PayPal rolls out QR codes

  • By Christine St Anne

PayPal will be rolling out a QR code payments to 23 markets including Australia and will also waiver the standard seller transaction fees for sales using this functionality. 

From farmers markets to selling secondhand goods - the rollout of the QR code functionality in the PayPal app will enable people to buy or sell in-person, safely and securely, and touch free.

“We know that in the current environment, buying and selling goods in a health-conscious, safe and secure way is front of mind for many people around the world,” PayPal senior vice president of branded experiences John Kunze said.

“As the coronavirus pandemic has evolved, we have seen a surge in demand for digital payments to transition to include new and safe solutions for in-person environments and situations," he added.

High level research by RFi Group suggests that in Australia, consumers are aware of QR codes. 

In fact, peer-to-peer payments provider Beem It already offers the QR code functionality. 

The research also revealed that there is an opportunity to boost usage of this functionality if there are incentives offered such as referral bonuses, introductory offers or discounts.

There could also be additional challenges for QR code acceptance given the variety of choices now available to consumers.

For example, there has been growing adoption of Apple Pay and now increasingly mobile payments by consumers.

Therefore, it will be key on how PayPal communicates its new offerings to consumers.

“In Australia, consumers are familiar with QR codes and have experience using QR codes as part of loyalty programs, when entering competitions, scanning for further information about products and when using social media,” RFi Group client insights manager Anna Shaw said.

“To encourage customers to use it more widely for payments, it needs to be easier or faster than other ways of making payments, especially given RFi Group data has shown that usage of mobile payment services such as Apple Pay continue to increase,” Shaw added. 

Globally, RFi Group research revealed that 22 per cent of consumers do find the concept of QR codes appealing. While only 6 per cent have indicated that they have used QR codes before. 

China leads as the country with the greater acceptance of QR code payments and there could be greater acceptance of this functionality off the back of travelling Chinese tourists.