retail news in context, analysis with attitude

Marketplace, on National Public Radio (NPR), had an interesting story the other day about how churches are grappling with the fact that people don't carry money the same way they used to. They use credit and debit cards, and they increasingly shop online.

"Research is showing over 80 percent of population, they do not carry more than $50 in their pocket," Mary Paxton, who directs philanthropy and stewardship for United Church of Christ, tells Marketplace. "So if you're sitting in church and it's time for the offering plate, you may only have $3 or $5, versus if you have your credit card."

And so churches are trying various techniques to make it easier for the devout to support them. There are, for example, some churches that install kiosks in the church vestibule so that people can dip their cards and make contributions. One church actually posts a text code in the sanctuary so that people can donate via text message while sitting in the pew. Churches also can establish websites via which people can give.
KC's View:
The lesson is clear - that every business, including the institutions in the business of saving souls, has to adapt to consumer trends if they want to survive, as opposed to counting on consumers to come to them and do it their way.