Currently, 46 of 53 state agencies accept online applications for USDA Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits from new applicants, and 33 state agencies allow SNAP participants to recertify to renew their benefits online. However, the use of online applications on SNAP participation has not been thoroughly examined. The purpose of this study was to collect information about online application features, protocols and procedures used for processing online applications, and perceived advantages and challenges with using online applications.
- All study states reported that online applications helped improve customer service.
- Insufficient funding to improve their online application process and perceived increased potential for fraud were the most reported challenges.
- The proportion of applicants submitting online applications increased as the distance to the nearest SNAP office increased.
- Most online applications had user-friendly features.