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Google ups the ante on mobile payments

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Google is once again expanding its digital payment options.

The company knows it can be difficult for shoppers to make online payments within third-party apps and mobile websites, as well as in Google Assistant, when they are on the run. A new service is easing this pain and giving users more options.

Using the Google Payment application program interface (API), customers can now pay for purchases with credit and debit cards saved to their Google Account, which stores all personal information from email addresses and account activity to payment preferences. This means users no longer have to rely only on payment cards stored in their Android Pay app.

The Google Payment API is not a new tool. In fact, many merchants and developers already use the service to integrate payments in their own sites and applications, according to TechCrunch.

As long as shoppers see the option to pay with Google on supported apps or sites, they can pay with any account stored in their Google Account. The API supports faster checkout, drives more conversions, increases sales and reduces abandoned carts, according to Google.

By giving users access to more saved payment methods, it will be easier for shoppers to make purchases. It will also eliminate the need to fumble to find payment cards during checkout, pull out their cards in public, or re-enter data that Google already has on file, the company explained.

The service also gives Google a chance to gain momentum against rival Apple Pay. This comes at a crucial time since Apple Pay had 86 million users versus Android Pay’s 24 million users as of April, according to “Contactless Payments: NFC Handsets, Wearables & Payment Cards 2017-2021,” a report from Juniper Research.

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Fast-food giant’s delivery service expands

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

More hungry customers can now get their Big Macs, fries, beverages and desserts delivered right to their door.

As of Wednesday, May 17, McDonald’s is expanding its delivery service to customers in Los Angeles, Chicago, Columbus and Phoenix. Through its partnership with UberEats, the company’s “McDelivery” program now encompasses up to 1,000 restaurants in the United States.

In January, McDonald’s and UberEats began piloting McDelivery in more than 200 restaurants throughout Miami, Orlando, and Tampa Bay. The pilot generated high levels of customer satisfaction and consistent growth as awareness increased, and more customers began using the service to have orders delivered to their door, according to the fast-food giant.

“We are bringing a new level of convenience to more of our customers as we continue to transform the McDonald’s experience,” said McDonald’s president and CEO Steve Easterbrook. “Through the ease of the UberEats app, our customers can enjoy their favorite McDonald’s foods delivered right to them — giving them greater choice, control and personalization than ever before.”

Food delivery is not a new program for the Golden Arches. Globally, McDonald’s has over two decades of experience in the delivery service. Asia and the Middle East are not only McDonald’s two most developed delivery markets, but their top delivery restaurants generate up to 40% of their sales from delivery. With their help, McDonald’s chalked up $1 billion in delivery sales across both company and franchise restaurants globally in 2016, according to the company.

Food deliveries also is not new territory for Uber. The livery company recently partnered with Kroger Co. as it tests Uber-based grocery deliveries in several locations.

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Report: Walmart preps for next competitive threat

BY CSA STAFF

Executives at Walmart are planning their next move in anticipation of its newest rival — and asking suppliers to support their cause.

The European grocer Lidl, which has a track record for disruption, is preparing to open its first 20 United States-based stores this summer. The first locations are set to open their doors in the next few weeks. As a result, Walmart is asking suppliers to keep their prices low, according to the Consumerist.

According to the report, vendors have been told that Walmart should be paying 15% less than competitors at least 80% of the time. Additionally, the retail giant is asking suppliers to ship Walmart’s orders complete and on time, which would help keep items in stock, avoid unneeded re-orders, and take in an additional $1 billion in sales — a move that would benefit suppliers, as well.

Lidl is not a new competitor for Walmart. The retail giant’s Asda stores compete directly against Lidl and Aldi in Europe. As Lidl prepares its U.S. debut, however, Walmart is eager stay one step ahead — especially since its European Asda brand has failed to grow sales for 13 consecutive quarters, while Lidl, along with Aldi, have captured 12% of the market, the report said.

To read more, click here.

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