How will the mobile payments impact the grocery industry?

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Have you ever heard anything about mobile payments or have you ever tried it?

Well, mobile payments develop very fast in recent years, especially in China. When I went back to my hometown during the summer break, I just need to take my cellphone with me every time I was shopping. Because you can use mobile payments everywhere in China. You can use it to buy shoes in the shopping mall or pay for fruits in grocery store, even the metro card refill can be done by mobile payments. Most people in China today don’t have cash in their wallets. They even don’t take their wallets. A smartphone with mobile payments is enough. Can you image that even beggars on the streets use QR code to beg?!

Same thing happens in the United States. Apple Pay, a way of mobile payments, was launched in late 2014 along the IPhone 6. After it was launched, lots of the industry announced that they were available to apple pay.

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For example, in October 2014, Whole Foods Markets announced that they were offering their customers the ability to make purchases with Apple Pay, a new service expected to transform mobile payments with an easy, secure and private way to pay for items at Whole Foods Market checkout lanes across America. By the end of 2016, Whole Foods already became one the most successful brick-and-mortar stores at getting customers to embrace Apple Pay. In 2017, there are 37 grocery stores that accept Apple Pay.

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As an innovation for improved efficiency and customer convenience, mobile payments change the traditional way of payments and make smartphones more useful and important to our daily life. I think the innovative point of mobile payments is that they make your phone become your wallet. People 20 years ago definitely cannot image it.

Customers can finish their payments by using the mobile wallet apps on their smartphones. It’s easy, fast and convenient. Also, it’s secure and private. Because they need to enter a PIN/Password or Fingerprint to confirm the identify. These are the pluses of mobile payments. There’s no doubt that mobile payments will become the main stream of payment methods in the grocery industry in the future.

Why? Because the smartphone users are increasing. More and more people will use smartphones which can be used for mobile payments.

Almost 2.4 billion people use a smartphone in 2017, according to eMarketer’s latest forecast. Worldwide smartphone penetration will continue to increase, and by the end of 2018, more than a third of the global population will be using a smartphone. As you can see from the data, the number of smartphone users are increasing which provide a huge user base for mobile payments.

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However, mobile payments still have some disadvantages. First, you must have NFC equipment in your smartphones. If you don’t have that, you can’t use mobile payments. Second, there are lots of mobile wallet apps in front of you, you must make a right choice. Last but not the least, it will be very troublesome once you lose your phone. Because all of your bank information and credit cards information are in there. It would be dangerous.

But I would recommend mobile payments to a client if I were a salesperson in grocery industry. It saves the time of checkout. Also, it provides support for the development of online grocery. And I believe all the cons can be solved with the development of the technology. Now that new technology can make our life easier and more convenient, why not try it?

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