Google Wallet and Apple Pay continue to lose ground against… Starbucks?

Google Wallet and Apple Pay continue to lose ground against… Starbucks?

 by Adam Blinderman


You might be surprised to know that 90% of all mobile payments in the U.S. were made at a Starbucks in 2013. I know I was.
Every week 7 million mobile transactions are conducted at Starbucks, making up 16% of total transactions, with CEO Howard Schultz boasting the volume is growing by nearly 50% annually.
How do they pull it off? It’s a mixture of their clientele base, the nature of grab-n-go coffee, and the fact Starbucks throws incentives and loyal customers who use their app. It’s this unique combination which leads to their continued success.

How does Google Wallet, and Apple Pay measure up?
Google Wallet has been around since 2011 and had a pretty lackluster launch. Over the years, Google has struck deals with various credit card companies and expanded the number of devices which could support “near field communication,” an essential component to Google Wallet’s implementation. Recent ad campaigns in response to Apple Pay being released in October have since boosted the number of Google Wallet users, but the service is far from mature. There are about 300,000 retailers who accept payment through Google Wallet, yet it still hasn’t caught on. According to Google, 93 percent of people who do research into products on their phone go on to make a purchase. Yet, barely 17 percent of those purchases are made with Google Wallet.
Apple Pay has been a little more successful at its start, with CEO Tim Cook reporting around a million credit cards registered in the first three days after launch. That’s an impressive number, for sure, but to measure up to Starbucks; each of those credit cards registered would have to buy something every day of the week. Every week.
That’s not to say Google and Apple won’t ever catch up to the latte-slinging giant, but that they’re going to have to make some real strides in their marketing departments to catch up.
With market estimates pointing toward the rise of online transactions through mobile platforms; to the point where they will account for more than half of online transactions within 5 years, you can see why Google and Apple have everything to gain by pushing their respective services.


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