Mobile Payments Scorecard: Expectations Up, Still a Ways to Go

With a regular barrage of mobile payments stats of all types, it can be bit refreshing to look at the broader picture of where things are headed.

A new report has identified what it sees as the top trends in payments for 2014.

The study, by Vantiv and Mercator Advisory Group and reported in Pymnts.com, combines consumer survey data and perspectives of executives from merchants, financial institutions and independent sales organizations.

According to the report, consumers have integrated smartphones and tablets into their daily lives and are beginning to use them for mobile payments in stores and online

Here’s a brief overview of the top trends identified in the study by Vantiv and Mercator, based on the Pymnts.com report:

  • Omni-commerce takes hold. The infrastructure of omni-commerce is falling into place.
  • More expectations. Omni-consumers often fall into the 18-to-24 age group, but they’re not always Generation Y, according to the report. They embrace new channels.
  • Room for improvement. Consumers access e-commerce sites from computers and mobile devices, blurring physical and online commerce. Consumers say they have difficulty shopping online and debit/credit card is the most common method of payment for online purchases.
  • Mobile inroads at point of sale. Though not widely adopted, mobile payments are beginning to impact the POS experience. Mobile-payment use increased significantly over the last year, led by growing use of POS tablets, the report notes.
  • Payments still unfolding. Many consumers are not aware of the various types of mobile payments that are in place or on the way.
  • Loyalty, rewards, and the mobile opportunity. With almost three-quarters of consumers armed with loyalty cards, consumers see more value and less risk in mobile loyalty programs.
  • Smaller merchants move forward. The Vantiv/Mercator research found that most small businesses conduct sales in multiple channels and understand and embrace the omni-commerce concept, based on the Pymnts.com report.
  •  Prepaid: broadening its reach. Consumers use prepaid cards for various purposes, but would use them more if issuers offered services that made it easier to manage their accounts. The report found that more than half of consumers had bought a prepaid card in the previous years.
  • Disruption in the competitive landscape. Consumers are open to innovation in mobile payments, according to the study, though a growing number report a personal experience with data theft or fraud.
  • Coping with high-profile security issues. In spite of the focus on data breaches, anxiety about security has decreased since last year and confidence in mobile payments increased slightly year over year.

While the trends identified don’t point to an overnight acceptance of mobile payments, they do show forward movement.

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