12 Amazing BNPL Stats (2022)

by Josh Howarth - April 8, 2022

The pandemic has sparked many trends. And boosted the growth of numerous industries.

Understandably, during times of uncertainty, buy now, pay later (BNPL) has soared in popularity.

undefinedSearches for "BNPL" are up 1257% since 2018.

Several BNPL services have seemingly sprung up out of nowhere and are now dominating the market.

Read on to discover all the need-to-know BNPL statistics for 2022.

Contents

Top 2022 BNPL Stats

  • BNPL e-commerce transactions will total close to $700 billion by 2026.
  • Sweden has the largest BNPL market share.
  • Klarna has almost 150 million active users.
  • 16% of 18 to 34-year-olds use BNPL.
  • Almost half of US citizens are interested in BNPL services.

BNPL Industry Size

BNPL is a $100 billion global industry (CNBC)

bnpl-industry-value-min.png

The BNPL space is experiencing accelerated growth.

In 2020, $97 billion worth of global e-commerce transactions used BNPL schemes. This accounted for just over 2% of all e-commerce purchases.

By 2024, an expected 4.2% of e-commerce transactions will use BNPL.

And according to eMarketer, BNPL e-commerce transactions will reach $680 billion by 2025.

US BNPL lending is forecast to reach nearly $75 billion this year (MAG)

BNPL lending in the US is forecast to grow significantly over the next 24 months, exceeding $100 billion by 2024.

In 2019, US BNPL lending totaled $3 billion. This figure increased by 13x in 2020 to $39 billion.

In 2022, BNPL lending is predicted to reach $74 billion.

And in 2024, that figure is expected to increase by $30 billion to $114 billion.

Sweden has the largest market share in the BNPL market (Worldpay)

Sweden has long dominated the BNPL market.

Back in 2016, Sweden led the way for BNPL domestic e-commerce payments with 2x more than second-placed The Netherlands.

By 2020, Sweden’s domestic BNPL e-commerce payment proportion had more than doubled. Germany and Norway were ranked second and third.

Australia and New Zealand are the only non-European countries in the top 10. In fact, all of the other eight countries that use BNPL the most are located in Northwest Europe.

bnpl-by-countries-min.png

The global average for e-commerce payments made using BNPL schemes is 2.1% (as of 2020).

Here’s a breakdown of the proportion of domestic e-commerce payments made with BNPL in 2020:

Rank Country BNPL’s domestic e-commerce market share
1 Sweden 23%
2 Germany 19%
3 Norway 15%
4 Finland 12%
=5 Australia 10%
=5 New Zealand 10%
7 Netherlands 9%
8 Denmark 8%
9 Belgium 7%
10 United Kingdom 5%
11 France 4%
=12 Japan 3%
=12 India 3%
=12 Indonesia 3%
=12 Singapore 3%
=12 Philippines 3%
=17 Italy 2%
=17 Spain 2%
=17 United States 2%
=17 Poland 2%

BNPL service Klarna has approximately 1 million monthly active users (Airnow)

Swedish fintech company Klarna is a big reason behind the nation’s heavy use of BNPL services. The firm has seen its monthly active users shoot up since the start of 2019.

In January 2019, Klarna had under 20,000 monthly active users.

By January 2020, this figure grew to over 180,000.

A year on, Klarna had almost 700,000 monthly active users.

And, by September 2021, there were approximately 970,000 monthly active users on the Klarna platform.

klarna-users-min.png

Here is a closer look at Klarna’s monthly active users over time:

Milestone Year Google Play Store iOS Store Monthly Active Users
1,000 Nov 2018 1,431 1,258 2,689
10,000 Jan 2019 7,008 9,890 16,898
100,000 Jul 2019 14,896 101,395 116,291
250,000 May 2020 48,489 261,520 310,009
500,000 Aug 2020 92,456 413,921 506,377
750,000 Apr 2021 198,240 585,982 784,222

Klarna has around 14x more users than any other BNPL service (Klarna)

Klarna is the most popular BNPL service provider. The fintech company had approximately 147 million active users.

In the second place, Affirm has 11.2 million active users. And Afterpay has 10.5 million.

PayPal Credit is the BNPL market leader in the US (Forbes)

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Searches for "PayPal credit card" have exploded in the last 10 years.

Klarna also has a huge influence in the US, but PayPal Credit is far and away the most popular BNPL service.

As of 2020, PayPal Credit had 34.6 million users in the US - over 4x more than second-placed Klarna (7.9 million).

Affirm (5.6 million), AfterPay (5.6 million), and FuturePay (3 million) make up the rest of the top five US BNPL services.

In total, eight different BNPL services have over 1 million users.

BNPL User Demographics

US men are more likely to use BNPL services than US women (The Motley Fool)

A March 2021 survey of 2,000 respondents found that 55.8% have used a BNPL service. This penetration rate had increased by around 50% since a July 2020 survey.

bnpl-users-min.png

Broken down, 62.8% of males surveyed had used a BNPL service.

While 51.36% of females claimed to have used a BNPL service at some stage.

The 18-34 years age group are 3x more likely to use BNPL regularly than 55+ years (The Motley Fool)

A 2021 survey revealed that 16% of 18 to 34-year-olds use BNPL regularly.

bnpl-usage-by-age-min.png

This was markedly higher than the other two age groups questioned - 35 to 54-year-olds (9%) and 55+ years (5%).

Across the board, there was a negative correlation between age and a predilection towards BNPL:

Age Group 18-34 Years 35-54 Years 55+ Years
Use It Regularly 16% 9% 5%
Have Used Before, Not Regularly 15% 10% 8%
Have Not Used, Very Interested 10% 4% 5%
Have Not Used,

Somewhat Interested

14% 16% 11%
Have Not used, Not Interested 37% 51% 56%
Don’t Know What This Is 8% 9% 15%

BNPL Usage Stats

Clarity of fees is the most important factor for BNPL users (PYMNTS)

A September 2020 survey found that almost half of respondents (41.8%) cited “clarity of fees or interest rates” as the most common reason for using BNPL.

reason-for-using-bnpl-min.png

This was closely followed by “ability to monitor spending” (39.1%), “convenience of the option” (37.2%), and “number of merchants who accept this payment type” (36.7%).

Of the seven reasons cited, “rewards offered” was the least popular with 24.3% of the vote.

Here is the full list and how they stack up against credit cards and digital wallets:

Reason BNPL Credit Card Debit Card
Clarity of fees or interest rates 41.8% 11.2% 16.3%
Ability to monitor spending 39.1% 21.7% 24.3%
The convenience of the option 37.2% 34.8% 62.1%
No. of merchants who accept this payment type 36.7% 32.9% 46.4%
Trust that information is secure 33.1% 19% 33.3%
The company's website is easy to use 31.3% 19% 33.3%
Amount of funds available with this option 30.6% 19.2% 20.5%
Rewards offered 24.3% 68.7% 14.7%

Clothing is the most popular category for BNPL purchases (PYMNTS)

Almost two-thirds (63.5%) of respondents who use BNPL purchased clothing.

Entertainment was the next most popular category for BNPL spending with 30.3% of the vote. Followed by reading material with 29.4%.

top-bnpl-categories-min.png

Here is the full list of the top 11 BNPL purchase categories:

  • Clothing - 63.5%
  • Entertainment - 30.3%
  • Reading material - 29.4%
  • Household furnishing - 28.7%
  • Groceries - 25%
  • Food delivery services - 21.8%
  • Cleaning supplies - 21.2%
  • Automobile - 19.9%
  • Consumer electronics - 17.5%
  • Travel - 17.4%
  • Pet supplies - 17.1%

BNPL Industry Forecast

42% of Americans use or are interested in BNPL (eMarketer)

interest-in-bnpl-min.png

According to a February 2021 survey, 1 in 10 US consumers regularly uses BNPL services at checkout.

Of the 80% who have not tried BNPL at all, just over one quarter are at least somewhat interested.

Almost half of all respondents (48%) have not used BNPL services and are not interested.

Almost half of Gen Z are expected to use BNPL by 2025 (eMarketer)

Gen Z is the most likely generation to use BNPL services. And adoption rates are expected to increase from 36.8% in 2021 to 47.4% in 2025.

bnpl-by-generation-min.png

Although older generations are significantly less likely to use BNPL services, an increase is expected across the board nonetheless.

Here’s a breakdown of the predicted figures between 2021 and 2025:

2021 2023 2025 % Change
Gen Z 36.8% 46.5% 47.4% ↑ 10.6%
Millennial 30.3% 39.5% 40.6% ↑ 10.3%
Gen X 17.2% 26.3% 30.9% ↑ 13.7%
Baby Boomers 6.2% 12% 14.8% ↑ 8.6%

Conclusion

That wraps up our look at the current state of the BNPL industry.

It is clear that BNPL has burst onto the scene.

And is set to continue to grow in the coming years, potentially rivaling credit cards and digital wallets.

Written By
Josh Howarth
Co-founder of Exploding Topics.
548 Market St. Suite 95149
San Francisco, California
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