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Brands urged to integrate offerings with social networks: report

The report, Mobile Commerce Markets: Key Sector Strategies, Opportunities and Forecasts, 2014-2019, also recommended that operator billing capabilities be integrated with Web sites to promote the monetization of digital content amid a wider user base.

“There is no doubt that mobile commerce and payments will grow,” said Jeff Hasen, founder of Gotta Mobilize, a Seattle-based consulting firm. “The questions are around how fast, which solution or solutions win, and whether there will be something like a security breach that will scare off the mainstream.”

A representative with Britain-based Juniper could not be reached for comment.

Migrating consumers
The report found that just over 2 billion mobile phone or tablet users will make some form of mobile commerce transaction by the end of 2017, up from 1.6 billion this year.

Mobile consumption of services such as banking, money transfer and purchases of goods and services are surging as consumers either migrate from desktop usage or become first-time ecommerce users through their smartphones or tablets.

Global payments via mobile will reach about $507 billion this year.

In developed markets, mobile devices will account for over half of online transactions within five years, according to the report.

While contactless payments have yet to gain traction outside Japan and South Korea, Apple Pay will provide near-field communication, or NFC, with momentum, according to the report.

In other findings from the report, concerns around transaction security remain the main turn-off for consumers from embracing mobile commerce.

“There are no absolutes in mobile – cash won’t be gone by Thursday,” Mr. Hasen said. “Some will choose to use these services for convenience, perks, and other reasons. Others will never do so, or it will be a real long time before adoption.

“Look at banks,” he said. “While we can do everything from our mobile device, not only are there ATMs, there are tellers available for those who won’t adapt or adopt. But for the first time, mobile payments seem on a mainstream path and will be more so if more terminals and services are available and promoted.”

The findings fit with Juniper’s projections in April that global payments via mobile devices will reach close to $507 billion this year, a rise of nearly 40 percent from 2013, driven by host card emulation solutions, contactless POS and the then-impending Apple Pay rollout.

Global payments
Average transactions through tablets have already surpassed those made via desktop computers, in many markets.

Testing McDonald’s mobile payments in Georgia.

“The reterminalization of retail locations will drive a US consumer behavior change tide that will lift all mobile commerce boats,” said Wilson Kerr of Unbound Commerce.

“Credit card companies are finally rolling out Europay, MasterCard and Visa tap and pin cards in the U.S., and consumers will start interacting with retail payment terminals in a new way. Apple Pay launched this fall, to coincide with the move toward these new, more-secure in-store payment interactions,” he said.

“Retailers that do not update their terminals will be penalized with card-not-present rates and will shoulder the burden on fraud. Contactless NFC payments will be the start, but the opening of the marketing floodgates for NFC will not be far behind,” he said.

“Smart retailers will start testing now and devote resources to omnichannel marketing initiatives that use mobile to bridge the gap between online and offline.”

Final Take
Michael Barris is staff reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York.