First Data Introduces Mobile Voucher Technology for Merchants

What's Next In Payments®
9:05 AM EDT March 22nd, 2011

First Data Corporation, a global leader in electronic commerce and payment processing, today introduced mobile vouchers (mVoucher) for merchants looking to extend their brand and commerce services to their ever-more-mobile customers. First Data mVoucher enables merchants to deliver offers to consumers through e-mail or their mobile device.

Sometimes referred to as coupons, mVouchers store a prepaid value funded by the merchant or consumer product goods company. Mobile vouchers can be delivered as coupons, loyalty rewards, promotional rewards, contest rewards or general marketing initiatives. The virtual offer can then be used for redemption online or in-store through a mobile device as an SMS (short message service) or 2-D barcode, and ultimately through contactless exchange such as Near Field Communication (NFC).

With major merchants already signed and using mVoucher, First Data is helping its customers take advantage of this latest trend in loyalty and personalized marketing program development.

“Innovations in mobile services and applications have catalyzed the consumer adoption of sending real-life gifts and buying daily deals in real time from a mobile device. As people continue to embrace this mobile lifestyle, First Data mVoucher will enable merchants to instantly deliver targeted offers to their most loyal customers even while they are in the middle of shopping as well as drive more foot traffic through their doors,” said Dom Morea, SVP and division manager, Advanced Solutions and Innovation, First Data.

How mVouchers Work

The consumer requests or receives a mobile voucher either through a banner ad, short code, loyalty program or as a special promotion. The mVoucher system also provides the merchant with an optional registration process to allow their customers to opt-in to receive additional virtual offers through e-mail or SMS. The consumer then visits the merchant location where the cashier enters the 16-digit code or scans the barcode at the point-of-sale (POS) terminal. With the future of mobile commerce in mind, mVouchers are also designed to support NFC-based redemption between a mobile device and the merchant point of sale as this technology is broadly deployed.

In addition, the mVoucher program includes an optional registration feature on a mobile web or App Gift Card Portal for the consumer to manage their saved offer and accept more incentives from the merchant. Included is the ability to reload funds, check balance and transaction information, locate the nearest physical store location and purchase additional mVouchers to send to others.

As part of the mVoucher launch, First Data and CardinalCommerce collaborated on the development of a mobile commerce platform to provide an integration-free solution for merchants to deliver mVouchers. Redemption of mVouchers can take place through an existing relationship with First Data and a merchant’s POS system or the internet checkout process, which allows for detailed reporting from request to delivery to redemption.

“Leveraging the convenience of a consumer’s mobile phone, merchants can drive loyalty, brand affinity and simplify the transaction process through this new product capability. MVoucher is a simple to use mobile solution that utilizes a retailer’s existing gift card infrastructure and helps them exploit the opportunities of mobile commerce,” said Tim Sherwin, EVP and co-owner of CardinalCommerce Corporation.

Around the world, every second of every day, First Data makes payment transactions secure, fast and easy for merchants, financial institutions and their customers. First Data leverages its vast product portfolio and expertise to drive customer revenue and profitability. Whether the choice of payment is by debit or credit card, gift card, check or mobile phone, online or at the checkout counter, First Data takes every opportunity to go beyond the transaction.

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