Worldpay has predicted that ‘Buy now, pay later’ (BNPL) schemes will expand to 10 per cent of all e-commerce transactions in the UK within the next four years.

The main reason behind this, it is argued, is the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has had a profound effect on payment preferences as well as the e-commerce market as a whole.

According to Worldpay analysis, BNPL schemes are the fastest growing payment method in the UK for the second year running. Despite attempts at regulation by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), this trend is expected to continue, with BNPL likely to double its market share by 2024.

“We predict that the BNPL sector will not slow down – with the UK market seeing double digit expansion over the next few years,” remarked Pete Wickes, General Manager Emea at Worldpay.

As this happens, it’s important that the frameworks that govern and protect consumers and merchants also adapt to ensure that there continues to be trust and reliability in payments technology.”

Breaking down the figures, Worldpay’s data suggests that BNPL transactions will expand by 29% annually, a meteoric rise from £9.6 billion to £26.4 billion between 2020 and 2024.

An additional impact of the pandemic which is intrinsically linked to the rise of BNPL methods is the increase in online transactions. Worldpay’s 2021 Global Payments Report – which surveyed 46,000 international consumers – predicts that 20% of purchases in the UK will be made online by 2024.

Worldplay itself was recently surveyed by Trustly, which used the findings of its study to make financial predictions for the global travel industry.