By Brianna Ahearn, contributing writer
Digital wallets are a new innovation retailers are scrambling to make available for their customers, because they offer the option to access payment options on a smartphone or tablet for the “on the go” consumer. Macy's is the newest store to add the option with a new digital wallet. On August 26, the company introduced My Wallet for Macy's customers to allow them to organize their payment options. My Wallet is a browser-based online application that can be accessed both by in-store and online shoppers. The application also includes Macy's digital coupons, so consumers can maximize their savings.
The arrival of My Wallet comes at the perfect time, when retailers are gearing up for the busy holiday season, and the application will help customers keep track of their purchasing. Users get started with My Wallet by filling out a profile and then can add up to 10 payment cards under their profile. Besides a Macy's Card, users can add Visa, American Express, Discover, and Mastercard credit cards under payment options. Customers who receive Star Passes in the mail from Macy's will see them automatically added to their My Wallet account online to be used at checkout but mailed versions will be accepted in-store as well. My Wallet will indicate which Star Passes and offers are expiring within 48 hours, so users can be sure to take advantage before it's too late. Visiting Macy's Deals and Promotions page will let shoppers find new offers to add to their My Wallet with a click. The retailer has provided an introduction video to get consumers aware of all of the features My Wallet has.
Unlike another big retailer who offers a digital wallet, Amazon, Macy's My Wallet isn't supporting gift cards at this time, nor do they offer a mobile app for My Wallet. To use their My Wallet account in-store, users must visit Macys.com on their mobile browser, then access their offers on the website. As a security precaution if a customer's phone is lost or stolen, My Wallet automatically logs out after inactivity for more than 30 minutes; the account can't be accessed without a Macys.com username and password. Macy's currently offers a mobile app for shopping and browsing, so it's likely a digital wallet app may arrive soon.
As more retailers such as Starbucks began to accept Paypal or mobile payments, Macy's is smart to offer a digital wallet. The company has made several changes to improve business and customer experience, including experimenting with same-day shipping, increasing fulfillment centers, and improving other aspects of its omni-channel strategies. Although Macy's first quarter earnings were disastrous due in part to inclement weather and its second quarter was lukewarm, analysts praised the company for aggressive promotions and a focus on long-term strategies like Macy's My Wallet and its omni-channel push.