How would integration of Clutch and Google Wallet affect retailers and their customers?

Clutch, a company providing mobile shopping, mobile wallet and loyalty platforms announced that it would integrate its platform with Google Wallet yesterday. Google Wallet users can see the integration live on their smartphone screens.

According to Clutch, the integration enables users to add and use loyalty cards from their favorite retailers to the Google Wallet mobile app on Android and iOS. Through such integration, retailers could cost effectively promote their loyalty programs to their customers through smartphones, without a need for a custom mobile app development.

Clutch, is a mobile shopping, mobile wallet and loyalty player that aims to simplify mCommerce by providing solutions that embrace emerging technologies and also understand customer behavior. Clutch has tie ups with over 350 merchants which include leading brands like Harley Davidson, LG, Lacoste, Godiva, etc.

Talking about Clutch’s integration with Google Wallet, Andy O’Dell, co-founder and Chief Commercial Officer of Clutch said The openness and flexibility that Google provides with its API is key to success. Our integration demonstrates how this openness is great for the consumer and the retailer. The consumer gets the convenience of instantly adding loyalty cards to their mobile wallet, while the retailer gets a single relationship that delivers a variety of distribution points for their high-impact loyalty programs, offers and more.

Let us take you through as to what this integration means to an end user of Google Wallet:

  • While accessing the main menu of Google Wallet, you will currently see an option to access loyalty programs.
  • You will be able to browse programs from retailers and add their cards to your Google Wallet by either scanning a QR code or barcode or by typing their membership number.
  • You can also sign up for new programs through your Google Wallet account
  • Once, you have added loyalty cards to your Google Wallet account, you can view your rewards points balance, see customized offers and promotions from retailers, etc.
  • You can also present your smart phone to a participating merchant at the POS terminal in a store to access your loyalty account and redeem your rewards.

See also... Google says Goodbye to carrier based NFC systems, with HCE

Clutch also claims that such integration would also allow merchants a new platform to reach their customers with customized promotions and offers. Merchants could also cut down the transaction processing time as consumers could find and present their loyalty cards faster through Google Wallet.

Clutch’s platform competes with other mobile shopping companions and wallet apps like Lemon and Square. Lemon Wallet is a mobile app that allows customers to store a digital copy of all their cards (ID, Insurance, Loyalty and payment cards) in the wallet to access whenever needed. It claims to provide quick checkout and high security. An upgrade to Lemon Wallet plus also enables the users with account monitoring, balance updates, lost wallet service, enhanced security and card expiration alerts.

Clutch app can also be downloaded for free from Apple App Store and Google Play Store.

LTP View: Considering the latest integration with Google Wallet. Clutch can be seen as one of the first app’s to address today’s fragmented mobile shopping landscape that unites shopping, gifting and loyalty with users’ real-time location and social data.

Clutch aims to help the retailers cut down the transaction processing time and provide customized offers to its customer base. It is yet to be seen how retailers respond to such claims from Clutch. Talking about the user experience, such integration might work in the favor of shoppers who like to get customized offers from multiple retailers on a single platform.

Google wallet seems to be attracting a lot of third party loyalty, discounts and marketing apps to integrate with it. Is this standalone success or post launch of Google Wallet on iPhone (without NFC)? It's definitely helping Google Wallet to become the universal platform for storing cards and loyalty Programs and using them all the time.