The 8 most popular payment methods in Europe

Our data analysts looked at plenty of recent payments studies to find out which payment methods are most commonly used by online shoppers in Europe. Here is the result:

Credit cards

To initiate a payment, the customer enters their credit card data in the payment process and, if necessary, authenticates themselves via a second factor (e.g. 3D Secure). After successful verification of the data, the customer receives an immediate payment confirmation and can continue the purchase process without interruption.

Direct debit/bank transfer

The customer enters his account details and gives the merchant permission to collect the invoice amount due from his account. The goods are shipped immediately after the direct debit authorization has been granted.

Open Invoice

The goods are shipped with an invoice, which the buyer must pay by bank transfer within a certain period of time.

Debit cards

In Germany, the Girocard (formerly EC card) cannot currently be used for online shopping in e-commerce. However, the Mastercard Debit can be used as an alternative for online purchases. Here, the customer can confirm the payment transaction with the same PIN number that is used for stationary purchases.


As in a physical wallet, the customer deposits various payment services in his electronic wallet as well as customer information (e.g., delivery address). At checkout, the customer is then redirected from the online store to the website of the wallet provider, where he logs in with his user data and confirms the payment. As a rule, payment is made without further data entry using the preferred payment service. The merchant receives an immediate payment confirmation and can continue the purchase process without interruption.”


The purchase price is not paid by the customer as a total amount, but over an agreed period of time in several partial payments (installments). The goods will be shipped before/with receipt of the first installment.”

Bank transfer/Pre-payment

The customer transfers (online/at the ATM/by means of a transfer slip) the due payment amount following the order. The goods will be shipped only after the payment is received by the merchant.

Online bank transfer

The customer is connected from the online store with his account-holding bank (e.g. Giropay) or the payment page of the third-party provider (e.g. Sofortüberweisung). There, the customer authenticates himself with the access code for his online banking, confirms the pre-filled transfer form and thus initiates the payment process. The goods are shipped directly afterwards.

Contact us to learn more about our customized white label solutions for open invoice, installments and direct debit.