Whether the Square/Starbucks partnership has done anything for mobile payment adoption among consumers has yet to be seen; however, it seems to have lit a fire under other big brands looking to snag a piece of the payment pie.
Over the weekend, McDonald’s announced that it’s testing a new payment system powered by PayPal. Customers will be able to order food and pay using PayPal’s digital wallet and mobile app.
Many mobile payment solutions boast a quicker check-out process — something that McDonald’s 30,000 locations would benefit a lot from. However, customers in the U.S. will have to wait to get hands-on as the food chain is only testing at 30 of its locations in France.
Mobile payment adoption hasn’t reached critical mass in the U.S. quite yet, but that hasn’t stopped Starbucks’ rival Dunkin’ Donuts from joining the race. In the past, the company enabled customers to pay using a virtual Dunkin’ Donuts card, similar to the Starbucks app.
After a recent update, the app now lets customers send virtual gift cards (ranging from $2 to $100) to friends through text message, email, or Facebook, encouraging coffee and donut lovers to buy from Dunkin’.
It’s too soon to tell what these brands and their apps will be able to accomplish for mobile payment adoption and the customer experience, but it does reflect the growing interest surrounding new payment opportunities. Because so many tests are still underway, we don’t recommend that brands and small businesses rush to find a solution. Instead, keep a close eye on these tests and research which option will benefit your company the most.
Jennifer Beese: Jennifer Beese has worked as a community manager and social media strategist. When she’s not writing, you can find her studying anatomy and physiology—she literally has a skeleton in her closet—or under the stars with her telescope.