Mobile Payments Today: November's best reads
While Apple Pay continues to garner the majority of the attention in regards to mobile payments, Samsung Pay has quietly become the most well-rounded third-party mobile wallet on the market, giving consumers an incentive to use it and merchants a reason to seek partnerships with the company.
Last month, Samsung Pay introduced a system-specific loyalty program called Samsung Rewards. The loyalty program was a much-needed addition that addressed this industry's long-running argument that proximity mobile payments use would rise with consumers if there are incentives. Neither Apple Pay or Android Pay currently have a a system-specific loyalty program.
That particular story was one of the most-read on Mobile Payments Today in November.
The other piece of major news from the industry last month was Citibank's launch of Citi Pay as more banks gets involved with their own twist on mobile payments.
Our most-read article in November was a contributed article from André Stoorvogel, head of marketing at Rambus Bell ID. He provided us with his thoughts on the industry after another Money20/20 conference.
5. "Loyalty could attract US millennials to mobile payments" — Tony Rose, the director of mobile product management for Vantiv, discusses how rewards might be the best way to attract this demographic to use their smartphones to pay.
Millennials, or what many refer to as "digital natives," continue to draw attention from all corners of commerce. This group — roughly individuals who are now in that long-prized 18- to 35-year-old age group — is the single largest generation ever seen in the U.S., with 75.3 million members at the end of last year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
As a generation, their habits, attitudes and thinking reflect the enormous change technology has had on our world. For instance, analysts like those at The Strawhecker Group (TSG), have asserted that millennials now play a critical role in leading overall adoption and use of consumer technology. That is, in part, why those seeking to understand which changes are still to come in social and consumer behavior are watching millennials for answers.
Mobile payments adoption is no exception. Many want to know whether mobile apps like Apple Pay and Android Pay will end up being cast aside, or embraced to the point of standardization. Here, the data shows a strong trend toward adoption by millennials.
4. "Creating loyalty, engagement and influence through mobile payments" — Talbott Roche, the CEO and president of Blackhawk Network, discusses some ways smart brands are leveraging mobile payments systems through branded value to influence consumers' choices, generate engagement and create loyalty.
Thanks to continued changes in technology and consumers' dependence on mobile, the number of opportunities for brands to interact with their shoppers has increased significantly.
Now, brand interactions with consumers can take place anytime, anywhere. In a time where consumers expect brands to address their needs instantly in real-time, forward-thinking companies are looking to capitalize on mobile consumer touchpoints in order to create connections with consumers on every level.
According to a mobile survey from Google, only 9 percent of users surveyed will stay on a mobile site or app if it doesn't satisfy their needs, and 66 percent of consumers will take actions that have some negative impact on the brand, including going to another company’s mobile site or app for what they need (29 percent) making all mobile consumer touchpoints important to brands. Payment, for example, is one such touchpoint that can't be removed or circumvented by the consumer during the shopping process.
Here are some ways smart brands are leveraging mobile payments systems through branded value to influence consumers' choices, generate engagement and create loyalty:
3. "Samsung Pay first 'Pay' to add system-specific rewards program" — Samsung Rewards is structured like a typical credit card rewards program with a few bonuses here and there.
It was at last month's Money20/20 conference in Las Vegas that Samsung's Haley Kim told Mobile Payments Today about the company's desire to turn Samsung Pay into a mobile wallet that, at its core, is about convenience and loyalty benefits and not necessarily about payments.
Samsung accomplished the convenience part (and made Samsung Pay more versatile) by enabling users to store more than just traditional payment cards in the mobile wallet. This included the ability for users to add retailer gift cards as well as loyalty and memberships cards.
At Money20/20, Samsung announced the availability of a nearby deals feature that gives consumers the opportunity to benefit from discounts wherever they go, Kim said.
On Monday, Samsung Pay took another step forward as the most well-rounded mobile wallet on the market with its announcement of the upcoming availability of a system-specific loyalty program called Samsung Rewards.
Android Pay and Apple Pay both lack such a program.
2. "Here comes Citi Pay" — Citi is the latest financial institution to come to the market with a digital wallet service.
Citi is going the Chase Pay route with mobile payments and has introduced a standalone digital wallet app called Citi Pay.
Citi will make Citi Pay available to all of its customers for online and in-app purchases, thanks to a partnership with MasterCard and the network’s Masterpass service. Customers with an Android device will have the ability to make in-store purchases via NFC at contactless point-of-sale terminals.
Citi Pay is not available as an iOS app.
Citi later this year will roll out the Citi Pay in-store payment feature to customers in Australia, Singapore and Mexico. The bank will launch Citi Pay in the U.S. in early 2017 with online, in-app and proximity mobile payments, according to a press release.
Citi expects to add more markets at a later time.
1. "The end of payments as we know it" — André Stoorvogel, head of marketing at Rambus Bell ID, provides us with his thoughts on the industry after another Money20/20 conference.
Money20/20 is over for another year. And as sore feet (and heads) recover and the dust starts to settle, attention is turning to the big trends and key themes.
The show has always been focused on the future and this year’s installment was no different.
In particular, there was much to make retailers sit up and take notice, for it is readily apparent that payments are in the midst of unprecedented transformation.
So, what forces are driving the change and what does the future of retail look like?
Will Hernandez / Will Hernandez has 14 years of experience ranging from newspapers to wire services and trade publications. Before becoming Editor of MobilePaymentsToday.com, he spent two years as the content manager for PaymentsJournal.com, a leading payments industry news aggregator and information hub published by Mercator Advisory Group. Will spent four years covering the payments industry as an associate editor for multiple publications in SourceMedia's Payments Group based in Chicago.