Black Friday

Black Friday Sees an Explosion in Mobile Payments

Black Friday

Black Friday, has become an international retail phenomenon.

For those not in the know, it’s the Friday following Thanksgiving in the United States, where products are discounted to ridiculously low prices.

The same has begun to happen all across the globe, followed by a ‘Cyber Monday’ on the Monday after, where online retailers hold heavy discounts on a wide range of products.

But, why is such an event – especially one surrounded by shopper chaos and absurd queues – of interest to the world of payments?

Well, what if I was to tell you that across Thanksgiving and Black Friday Americans spent a whopping $3 billion shopping online, with a quarter of those sales being made on mobile devices?

Interested now?

According to Adobe, and backed up by independent data from IBM, spending on mobile devices was up 118 per cent compared to last year’s figures for the same Thanksgiving and Black Friday period.

More people were interested in buying online using iOS over Android, and more people actually felt comfortable using their tablet to purchase products as opposed to using their mobile phone – which they instead used to browse goods online.

The iOS/Android split could be a little bit of a kick in the teeth for Google Wallet, which recently launched a prepaid debit card, as only a combined $148 million in sales was made via Android devices, versus $543 million over iOS, with $417 million of these being on iPad.

It marks an interesting turning point for online sales, especially on mobile devices.

It’s hard to know quite how the payments were made, most likely through an online payments system by card. But the rise of ecommerce on mobile devices paves the way for mobile wallets and the rise of PayPal-like competitors.

It’ll even be interesting to hear how many people decided to pay using Amazon Coins through the retailer.

No doubt Cyber Monday’s sales figures will yield even more mobile-enabled sales. However, it may be a little while yet before we really know how people decided to pay on the day.

I’m waiting to see who decided to use NFC in stores across the country.

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