EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 2959 - December 18, 2012     3 of 4

PayPal President Predicts Payment Changes in 2013

By David A. Utter

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The necessity of exchanging payments for goods contributed to the development of various systems throughout time. By improving ways to do so, the world of commerce made it more convenient and efficient to get money out of pockets and into cash registers, which in turn got shoppers their purchases faster.

We've come a long way from rolling a massive stone down payment to Thog's First Bank of Banking to buy a timeshare in a cave overlooking lots and lots of forest. Ecommerce of course wouldn't have grown without improvements to allow distant customers to make purchases from in front of a screen.

PayPal's influence on ecommerce stands as an important part of the genesis of online shopping. PayPal president David Marcus thinks 2013 will see the rate of changes accelerate in how people spend money.

For one thing, Marcus isn't real high on near field communication (NFC) payments. The tap-to-pay model doesn't solve problems or add value, according to him. However, he does hold an optimistic view on digital wallets, a service PayPal and other like Google have been trying to drive to greater consumer acceptance.

"In 2013 payments will finally merge with loyalty and rewards," said Marcus. "These three separate businesses will converge to make it easy for consumers and merchants to automatically leverage appropriate coupons and offers."

Marcus also predicts on the brick-and-mortar side an emergence of mobile cashiers to check out shoppers in the aisle, rather than bringing the aisle to the cash register. He's also thinking positive on location-based experiences, where mobile devices coupled with technologies to alert nearby potential customers about deals should evolve.

PayPal Predictions for 2013:

  • NFC will fail to gain mass adoption;
  • The payments, loyalty and coupons businesses will merge;
  • The cash register will go mobile.

For ecommerce pros, that last bit will be one to watch. We know mobiles are becoming a more commonly used way to shop online. If the location-based experience continues to improve (Marcus cites Apple's Passbook as an example of this beginning to happen), online sellers will have to adjust their local marketing strategies to take advantage of what customers will come to expect of this.

About the Author
David A. Utter is a freelance writer based in Lexington, KY. Find him on Twitter @davidautter and on LinkedIn.

About the author:

David A. Utter is a freelance writer based in Lexington, KY. He has covered technology topics from search to security to online business and has been quoted in places like ZDNet and BusinessWeek. He considers his appearance on NPR's "All Things Considered" with long-time host Robert Siegel a delightful highlight. Send your tips to and find him on Twitter @davidautter and on LinkedIn.

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