April 26, 2012

Walmart’s ‘Pay with Cash’ program solves online barrier for struggling customers

Posted by: in North America

Walmart’s new “Pay with Cash” program, enabling U.S. customers to shop online without having to use a bank card, is an interesting manifestation of one of our trends for 2012, Navigating the New Normal. We forecast that with developed-world economies in rough shape, more brands in more categories would find more ways to accommodate cost-sensitive consumers, via stripped-down offerings, smaller sizes and so on. Walmart’s program, aimed at the unbanked or underbanked, allows shoppers to place an order online, where inventory is much wider than in stores, and then pay in cash at a Walmart store within 48 hours. Items are then shipped or sent to the store for pickup.

“Many of our customers shop paycheck to paycheck” and “don’t have the means” to a bank card, said Walmart.com’s president and CEO in a release. The company notes that 1 in 4 U.S. households have no bank account or credit card or have limited banking options, per 2009 data from the FDIC, and cites 2011 research findings that a wide majority of these consumers are online.

A similar approach is common in India, where “cash on delivery” is an option for the many who have Internet access but no credit card, or are still uncomfortable sharing their credit card info online. (Almost two-thirds of Flipkart’s customers pick COD, according to an interview with the CEO of India’s biggest e-commerce brand; see today’s post on our site AnxietyIndex for a look at Flipkart’s marketing approach.) These types of solutions will become increasingly common as spending in developed markets continues to shift to the high and low ends, and we’ll likely be seeing more brands taking inspiration from tactics in emerging regions.

Image credit: Walmart.com

1 Response to "Walmart’s ‘Pay with Cash’ program solves online barrier for struggling customers"

1 | Bill Bishop

April 27th, 2012 at 7:52 am

Avatar

Wal-Mart’s pay with cash option fits the needs of people who can’t or just would prefer not to pay with plastic. It’s a helpful response to growing needs in our bipolar consumer marketplace. It also serves as a reminder that there are always more “degrees of freedom” in the payment system than most people think about; e.g. you can pay before, during, or after you make a purchase and while tender options mainly focus on credit, debit, cash, and check, we’re now seeing growth in “private label” payment options controlled by retailers. Changeups in the mix of payment options can increase differentiation and could help reduce costs. It will be worth watching the big picture play out.

Comment Form

SIGN UP FOR OUR WEEKLY EMAIL NEWSLETTER:

10 Years of 10 Trends

The Future 100

Things to Watch

  • Bio-responsive spaces
    May 19, 2015 | 4:48 pm

    DynamicSanctuary

    At last week’s Sight Unseen Offsite event in New York, Ford partnered with indie design studio The Principals to create the “Dynamic Sanctuary.” The sanctuary is a sculptural space made out of plastic, Plexiglas and LED lights that connect to a heart rate monitor and fade in and out based on the wearer’s pulse. The space was meant to be a haven from the chaos of daily life and a “poetic metaphor for the design ideas behind Ford’s 2015 Edge vehicle,” said Sight Unseen.

    Continue reading “Bio-responsive spaces” »

  • Rosé’s normcore moment
    May 14, 2015 | 12:21 pm

    Rosé

    As summer nears, once again we’re on the cusp of “rosé season.” While late spring often sees attempts to elevate the red-headed stepchild of the wine world into a product worthy of connoisseurship, this year something different is afoot: a knowing celebration of rosé’s bland charm.

    For perhaps the first time, a wine label is emerging from the self-aware world of Instagram—and, no surprise, it’s a rosé. Continue reading “Rosé’s normcore moment” »

  • Snapchat TV
    May 12, 2015 | 5:25 pm

    Snapchat

    This summer, TV’s highest-paid female actress, Sofia Vergara, will star in a reality series launching exclusively on Snapchat. The series, titled Vergaraland, is co-produced by Fusion and Vergara’s production company, Latin World Entertainment. It will tell the story of her Hollywood life through the eyes of her 24-year-old son.

    Continue reading “Snapchat TV” »

  • Virtual reality theme parks
    May 11, 2015 | 4:12 pm

    TheVoid

    Some worry that the coming age of virtual reality could lead to an epidemic of digital shut-ins—why leave the house when you can “be” anywhere with the touch of a button? The Void, however, imagines a social space where virtual reality might draw people together—a 21st century take on the classic video arcade.

    Continue reading “Virtual reality theme parks” »

  • Intangibles
    May 7, 2015 | 6:37 pm

    Intangibles

    How much would you pay for a snap? A voicemail?

    Walker Art Center in Minneapolis has launched an online shop that could be considered a conceptual art piece itself. The shop sells what Walker calls “intangibles”—ephemeral, digital commodities such as personalized ringtones or custom avatars to use on social media. Prices range from $1.99 to nearly $4,000, for a virtual ocean-view property on the platform Second Life.

    Continue reading “Intangibles” »

  • WhatsApp marketing
    May 6, 2015 | 4:32 pm

    Clarks

    Clarks shoes in the UK recently launched a WhatsApp campaign to bring the brand to life for its fans. The campaign asked users to add three characters to their contact lists—“some of culture’s greatest innovators, rebels and fashion icons”—who were all fans of the shoes. The characters then sent messages, videos and Spotify playlists through the app, telling the brand’s story while interacting with Clarks enthusiasts.

    Continue reading “WhatsApp marketing” »

  • Facebook’s Anthology
    April 30, 2015 | 4:20 pm

    FacebookVideo small

    Video is king on social media—more than 4 billion are viewed per day on Facebook alone. To capitalize on that, Facebook has just introduced Anthology, a partnership with seven media companies with the aim of creating unskippable ads.

    Continue reading “Facebook’s Anthology” »

  • MyIdol
    April 27, 2015 | 4:55 pm

    MyIdol

    Social media is abuzz with tiny pole dancers. And rock stars. And pandas. All thanks to an app that takes the humble selfie to new heights of playful absurdity—and in 3D, no less.

    Continue reading “MyIdol” »

  • Tindergram
    April 17, 2015 | 11:03 am

    Tinder Instagram

    Swiping just got more interesting—with its latest update, Tinder lets users browse the Instagram feeds of their potential matches. The pairing (which, Adweek notes, seemed inevitable) offers “a sort of social diary, co-written by your friends and family” to help people better stalk their dates.

    Continue reading “Tindergram” »

  • Everlane’s Transparent City series
    April 8, 2015 | 2:33 pm

    Everlane LA

    “We call it Radical Transparency,” says e-tail startup Everlane. The company, known for its luxe basics, was built on the principle of disclosing production costs and keeping markups as low as possible. Now, Everlane has launched the Transparent City tour, a first-of-its-kind look at the inner workings of like-minded local companies. The kickoff event in LA brought guests behind the scenes with local bloggers, designers and chefs to learn about their creative inspiration. And, perhaps the culmination of the week — Everlane invited a select few on a tour of their factory, sharing the garment construction process from start to finish. The tour had a 300-person waitlist.

    Continue reading “Everlane’s Transparent City series” »

  • RSSArchive for Things to Watch »