Mobile Wallets are going to dramatically transform how consumers purchase goods and services. Many predict the end of cash and physical credit cards for both point-of-sale and online transactions within the next five years. Not one to shy or fear new technology, I’ll be one of the first to ditch cash completely and transfer my credit cards to a mobile wallet service on my iPhone when it becomes available. We do already have the Google Wallet in beta, and the Isis Wallet, the Visa Wallet, and the PayPal Wallet are in the works, and many more mobile wallet services are likely to launch in 2012 – perhaps even the much-speculated Apple iWallet. Whichever service dominates is a story yet be told, but nonprofits would be wise to familiarize themselves with this technology and be ready to alter and adapt their fundraising campaigns when the opportunity arrives. That said, I don’t know of any wallet service or online fundraising vendor currently building the functionality to donate via wallets, but it’s just a matter of time. The ideas below are merely speculative, but completely possible.
1. Point of Sale Transactions
For location-based nonprofits such as museums, performing arts venues, zoos, health clinics, churches, etc., mobile wallets clearly make sense for processing tickets and goods and services sales:
Current “Donate Now” technology lands donors on a page where they must enter their name, mailing address, email, and credit card number and security code to make a donation. That technology has served the nonprofit sector well, but no doubt in the coming age of mobile wallets that process will seem cumbersome. Imagine using instead a mobile wallet to give where all that needs to be done to make a donation is to first click to “Save to Wallet” and then simply “Tap to Pay” on a smartphone to process the donation:
3. Mobile Transactions
The ability to donate by tapping to “Save to Wallet” on mobile websites makes a lot more sense than a multi-step, mobile-optimized “Donate Now” page and could even replace text-to-give technology. Many mobile donors don’t want to take the time to tap in their contact and credit card information, or in the case of text-to-give, do not want their donation to show up on their mobile phone bill. “Save to Wallet” technology would eliminate both obstacles. That said, imagine sending an urgent call to donate via text message where all the donor has to do is tap twice to give: