February 18, 2019, 12:32 PM EST
How Digital Wallets Create Retail Opportunity
As more people embrace the powerful, convenient tools their phones offer, a growing number of shoppers are leaving their physical cards and wallets at home, opting to transact via mobile instead. Here are some of the core opportunities mobile wallets afford retailers.
1. Digital access-on-demand
Consumers are inundated with cash, coupons, fobs and other items that bulge wallets and purses. But they are finding digital solutions more efficient and convenient, whether the point-of-sale is a checkout counter, airline gate or social feed. The on-demand, seamless availability can be a differentiator among businesses — enhancing customer experience and driving loyalty.
While the adoption of mobile payments may be taking longer than originally predicted, it is here — and will accelerate. Consumers spend about 50 minutes in shopping apps per month, and nearly a third of last year’s Cyber Monday sales came from mobile devices. Mobile payment options offer shoppers additional utility – and the ability to add most general purpose and store cards to their wallets. In general, mobile offers:
- A faster authorization process than chip/EMV
- Flexibility and choice in payment option
- Better security features than physical cards
- The ability to transact when a customer has no physical card or cash on hand
Already today, many shoppers happily leave their cash, cards, coupons and tickets at home and rely solely on their phone for purchases. In fact, 60 percent of consumers believe they’ll shop completely wallet-free as early as 2025, according to the 2018 Synchrony Digital Study.
60 percent of shoppers believe they will shop completely wallet-free as early as 2025
2. Supercharged loyalty
Shoppers who consolidate their loyalty accounts into mobile apps and wallets no longer have to hunt for cards, much less the account numbers, passwords and other login information that is notoriously hard to keep track of. Mobile access to loyalty offers and program benefits is instantaneous and convenient, incentivizing shoppers to participate more often.
Mobile tools also allow retailers to better understand their customer’s habits, their preferences and rituals. Thanks to powerful AI services that are now readily available to any size retailer, all that collected data can be put to use crafting deeply personalized offers and promotions that are relevant and effective. That’s a huge deal: 50 percent of consumers say they would shop more at their favorite brands if they were to receive personally relevant mobile offers. And according to Synchrony research, of those who use mobile tools, nearly 70 percent are motivated by offers and discounts.
Consumers spend about 50 minutes per month in shopping apps
3. Tech Convergence
The convergence of numerous technologies — mobile devices, ubiquitous internet, the cloud and, increasingly, AI — have enabled on-demand decision-making that fundamentally changes what’s possible. From a retail marketing perspective, mobile devices allow businesses to send highly specific offers in real time based on where a shopper has browsed or shown interest, but also where they are located in that very second; talk about surprise and delight.
Thanks to these technologies, shoppers using mobile wallets can also enjoy far more on-the-spot flexibility. For example, Synchrony’s SyPi product can provide instant verification for new or increased credit lines, in addition to other powerful features, such as rewards redemption and biometric authentication using touch-ID. That’s convenient for shoppers, particularly the nearly 50 percent who, according to Synchrony research, make payments and check balances using apps.
70 percent of those who use mobile tools do so to access offers and discounts
Technology has truly leveled the playing field — allowing businesses of any size, industry or location to capitalize on the growing shift to mobile-first shopping. Mobile payments and tools are not only about making transactions, but also making every interaction between customer and brand as seamless and personalized as possible. As mobile devices get faster, smarter and more secure, mobile-fueled commerce will become an increasingly important area of opportunity.
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