“Gone are the days of searching for your wallet. The wasted moments finding the right card. The swiping and waiting. Now payments happen with a single touch.” – Apple
To many consumers, Apple Pay seems revolutionary, simplistic and futuristic but what are the takes from the merchant’s perspectives?
With the launch happening any day now, some of the big players have been very open with their thoughts on Apple Pay. There is an amazing divide among the product/marketing teams at merchants, who are largely enthusiastic, and the finance/accounting execs who need to see more. Here’s a quick roundup of what a few had to say recently.
Dunkin’ Donuts. DD is currently planning on adding a mobile order feature to their already existing mobile application. Justin Drake, the brand’s PR manager, believes the mobile experience will remain a vital element when designing and deploying new platforms, features, campaigns and partnerships. That’s why they say that they might actually strongly consider the implementation of Apple Pay.
Pizza Hut. When asked about Apple Pay, the VP of global digital experience, Danny Sullivan, seemed to be a little less enthusiastic about the initial Apple Pay deployment, in fact he actually used the word – pessimistic. His concerns lie with a few well-known limits currently with Apple Pay. Specifically, Sullivan is concerned that it exclusively focused on in-store and in app payment approach (what about e-commerce he asked?) and the fact that it excludes Android users from the service.
“I still don’t think the use case has been made,” Sullivan said. “It [NFC] has been talked about in the industry forever,” adding that he does think that massive acceptance of in-store mobile payments is “inevitable.”
But “I think what will make it inevitable is when credit card companies stop sending you plastic cards,” he said. “That is not going to happen very soon. From a customer experience point, credit cards still work pretty well.”
McDonald’s. McDonalds is an early launch partner of Apple Pay and Chief Digital Officer Atif Rafiq spoke with a reporter last month stating, that adopting Apple Pay is just one of many steps in a series of digital enhancements for McDonald’s locations. Rafiq also stated that the company will place an Apple Pay button on an upcoming application, but declined to disclose specifics of what the app will do.
Walmart. MCX now branded CurrentC will go live next year – their mobile payment plan backed by Target, 7-Eleven, Southwest Airlines, the Gap and Shell. Given its mobile app requirements for supporting cash-based customers, and its focus on reducing the cost of acceptance, Walmart has no intention of supporting Apple Pay initially.
Target. Bill Ramsey, Director of Finance at Target, told a conference audience that Apple Pay has to do more than replace cash and plastic to qualify as a breakthrough, and if it doesn’t offer consumers added value or convenience, it’s not really an improvement at all.
Target is currently part of CurrentC because they have said that incorporating features beyond simple payment into the system is easier and gives retailers more control over using their own branded cards.
Target, will however, offer Apple Pay via their mobile app and is a launch partner.
Whole Foods. With Apple Pay, Whole Foods hopes to make it easier and faster for customers to grab their morning coffee from their coffee bar, a beer in the Whole Foods tap room after work, a juice from their juice bars, or all their grocery needs. The checkout lanes at all Whole Foods Market stores are fired up and ready to accept Apple Pay later this month.
Apple Pay will be accepted at 220,000 stores, with rumors swirling that more are on the way soon.
- Babies R Us
- Duane Reade
- Toys r Us
- Walt Disney World
- Whole Foods
You will be able to use Apple Pay in the following apps:
Early merchant adopters all seem enthusiastic about the platform and pursuing the idea with the hopes of enhancing the overall customer service experience, and increasing conversion, particularly on the mobile device.
Other merchants are sitting back and keeping close eyes on the service.
For additional news on Apple, visit the PYMNTS.com Apple Pay EcoSystem.