Google Wallet: How will it affect banks and merchants?

The Google Wallet announcement made a few weeks ago continues to spur discussion of its implications. Banks and merchants wonder how this service will affect their customer interactions, specifically how it will change merchant funded rewards.

Once Google Wallet launches to a wider audience, the company will be able to see purchases customers are making in real-time, and be able to record spending history. The company, who already has come under scrutiny for keeping users search data, will have an upper hand with concrete insight into customers’ spending habits. On the flip-side, banks continue to market this data to vendors, giving them access to customers’ spending habits via merchant-funded rewards cards and incentives.

Daniel Thomas, a Mindful Insights analyst and contributor to NetBanker poses the question, “So, merchants are going to need to decide: should they allow Google to make the reward offer or the banks?  Surely, they won’t compensate both for bringing in the same purchase. That leaves the decision in the hands of the consumers. Do they want to receive points and cash back from Google or from their bank?”

Outside of privacy concerns, what are your thoughts on how the Google Wallet will affect financial institutions and merchants?  Let us know your thoughts by tweeting at @bankingdotcom or responding in the comments section below.

Written by Banking.com Staff