Contactless Payments, Voice Assistants, and the Future of Businesses

Are voice assistants the future of businesses? According to a report by PYMNTS, it was found that 35% of consumers have an interest in using them to order lunch. A significant portion of those surveyed would also like to use voice assistants for the sake of ordering other takeout options.

Meanwhile, when it comes to using contactless payment methods themselves, 46% of the respondents said they now use them. As for the trust factor, 85% of consumers said it was either very important or extremely important when faced with a purchasing decision.

In the context of the worldwide coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, consumers are seeing the value in contactless payment methods. Through smartphone applications such as Uber Eats, DoorDash, and SkipTheDishes, for example, customers are able to make their food and drink orders from the comfort of their own homes. 

Minimal contact is being practiced as both restaurant payments and tips are made through mobile phones. Once a restaurant has finished preparing the order, it would then be picked up and dropped off to the customer by a delivery person.

In order to minimize health and safety risks, Uber Eats, for instance, asked their delivery people to inform customers of any taken precautions prior to dropping off orders. An Uber Eats delivery person can, for example, inform a customer that they are wearing a mask and have washed down their equipment through the mobile application.

This is in addition to other health and safety tips listed on the Uber website for both drivers and delivery people. “Cover your mouth and nose,” the website advised. “If you sneeze or cough, do so into your elbow or a tissue.”

There is also advice available for individuals who are using Uber Eats to order food. One way to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 would be to request the “Leave at door” option within the smartphone application. Additionally, individuals may include notes that indicate their delivery preferences. Another way to ensure their own health and safety would be to wash their hands after receiving the food and before consuming it.

According to PYMNTS, mobile applications that encompass a voice assistant can be fairly powerful when combined with businesses that sell food. Technology similar to this can go far in terms of ensuring customers a seamless and enjoyable digital shopping experience.

Recently, Amazon has introduced consumers to contactless payment technology. A report by CNN noted that instead of shoppers having to swipe their card to complete a transaction, they can simply hover the palm of their hands above a scanner at Amazon Go store locations.

Dilip Kumar, the vice president of physical retail and technology at Amazon, told CNN that businesses may find the technology appealing amid COVID-19. In order for a shopper to get started, they must insert their credit card into an Amazon One device. 

The shopper should then hold their palm above the device in order for it to take multiple images to capture any fine details. Once a user’s palm is linked to their credit card, they can enter Amazon Go stores and make purchases in a seamless manner.  

“I encourage people to try it, see how they like the experience, and then go from there,” he said.

As technological innovations continue to make the shopping experience easier and more seamless, it is imperative for merchants to stay up-to-date with the latest findings and trends in order to succeed in their business pursuits. 

Merchants Broker is here to provide businesses with the best payment processing rates on the market. For further information, contact an experienced professional at Merchant Broker today at either 1-888-668-0733 or info@merchantbroker.com.

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