Mobile Commerce Daily is now Retail Dive: Mobile Commerce! Click here to learn more!

Wells Fargo expands mobile offerings with person-to-person transfers

The Wells Fargo Kindle Fire app

Wells Fargo is continuing to build its mobile strategy with a new tool that lets clients send and receive money from friends and family.

The person-to-person transfers feature has been added to all of Wells Fargo’s mobile and Web platforms. Wells Fargo has applications for the iOS, Android, BlackBerry and Palm operating systems, a mobile Web site and an SMS program.

“Customers have begun to move away from using cash or writing checks and toward person-to-person and online payment services,” said Andrea Mahoney, spokeswoman for Wells Fargo, San Francisco.

“Send & Receive Money is a new person-to-person online and mobile service that makes paying another person easier,” she said.

“Send & Receive Money lets customers use just a mobile phone number or email address to send and receive money, rather than requiring them to know the recipient’s account number.”

Wells Fargo provides insurance, investments, banking and mortgages to consumers and commercial businesses and has more than 9,000 stores and 12,000 ATMS.

Simple transitions
In order to use the person-to-person features, users must first create an online account for both Web and mobile transfers.

Mobile users must also complete a one-time registration that lets clients both receive and send money. By using their mobile phone number, transactions go directly into a user’s account.

To send money, users can send money by entering the recipient’s email address or mobile phone number and select the amount of the transaction.

The receiver then is sent an email confirming that the transaction was deposited into their account.

Bank on mobile
Well Fargo’s send and receive function is an example of how mobile banking is getting more sophisticated.

Not only do consumers expect to be able to simply view their accounts, they are also becoming more comfortable sending and receiving sums of money via their devices.

Additionally, by tying the service to a client’s mobile phone number that automatically deposits the money, it eliminates a step for users. Therefore, consumers might be more willing to give out their mobile phone number if they know that a secure business, such as a financial institution, has control of it.

Wells Fargo has been doing a lot recently to make sure that the company is on every platform.

For example, the company recently rolled out a Kindle Fire app after seeing an opportunity for the company to be on this platform (see story).

Additionally, last year the company upgraded its alerts system to include individual, customized alerts (see story).

“Customers are asking for features that take advantage of the amazing capabilities of their mobile devices,” Ms. Mahoney said.

“Today, Wells Fargo has 7.7 million active mobile customers, and mobile channel usage continues to grow at a rapid pace,” she said.

“More and more functionality is being extended to the mobile channel. Mobile designs for new efforts are a priority. As we develop new products and services, we continue to listen to our customers to set priorities and determine the mobilization of existing online features.”

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York