That’s right, Apple Pay is going to be available for web commerce stores later this year.

That means a couple of different things, depending on where you are in the ecosystem of mobile and web commerce.

Last week at WWDC, Apple execs announced that in addition to mobile payments for m-commerce, they’ll be making Apple Pay available as a payment mechanism for the rest of the world wide web that’s selling something.

Re/Code broke the news earlier in the year that mobile commerce sites would be able to leverage Apple Pay as a new payment method for their product offerings; any number of news outlets covering the WWDC presentation carried the extended news about web site shopping being enabled.


$7 Digital Business Card


I was browsing through a number of articles detailing the strategy and its implementation after the presentation was over, and this one jumped out at me – it’s from a UK based site called EssentialRetail

The technology giant announced last night at its global conference that it will be making an Apple Pay button available for retailers to embed on their desktop websites. The button will link to a shopper’s iPhone device and using touch ID fingerprint technology on their mobile, they will be able to authenticate the desktop purchase.

While the idea that allowing for fingerprint payments will help to reduce shopping cart abandonment, I’m not personally sold on the idea that this is going to do much for retailers that don’t have a mobile version of their site that can be used on iPad or iPhone.

Why do I think that web site sales will be slow going from a consumer adoption standpoint?

Because I think that shopping cart abandonment is driven by two things – the first one is timing.  People don’t always want to buy something they see online at the moment they see it, but they like to use shopping carts for “storage” units that they can come back later on.

I’m completely guilty of this myself – “oh, that pair of shoes looks nice at Zappo’s, I will just pop them in my cart and come back if there’s nothing better at Nordstrom’s site”; the actual odds that I’ll come back to them are slim – maybe Nordstrom’s had something better, maybe I went shopping, maybe I decided that I had a decent pair in the closet that would do. 

The second reason for abandonment is friction – and this is WAY more of a big deal on mobile than it is on desktop.  How many times have you tried to fill out a form on mobile and it’s such a tiny screen and so frustrating that you give up and wait until you get to your laptop or just chuck the idea altogether?

[Tweet “I am completely onboard with Apple Pay for mobile commerce, for this very reason. “]

The idea that you can just smash your thumb on your phone and buy something on mobile is super attractive, exceptionally convenient, and utterly fabulous at reducing friction.  But you don’t need that when you’re on your laptop.

It’s so attractive that TechRepublic just pushed an article agreeing with me!

Unless you wear a tinfoil hat, you’ve got at least one credit card stored in your computer, and the auto-fill for your address (either from the retailer or the computer itself) makes it a snap to complete a purchase – if that’s what you want to do. 

By the time you grab your iPhone or iPad (don’t forget you have to use Safari, which is not everyone’s browser of choice, even if they own a Mac) and complete the transaction, you could have easily used that autofill and been done with the whole thing.  So I’m really not sure what Apple is aiming for with this option, but I’m still delighted that mobile sites will get Apple Pay!