Commentary

Mobile Payments: 77% Want Convenience, 38% Rewards

Mobile shoppers are drawn to deals but for mobile payments, they want convenience.

It turns out that convenience was the most positively discussed subject of new payment methods in a new global study.

More than three fourths (77%) of conversations noted convenience, with the travel sector leading the way in terms of the highest share of coverage in the study.

The study, conducted by Prime Research for MasterCard, comprised an analysis of 1.6 million online conversations around shopping and retail, across 61 markets over the last 12 months.

Though not necessarily quantitative, the study did identify some interesting insights into what is top of mind around mobile payments by different people in different countries.

The study found that many consumers don’t want to take out their wallet on every trip and wanted to be able to use mobile payments when they travel.

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This is not to say the shoppers don’t want deals, since rewards and benefits was the most positively discussed topic (38%) across social media when it came to shopping and retail. Entertainment was the category leading the way, where rewards and benefits were most discussed.

Consumers also expressed eagerness for further acceptance of NFC payments so they could receive rewards for regularly using them.

Even with Apple adopting NFC in Apple Pay, payments with NFC have hardly been explosive.

Following rewards and benefits, consumers desire that retailers integrate new payment systems, with conversations about fashion being the most prominent. Fashion shoppers were the most vocal about speaking of retailers who accept new payment methods via smartphone.

The study found differences in markets. Here are some:

  • North America – Had the highest percentage (96%) of favorable conversations on digital wallets and in-app payments. Had the highest volume of conversations globally about digital wallets and in-app payments. The most favorably discussed retail sector was fashion (96%).
  • Latin America – Had the highest percentage (88%) of contactless payment conversations in comparison to digital wallets and in-app payments (12%). Highest favorable tone on the entertainment retail sector (97%).
  • Europe – Digital wallets and in-app payments discussed more favorably (93%) than contactless payments (91%). Most favorable sectors: retail and fashion (95%).
  • Mideast, Africa – Digital wallets and in-app payments discussed favorably (93%) with contactless payments at 89%. Travel had the highest favorable tone in the area (97%).
  • Asia, Pacific Rim – Highest favorable tone was on contactless payments and fashion and food had the highest favorable tone of all the retail sectors there (99%).

As a side note, the study found that Twitter was the most popular channel for shopping and retail social conversations on a global level.

Based on the three criteria of convenience, rewards/benefits and acceptance that MasterCard identified, there were differences by country. Here are the most discussed in the categories:

Convenience

  • 53% -- Australia
  • 39% -- US
  • 33 – Germany, France
  • 27% -- UK

Rewards & Benefits

  • 45% -- US
  • 44% -- Australia, Japan
  • 26% -- Germany
  • 22% -- UK

Acceptance

  • 85% -- Japan
  • 84% -- Canada
  • 83% -- Netherlands
  • 71% -- India
  • US – 64%

So far, there doesn’t appear to be any one-size-fits-all mobile payments approach adopted.

And based on what people are saying about it around the world, it doesn’t appear that there will be one that gets adopted overnight.

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