Google Unveils New Payment Initiatives to Buoy Wallet (May 16, 2013)
Google is launching a trio of new services that leverage the tech giant’s ubiquitous online presence to spur usage of its mobile wallet. Announced at Google’s I/O Conference in San Francisco this week, the new initiatives include a one-click payments function for Google Wallet, an instant buy feature for Android and the ability to send money via Gmail.
The one-click payment function is being integrated into Google’s Chrome browser and is being made available as an API for merchants’ Websites. Participating e-retailers will leverage Chrome users’ stored shipping data to enable shoppers to bypass the process of filling out shipping information when shopping online, reducing shopping cart abandonment.
On the mobile side, Google’s new instant buy feature for Android devices offers an API that enables online merchants to support checkout via Google Wallet on their mobile sites by providing a button that users can click to make purchases through the wallet using payment and shipping data stored in Google Wallet. Shopping cart abandonment is even more of an issue on mobile devices, Google says; the company claims that up to a whopping 97 percent of mobile transactions are abandoned (excluding digital downloads). A number of retailers already have integrated the instant buy API, including Airbnb, Expedia, Rue La La, Uber and Wrapp.
Finally, Google is offering a new P2P money transfer service via Gmail that will give users the ability to send money to any recipient, including non-Gmail users. Transfers are free if done via a linked Google Wallet account; fees are under 3 percent per transaction if using a payment card linked outside of the wallet. The feature will roll out over the next 18 months to all Gmail users over 18, the company said.