Mobile not only matters as a means to lure consumers into stores through effective marketing, it also matters at the point of sale.
Informa Telecoms & Media's latest research indicates that major retailers can no longer solely rely on the in-store POS (point-of-sale) terminals for transactions and need to evolve their strategy to offer both online and mobile payment options to customers.
According to the new report, retailers that offer multiple payment options, including a mobile checkout facility, will be able to serve more customers and reduce loss of sales due to shoppers' reluctance to queue.
With major retail giants like Apple turning to mobile point of sale solutions and thousands of smaller businesses relying on industry leading mobile payments providers like PayAnywhere, it's clear that mobile payments have arrived in earnest across the domestic retail landscape.
The use of mobile POS terminals can help retailers to serve more customers during busy times and issue paperless receipts to customers' e-mail addresses, rather than making customers wait in long lines to pay at fixed POS terminals.
And the case studies showing the effectiveness of mobile strategies at the point of sale are piling up.
During the 2012 Christmas holidays, lifestyle brand Alex and Ani implemented mobile checkout technology in several of their US stores and witnessed an impressive 318% increase in sales just from transactions processed by sales associates carrying mobile POS terminals.
"Many retailers have now deployed, or are in the process of deploying, mobile POS terminals," says Shailendra Pandey, a senior analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media and author of the report. "Unlike a few years ago, many vendors are now offering mobile POS terminals and support services. These vendors are also offering attractive incentives to merchants and retailers to upgrade their old terminals with new mobile POS systems."