Trends in Mobile Payments and Retail Strategies

Mobile payments have been among the most spoken-about topics in transaction processing conversations throughout the retail, restaurant, banking and financial services sectors for years now. Whereas the initial belief was that mobile payments would quickly surpass cash, credit cards and other payment methods with respect to consumer preferences, the technology has proven to need a bit more time to reach higher adoption rates. 

However, this does not mean that retailers and others can balk or hold off on embracing mobility, as plenty of customers are already expecting the ability to use their mobile apps and devices to complete transactions. Keeping an eye out on trends taking shape in this arena can help to better inform the relevant strategies businesses create to handle mobile payments challenges and capitalize on modern payment methods in stride. 

Helpful stats for payment growth
Time Magazine recently listed a few statistics that provide a more comprehensive picture of the current mobile payments market, affirming that the Federal Reserve has found that fewer than one-sixth of the American population has completed a transaction in this way. The source countered that note with a revelation from Forrester Research that indicated $4 billion in retail transactions were processed through mobile devices, and forecast that figure to increase to $34 billion by the end of the decade. 

So, while the technology did not catch on quite as rapidly as some expected, it is almost assuredly going to soon, and retailers must prepare more proactively to ensure that this is an advantageous trend, rather than a disruptive one. Implementing the necessary tech to accept these payment methods today can put the retailer in a far more desirable position when a higher rate of customers begin to demand the capability. 

Mobile payments have so far had a slow start, but expect that to change with the adoption of new technology, specifically EMV.

Mobile payments have so far had a slow start, but expect that to change with the adoption of new technology, specifically EMV.

The marketing angle
Payment processing and marketing technologies continue to become more converged, especially for retailers. Computerworld recently reported that beacon advertising might represent the next step in mobile payments-related marketing strategies, and might even act as a foundation for new transaction processing innovations. According to the source, retailers are expected to begin integrating beacon marketing with direct mobile payment processing functionality. 

This would translate to a user in a store or elsewhere seeing the beacon ad, and being able to click one button to make a purchase. Again, mobile payments are going to evolve more quickly, and any entity that manages transactions will need to keep pace to remain competitive in the coming years.