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Consumers turn to smartphones, tablets for retail activities more frequently

Oct 18, 2013 Dave King

U.S. retailers could benefit from implementing an electronic payment system, as consumers are increasingly turning to their smartphones and tablets in these stores. In fact, a Report found that more than half of all retail related Internet time originated from smartphones and tablets.

"Since U.S. consumers now spend more than half of their time on retailers' websites using their smartphones and tablets, mobile can't be viewed simply as an ancillary device or action, it now epitomizes how consumers think and act when they interact with retailers," said Executive Director Vicki Cantrell. "Retailers have to continue to invest to make sure they get their mobile offerings right, or will increasingly risk alienating customers and leaving significant money on the table."

Between June 2012 and June 2013, retail increased 49 percent as a content category on smartphones - a sign that stores need to increase their mobile offerings online and on-site.

How do mobile payment systems benefit retailers?
To keep up with customer trends, retailers would be wise to implement a mode of accepting payments via mobile devices, as this technology provides numerous benefits, such as:

- Shorter lines: The customer experience is one of the most important things to consider, and when people face long lines they can become frustrated. According to Business Vibes, the wait time at checkout can decrease, which may improve customer satisfaction. Paying with a smartphone can be much quicker than cash and credit cards, and people who experience shorter lines are often more likely to come back.

- Convenience: Another reason this technology could prove beneficial is the fact that it provides a convenience to customers. Instead of having to carry around cash or credit cards, people can just use their mobile phones to make a payment. Consumers are attached to their phones these days, and the ability to purchase goods with a device could be a major draw.

- Better loyalty programs: When customers make payments with mobile devices, retailers are able to better track data. Using this information, they can generate targeted offers through a loyalty program. For example, people who buy a lot of Pepsi can be alerted whenever this beverage goes on sale. This type of personalized service could help keep customers coming back, which is essential for businesses.