CNP Expo: Leveraging Digital Wallets

May 23, 2013

As digital wallet technology evolves, merchants are looking at ways to apply this technology across different channels. At this point, the adoption rate for this technology, both on the consumer and merchant sides, is low but growing.

Panelists at the final session of the 2013 CNP Expo suggested we’ll see more adoption once someone comes out with a digital wallet that presents a clear value proposition to consumers and merchants. On the consumer side, digital wallets don’t require you to share your PIN with anyone or put it into a device other than your own, and it’s more secure. For merchants, it gives them access to a large consumer base that can pay with multiple methods (cards, ACH, localized banking options, etc.), it’s easy to integrate, and it has fraud prevention built in.

Ken Moy, senior vice president and U.S. Emerging Payments Group head for MasterCard agreed. “Mobile devices are everywhere. As consumer comfort with these devices grows, it just makes sense to them to use these devices for more things—why not payment? It’s a natural evolution. And these mobile devices are creating new e-commerce channels” that merchants can’t afford to miss out on.

Panelists also emphasized that mobile and digital wallets are about much more than simply payments. Coupons, loyalty programs, identification documents and geo-targeted marketing are all enabled by the technology.