PayPal’s Mobile App Redesign Touts POS Acceptance, Merchant Deals (Sept. 9, 2013)
PayPal is making a splash with a redesign of its mobile app that pulls together several of the company’s latest initiatives into a digital wallet emphasizing consumer benefits, including instant discounts and the ability to pay at the POS. The new app, unveiled last week, sports a “shop” button touting retailers that accept PayPal and offers the choice of paying with a PayPal balance or any linked bank account, credit or debit card. PayPal’s POS transactions run on the Discover Network. A location-based feature enables users to find merchants that accept PayPal at the POS, such as Jamba Juice and Eat24, which also offer an order-ahead feature. Mobile app users also can take advantage of PayPal’s connection to NCR Mobile Pay and pay at the table of participating restaurants.
Other new enhancements to PayPal’s mobile app include more financing options and access to instant deals and discounts. PayPal mobile app users may opt to finance purchases from inside the app via Bill Me Later, which PayPal acquired in 2008, or finance deals directly with merchants offering their own special terms. With the retooled app, PayPal is promising up to $100 in offers that can be redeemed automatically at checkout, Hill Ferguson, PayPal’s vice president of global product, explained in a blog post.
Analysts say an expanding array of digital wallets are designed to improve marketing and payments efficiency for merchants, but broad consumer adoption is yet to come. PayPal’s latest moves are aimed at attacking that challenge, Eric Grover, a payments analyst and principal at Intrepid Ventures, tells Paybefore. “For PayPal to get meaningful traction at the physical POS, it has to provide compelling benefits to consumers to persuade them to use PayPal in lieu of a [physical] wallet full of payment cards with ubiquitous acceptance, many with rich rewards, that they’re habituated to using,” Grover notes.