PayPal may be the most trusted name in online payment processing, but it can now be used in "the real world."
The internet mogul is going live in two million retail locations across the country where Discover cards are accepted. PayPal recently partnered with Discover to make this transition happen, but it will take work to make it truly effective.
PayPal has been testing the waters with this program since 2012 in stores like Dollar General and Home Depot. In these locations, users are able to sign into their accounts at the checkout counter and make payments through it instead of swiping their cards. However, this brings up a new problem as the act of signing into an account does take more time than a simple swipe of a card. Consumers may have to be convinced that PayPal is the way to go.
While the expansion may be a good idea in theory, it is still unknown if consumers will adopt it. Many of the managers from tested Home Depot stores say their customers bypass PayPal as a way to pay for their items. The customers know they can do this, but they prefer swiping their cards, much like the difference between writing a check and paying with a debit card.
PayPal does have other ideas in the works, like a smartphone app that will allow restaurant customers to place orders before they get to a location. Once they have arrived, they can just pick up their food or drinks and go, without the need to wait in line. Of course, there is the issue of ordering something that may not be in stock or putting mobile customers ahead of live customers. All of this will need to be worked out in time.
Expect to see PayPal payments available in some of your local stores in the near future.