E-commerce giant Amazon India is introducing a QR-code-based facility for product discovery and payments at offline stores amid efforts to increase adoption and offer new use cases for its digital wallet Amazon Pay,
The scan-and-pay strategy is akin to Alibaba-backed Paytm’s foray into the offline segment in 2017 to bring small sellers and offline businesses onto its digital payments platform.
Amazon Pay’s new service will initially be available at Shoppers Stop, the brick-and-mortar retail chain in which US-headquartered Amazon acquired a 5% stake two years.
Customers in select areas of Bengaluru can avail of the facility, which will be scaled up in the coming months.
“We have begun introducing Amazon Smile code, a new way for our customers to shop and pay at physical stores e.g. Shoppers Stop, among others,” said an Amazon India spokesperson. “Amazon customers can use their Amazon app to scan the Smile code and discover the product, read reviews, ratings and buy the product with Amazon Pay.”
The spokesperson added that neighbourhood retailers will soon get the facility as well.
Customers can add money to their Amazon Pay wallets through card, internet banking or UPI (Unified Payments Interface) up to Rs 10,000 without completing know-your-customer (KYC) formalities.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had originally mandated that all wallets would need to complete the KYC procedures of their customers by February 28.
This deadline was subsequently pushed by six months in response to operators of pre-paid instruments (digital wallet firms) seeking additional time to find alternatives, after the Supreme Court prohibited the use of Aadhaar for KYC by private entities last September.
In another bid to boost the user base of Amazon Pay, Amazon had rolled out its UPI handle last month for payments via the real-time system.