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7 tips to adapt to the wearable payments boom

Wearable tech is becoming commonplace. Consumers are synching phones to watches, watches to bank accounts and moving further away from traditional cash and card-based payments. 72 percent of consumers believe wearables are the future of in-store shopping, according to a survey from Vista Retail Support .

MBNA, a subsidiary of the Bank of America, wanted to get the low down on how retailers can adapt to this huge change on the horizon.

SEE ALSO: Starbucks launches mobile payments in China

They spoke to Kirstin Smith, Head of Fashion and Retail at Valtech — a digital agency that engineers consumer experiences for businesses, and James Pepper, Technical Services Director at Vista Retail Support – an IT and support organisation for retail businesses (Original research here).

They came up with these seven tips:

1. Track your average basket size

Retailers with small average basket sizes (under £30) should already be providing wearable payments.

2. Consider software that surpasses the contactless transaction cap

70 percent of consumers believe the £30 transaction cap is too low. Apple Pay uses a new type of payment verification on the latest iPhones and Apple watches that allows the cap to be lifted.

3. Educate customers about wearables

Training staff to educate customers about contactless technology, including wearable payments, is something all retailers serious about incorporating the technology should do.

4. It’s about more than just payments

Customers expect a lot from retailers today, from offering a variety of payment methods to providing in-store visual experiences. So it’s also worth identifying how wearables could feed in to the wider retail experience.

5. Test drive new ideas

Once businesses have nailed their customer experience and figured out which wearables could work for them, Kirstin advises that businesses should start creating low-cost prototypes.

6. Keep track of trends in retail experience

Look out for key announcements in wearable technology and retail innovation. As James points out, wearable innovation is already changing retail for some businesses.

7. Watch out for the tipping point

Retailers need to be prepared for the point at which consumer and retailer behaviour changes to avoid being left behind.

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