The influence of mobile technology on retail in this century has been truly astounding. By 2003, 95 million people around the globe made a payment via their mobile device. By 2015, there were 500 million users making 50 billion transactions for a total volume of 610 billion USD. With mobile wallet growth on the rise, could it be the next subset of mobile commerce to reap the benefits of a mobile hungry populace? Over the last five years, m-commerce has enjoyed a 30% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) that is showing little sign of slowing down. If brick and mortar retail is still king, what will it take to bring mobile wallet adoption out of the hands of early adopters and into the hearts and minds of shoppers worldwide?
Brands constantly look for new channels to engage with consumers and mobile wallets are often underutilized—yet promising—tools that can do just that. People use physical wallets to hold their rewards cards, gift cards and more—and expect the same capabilities from their mobile wallets.
But until a mobile wallet can provide the same functionality as a physical one, there’s no reason for consumers to leave their leather billfold at home. Mobile wallets that don’t bridge this gap are less likely to be used to their full potential because they don’t provide consumers with added value that eliminates the need for a physical wallet—causing brands to miss out on engagement opportunities.
Around 80% of consumers use mobile phones inside a physical store to check product reviews, according to a recent study by website design firm Outerbox, underlining the advent of the omnichannel shopping era.
Combine this with the growing spending power of the notoriously choosy Millennial generation and it is easy to see why some commentators have branded the concept of customer loyalty as dead.