TouchNet’s fourth annual survey explores student usage of payment options including campus cards, Apple Pay, Venmo, and more
Get ready for some eye-opening stats on how students interact with your campus via payments and mobile apps. Here’s a good place to start. Nearly 85% of students use their smartphone to make payments and 95% use at least one app to interact with their institution.
For four years, TouchNet has conducted survey research into student’s financial habits and preferences. This year’s results are presented in the 2023 Student Financial Experience Report. TouchNet makes the report available to any interested party, and it is definitely worth the download.
Nearly 90% of students use their institution’s campus app multiple times each week.
The key conclusion is that establishing trust and simplicity create the best student experience. If institutions can earn their students’ trust in multiple ways including secure handling of their financial affairs, they will be more apt to stay in school and graduate.
“Gaining students’ trust and making the college experience easy to navigate happens in many ways but is most effectively achieved via technology,” says the report. “A continuing investment in technology solutions will pay off, as nearly half of students reported that technology played a major role in their decision to attend their current college or university—a 41% increase YOY in 2023.”
Let’s look at a few standout results to whet your appetite.
Interestingly, the data showed a disconnect between campus app usage and student expectations of what the app should do. Nearly 70% cite making/managing payments as a top feature for a campus app, but only 25% actually use the app to pay for things on campus.
Another of the top cited features for a campus app is that it should be a “streamlined all-in-one app,” but campuses seem to be missing the mark in this case. Nearly three-quarters of all students report that they need to use more than one app to interact with their institution.
According to the report, “perhaps there’s an opportunity to increase awareness of the functionality and integrate it into a comprehensive app.”
There are many interesting data points that can help you think strategically about the future of your card program and auxiliaries.