Those darn Millenials and their smartphones, am I right? The rise of smartphones and mobile payments has led to the virtual annihilation of disposable cameras, landline phones, and maybe one-day wallets. The wallet itself has gone mobile.
A mobile wallet is an app on your smartphone where you can store credit and debit card information to make purchases. Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay are a few of the popular device-based mobile wallets. Your banking institution may also have a mobile wallet.
What does this have to do with micro markets?
Glad you asked. Many micro market technology providers, like 365 Retail Markets, also have a mobile app that pairs perfectly with your market. According to Nation’s Restaurant News, restaurant and snack purchases ranked second in top mobile purchases by mobile app users. You are in the business of snacks and convenience in the workplace. Your goal as an operator should be to make it as easy as possible for your customers to get the products that they need from you. Offering multiple payment options gives you the opportunity to customize your market for the individuals using it. Your market cannot be one size fits all.
Who would use an app to purchase snacks in a micro market?
Short answer: the majority of your workforce is aware of and comfortable enough with mobile wallets to use it in your market if they know it’s available. In a report by ComScore.com, 4 in 5 smartphone users report using retail apps including 92% Millennials, 82% GenXers, 66% Boomers. They’re using mobile payments because they are faster, more convenient and more secure than cash or credit/debit. According to ComScore.com, “Mobile apps are a critical touchpoint for driving shopping and buying.”
Mobile payments are growing trend. You have the unique opportunity jump in, capture the early adopters and ride the wave.
How will a mobile app help my business?
By now, we know that cashless is here to stay. Successful operators have adopted cashless payment methods into their markets to mitigate per swipe credit card fees. Stored value accounts save YOU money and are a fast and convenient way to make purchases in the market.
Here’s a little-known fact: people spend more when they aren’t physically holding cash or a credit/debit card. Having a mobile app option is enabling people to spend more at once without the guilt of seeing the money leave their hand or immediately impacting their bank account. The app becomes the new stored value account and your customers will actually spend more and cost you less!
With the app, your customers can auto-fund their stored value account. Meaning you only pay credit card fees on the initial funding, and not on every purchase. You cut down on time spent funding at the kiosk and they could even scan and pay for the product on their phone through the app.
What else are these micro market mobile apps good for?
Promotions and loyalty. Now through the end of September, Chick-Fil-A is giving away a free 8-piece order of chicken nuggets for anyone who downloads their mobile app and creates an account. Starbucks is the leader in mobile payment apps (ahead of Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay) in large part because of their loyalty rewards programs.
Yes, you can!
You can implement similar strategies in your market with your app. Offer an incentive for those who download the app, create an account and/or auto-fund using the app. For repeat users, give them BOGO deals on snack and drink combos. Your customers are used to using apps. With the proper incentive, they’ll use yours too.
Technology and consumer preference are changing. Take this opportunity to be a leader in the change. Deliver the best products with fast, convenient and secure service. Your customers will thank you.