Starbucks: Mobile Payments and Ordering

Starbucks provided a few nuggets on mobile payments and ordering on their latest earnings call:

Mobile payment reached 29 percent of transactions in all U.S. stores, up 2 percent from last quarter. The Mobile Order & Pay smartphone app feature, grew to 8 percent of the quarter’s transactions, up from 7 percent in the first quarter.

Incredible how Starbucks has a 1 to 1 relationship with 29% of their customers. Instead of being customers hidden by cash or anonymized as credit cards, Starbucks is aware of 29% of the customers who transacted at their stores last quarter.

Mobile ordering definitely has considerable growth ahead of it. Although Starbucks blames weak comp sales on their inability to fulfill mobile orders, 8% of overall orders is tiny. Hardly a reason for lower than expected comp sales. 

Their fix? Tablets in the hands of baristas. Somehow I don't believe this will be the fix. Trick is in having right amount of labor at the peaks.