In-app mobile payment features increased by 57% in the last year, according to a new study emailed to Retail Dive by Appy Pie, a DIY mobile app development platform that has helped create more than 2 million apps over the last three years.
The study compared all apps created on the Appy Pie platform in the first two quarters of 2017 to all that were created during the first two quarters of 2016 platform. Among retailers in 2016, 9,250 out of 13,700 apps included payment features, while in 2017, 17,200 out of 22,225 total apps created were built with in-app payment features.
Separately, 27% of respondents to a Morning Consult poll said they use PayPal a few times a year, and about 15% said they use it once a month, findings that came the same week that PayPal reported an 18% jump in revenue year over year.
The growth in retail apps with embedded payment capability is encouraging, and probably not all that surprising if you have been even half aware of what's been going on with retail mobile apps in the last few years. Apps are for selling, not just promoting, and if retailers are looking to make sales they need to make the entire purchasing process as frictionless as possible, which requires a reliable in-app payment feature.
Payments, as retailers like CVS have found, can be inherently connected to brand value, a component that retailers need in their mobile apps to offer the complete customer experience.
Beyond the growth percentage itself, the number that is most astonishing here is 17,200. The number of retail apps created with in-app payment features in the first half of this year was much higher than the total number of retail apps created on the Appy Pie platform during the first half of 2016. In-app payment is now a must-have.
That's also a reason why a company like PayPal has been aggressively partnering with others in the financial space to broaden the availability of PayPal as an in-app payment option. PayPal certainly would like to see the percentages in Morning Consult's poll go up. PayPal has been performing well in a rapidly changing payments space, trying to change with the times, but quite a bit of its future success in mobile could rely on its Venmo money transfer service, which it is also trying to expand for use with merchants.