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Apple Pay is one of many payment methods online shops can provide to their customers. Apple says that mobile conversions increased for J. Crew by 20% using Apple Pay, and Lululemon's conversions increased by "several orders of magnitude". Will Apple Pay yield the same results for your online shop? 

Apple Pay phone
© Primakov / Shutterstock.com

There are 900 million iOS users worldwide, with around 383 million users who have enabled Apple Pay. That's a 20% increase since December 2017. The thing is, only 27% of eligible iPhone users have ever used Apple Pay. 8% of those use it weekly, and 23% say they don't even know how to use Apple Pay.

Apple says their transactions exceeded $1 billion in Q4 2018, but most of Apple Pay's use is offline, especially in markets like China, Japan and Russia where the wallet is heavily used for public transit. Analysts at Loup Ventures say only 12% of Apple Pay users are based in the U.S.

Declining Online

More than half of U.S. retailers support Apple Pay in-store, but only 24% of the top U.S. retailers offer Apple Pay digitally (desktop, mobile or native apps). Interestingly, both J. Crew and Lululemon, despite their early wins, replaced Apple Pay with PayPal. For iPhone users with model X and higher, Apple replaced Touch ID with Face ID. Many iPhone users hate the change, reported getelastic.com. An awkward selfie is a lot less appealing than a quick tap of the thumb, and as iOS users upgrade their devices, things will get more complicated, and both users and retailers may continue to drop the service.

Hard To E-commerce

Apple Pay requires the retailers to be responsible for data validation. This may require your business to change its logic to fit Apple Pay, forcing you to enter customer data like addresses and phone numbers how Apple does. It might just make offering Apple Pay more trouble than it's worth. 

A Quick How-to Guide 

Apple Pay may be worth a trial for your business if:

  • Your mobile traffic is greater than 75%, with a high percentage of iOS users
  • You serve a younger, tech-savvier customer base that both uses and prefers mobile wallets
  • You don’t already offer two or more alternative payments (e.g. PayPal, MasterPass, Visa, Amazon Pay) — too much choice can lower conversion
  • You offer a native iOS app
  • Account creation is optional, not required
  • Your checkout doesn’t involve custom fields not included in a standard Apple Pay payment sheet

 Only a few of the total iOS users set up and regularly use Apple Pay. To calculate the value Apple Pay may add to your business, here is some helpful math, again thanks to getelastic.com:

1. Multiply your monthly iOS visitors by .27 to estimate number of Apple Pay users
2. Multiply your existing iOS conversion rate by 1.2 (a generous estimate, but in line with reported retailer case studies)
3. Multiply monthly Apple Pay users (1) by adjusted conversion rate (2)
4. Multiply (3) by your iOS segment’s average order value

Apple Pay is being offered by more and more e-commerce payment gateways and platforms, but it is not the be-all, end-all for online retailers. Improving mobile checkout usability and site performance is (still) the best way to increase mobile conversions.