In The News

Internet Retailer

Mobile + Social + Virtual: A New World of Gift Cards

The mobile wallet initiative started by Wal-Mart and other merchants has opened up a bit, announcing its name—Merchant Customer Exchange—and more members including 7-Eleven Inc. and Best Buy Co. Inc.

It launched earlier this year without a name. Now the mobile wallet initiative started by Wal-Mart and other merchants has opened up a bit, announcing its name—Merchant Customer Exchange—and more members. Details about the program’s exact plans are still sparse, however. The company is “dedicated to offering consumers a versatile mobile-commerce experience that will combine the convenience of paying at the register with customizable offers,” the group said in a release today.

The real driver for adoption of such a program is the consumer—not the retailer, not the wireless carrier and not the payments company, says David Stone, co-founder and CEO of digital gift and incentives technology provider CashStar. “For any mobile payment system to be a success there have to be benefits for the consumer, such as convenience and speed,” Stone says. “Even more important are tangible benefits like rewards incentives and a personalized shopping experience.”

Read More