In today’s top retail news, Mastercard is set to enter the buy now, pay later (BNPL) arena with an offering that integrates into the company’s merchant network, while HomeGoods finally gives shoppers the ability to make purchases online. Also, Walmart Health is working to create a patient records portal as part of the retailer’s move into healthcare, and brands are expanding their subscription offerings but consumers seem less interested than before.
Mastercard is set to launch a new BNPL program, called Mastercard Installments, that will allow consumers to use the payment option at 78 million enterprises, vastly expanding the landscape. Consumers will be able to finance goods and services at the point of sale through equal, interest-free installments — known as “pay in four” — without wielding debit, credit or prepaid cards, and BNPL offers will be pre-approved through the lender’s mobile app or through instant approval during checkout.
Discount home décor retail giant HomeGoods has added eCommerce capabilities to its website, giving shoppers an online portal to browse and buy brands and products that were previously only available in the chain’s brick-and-mortar locations. The retailer’s online store currently includes bedding, bath, kitchen goods, pet products, and storage and organization items, with plans to update and expand available selections regularly.
Walmart is partnering with health records platform Epic to create a portal through which Walmart Health members, healthcare professionals, insurance carriers and others can access patients’ medical records and history, the latest step in the box store giant’s ambitions to play a larger role in consumer health. More than 2,000 hospitals and 45,000 clinics currently rely on Epic for their patient records maintenance.
With over 80% of Americans now signed up for at least one subscription service, according to PYMNTS data, retailers have been increasingly adding to and expanding their offerings in an attempt to get a piece of the action. But consumers may be reaching their capacity for new services, with nearly 20% of consumers planning to pull back on their subscriptions, either to save money or buy similar items at local retailers.