Consumers enamored with the ease of waving their smartphones in front of scanners to pay for their lattes at Starbucks can now feed their apparel shopping addictions the same way. Neiman Marcus Group and Capital One yesterday announced the launch of Neiman Marcus Mobile Wallet. Available now within the NM App for all Apple iPhone users, it’s the first deployment of a mobile wallet capability created specifically for a retail card partner, enabling customers to quickly and easily make in-store purchases without a physical credit card at all Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman and Last Call stores.
So how does it work? IPhone users download the free NM App, which they can load with Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman credit cards, as well as other general purpose cards. At the point of sale, customers open the NM Mobile Wallet, generate a QR code with the click of a button and, just like at Starbucks, scan to pay. “With the mobile wallet technology and our partnership with Capital One, we will continue to provide an industry-leading digital shopping experience that furthers our mission to provide a seamless, memorable experience in whichever channel the customer decides to shop,” Karen Patz, president and CEO of Neiman Marcus Group said.
Still not convinced consumers are ready to quit carrying paper and plastic? According to Pew Research, more than half of Americans now own a smartphone, and Juniper Research predicts that more than one in five mobile phones will have mobile wallet functionality by 2018. Combine those stats with Forrester’s forecast that U.S. mobile spending will swell to $142 billion by the end of 2019, and Neiman Marcus Group’s decision to get into the mobile wallet game is likely a wise one.
It’s not the only retailer testing the technology: Walmart is working on its own system developed by Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX) in conjunction with a handful of other big vendors, while Target began trying out the mobile payment application, CurrentC, in several of its stores last year, enabling employees to pay for purchases with their smartphones. Not to mention, Apple launched Apple Pay at 220,000 merchant locations in the U.S. last fall and plans to expand into the U.K. this year.