Thursday, October 27, 2011

Will Consumers Use More Than One Mobile Wallet?

It might not make as much sense for consumers to use multiple "mobile wallet services" compared to a single repository for credentials, but on the other hand there might be some compelling reasons to do so, as when a particular retailer does not support multiple wallet services. Also, despite the initial set-up of credentials in any wallet system, how much on-going hassle is it for a consumer to use multiple platforms?

In some cases, the offers available on leading wallet services might be different, meaning consumers can take advantage of multiple offers. From a retailer's point of view, fewer is better, for logistical reasons. But in all cases, it is arguably true that mobile wallets have an immediate advantage for retailers that "mobile payments" do not.

Mobile payments will require greater investment in terminal equipment and systems. Mobile wallets will also require some investment, but where a new "mobile payment" scheme offers questionable or subtle benefits for a retailer.

Mobile wallets are a vehicle for customer loyalty, customer acquisition and probably average sale size as well. That's quite a bit more substantial and immediate than simply adding one new form of payment.

"If the wallet doesn't have the merchant in mind, the relationship fails," says Phil Kumnick, senior business leader for global processing at Visa. "This should be about making the merchants' business better." Will Consumers Use More Than One Mobile Wallet?

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