PayPal CEO Dan Schulman says the emergence of mobile payments technology, including in-app and in-store payments, has really started to take shape this year, completely changing the way people think about payments.
“Everyone’s saying this is the year that really what they call ‘omnichannel around the mobile phone’ — being used online, in-app, in-store — is coming to the forefront,” Schulman said at Business Insider’s Ignition conference on Wednesday.
That means more people are now shopping directly within mobile apps as opposed to going to retail stores, and even when they do, they’re starting to consider the use of mobile payments instead of cash. That’s also enhancing the overall shopping experience because retailers can now send coupons or promotions based on past shopping records.
“What we need to do as an industry is to think about a world that is dominated by mobile and software,” Schulman added. “We need to think about how do we reimagine the management and movement of money in an era where everyone will have a smartphone,” Schulman added.
PayPal, for example, saw 40% year-on-year growth in mobile transactions last quarter, while over a billion transactions, or a quarter of the total, came from mobile last year.
In fact, mobile commerce hit an all-time high in the US this year, with Americans spending more than $11.4 billion through mobile web and apps in the third quarter alone, according to BI Intelligence. A recent comScore report said 60% of US consumers online used mobile devices to interact with retailers, while the time spent interacting with retailers on smartphones nearly doubled over the past two years.
Schulman says PayPal’s sole focus on digital and mobile payments is also what separates it from other competitors, like Square, who draws most of its revenue from the card-swiping devices it sells to merchants.
PayPal’s product offerings are all centered around digital payments. It includes the core PayPal online payment service, but also Venmo, the popular mobile peer-to-peer payment app, and Braintree, the payment processing service that powers the payments technology for apps like Uber, Airbnb, and Pinterest.
“We’re one of the very few companies who is so focused on digital and mobile payments. It gives us a tremendous advantage with that focus,” he added.