As a wireless retailer, you know that people rely on their smartphones for everything—from booking appointments and sending emails, to making calls and taking photos. And now consumers also use their smartphones to make payments. The rise of digital wallets and other mobile payment options has changed the retail environment dramatically—and it's in retailers' best interest to learn how to incorporate these payment options into their stores. In fact, a recent report from Juniper Research found that by 2021, smartphone and tablet-based mobile transaction systems will account for more than one-third of all POS systems, and process 20% of all retail transactions.
In order to stay on top of this trend, wireless retailers need to know how to best use mobile payments to enhance the in-person shopping experience. By offering innovative payment solutions, you can enhance every aspect of your wireless store, not just the checkout aisle. Here are some ways this technology can improve the in-store experience.
Streamlining the checkout process
When people hear the terms "mobile payments" or "wireless payments", they typically think of waving a smartphone across a terminal located at a fixed register. This capability is great, but it should extend into the store itself. By relying on mobile scanners, sales associates can use mobile payments to complete a purchase anywhere in the store. Allowing your customers to bypass the checkout aisle entirely can help your wireless retail store stand out from all the others.
Moving customers from discovery to purchase
A big part of the appeal of mobile payments is that they integrate seamlessly with other functions of a smartphone. Retailers should utilize in-store beacons to give customers details about products, the location of specific items within the store, demonstrations, and tutorials directly on their smartphones. Once a customer has full product specs on the item they’re considering purchasing, it should be easy to instantly complete a payment on the spot from their phones.
Encouraging customer loyalty
By 2021, more than 660 million people are expected to be using mobile payments globally—and this provides an excellent opportunity to build out customer loyalty programs. Offering a loyalty program for mobile transactions means that customers can feel rewarded for something that rewards the retailer, too. Retailers can even drop discounts or promotions directly into their customers' mobile wallets. Having their loyalty points and coupons readily available within their mobile phone can help motivate shoppers to rack up points and return to your store location to reap the rewards. By encouraging the use of a streamlined and efficient payment process, wireless retailers can build long-term customer loyalty that will benefit their stores for years to come.
Gathering valuable customer data
Ideally, mobile payments integrate in real time with your POS and CRM system. This way, you can gather the specifics of your customers’ purchases—everything from the time of day they completed their purchase to the touchpoints they encountered before deciding to make a purchase. When the specifics of every transaction are carefully tracked and processed, retailers gain a detailed understanding of their customers. Those insights can be used to refine and target marketing messages, improve the store layout and product mix, and provide customized deals and offers to customers.
Contributing to omnichannel experiences
Mobile payments offer wireless retailers another channel to create a streamlined buyer experience. Chances are, before deciding to purchase a new phone or accessory, your shoppers researched products online or through an in-store tools like Endless Aisle. Perhaps they even saw an in-store ad for a new phone model on your digital signage, or received a text message promoting a limited time offer. Regardless of the particular journey a shopper takes, you want to make sure the messaging, branding, and overall experience is consistent across all channels. Mobile check-outs are often the last step a customer takes to complete their purchase—so it is in your best interest to ensure that this final step is as seamless and on-brand as possible.
Wireless retailers who offer frictionless payment experiences to their customers will stand to get ahead of the competition. By incorporating mobile payment options into your store, you can help create the efficient and easy payment experience your consumers are after, while incentivizing them to become loyal, repeat shoppers.
Wireless retailers who are ready to offer mobile payments want to hit the ground running. Take hold of the competitive edge mobile payment solutions can offer your business.
Mobile payments are expected to become even more popular with customers as retailers continue to enable EMV-terminals. Learn more about how EMV can fit into your mobile payment strategy by downloading our latest whitepaper, EMV Made Easy: The State of the Shift.
Photo Credits: Shutterstock / Branislav Nenin, Shutterstock / adriaticfoto, Shutterstock / Denys Prykhodov