India has seen phenomenal growth in internet usage in the last few years. From mere a 2% internet penetration in 2006 which means about 40 million people, it rose to 22%, almost 277 million users by 2015. In 2018, the statistics pointed at 35% penetration which is 500 million people and it is only expected to rise at this exceptional pace. The Internet and Mobile Association of India is looking at touching a user base of 730 million people by 2020. The statistics indicate growing awareness amongst the masses, both urban and rural, about the power of the internet to make their day-to-day and routine tasks like electricity bill payment, mobile recharges, booking bus tickets, payments of gas and water bills, etc. really easy and pretty simple.
Online payment methods
- Brand website – most utility providers now have their own websites that are enabled to accept online electricity bill payments or other payments or recharges. These service providers, government or private, use distinct security features to make their website safe and secure for consumers to make fast payments.
- Company App – many of such service providers today also have their brand Apps, developed in-house or through outsourced developers providing for a strong, robust and secure system for quick e-payments of bills.
- Reseller website – with the growth of e-commerce and internet, the digital market has also seen the rise of some reliable third-party e-resellers who resell services like electricity bill payment, recharges and another form of bill payments. Some big names in this field today are – MobiKwik, Paytm, PhonePe and others. One good thing about using a reseller site for making online payments or even e-shopping is that they offer promotional schemes like cash back offers and discounts on purchase of other products etc. to encourage customers to keep using their services loyally.
- Reseller App – similarly the reseller Apps can be used for performing numerous transactions, online financial activities like money transfer, shopping etc. Apps downloaded from authentic reseller sites are reliable and safe to use. The good thing about using the reseller App and site is that consumers can use the mobile wallet of the reseller as a preferred payment method.
Online is safe but consumers need to be cautious
Making payments in the virtual world is not only fast, quick and convenient, but it is also safe too. Most merchants providing and facilitating online payments involve state-of-the-art tools, resources, and latest technological advancements to make their e-commerce platform robust, secure and fool-proof. Consumers, however, are still advised to be extra cautious while conducting a financial transaction online. This is because they need to share private and confidential information related to their banking ids, account number, card numbers, CVV etc. Internet crime rates have increased almost proportionately to the growth of technology and hence customers must not take things for granted while making online payments and getting recharges done. They should stay away from falling prey to dubious reseller sites and Apps. It is best to stick to using sites and Apps of either the service provider or leading and popular resellers.