Awareness and Trust Key to Contactless Payments Success

Increasing consumer awareness and building trust around contactless mobile payments will be key if providers and brands expect to see the widespread adoption of NFC technology in 2012 as predicted.

That’s the main conclusion of eDigitalResearch’s first Mobile Payment Index study, which surveyed a nationally representative panel of consumers online. 2,106 responses were collected in total; 1,068 from smartphone owners and 1,017 from non-smartphone owners.

The research also revealed that 89 per cent of previous users of contactless mobile payments are likely to use the technology again in the near future, demonstrating the potential that NFC could offer retailers, brands and providers. The survey also found that, of those that have the NFC technology enabled on their smartphone device, 47 per cent  have already used it to make a purchase. Early adopters, predominately young males, are using the technology to buy low-to mid-priced items.

However, the results also highlight the distinct lack of general consumer awareness surrounding contactless mobile payments. Of the 2,000 consumers surveyed, 33 per cent said that they had not heard of the technology before. Trust in the technology is also incredibly low, with 35 per cent saying that they wouldn’t use contactless mobile payments because of concerns over security and fraud.

“It’s not surprising that we’re seeing this sort of wariness from consumers,” notes Derek Eccleston, head of research at eDigitalResearch. “Unlike mCommerce, where consumers were driving the change and shopping online via their mobiles well before the first shopping apps, this time around it’s up to retailers and technology providers to push for this next revolution of the market. People need to work together to increase consumer awareness, and in turn, settle fears and tackle key issues, such as security.”

The study also found that, over the next year, 27 per cent of smartphone owners surveyed are likely to use contactless mobile payments more. It’s important, however, that mobile firms, technology providers and retailers work to increase consumer awareness and convert this segment of consumers into contactless mobile payment users.

You can download the full results of the survey here.