The study found that e-top ups were more readily available in developing countries such as Kenya, South Africa and in parts of South-East Asia, than in developed countries. The range of top-up options is growing rapidly as operators move to take advantage of PayPal, new mobile banking apps and the rise of social media. The once-popular scratch cards have almost disappeared.
In the absence of contractual lock-in the top-up is a key opportunity for telcos to reinforce customer loyalty. So it is essential that multiple top-up options are available and that they are easy to use.
We found that top-up bonuses were widely used to discourage churn, but the promotion of these could often be improved.
Ideally top-up via ATM should be universal - any ATM can be used to top-up the prepaid service of any operator - but this has not been widely achieved outside Europe.