API payments company Stripe is making a big move to mCommerce.
The company announced the release of its new API tool Relay yesterday (Sept. 14), which allows stores and software application developers to build their own mobile eCommerce experiences.
“Today, mobile eCommerce websites aren’t working: ten-step shopping carts, mandatory account signup, slow page loads. When we get linked to a shopping cart on our phone, we usually just give up,” Siddarth Chandrasekaran said in a company blog post announcing the Relay launch.
“That shouldn’t be surprising — most mobile shopping sites are fundamentally the same as the desktop sites that preceded them, despite the medium calling for something completely different,” Chandrasekaran added.
According to Chandrasekaran, mobile devices account for 60 percent of browsing traffic for shopping sites but only 15 percent of purchases.
Stripe’s Relay seeks to bridge that gap but by offering the ability to create mobile shopping experiences that allow users to transact faster, reuse stored payment information and complete transactions in a single application.
As a Relay launch partner, Twitter is using the tool to enable stores to sell products within tweets. The first eCommerce integration for Relay is with SAP hybris, which is used by retailers like Levi’s, Oakley and Ted Baker.
Stripe is well-known for backing Facebook’s “buy button” and launched its dashboard on the iOS platform with an iPhone app earlier this year. Since being founded in 2010, the company has raised $200 million in funding to date, and a recent report (citing anonymous sources) suggested that Stripe may soon be raising $500 million.
The financing could top $500 million, an unnamed source allegedly told TechCrunch, though a spokesperson refused to comment on the rumors.
Stripe has been successful at garnering large amounts of cash in past years, with big investors including Elon Musk, Sequoia Capital and Peter Thiel. Any new funds would likely go toward growth and geographic expansion beyond its current 20-country roster, as Stripe just unveiled a beta program in Japan.