Why m-commerce could be the secret sauce for chat apps

News Podge

line kakaotalk wechat blossom
Chat apps are blossoming as m-commerce platforms. Original image credit: SpaceElephant

With the massive uptake in chat apps, there has been increasing news on how these services are monetizing their audiences – and who will win the race to leverage their userbase for business growth.

The secret sauce might lie with m-commerce.

It’s already happening right now — Tencent (HKG:0700) owns WeChat, a chat app that allows users to make purchases from retail brands.

Recently, they even announced a payment function for McDonald’s within the chat app itself. It’s not alone – similar apps like Viber are starting to monetize their audiences and introducing innovative new business models. Line, for example, allows users to see gourmet coupon offers from nearby places, with 32 percent of their 200 million registered users having already used such coupons.

Using data from our Mobile Life 2013 syndicated research on mobile consumers, we can plot countries on an axis of mobile…

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