- Amid the holiday season, PayPal introduced a charitable donation platform, enabling it to reach into the crowdfunding space.
- And Mastercard launched virtual and physical gift cards in partnership with InComm to cash in on growing gift card demand.
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Payments firms are gearing up for a digital holiday season this year amid worsening pandemic conditions.
- PayPal enabled charitable donations with the launch of the Generosity Network. The crowdfunding platform lets users create campaigns to raise donations that are then deposited directly into the organizer’s PayPal account, where it can be distributed to the intended cause or recipient. The offering is part of PayPal’s Giving initiative that lets consumers donate credit card rewards—which are then monetized—or make charitable donations at checkout.
- Mastercard partnered with InComm to launch virtual and contactless gift cards. The two firms introduced MastercardGiftCard.com, an online gift card platform that allows customers to send virtual cards via email or physical contactless cards by mail. Recipients can use their gift cards online, where they can leverage Click to Pay, a streamlined checkout offering from Mastercard and other top card networks. Consumers can also make contactless payments with their gift cards—either by adding their card to a mobile wallet or using their physical gift card at brick-and-mortar locations that accept Mastercard contactless cards.
PayPal’s and Mastercard’s new offerings may be even more valuable this year as consumers increasingly shift toward digital payments amid the pandemic.
- PayPal’s new platform can increase its overall user engagement. Almost half of the US population has been financially affected by the coronavirus pandemic, according to an NPR poll. Consumers may look to provide charitable donations for those in need and could turn to PayPal’s Generosity Network to make those payments—and people may be more inclined to make donations during the holiday season, considering US adults donated $511 million over the holidays last year. This could lead to more engagement on PayPal’s platform and might lead users to take advantage of its other products, too. PayPal can also leverage the offering to grow its presence in the peer-to-peer crowdfunding space alongside firms like GoFundMe, which has raised more than $9 billion since its inception in 2010.
- Mastercard’s and InComm’s gift cards can be used as a tool to bolster their payment volumes. More than half of US internet respondents in a National Retail Federation survey listed gift cards as a 2020 wish list item. Mastercard and InComm could leverage this popularity to get customers to use their new offering, especially since it can be used online or in-store. It could also garner interest from consumers since it integrates Mastercard’s Click to Pay solution, which removes the hassle of entering card information at online checkout. And the gift card offering may appeal to consumers by offering a contactless payment option in-store, especially as this method of payment gains increased usage during the pandemic.
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