Monday, March 4, 2024

New frontiers of commerce

Today’s consumers are looking for digital commerce experiences that go further than smartphones and computers, according to new research from PayPal.

The PayPal 2022 eCommerce Index reveals that Australians are confident using connected devices to shop. In fact, just over half say they would be comfortable having their smart appliances, such as fridges and washing machines, and their cars make orders and payments for them.

Smart commerce

Australians are particularly interested in how their smart appliances can make routine transactions easier, such as restocking basic household supplies.

This includes:

  • being prompted by their washing machine to order detergent or their fridge to order milk (19%)
  • reminders from smart devices to pay bills, such as gas and electricity (15%)
  • their fridge offering relevant grocery ads, deals and discounts (11%)
  • their car to monitor fuel levels and connect with nearby petrol stations to find the best price (32%)
  • ordering and paying for things like parking, petrol and drive through food via their car’s dashboard.

Peter Cowan, Managing Director of PayPal Australia, says, “As we continue to evolve into an IoT world, payment touchpoints will become more apparent in places where consumers live, work and travel, allowing commerce to take place in the environments where consumers already are, rather than requiring consumers to visit specific sites or locations to transact.”

The metaverse

The research also found a growing appetite for commerce in virtual environments, with 23% of Australians willing to buy goods in the metaverse and 51% of Australian metaverse users already having done so.

This appetite to engage with the metaverse is also expressed by Australian businesses. In fact, 60% of businesses that sell online are interested in opportunities within the metaverse for either today or the future. Almost half (49%) are interested in advertising opportunities, 50% are interested in selling physical products and a slightly lower amount (45%) in offering virtual shopping experiences.

However, concerns over security may be hindering further action from businesses, with 24% worried about scams or frauds related to virtual spaces and the metaverse.

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