Mobile update: Google Wallet

It looks fairly certain that in the next couple of years, tablet and handheld devices will begin to overtake laptop and desktop computers as the computing device of choice for most consumers. It is important that charities be prepared for that eventuality.

As of now, investments in mobile do not have the same potential for revenue return as comparable investments in non-mobile website development, search, display or email. The volume of transactions for nonprofits just aren’t there to the same degree. That is bound to change, however. Google Wallet is one of several initiatives now underway to transform mobile devices into easy payment options for both online and offline commerce–to effectively replace wallets and credit cards with mobile devices. When that happens, mobile Web solutions will become essential to nonprofit fundraising efforts.

To prepare, nonprofits should design websites that work well for tablet users, and should strongly consider including site plugins or versions to serve for handheld user experience.

A few more recommendations:

  • Look for the emergence of easy payment platforms for mobile, and be thinking about the fundraising opportunities they afford.
  • Consider testing into mobile as a digital advertising platform, including both search and display.
  • With limited exceptions, Text to Give is not recommended by Russ Reid as a mobile tactic. We feel that the limits to subsequent donor cultivation sharply diminish the value of these campaigns.

What’s been your experience with emerging mobile technology? Let us know!