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Keeping Up with the New Normal in eCommerce, Fraud and Payments

A common theme throughout 2020 has been the acceleration of digital adoption across both businesses and consumers. We take a look at the lingering impacts on payments and risk across multiple studies and reports comparing consumer and fraudster activity between 2019 and 2020.

Online Retail

Online shopping volume is beginning to regress towards the mean but still much higher than one year ago. According to Adobe’s 2020 Digital Economy Index, consumers spent nearly $94 billion more than originally forecasted between March and July this year while monthly eCommerce retail spending was comparable to holiday sales numbers in April, May and June. Online retail spending peaked in May and was up 76 percent in June 2020 compared to June 2019. Online retail sales began slowing in July but are still up 55 percent year-over-year. At the current pace, Adobe’s original US online retail forecast dollar volume forecast will be exceeded by October 5.


Omni-channel is more important than ever with in-store pickup of online orders being one of the fastest growing sectors of eCommerce. The market is searching for a colloquial, common term to refer to this, such as “Click-and-Collect” or BOPIS, an initialism for Buy Online Pickup In-Store. eMarketer revised their 2020 forecast for online sales picked up in-store to grow by more than 60 percent, up to $58.5 billion from $36.5 billion in 2019. An Adobe survey found that 31 percent of online consumers prefer this or curbside pickup to home delivery, implying much of this behavior could stick.

Cross-Border eCommerce

The pandemic boosting eCommerce and in-store pick seems obvious, but less expected was the increase in cross-border shopping. Globally, international eCommerce sales increased 21 percent in the first half of 2020 compared to the first half of 2019, while cross-border sales in the US increased more than 10 percent comparing the same periods of time. This increase really began in April and peaked in May.

Fraud and Chargeback Trends

Fraudsters have been taking advantage of the pandemic and increased online shopping activity as well. According to data from ACI Worldwide, the total dollar value of fraud attempts is up 3.5 percent in July 2020 compared to July 2019, while the average fraud attempt is up $10 in ticket price over this same time frame. Non-fraud related chargebacks are up significantly as well, with a 23 percent increase in the first six months of 2020 compared to the first half of 2019.

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