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Mobile Payments Could Help Settle This Debate

That “women control 80 percent or more of consumer spending” is a commonplace bit of marketing rules of thumb that researchers now say might not be true.

In a survey conducted last year of nearly 4,000 Americans 16 and older by Futures Co., a London consulting firm, 37 percent of women said they have primary responsibility for shopping decisions in their household, while 85 percent said they have primary or shared responsibility. The respective figures for men were similar: 31 percent claimed primary responsibility while 84 percent said it was shared.

That’s one issue mobile payments capability probably could help answer more definitively. It might never be possible to precisely identify how “responsibility, participation or influence” actually operate. But it should be possible to “prove” who actually made a purchase, with greater accuracy, once mobile payments become popular.
Sure, there are tons of privacy issues to be settled before personalized data can be gathered and analyzed. In principle, however, an actual purchase will be a quantifiable bit of data quite a lot more accurate than a survey respondent’s guess about what percentage of the time “influence” or “decision making”occurs.
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