The Impact of Lockdown on Digital Payments

Category: Covid19 Resources



Things in the world of business have changed drastically after the imposition of lockdown on account of the COVID-19 pandemic. It has especially impacted the way people shop and make payments. Needless to say, there has been a severe impact on digital payments as well. On one hand, digital payments, such as donations have seen a massive surge, but on the other hand, digital payments that were made for online shopping have reduced dramatically. Digital payment is a relatively new and highly dynamic payment mode. In the coming days, it is expected to see even more transformation as it strives to adjust to the new reality. Here are some of the ways things have changed and how to adapt to them.

  1. Digital payments for essential goods have increased: There has been a notable increase in the digital payments and wallet payments being made for essential goods. Earlier, people used to carry out cash transactions for everyday use items, such as vegetables, groceries, and fruits etc. However, with this pandemic, the public and businesses are now reluctant to handle currency notes and coins. This trend has led to a massive increase in the quantum of digital payments being made for daily needs fulfillment. Businesses are also more willing to accept digital payments so as to minimize the need to sanitize and contact.
  2. Ecommerce transactions have declined: While digital payments for offline transactions have increased, a significant decrease in ecommerce transactions has been noted. Due to various restrictions, the volume of ecommerce has declined drastically, as the companies are not able to carry out deliveries. Consequently, digital payments in the ecommerce segment have also declined. The impact in this segment is especially palpable as ecommerce was one of the most prominent segments for digital payments. Due to restriction on the movement of goods, people are not carrying out ecommerce transactions, and therefore, payments have been hampered like never before.
  3. Digital payments for services have increased: As more and more businesses are moving towards contactless services and social distancing, a decline in cash transactions has been observed. However, people are still required to pay for essential services such as utility bills, electricity payments and taxes. Hence, the use of digital modes for fulfilling these obligations has increased. Till date, digital payments have played an important role in keeping the economy running, as people are not able to venture outside and withdraw money from ATMs or bank branches during the lockdown. In such cases, digital payments have come to their rescue and have helped them avail essential services.
  4. Travel sector is suffering from reduced demand: The ban on movement of goods and people has wreaked havoc on the transport and travel sector. This segment has almost come to a standstill, as people have either postponed or cancelled their travel plans in the wake of the pandemic. Tourism has also hit a bad patch due to the ongoing ban on air travel and domestic and international flights. As a result, the quantum of digital payments usually made for tour and travel purposes has also declined drastically. However, it is expected that once the lockdown is revoked and people are allowed to go about their normal activities, the sector may see a swift surge. Accordingly, the momentum for digital payments will also increase considerably.
  5. Overall trend: As is evident from the points discussed above, the lockdown has had different impacts on different segments. Digital payments have played an important role in keeping the economy live and running during these difficult times. Despite the restriction on movement and contact, digital payments have made it possible to pay mandatory bills. Also, some businesses have been able to conduct regular operations while observing social distancing, due to digital payments.

All in all, digital payment systems and electronic wallets have proved their worth during these testing times. These technologies have helped in maintaining order amidst the chaos by performing some very essential services. Even after the lockdown is revoked, it is expected that digital payments will continue to be popular as people all over the world will become more cautious about possible infections and the dangers of transactions that involve contact.



COVID-19 has not only changed the way we define a normal life, but also impacted the ecommerce industry massively. Online businesses have had to change many of their usual practices to survive during these challenging times. Moreover, even the customers had to change the way they shop and the way they transact online. However, these rapid changes come with the increased risk of online frauds. Fraudulent activities like spamming, phishing and stealing of identity can be damaging to both businesses and to the shoppers. In order to safeguard your business and your customers against such cyber attacks, here are some tips for enhanced security.

  1. Beware of Trends: The most challenging aspect of online frauds is their versatility. These frauds may take place in a variety of ways, through stealing of password or the use of Trojan virus. In order to safeguard your business and your business associates, it is important that you are aware of the latest types of frauds perpetrated. Some of the most common online scams during the current crisis are retail arbitrage, reselling and account takeover. It is important to be aware of these trends so that you are not caught off-guard. It is equally vital that you spread this information among your associates, as the pandemic outbreak has made everyone more susceptible to scams and frauds.
  2. Choose the Right Payment Gateway: As more and more people are relying upon ecommerce businesses for fulfilling their requirements, there has been an unprecedented increase in online payments. In such cases, it is important for online businesses to choose reliable payment processing service providers. If your payment provider has a solid track record, you can minimize the possibility of online frauds for your own business and your associates. High quality payment processors use state of the art technologies to protect their systems against any cyber attacks. They also tweak their processes in line with the latest attack trends. This will also ensure that your system does not break down under the pressure of increased payments and transactions.
  3. Disseminate Information: As important as it is to be aware of different online scams, it is equally necessary to keep your employees and associates fully informed as well. You can conduct seminars or workshops to keep your employees updated about such scams. You can also send newsletters or pamphlets to your clients about various precautions they can take to minimize the possibility of online frauds. This exercise may help you in creating a positive rapport with your client base as well. You can enhance your goodwill while bonding with your clients and ensuring their safety at the same time. You may also apprise them of critical points to watch out for.
  4. Be Proactive: During these difficult times, it pays to be proactive. While you should keep your tools and programs updated, you should also remain aware of any uncommon or strange transactions and incidents. For example, you should carry out an extensive check if you notice a new account making significant transactions. In case of an old account making unusual purchases, it would be prudent to cross-verify the details. Such vigilance can not only save your business but may also provide extra security to your customers. Similarly, you should ask your associates to remain vigilant about any red flags.
  5. Use Common Sense: It’s true that almost all businesses are facing hard times due to the COVID outbreak. However, common sense should still prevail. So, remain as watchful as you would be during normal times, and exercise the same type of caution, if not more. Encourage your customers to change passwords regularly and make sure they are as complex as possible. Do not click on any suspicious link and never ever reveal your own passwords to anyone. You should also remain in close contact with your clients so that they know the real time status of their transactions. Such monitoring will help in reducing the possibility of any frauds or scams.

Like any uncertain or chaotic situation, the current pandemic has many hackers and spammers to become more active than usual. But by following these simple tips, you can keep your business safe and secure.



The onslaught of COVID 19 has changed the shopping landscape dramatically. Its impact on e-commerce and online shopping has also been intense. However, it is important that businesses understand the overall effect and devise appropriate strategies to deal with the situation. To make sure that your business is in a position to provide the best possible services during this difficult time, there are certain guidelines you can follow. These pointers will also help you in maintaining the liquidity and profitability of your business.

  • Figure out the impact: In order to design an appropriate strategy, it is important to figure out the areas which are going to be impacted by the pandemic. Further, it is also important to quantify the impact, so that you are fully aware of the changes. Depending on the type of your business, you may experience a drop in your website traffic. However, you should endeavor to measure the drop exactly, or at least have an approximate idea. Once these areas have been identified, the next step is to take mitigating actions to minimize the negative impact. This step will also allow you to identify your critical resources and ensure their proper utilization.
  • Streamline your costs: The pandemic has stalled the pace of growth for the e-commerce landscape, and is likely to have a negative impact on revenue and profit margins. During such times, it is important that you cut down your costs to preserve your financial resources. This is also the best time to evaluate your plans such as marketing budgets etc. You may decide to suspend some of the activities until things get back to normal. In other cases, you may find some expenses to be completely superfluous, and decide to eliminate them completely. You may also want to automate various operations, leading to more efficiency and reduction in cost.
  • Manage your resources: Apart from planning your expenses, you should plan about your resources as well. Identify the assets which are most resource-incentive. For example, maintaining an inventory calls for substantial investment, and therefore, you may want to carry out ABC analysis of the items lying with you. With this analysis, you can identify the items which are most critical for your business. You may want to reduce your investment in non-critical items while focusing on the important ones. Similarly, you may want to renegotiate the terms and conditions with your debtors, so as to speed up the cash flow and boost your liquidity. You may also carry out a similar process with your creditors to renegotiate your contract.
  • Focus on revenue: The long lockdown is indeed going to have a negative impact on the revenues of most businesses. However, such a negative effect is not going to be equal for all. In fact, for some businesses, this calamity may lead to higher revenues. In this scenario, you may want to figure out alternative revenue streams for your business. You may want to expand your business into health-related areas, and by doing this, you will not only be able to seek new revenue streams, but also provide essential services to the society. For example, you may add items such as face masks, gloves etc. to your inventory.
  • Implement and track metrics: You can use this slack time to try out various marketing and analytics strategies. You can implement new metrics which may help you in tracking your business activities in an efficient manner. Most of these metrics are real time and may help you in taking timely and prompt decisions. The metrics regarding site visit and sales value are especially helpful. Additionally, you may also want to keep an eye on the competition to see how they are faring in this environment. Some of the most prominent metrics you need to look out for are Benchmark CPC and Benchmark CTR. Another important area for analysis is the price competitiveness, where metrics such as benchmark product price difference may be used.

COVID 19 has presented e-commerce businesses with an unprecedented situation. While the environment is unpredictable, you can successfully navigate through this situation with the appropriate tools and intensive planning. So, try and use this downtime for planning your future course of action.



It doesn’t come as a surprise that the COVID 19 pandemic has led to widespread panic and despair all over the world. After all, no one was prepared for a crisis of this magnitude. Currently, people are restricted in terms of movements and their access to the outside world, which is causing various physical and mental health issues. Since normal working conditions are suffering, businesses need to take certain smart steps to promote the wellbeing of their communities. Whether you are running a small business or a have a multinational empire, you can make your contribution towards maintaining normalcy by following a few simple tips.

Ensure the welfare of your team

Every business has an obligation to take proper care of its workforce. During the current pandemic, many businesses have taken several steps to ensure that their employees stay safe. Businesses have taken their operations online, which not only helps their workforce but also their customers. This way, they are able to provide essential services to their clients and keep their employees safe at the same time. Even those businesses that cannot let their workers telecommute can ensure their welfare by providing protective equipment like face masks and sanitizers. Many businesses have decided to provide their employees with extra wages too.

Re-purposing the facilities

Since most businesses are closed for regular operations, they can contribute to their communities by donating their idle spaces. For instance, in many areas, empty hotels and hostels have been converted into makeshift shelters for vulnerable people. Such re-purposing helps in ensuring that limited resources don’t get exhausted by the increasing number of patients. Many factories have donated their facilities for manufacturing of essential items such as hand sanitizers and face masks. Many tech companies are also collaborating for tracking the spread of the virus and for keeping people safe. Overall, all businesses are doing their bit by ensuring the efficient utilization of the resources at their disposal.

Organize fundraisers or voluntary activities

Many businesses have extensive networks that can be utilized intelligently during the time of a crisis. Organizing various charity activities, such as fundraising or offering resources for community use can help, for example. Such activities can be undertaken by businesses operating at any level. Even the smallest of businesses can contribute by organizing such events in their localities. Creative approaches can also be taken in this regard. Like, many organizations are using their resources to send digital messages to people who are in need and in isolation.

Help your business partners

No business can thrive in isolation. This is the reason why, during a pandemic, it is imperative to ensure the welfare of your business partners. This is especially true if you outsource several of your business functions. So, you should ensure that you have made the necessary payments that are due to your partners. If your business has suffered heavy losses, instead of defaulting on your due payments, try to work out an equitable solution with your business partners. It is important that you maintain proper work relationships with collaborators, so that nobody has to bear a disproportionate financial burden. Businesses can ensure their long-term survival by providing support to their partners.

Stay in touch with your community

COVID 19 may have resulted in social distancing, but it does not mean that you cannot remain in touch with your surroundings. With the help of modern technological tools, you can ensure that you are aware of your local environment. Apart from supporting the general public, you can also check in on your employees and your business associates. Many businesses have also started community groups where they can pool their resources for the benefit of their local societies. Such community spirit is necessary for sailing through these tough times. You can also organize virtual events to boost the team spirit and morals in your surroundings.

To conclude

COVID 19 has presented our society with an unprecedented situation. However, it has also highlighted the importance of working together for attaining collaborative goals. It has provided businesses with an opportunity to set an example and ensure the welfare of their local economy. And by following the above tips, you can achieve that easily.



Hello from PayTabs,

I trust you, your family and loved ones are safe and sound and observing the safety recommendations during the exceptional circumstances brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. As the situation continues to unfold around the world, I wanted to reach out and personally update you on how we at PayTabs are supporting our employees, partners and you—our valued customers.


PayTabs primary concern and our highest priority has been and always will be the health, safety, and success of our merchants, partners and employees. I care deeply about the safety of my team, their families and close friends as it is the foundation of everything and this is why we have activated our remote working policy and requested all PayTabbers across all our global offices to work from home.

I always believe that business will have its own ups and downs and the economy will adapt and transform, but our people are our most important asset and should be protected and safe at all times.

As such, we have made some positive arrangements to ensure our employees stay safe, well sanitized and are able to support your business operations with the high level of service you’ve come to expect from us as your trusted payment solutions provider.


We have established a mandatory remote working policy with the appropriate technology platforms, infrastructure and online devices to ensure your and our comprehensive business continuity. Our engineering teams are well equipped to perform their tasks when working remotely. We’re confident that our payment systems and procedures will continue to seamlessly support customers and partners during this time.

Our customer and tech support teams will be on hand to assist your business needs during our usual business hours. Our account managers (who are only a phone call or email away) have the resources required and are dedicated to serving you.


And now for some good news, here’s an overview of a major initiative our team has been putting together behind their remote working desks to ensure that we support your online business and during these unique times of disruption:

We have launched for the first time in the Gulf region our #Stayathome and sell from your living room initiative. This will empower micro businesses, freelancers and small merchants with payment methods or tools to sell from the comfort of their homes in these trying times.

We hope these and other positive initiatives will assure you of our continued commitment to serving you, our e-tailers during this period. Please rest assured that you, our valued customers are at the forefront of every decision we make.


If we try looking back to what led to the location dependency in the past, it will point us in the direction of the limited availability of technology and infrastructure. Lack of technology advancement mandated that work environments had to be “central” as opposed to being flexible.

The digital era has given tools to companies of all segments across all industries. Because of the internet of things, we can work remotely, from any corner of the world and still feel like we’re contributing. Based on a report by PwC, 64% of millennials would like the opportunity to work from home. Take for instance the example set by freelancers, digital experts and content creators like graphic designers, web developers, bloggers and writers who work remotely.  Availability of high-speed internet, cloud-based applications and flexible spaces made this viable.

Distributed teams are composed of employees who work remotely from all around the world rather than being centralized. Did you know that WordPress runs 100% distributed teams? That means everyone works from home, or more precisely, from wherever in the world they wish.

We are all guilty of checking our emails on a vacation or while traveling for business. In fact, isn’t that what we do the moment we get off a flight? We look for connectivity. We are virtually connected without even realizing it and our location is no longer a limitation.

The virus has re-enforced a message. We have arrived into a new era of hyper connectivity. How many of us are ready?

Our thoughts and prayers are with those affected by this pandemic. We wish them a full and speedy recovery, and we remain inspired by those on the front lines in healthcare, transportation services, government, and many others who are caring for people around the world.

Stay safe and my best wishes for your continued health and business success.

Abdulaziz Al Jouf

CEO & Founder