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Payments Landscape 2022: PayPal vs Venmo vs Apple Pay vs Google Pay vs Bitcoin

The payments landscape will always be a competitive one. Consumers have multiple options to choose from across their devices. Interestingly, according to Google Trends data, Bitcoin and PayPal remain the most popular. 

Navigating The Payments Landscape

Convenience and accessibility are crucial in determining which solutions consumers use for payments. The accessibility hinges on two aspects. On one side, everyone needs access to new payment solutions. Conversely, merchants and retailers need to integrate it into their existing systems. Despite substantial progress, it is challenging to balance the two sides of the equation. 

Consumers can conveniently use the most common payment methods in today’s payments landscape. That includes using PayPal – mainly online, but also through a debit card – or Venmo. In addition, there are mobile solutions like Apple Pay, Google Pay, etc. Finally, for more fringe use cases, one may even be able to use cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. That latter option is relatively rare, but interest in the currency remains very high.

Per Google Trends, PayPal and Bitcoin are the leading options for payments. They generate the most search queries, although Bitcoin is more speculative, whereas PayPal is infrastructure. Apple Pay, Venmo, and Google Pay are virtually non-existent in comparison. However, there is a slightly higher interest in Google Pay than in Apple Pay, which inched ahead of Venmo in the past year. 

Adjusting The Overall Results

When filtering results for these terms as “merchant services and payment systems”, things look very different. It would indicate PayPal and Google Pay are the least favorite of the bunch. Bitcoin and Venmo note equal “success”, whereas Apple Pay dominates the space. That is very interesting and confirms merchants and retailers want to explore more options to satisfy customer needs.

However, it is also apparent the search query volume is all over the place. There are many peaks and lows depending on the time of year. Apple Pay is on a high now with the holiday season approaching. PayPal also notes some strong momentum due to that time of year. Everything else has seemingly dropped off the radar, although they may make a surprise comeback. 

It is worth noting the payments landscape may change in some countries. Growing interest in PayPal in Réunion, Costa Rica, and the UK is peculiar. China notes the highest volume for Bitcoin (68%) and Apple Pay (32%), whereas Argentina only cares about Google Pay (100%). Venmo keeps building momentum in Portugal (100%) and Sweden (100%).