Beacon-based Mobile Payments: 4 Brands that are Doing it Right
May 12, 2016
Mobile payments, especially in physical locations have been gaining significant traction over the past few years. According to a recent report by Prepaid International Forum, 24% of adults in the UK alone have used their smartphones to make in-store mobile payments and 12% do so on a regular basis. Significant reasons for the sharp increase in mobile payments can be attributed to the sheer ease of only having to carry a mobile phone (and not a physical wallet) to make payments and the ability to view account and balance information in real-time.
Mobile proximity payments can be processed by leveraging a host of technologies and platforms today. Digital wallets like, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and iBeacon technology among others are some of the popular technologies that are leveraged by businesses and brands today to deliver mobile proximity payments. However, digital wallets like Apple Pay and Samsung Pay face certain barriers to adoption since they are phone specific, and do not allow businesses to make customizations. A good way to overcome this problem is to leverage iBeacon technology, that not only allows for customization, but also gathers valuable customer insights. Beacon-based payment apps are also phone agnostic, thus making it practically accessible to any smartphone user.
Given the imminent advantages of the technology, leading brands across the globe are leveraging beacons to deliver quick, safe and easy mobile-based proximity payment solutions. In this post, we discuss how four leading brands from different verticals are leveraging beacons to create significant customer value by efficiently processing mobile payments.
1. Danske Bank
As part of the world’s largest beacon deployment for processing payments, Danske Bank introduced its mobile proximity payment service called ‘MobilePay’ that leverages iBeacon technology to enable quick and easy mobile payments. The idea behind the solution was to make payments and money transfers as simple as sending text messages.
In order to make payments, customers just have to wave their smartphones across the store’s smart beacon, with the app running and then enter the PIN directly on the phone in order to authenticate the payment.
‘MobilePay’ is widely accepted at stores in Scandinavia and 10 million Danish Krone (DKK) worth of transactions were processed through the app in December 2015 alone. The service has witnessed significant adoption and growth in 2015 and the customers are expected to double in 2016, with more retailers joining the network.
2. Hailo Taxi
Hailo is a taxi hailing app that leverages iBeacon technology. Both the passenger and driver apps are beacon-enabled in order to deliver seamless and hassle-free mobile payments. By using the app, customers can not only locate and hail a taxi in a matter of minutes, but also easily pay for the ride through a one-click confirmation on the app. Hailo is hugely popular and is available in more than 20 cities, including London, Madrid, Barcelona and Osaka, and all across Ireland.
In addition, Hailo also has a beacon-enabled payment solution called ‘Pay with Hailo’ that allows passengers to get into any taxi on the road and then connect with the driver’s app through the Hailo app on his/her smartphone (through GPS) and then make the payment.
Recently, Hailo also launched ‘HailoPay’;a mobile payment service that allows a passenger to pay with his/her debit/credit card by visiting a secure site (on a mobile browser), entering the driver’s badge number and confirming the payment amount.
3. Coachella 2016
The Coachella music and arts festival 2016 introduced contactless payments in order to allow attendees to make safe, easy and effective payments through smartphones. This nifty solution was supported through NFC and chip card readers provided by payment solution provider, ‘Square’. Square’s compact readers allowed for a variety of payments, such as Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Android Pay and other chip-enabled credit cards. In addition to this, Coachella is also integrating iBeacon technology into its iOS app, in order to reduce the need for a physical wallet.
In an interesting example of iBeacon technology, Coachella collaborated with American Express in order to offer a mobile rewards program called ‘Surprise and Delight’. As part of the initiative, attendees were allowed to link their American Express cards to the Coachella app in order to win rewards based on their exact location in the festival.
PaidEasy is a beacon-enabled app that allows customers to easily discover restaurants, search for offers and make payments using their smartphones. Through beacons installed at a restaurant, PaidEasy automatically opens a check whenever a customer enters the restaurant. Once the check has been created, the customer’s bill automatically syncs with the restaurant’s POS (point-of-sale) system, thus allowing the restaurant staff to easily add items to the bill.
Once the customer has finished the meal, he/she can pay for the meal through the PaidEasy app on his/her smartphone, without waiting for the physical bill to be delivered or having to process the payment through the restaurant’s POS system. Customers can also choose to split the bill among their group.
PaidEasy also allows customers to leave feedback in real-time, that the restaurant can address immediately, thus enhancing the overall restaurant experience.
Beacon-based mobile payments are not only proving to be effective and efficient, they are also becoming essential components to build brand loyalty, since it gives brands the opportunity to directly interact with customers. Deploying beacon-based solutions are also relatively inexpensive thus making it accessible to even small and medium sized businesses. In addition, iBeacon technology is so versatile that the payment solution can be stitched together with other business functions like loyalty programs and location-based personalized promotions among others. Thus, given the bevy of mobile-based payment solutions available today, iBeacon technology is definitely the most holistic solution that brands should leverage in order to perfect mobile payments, personally connect with customers and ensure business success.
If you are planning a beacon pilot, take a look at Beaconstac, that includes everything you need to get started. Using Beaconstac you can set up your own campaign, without a developer’s help!