Starbucks Releases Numbers on its Mobile Payments App

April 29, 2019         By: Steven Anderson

We’ve talked about Starbucks at length as the poster child for mobile payments, and with good reason. It actually not only managed to do mobile payments right, it managed to do them entirely too right, to the point where they had to adjust physical operations to accommodate all those mobile orders. Now, Starbucks recently released numbers on its mobile app, and the numbers are massive.

The current reports note that mobile app rewards memberships are up to 16.8 million users total. That’s in light of Starbucks seeing its active member base expand another half-million customers just in the second quarter alone, which represented a 13 percent increase by itself.

All this momentum has driven some noteworthy points in sales; members of the mobile rewards program actually generated 41 percent of United States sales for that quarter by their lonesome, reports noted. Also helping were some changes to the rewards program, that offered some smaller-interval rewards like 25 stars for an additional flavor or a free espresso shot, or 50 stars for a bakery item.

Of course, there’s also Starbucks’ delivery program, now available in 1,600 locations in seven major US markets. That’s a comparative pittance against the roughly 14,000 locations in the US, but still enough to make a decent representation. The program is still in its early stages, notes president and CEO Kevin Johnson, but it’s also being refined as it goes along.

Johnson also filled investors in on potential alterations in the in-store experience, momentum in the cold beverage platform, and ongoing developments in China, where there are still competitors working to eke out a piece of the growing Chinese coffee market for themselves.

We’ve long known that incorporating rewards programs into a mobile payments platform is a great way to draw users’ attention. Starbucks has been reliably demonstrating that point for years now, and this latest set of numbers only drives the point home further. However, we’ve also seen it’s possible to be too successful on this front, and with Starbucks actively working to improve the in-store experience, it’s clear that it also recognizes the potential costs of success.

In the end, mobile payments can be a real draw for users, if they’re presented correctly. Starbucks is living proof of that, and the numbers keep making the point abundantly clear.