PayPal and Portability: A Cloud-Based Marriage of Convenience

by Mercator Advisory Group 0

In a recent blog post, Anuj Nayar, senior director, global communications of PayPal, eloquently argues against tagging PayPal as a mobile wallet solution – and for good reason. In order for PayPal to move beyond its position in the market as an online payments solution, it will have to change its company narrative. In this post, Nayar asks the industry to call PayPal just “PayPal” without a descriptive adjective like PayPal Wallet for example, which he considers too binding. By defining itself as a cloud-based solution, PayPal offers the promise of portability, something consumers are only just beginning to figure has real value as more and more individuals manage their lives using multiple devices. The question is, what is PayPal making portable?

“…to a seamless, connected experience that follows you wherever you go and feeds you what you want, when you want it. Whether that’s a deal on your phone as you walk past the coffee shop or a $20 coupon that appears in your digital wallet when you’ve been looking at grills online on your laptop and is applied when you buy the grill – whether online or in store.”

The bet, then, is that through these offers PayPal will protect its consumer base from the increasingly competitive market for digital payments by solving a problem for consumers who want the convenience of ubiquitous discounts and coupons. As Nayar rightly points out, mobile payments in and of themselves aren’t solving any near-term issues consumers have with existing payment forms and it is clear that consumers are motivated by offers, so building a brand around that might make sense.