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comScore: Lack of awareness, education are barriers to digital wallet adoption
A recent report from comScore reveals that a lack of awareness, education and a misunderstanding of digital wallets is holding back intent and adoption of use.
comScore's "Digital Wallet Road Map 2013" reveals that, apart from PayPal, just 51% of US consumers were aware of digital wallet technology.
Almost three-quarters (72%) of respondents from two separate studies of over 2,000 US consumers were aware of PayPal and almost half (48%) had used it. However, just 41% were aware of Google Wallet and just 8% had used it.
Just 13% were aware of Mastercard's Pay Pass wallet, and only 4% had used it. Meanwhile 8% were aware of Square Wallet and V.Me from Visa but just 2% had used them, while ISIS had 6% awareness and 1% usage.
The comScore survey leaves little doubt that education is the way forward if adoption of digital wallets is to increase. Even after being asked to review digital wallet websites, participants in the study scored just 45% in level of understanding.
Security has always been a barrier to digital wallet use and the comScore study showed this concern is alive and well, albeit misunderstood. Almost all (93%) of study participants stated a preference for a digital wallet that must be unlocked before use. After reviewing digital wallet products just over half (53%) realized that this option was available.
"Low awareness, understanding of benefits and availability among retailers are among the key barriers to adoption of digital wallets. While these impediments may seem like a steep hill to climb, we have seen this story play out before in the financial services industry. There was a time when consumers were reluctant to use ATMs for similar reasons, and, today, look at how far we've come since the 1970s and 1980s," said Andrea Jacobs, payments practice leader for comScore.
"It would seem that the future is bright for digital wallets, but it will require deliberate execution of strategies such as sound marketing for this technology to realize its full potential. In order to win over consumers, wallet marketers, providers, developers and retailers must work together to address each of the aforementioned barriers."
Earlier this year, London-based ICM Research found that UK consumers and the country's market place aren't yet ready for a wholesale embrace of mobile wallets.
Their survey of 2015 Brits showed that, despite smartphone penetration reaching some 60% in the UK, only a third would definitely or probably use their mobile as a wallet to make payments, collect vouchers or to use as tickets for events and on public transport. You can read more here.
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