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2020 has not only seen a massive rise of online shopping during imposed lockdowns in the UK but a ‘BNPL’ explosion to fund Christmas purchases, as reported recently by The Sunday Times.

Swedish based Klarna was the first company that came to our attention a few years or so ago, flooding UK customers helping them to spread the cost of their shopping by making 3 interest-free instalments, automatically charged from their card every 30 days when purchasing from their huge business partner portfolio, predominantly fashion and beauty, accessories and home retailers.

With an easy to use and extremely appealing app to young fashionistas, this revolutionized the problem of shopping fashion online where clothing sizes are not standardised between brands and customers were ordering several colours and differing sizes in the hope that one garment may fit them. Their bedrooms became fitting rooms overnight.

That left the problem of returning the unwanted items and where large sums of money were being taken from their bank accounts, then having to wait for the slow refund process offered by retailers sometimes leaving the customer in hundred pounds of debt.

Helping shoppers to spend more online

Klarna was most definitely the answer and has risen to such prominence with a 24/7 support service, a product return service letting you stall the payment service whilst items are returned, coupled with a tracking service of your purchases.

The service is free to customers as long as they stick to the three payment schedules which is crucial to their business model. Klarna has it all.

At the start of the year Klarna reported that 6 million UK customers spent an average of 25pc more using their site than buying by traditional methods.

Klarna and their growing host of rivals tap into the fashion 20-30 age group who in the current global pandemic are finding it harder than ever to get credit from traditional high street banks and credit card firms.

However, keeping up sales growth, more and more luxury pet retailers are now offering Klarna and the host of other BNPL operators such as Clearpay, Paypal Credit, Amazon, Apple credit houses, and smaller less known US businesses, Sezzle, Afterpay, Affirm, Splitit, ViaBill and Partial.ly, with Australian contender Laybuy

With more than 208,000 reviews and 10 million downloads of the Klarna app, it’s quietly replacing the concept of credit cards, which require more affordability checks about their applicants and are heavily regulated.

The customer transactions are not recorded as a consumer debt by the UK registered agencies and in recent times, as more consumers battle with their finances caused by the effects of COVID-19, the true problems of debt begin to emerge according to one Bank executive at Capital One Card in USA, who are now trying to crack down by blocking some purchases. The UK banking arm are keeping ‘matters under review’.

Savvy Shoppers will continue to use BNPL cards particularly for purchasing SALE pet items

Whilst we would never advocate getting yourself into financial difficulties, it makes sense to take advantage of such offers for larger items such as a heated dog bed for your older arthritic dog when discounted in the Sales or premium dog travel crates and even unexpected vet bills which year on year pet veterinary bills are increasing substantially due to the many developments in better veterinary care. It allows you to buy that quality item that perhaps you may have passed by or introduce you to a new shop.

A quick pet retailer search provides such a diverse selection offering Klarna include >

We are supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Laybuy the Australian BNPL has recently launched, June 2021, a new ‘tap and go’ digital card for its shoppers to use with their existing shops in-store, spreading the cost of purchases over six weeks.

Customers can load the product into their phone’s wallet and make purchases as easily as they would with classic pieces of plastic debit and credit cards.

Laybuy aim to extend their offer to all retailers providing customers with the interest-free scheme.

There has been continued criticism about BNPL and concerns raised by consumers champion Citizens Advice who says that it is a slippery slop for young people especially to get themselves into debt.

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