BILL-PAY INNOVATORS (PART 1): What Challengers Must Do To Reshape How Americans Pay Bills

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A number of innovative companies are seeking to overhaul and streamline the chore of paying bills with services that potentially could steal market share from the dominant models of paying bills at FIs or directly at biller sites. Success for the upstarts will not come easily or soon, however. These innovators not only are competing against one another in a crowded field with piecemeal offerings, their survival will depend on changing entrenched consumer habits for paying bills at FIs, at biller sites, and by mail. In this report, Javelin maps out why consumers pay bills the way they do, why innovators pose both a risk and a reward for financial institutions and billers, and the key features and benefits that innovators must provide to gain wide consumer adoption. In addition, this report summarizes 10 bill-pay innovators that include longtime players Quicken (and Mint) and MyCheckFree, as well as innovators with particular strengths in money management (Pageonce), paying bills ( and Billeo), and digital archives (Doxo, Manilla, Volly, and Zumbox). Each company is profiled in greater depth in a companion report, “Bill-Pay Innovators (Part 2): Players to Watch—From to Zumbox.”

Primary Questions

  • What can bill-pay innovators provide that FIs and billers can’t?
  • What features must innovators provide to win over consumers who prefer to pay bills through their FI, at biller sites, or by mail?
  • What are the implications — and partnership opportunities — for FIs and billers?
  • What seven features provide a starting point for differentiating innovators?
  • What must innovators do to stand out from the pack?
  • Who are the leading innovators to watch, and how do they compare?



This report is drawn from several Javelin consumer surveys, which are weighted to reflect the U.S. population in terms of gender, age, income, and ethnicity.

The vendor analysis is based on interviews with executives from each of the companies. Javelin gathered additional information from corporate websites and public sources. To evaluate companies, Javelin interviews and research delved into corporate positioning, the availability of specific features and functionality, as well as pricing, corporate milestones, and goals. The companies examined are, Billeo, Doxo, Manilla, MyCheckFree (Fiserv), Pageonce, Quicken and Mint (Intuit), Volly, and Zumbox. Each company is profiled in greater depth in a companion report, “Bill-Pay Innovators (Part 2): Players to Watch—From to Zumbox.”


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