By Alyssa Arredondo, Entrust Datacard
From bartering goods to the gold-backed dollar, history has seen payment methods come and go on more than one occasion. Over the past few years, yet another chapter has emerged within the evolution of payments. The launch of Apple Pay in 2014, followed by Android and Samsung Pay just a year later, has sparked a rapid shift toward mobile. Global mobile wallet spend is expected to rise nearly 32 percent to $1.35 trillion this year alone, according to a Juniper Research study.
It’s safe to say mobile is just getting started. By 2020, Visa predicts consumers will primarily rely on mobile payments for buying goods and services, sending money and conducting business. While mobile is sure to grab headlines throughout the next three years, it won’t be the only way consumers pay during checkout.
Physical cards will still have a place in our wallets—they may just have a more personalized, luxurious feel. Take, for example, Chase’s Sapphire Preferred credit card. Overwhelming demand for the metal credit card following its release last summer is representative of a larger payments industry trend centered around customization. Rather than dishing out generic credit or debit cards, banks and retailers are inviting consumers to create highly personalized cards that not only meet their unique needs, but also serve as physical complements to the mobile wallet experience.
Among the payment industry’s most common personalization features are custom labels. Banks and retailers have the opportunity to enhance the consumer experience by printing full-color, edge-to-edge images, text and graphics on almost any credit or debit card out there. Targeted information and high resolution visuals can now be included on credit and debit cards, thereby giving consumers an up close and personal look at current marketing campaigns. Perhaps even more importantly, financial card issuers and government agencies can use such labels to draw consumer attention toward products, solutions or services that are relevant to their specific demographic.
In addition to custom labels, QR codes are also bringing personalization to the payments industry. By simply snapping a picture of their own unique QR code, users can securely and automatically generate transaction data. This extra convenience will go a long way toward speeding up the checkout process for consumers in a hurry.
Mobile is taking the payments industry by storm—and for good reason. Quick and easy to use, mobile offers convenience few other payment methods can. Although much will be made about mobile payments now and in the future, banks and retailers should remain conscious of the fact that physical cards aren’t going away anytime soon. From custom labels to QR codes, taking steps to incorporate personalization will enable banks and retailers to accommodate both mobile wallets and physical cards for years to come.
Alyssa Arredondo is the director of financial vertical marketing at Entrust Datacard. She has more than 12 years of experience in the financial services industry with expertise in credit card account acquisition, portfolio management, lifecycle marketing and loyalty marketing and analytics. Before joining Entrust Datacard, Alyssa held marketing roles at U.S. Bank and HSBC Card Services.
In Viewpoints, payments technology professionals share their perspectives on the industry. Paybefore presents many points of view to offer readers new insights and information. The opinions expressed in Viewpoints are not necessarily those of Paybefore.