CU members shop, spend more using mobile, study finds

Professionals explain what these findings mean for credit unions.

New research from the University of Illinois has found that paying for things with a smartphone increases how much consumers spend and how often they shop — findings that two industry pros said highlights how critical it is for credit unions to have solid mobile strategies in place.

Using data from Alipay, which is the world’s largest mobile payment system and the most popular one in China, the study found that total transaction amounts rose 2.4% after the adoption of the mobile payment channel, and total transaction frequency increased by more than 23%.

“Switching to the mobile channel leads to more shopping overall, and it particularly affects more hedonistic shopping such as food, entertainment and travel,” University of Illinois professor of business administration and study co-author Yuqian Xu said. “But it doesn’t affect purchases like education or health care. So it’s changing consumer behavior.”

The greatest impact came on less expensive items that members buy often, such as beverages and movie tickets.


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