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  • Written by Michel van Aalten


Key predictions and their wider implications from an Australian perspective



Open Banking creates new customer experiences

Open Banking is one of the biggest shake ups in the banking sector for a generation, and the rest of the world is watching to see what they can learn.

New developments will give individuals and organisations the opportunity to securely share their financial data with registered third parties, giving consumers better insights into spending habits, regular payments and companies they spend with. By providing permission to use their data, consumers are also given access to better products, services and prices, aimed at improving their experience and making providers work harder to attract their custom.

This also enables completely new customer journeys and payment methods based on more intelligent use of data. 


The customer experience continues to evolve

With customer experience being one of the key battlegrounds in 2019, retailers will need to innovate to stay ahead of the competition. Three key areas of focus will be:

1) Smart devices to boost sales

Much has been made about the potential of home assistants such as Amazon Echo or Apple’s HomePod to transform retail. But in 2019, the opportunities created by other connected devises such as televisions and gaming consoles will be fulfilled. For example, a customer could be watching TV, see an advert for a product and purchase it immediately with one click of a remote control.

2) Unified commerce to tackle queues

As more retailers truly embrace unified commerce and create a seamless link between the online and physical stores, customers will be able to start transactions on one platform and finish on another. This can help to vastly reduce queues in-store, a huge benefit for shoppers and for retailers.

3) Wearables to streamline checkouts

With their rise in popularity, wearables will continue to streamline checkouts and also create new customer experiences – particularly in the hospitality and entertainment retail sectors. For example, in a bar or resort, instead of leaving a card with staff, customers could be given wearable devices to enable them to pay quickly without having their card or phone present.


Retailers unlock the full potential of unified commerce:

In the new payments world of 2019, unified commerce is king. Rather than a source of competition, retailers will start to see bricks and mortar and online as one unified channel.

Key to this is understanding the power of payments data that can unlock new revenue. Data consolidated from across channels enables retailers to create a clearer picture of their customers and build more compelling loyalty offers or personalised shopping programmes. For example, using unified payments data, retailers can find customers that haven’t shopped with them for a while and apply the right initiatives to entice them back.

That’s not all. Payments data can also help retailers understand their loyal customers’ channel preference, average transaction value and shopping frequency, which helps retailers optimise their retargeting efforts.


Focus on local payment methods increases

In an increasingly global marketplace, merchants will continue to look further than their home market to sell their goods. And by adding local payment methods, they can appeal to shoppers from all over the world to scale-up their businesses.

On e-commerce platforms, merchants will increase their focus on different payment methods and ensure they are optimised based on the different preferences of their customers across the globe. In-store, retailers will adopt more international payment methods, recognising the value of offering a familiar payments experience for tourists. Chinese payment methods such as QR code-based digital wallets will be top of the list.


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