Here’s Why Canadian Merchants Should Offer Mobile Payment Options

Apr 4, 2022
5 minutes Read
Join the mobile payment revolution: Utilize digital wallets, contactless payment, and eCommerce, staying ahead in Canada's retail landscape.
Here’s Why Canadian Merchants Should Offer Mobile Payment Options

At Canadian points-of-sale from coast to coast, more and more customers are pulling out their smartphones to pay. Instead of using cash or cards, purchases are made by tapping smartphones and QR codes from digital wallets. What seemed like a novelty a few years ago is quickly becoming the expectation for more and more Canadian consumers. Is your business ready for the mobile payment revolution?

A global trend comes to Canada

The pandemic had a dramatic impact on payment behaviours favouring digital wallets and digital currency. The rise in eCommerce and the preference for contactless payment out of hygiene concerns caused the everyday use of cash to nosedive everywhere in the world. Globally, cash payments decreased dramatically – making up only 20.5% of payments in 2020, according to the 2021 Global Payments Report. In Canada, they plummeted even lower – accounting for only 5.4% of payments that same year. As cash use dwindled worldwide, the use of mobile wallets increased – by an impressive 19.5%.

The global mobile payment market is already strong at $1.97 trillion USD in 2021, and expected to get stronger – fast. According to a Fortune Business Insights report, it’s projected to reach $11.83 trillion USD in 2028, at a compound annual growth rate of 29.1%.

Canadians are wired for digital payment

While statistics still show Canadians lagging behind their American neighbours in the shift to digital communication devices, that gap is shrinking day by day. An overwhelming majority of Canadians – 77% – have a cell phone of some kind, 56% own smartphones, and 21% use tablets. While mobile payments is a newer phenomenon in Canada than in many other countries, the trend is catching on. By now, most Canadians are used to scanning QR codes to access food and beverage menus in their favourite restaurants. It won’t be long before they set up their digital wallets to make instant MPOS payments at the end of those meals.

A list of the most popular digital payment platforms tells you that these payment options are here to stay. Apple Pay, Google Pay, PayPal, Venmo – the names have seeped into common Canadian vocabulary. They’re widely used and growing in popularity. In 2020, PayPal had 348 million active users and Apple Pay had a whopping 441 million.

Popular platforms in China are becoming global options

Meanwhile in China, AliPay, WeChat Pay and UnionPay are the most popular mobile payment options. These payment giants enjoy huge prominence and incredibly high numbers of active users. In 2021, WeChat boasted 1.02 billion users and AliPay had a staggering 1.23 billion. Projections indicate the platforms combined will have approximately 2.5 billion users by 2025. When you consider the post-pandemic return to global travel, the rise in cross-border eCommerce and the growing flexibility in the consumer payments landscape, it’s no wonder these payment options are popping up all over the world.

A generation raised on mobile

Pushing these numbers even higher is the growing prominence of the Generation Z consumer demographic, who make up a growing proportion of buyers worldwide and in Canada. These are the young “digital natives” born between 1995 and 2010 into a digitally connected world. They currently represent about 25% of the Canadian population, and enjoy significant purchasing power of about $50 billion. This group is never without their smartphones and is expected to drive the growth of mobile payment. Here’s what they love most about digital payment transactions:

  • Convenience – checkout is easy, fast, and there’s no need to carry cards or bother with cash
  • Security – dynamic encryption and other advanced methods are in place to keep transactions secure and personal data absolutely private
  • Store offers, rewards and loyalty programs – mobile payment programs can offer perks, points, and discounts and store them right in your phone

A growing market – for good reason

These forecasts are encouraging more merchants to expand their digital payment options, both in-store and online. The ease and convenience loved by Gen Z shoppers is a boon for merchants and staff, too. Personnel have time to focus on customer engagement at the POS instead of making change and fussing over paper receipts. Heightened security is another major plus for retailers. Advanced biometrics and PINs used to authenticate mobile payments are increasingly considered more secure than chip payments with credit and debit cards.

For retailers, the benefits of mobile payment are in improved customer experience, better business management, and growth. Offering mobile payments expands your sales footprint with no effort, letting shoppers easily pay for your goods online and in-store. Without the hassle of cash accounting, merchants can develop new kinds of value to reach customers and drive sales. There are bookkeeping benefits, too, with many mobile payment applications providing automated transaction tracking, digital receipts, and effortless, real-time inventory management. Mobile payment applications also track customer trends, which help merchants improve the customer experience, identify dedicated customers and create new revenue streams.

Where older payment innovations usually required expensive hardware and installation, adding mobile payment options can reduce overhead. Just as shoppers magically transform their phones into digital wallets to make purchases, merchants can reconfigure their phones to sell – the right app turns them into a POS terminal or card reader. With everything done digitally, there’s no need for paper, and bank fees and other charges are often reduced.

Reach more customers with OTT Pay

It’s the perfect time for Canadian merchants to upgrade their business strategies to get a jump on the mobile payment revolution.

OTT Pay’s all-in-one payment solution helps your business engage with two billion digital and mobile wallet users around the globe. Our mobile payment infrastructure can help you drive online and in-store traffic, build customer loyalty, and increase revenue.

To learn more about how your business will benefit from partnering with OTT Pay, visit our website: