Mobile Payment Adoption Faces Hurdles With Consumers

More than half (56 percent) of mobile shoppers don’t know near-field communication (NFC) is a contactless payment system used for mobile payments.

A little more than seven out of 10 mobile applications users (71 percent) say they don't like the idea of being tracked into a store through their smartphones, and 56 percent say they are not interested in receiving push notifications while shopping, according to the findings of a survey conducted by Retale, which offers a location-based shopping app.

The survey, which asked more than 3,000 iOS and Android users about their mobile shopping experiences, usage and overall awareness, indicated while the future of mobile shopping may already be here, it seems the mobile shopper is still a few steps behind.

Despite the growing list of mobile technologies, ranging from Apple iBeacon, that send in-store push notifications to nearby smartphone users, to mobile payment and shopping coupon options such as Google Wallet, consumer adoption has been slowed by the lack of awareness and understanding, according to survey results.

In fact, three-quarters (75 percent) of survey respondents were unaware that iBeacon exists, while only 11 percent of Android users claim to use Google Wallet, and just 23 percent of iOS users have tried Passbook for coupon shopping offers.

"For retailers looking to maximize traffic and sales, understanding consumer motives and desires is the best way to improve the shopping experience," Patrice Dermody, president of Retale, said in a statement. "And that could mean helping consumers better understand the benefits of these technologies in order to break down the barriers to widespread adoption."

The survey also revealed that iOS users in favor of and against push notifications are nearly split, and found the majority of Android users don't want notifications sent to their mobile devices while shopping.

Only 29 percent of mobile app users said they are not concerned with being monitored, and 56 percent of mobile shoppers don't know near-field communication (NFC) is a contactless payment system used for mobile payments.

The 38 percent who said they are familiar with the technology choose not to use it—with only 5 percent to 6 percent saying they regularly use NFC to pay retailers.

Forrester Research projects that U.S. mobile payments will reach $90 billion in 2017, representing a 48 percent compound annual growth rate from the $12.8 billion spent in 2012. Proximity payments will reach $41 billion, making up nearly half of all mobile payments in 2017.

While consumers may still be wary of mobile payment adoption, on the business side of the market, communications giant AT&T and mobile payment solutions specialist Vantiv are teaming up to help convince companies of all sizes to implement on-the-spot mobile payment products and services.