Retailers hope to gain more customer insight with mobile payments

A number of retailers are hoping to learn more about their customers, by encouraging them to pay for items with their mobile phones.

According to, Tesco and French retailers Auchan are two of the companies investing in digital wallet apps. In order to persuade customers to use their mobiles instead of their cash or card, the retailers will reward users with discounts and rewards. Each time a customer buys something with their phone, they’ll automatically be given loyalty points. Other special features will also be offered, such as saved shopping lists.

By introducing this new payment method, retailers will be able to find out more about their customers’ shopping habits. They will then be able to target their advertising better, reports

It’s not just high street retailers which are experimenting with the tech though – Paypal also plans to implement mobile payments. Moreover, many banks, card companies and tech firms already offer such services.

Research firm Gartner believes the global mobile payments market will reach $721 billion (£435 billion) by 2017, with more than 450 million users worldwide.

Sophie Albizua, co-founder of retail consultancy eNova Partnership, says many stores are already making way for mobile payments.

“People spent the last five to ten years fine-tuning their websites,” she explains. “Now they have time to focus on something else.”