and again to make people spend more freely.


If there is an obstacle to buying something, for instance having to leave the shop, take out cash, and then come back, people will naturally be less inclined to make the purchase. The convenience of cards over cash is therefore another big reason why shoppers using cards spend more.

As you can see, customers have a few reasons they may not even be aware of why they spend more when they use a credit card, and it also makes managing their money easier. For that reason, as a business, you should always allow for credit card payments.