Memorial Day Weekend in the Connected Economy

Memorial Day is full of sacred traditions.

There’s the real meaning of the holiday, of course – honoring the dead who gave their lives in the service of freedom.

Then there are all the less formal observances:

The quick mountain getaway, perhaps.

A beach – if it’s warm enough.

A barbecue, almost certainly.

And maybe a mattress sale.

We’re just a little ironic.

But no matter how vast the activities may be, a few connections are always there.

Because the connected economy continues to take shape — indeed, it doesn’t take a vacation. The holidays may show how intertwined physical and digital channels have become.

The phone and the application are the pillars that accompany us in all these places, in all these aforementioned activities.

Then think of inflatable mattresses ordered on Amazon or other platforms, ready to welcome your guests. Hot dogs and veggie burgers ordered on same-day delivery apps. Movie tickets purchased through Fandango. Maybe there’s a rental car when we need to get from point A to point B – or an Uber or Lyft to leave the driving to someone else.

You get the picture.

Indeed, the above continuum of actions need not be transnational in nature. Beyond the United States, PYMNTS data shows that the connected economy is a global phenomenon. Data collected from 11 countries shows that the e-journey to fully realized digital transformation is underway – and still in its infancy.

To get a sense of the greenfield opportunity, 59% of consumers in the 11 countries who engage in mobile banking activities. Yet only 19% of consumers are highly engaged in these activities. Since 91% of us in the United States are connected to the internet and 77% own smartphones, dry tinder is here to log on more often to conduct various activities on digital channels.

Read also: Data point: US lags behind in digital transformation, Japan bottoms in study of 11 countries

Indeed, in this report, titled “Benchmarking the World’s Digital Transformation,” we found that there is a cross-pollination effect. In just one example, online shopping is closely linked to increased online grocery orders and online restaurant orders.

online grocery store

Payments are only part of the equation. In the United States, only 32% of consumers use mobile means of transaction.

Payments as a gateway

But payments serve as a gateway, of sorts, to a continuum of interactions. As Karen Webster noted in a recent column, as economies reopen, there is a wide range of consumer activity that straddles the physical and digital realms.

Consumers, she said, “logically double down on activities for which there are no great digital substitutes – traveling, eating at their favorite restaurants, going to concerts, taking the kids to amusement parks and county fairs – the things they might not have done or felt uncomfortable in the physical world for the past two years.

And as part of it all, devices and apps take shape as a complement to physical activities – and vice versa – not necessarily serving as a wholesale replacement. Along the way, as trends continue, we’ll likely see the rise of the superapp in the US, much like how we’ve seen them grow in Southeast Asia, among other markets.

For now, the three-day weekend, as you read this, is fading from memory – and the connected economy is getting a little stronger.



About: PYMNTS’ survey of 2,094 consumers for The Tailored Shopping Experience report, a collaboration with Elastic Path, shows where merchants are succeeding and where they need to up their game to deliver a personalized shopping experience.

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