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Young consumers are changing the payments landscape by adopting new mobile tools and interacting with financial institutions and merchants in new ways. According to recent Vantiv/Mercator Advisory Group research, more than three-quarters of consumers ages 18-34 now have a smartphone and more than one-third have a tablet. This group, which we call “omniconsumers,” has distinct expectations about the consumer experience. With every transaction, they are demonstrating how they want to shop, bank, and be treated.
Vantiv and Mercator recently conducted research examining the change being driven by this segment. The report, Mobile Payments and the Omniconsumer of the Future, sheds light on how consumers in general are thinking about mobile payments and technology and how young consumers differ from older consumers in their preferences. It turns out omniconsumers typically are young, tech-savvy consumers who expect “omnicommerce,” the integration of payments across channels and devices, to create a seamless, superior customer experience.
Omniconsumers expect easy access to information — when they want it, where they want it, and in whatever channel they choose. They hold a high comfort level when using mobile devices as part of a multichannel experience and are using mobile to connect the online and offline worlds. For example, the report points outthese younger consumers are more likely than average to use coupons received on their phones and are more likely than average to use showrooming techniques.
Although the emerging omniconsumer is typically a younger person, that might not always be the case. There are pockets of older consumers — primarily technology-savvy segments — that share the enthusiasm for mobile payments. Higher-income consumers also are more likely than average to be interested in mobile payments and cross-channel behaviors.
It is important to realize that, for the omniconsumer, mobile payments are not replacing existing channels — they are being added to the consumer experience. Young consumers still are making use of traditional channels. For example, they are more likely to embrace mobile banking but also are heavy users of ATMs, call centers, and bank branches. As a result, you and your merchants will have to manage customer interactions more holistically through a variety of shopping, purchase, and payment channels. That means offering consistent pricing, promotions, and loyalty programs — both online and offline.
Key facts about omniconsumers:
What’s clear is that omniconsumers will expect open communication from the financial institutions and businesses they choose to do business with. That means your communications with them are no longer restricted by time, location, or channel — but the message must be consistent across channels. Ultimately, to stay relevant, you and your merchants will need to understand and track the preferences of this younger segment and act accordingly to stay in step with their thinking.
For more information, download the whitepaper here.
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November 11, 2013
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