As mobile wallet providers seek to add value to their services in the payments market, account aggregator Yodlee says it has a data analysis tool that will help that expansion.
Yodlee is piloting Yodlee Transaction Data Enrichment, a service that sorts banking, credit and debit card transactions into categories based on merchant, merchant type and geographic location. The company's goal is to provide more visibility into payment patterns and trends to spot opportunities for cross-selling, marketing, special offers, risk management and reduced call center activity. The service leverages Yodlee's history of data collection, consolidation, categorization and statistical clustering analysis to produce the spending categories.
"Most mobile wallets don't have 100% of the spending data yet," said Eric Connors, senior vice president of products at Yodlee, adding data from other channels such as in-store payments and a deep dive into the location of purchases is often missing. "Having a clean description and geolocation can be invaluable for a wallet provider."
Yodlee is aiming the product, which is expected to be widely available in early 2015, to issuers, merchants and other clients. For mobile payment and digital wallet providers, the access to consumer preferences, payment trends and geolocation can help spot gaps or spikes in payment volume that can inform business strategy in the future.
"On a traditional statement, you may have the name of a merchant, but you don't know where that merchant is," Connors said. "By knowing that, a wallet provider can spot potential merchant partnerships or marketing campaigns."
For mobile wallet providers, the service can provide insight into offline purchases or payments made in other channelsinformation Connors said is often difficult for m-commerce tools to access. "You want to be able to have a full picture of where the money is going," Connors said.
Yodlee provides the technology that powers a number of personal financial management platforms, which allow consumers to access and categorize spending across a number of bank or card accounts for budgeting.
The company has more than 750 clients, including nine of the largest U.S. banks. It will charge for its new service on a per-user basis. Yodlee also offers Tandem, a social payments product that allows consumers to link their personal financial circles, such as a spouse or a child, with their bank accounts. These circles can be used to facilitate account transfers or person to person payments.
Account aggregation is an attractive service for businesses looking to offer m-commerce, said Richard Crone, a payments consultant. "It's a brilliant move, businesses have multiple financial relationships," he said. "And a payment always follows something. It's a service rendered that is followed by a bill.
"Bringing all of these things together in one integrated fashion creates new service opportunities that the payment platform provider can charge for, or they can simplify their workflow."