Following Apple and Starbucks, another retail giant is targeting the “mobile payment” business.
1. Japan’s Uniqlo launches online payment service
According to Nikkei News on January 19 According to reports, the operator of Japanese clothing giant Uniqlo will add payment functions to its smartphone APP to make it easier to track customers’ purchase records and improve the efficiency of planning, production and sales of products.
Previously, electronic payments at Uniqlo stores were handled by third-party service providers. Now Uniqlo’s parent company, Fast Retailing, has decided to handle all payment transactions at Uniqlo stores itself.
Japan’s largest mobile payment application is PayPay supported by SoftBank Group, with more than 35 million registered users. The Uniqlo app has accumulated about 30 million downloads. After adding payment functions, its parent company Fast Retailing will become the largest retailer in the country with this service.
It is reported that Uniqlo Pay, which supports Uniqlo’s online payment function, was developed by Fast Retailing and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation and launched on Tuesday. Users can bind their bank account or credit card information to the Uniqlo app and pay by displaying a QR code at the checkout counter.
However, the payment service is currently limited to about 800 Uniqlo stores in Japan. According to reports, Uniqlo Pay’s payment services will also be applied to online shopping and GU stores in the future.
In fact, Uniqlo stores have allowed mobile payment for some time, but Fast Retailing cannot obtain user gender and age data through mobile payment unless the Uniqlo app is opened at the same time, but many Customers are reluctant to open two apps.
In order to increase the usage of the APP, reduce the time customers spend waiting in line, and collect more customer data, Fast Retailing finally decided to integrate the payment function.
Obviously, for today’s retail giants, the value of mobile payment is not just as simple as convenience and speed. To some extent, it has even become one of the means of business competition. one.
In today’s retail world, more and more consumers are looking for faster and easier ways to shop. Whether shopping online or in a physical store, innovations such as self-checkout have fallen far short of fast-moving consumer demand. Especially in recent years, the popularity of “mobile wallets” has further promoted the development of mobile payments. Retail merchants, including Uniqlo, Walmart, etc., are using mobile payments to improve customer shopping experience while also using this to squeeze out competition. opponent.
2. Why more and more retailers are focusing on mobile payment
Data shows , in 2017, 48.1 million people in the United States used mobile payments. In 2018, that number grew to 55 million, meaning more than 20% of Americans are using mobile payments. In 2019, this number exceeded 61 million. The steady growth in the number of people using mobile payments over the past few years means that mobile payments are becoming a trend not just in the U.S. but around the world.
A survey conducted by payment solutions provider Blackhawk Network shows that one in five Americans Three in three smartphone users own a mobile wallet. However, as of October 2018, only half of retailers accepted mobile payments.
In addition, the survey found that 60% of shoppers said they would like to earn points by using their smartphones to purchase items in-store. Nearly half would join a membership program if they could use points to purchase products.
Improving digital payment capabilities is important for retailers because it creates a more seamless checkout process and increases customer loyalty. Retailers such as Walmart and Starbucks are already using mobile payment options and are reaping the benefits.
Before launching mobile payments in 2015, one of Walmart’s biggest weaknesses compared to its competitors was their inability to understand shoppers’ preferences for purchasing goods in stores and what kind of customers they were. What kind of goods are provided.
Later, Wal-Mart enabled mobile payment and tracked the items purchased by each shopper in the store through the online payment application to understand the situation of each consumer shopping in the store. Walmart then uses this information to recommend other products that shoppers may like, improving their shopping experience and enhancing customer loyalty.
According to Walmart, since the launch of Walmart Pay service, 80% of the company’s transaction volume comes from repeat customers. Data from 2016 shows that just a few months after the company’s online payment service was launched, about 22 million customers use their APP every month, and more than half of online orders come from mobile terminals.
Due to the epidemic this year, many large Wal-Mart stores were forced to close. This has led Walmart to pay more attention to the development of online retail channels and mobile payment technology. First, in December last year, Walmart announced plans to spin off PhonePe, a digital payment company owned by the Indian e-commerce platform Flipkart it had previously acquired.Later, he took the lead in securing a new round of financing of US$700 million for PhonePe, aiming to make the digital payment business bigger and stronger.
According to CNN reports this Monday, Walmart has announced a cooperation with FedEx to provide customers with more convenient shopping and return services. The partnership comes as Walmart’s U.S. online sales surged 79% in its most recent quarter. </p