A majority of women still prefer doing cash transactions followed by AadhaarPay, according to a survey.
The survey of more than 3,500 retail stores to understand the financial transaction behaviour of women revealed that more than 65 per cent of women still prefer dealing in cash followed by AadhaarPay, UPI QR codes and cards.
"While cash still remained the most preferred mode, Aadhaar Pay, UPI and Debit Cards also saw adoption among women consumers, with preferences ranging from 5-15 per cent among different age groups. Cash withdrawal, mobile recharges and bill payments were the top three services availed by women customers at retail touch points," the survey conducted by fintech services provider PayNearby said.
At urban and metro centres, money remittance also saw good adoption. The transactions were primarily conducted by young working women belonging to the age bracket of 31-40 years (45 per cent) and 20-30 years (25 per cent).
Approximately 78 per cent of women in tier III and rural markets availed cash withdrawals, it said.
Overall, Rs 1,000-2,500 was the most preferred range of withdrawal for women across the country.
The report also found that over 76 per cent of women operated their bank account by themselves, while over 20 per cent said their spouses operated their accounts.
"It is heartening to see young women in the age-group of 20-40 years engaged in micro digital transaction of financial services across retail stores in the country. From assisted to self-service mode, the journey requires persistence in the eco-system.
"As the youth start digital financial transactions, it will simplify their lives and help build a solid foundation for the evolution," said Anand Kumar Bajaj, Founder, MD & CEO, PayNearby.
Further, it was found that women's micro savings ranged Rs 500-750 per month, with savings for children's education is the top priority followed by investment in gold.
With regard to financial instruments, only 5 per cent of women customers were aware of insurance as a service, said the report highlighting that there was an impending need to create more awareness for the same, especially across rural and semi-urban markets.
However, among the cognizant respondents, life insurance followed by health were the preferred choices.
Besides, the pandemic helped create awareness to save for rainy days as more than 32 per cent of the women customers indicated this as a priority for them.
However, informal savings at home still seems to be the trend, with less than 12 per cent of women customer showing awareness for a formal savings product.
"To bring change and inculcate the habit of formal savings in every household, we require coordinated efforts from all stakeholders, and at PayNearby our commitment towards that continues unabated," Bajaj said.
Among others, the report indicated that almost 32 per cent of women visiting kiranas and retail outlets for financial transactions used smartphones and also availed WhatsApp actively.
Adoption in cities were as high as 50-60 per cent.
Rural Bharat also saw a good adoption, with double digit adoption almost everywhere in the country. This signifies a growing adoption of digital services among women consumers visiting Kirana stores for financial transactions, PayNeaby said.
Catering banking and non-financial services to the underbanked and the unbanked, PayNearby offers Aadhaar based banking services, domestic remittances, bill payments, card payments, and insurance services among others.