Tag Archive | Shopping

Walmart Sets Sites on Easing Shopping Burdens for Millions of Underbanked Consumers

Walmart has long been known as a retail outlet that offers great prices on millions of different items. The low prices on goods that this company offers surely helps to make shopping easier for consumers from all walks of life. Now, though, Walmart has launched a new mobile payment system that may well prove to make shopping even easier for the underbanked consumers in the United States. This new mobile payment system is called Walmart Pay, and it may help to make the world’s most popular store even more popular. And more than that, Walmart Pay may help the company to edge out the popular Apple Pay payment system, due to the fact that Walmart is refusing to accept Apple Pay in any of its locations.300px-2008-08-28_Black_Friday_shoppers_at_Wal-Mart

Walmart’s senior vice president, Daniel Eckert – the guy responsible for all of the retail giant’s financial services – is also making moves to entice the people he describes as “cash customers” via Walmart Pay. Cash customers are also known as unbanked and underbanked consumers. These folks make up nearly 28 percent of all consumers in the United States, according to data that was recently released by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp (FDIC.)

Walmart figures that by enticing the cash customers, they will be targeting roughly 40 million shoppers. Some of these people really don’t have a bank account at all, while others rely on alternative financial services on a regular basis. Walmart has already been known for offering its reloadable prepaid cards, the popular MoneyCards that have been available for some time. This product was offered via a joint effort between Walmart and Green Dot. Now, people can add these types of prepaid cards to their Walmart Pay online wallets, instead of linking the cards to traditional debit/credit cards or bank accounts.

Eckert said, “In the context of mobile payments, the existing wallet solutions out there limit customers as they work on the latest and greatest hardware and devices, and with credit and debit cards. We needed to find a different way.” Eckert went on to state that Walmart regulars are “over-indexed” with regards to the adoption of smartphone usage. There may be 28 percent of those folks without traditional bank account access, but 75 percent are routine smartphone users. These people often use their cell phones to receive money and send money via texting services.

Walmart Pay is operable with all Android and iOS devices, even as far back as the earliest generation of iPhones from Apple. Eckert said, “We’re the only retailer to offer a mobile wallet that gives that much access,” obviously very proud of this new initiative by his company. This mobile wallet will be rolled out soon. It starts its pilot in Northwest Arkansas, near stores that are close to the Walmart home base of operations in Bentonville.

Walmart’s endeavor into the mobile payment game comes with the relatively new form of technology rapidly gaining ground with American consumers. Some experts have forecasted that the total value of mobile payments in the United States will increase by roughly 210 percent in 2016. By the time 2017 rolls around, data indicates that about 50 percent of Americans will be routinely making payments with their smartphones and other mobile devices. Walmart may not always be the first company to come to mind when you think about the technological “cutting edge”, however with the introduction of Walmart Pay, it looks like the retail company is on the fast track to the future of mobile payment offerings.

Go Back To School Shopping While On a Budget

Most of us are on a budget these days which means we have limited funds when it comes to back to school shopping. You can go back to school shopping while on a budget and still get everything that you need. Here are some tips for those on a budget who need some help finishing their back to school shopping.

Go through what your child had last year. Is anything reusable? If so then you should reuse it. Why buy new, when you have something perfectly good at home that you can use? Go through everything. Often times they will end up with extra notebooks or pens that they can reuse too. Make sure to take note of what you do not have to buy.

Apple Back To School

Get online. You can compare prices of the items you need to buy for your child by looking at various retailers websites. This will help you know where to go for the best deal. You do not want to overpay for anything, so this step is pretty important.

Find out when the tax free weekend is. That is a great time to go back to school shopping. You will have to fight crowds, as many people go shopping on that weekend, but not paying sales tax will save you money. That is money that you could put toward other things that you still need to get your child for the new school year.

If you start early enough in the summer with the items you know your child will need, like notebooks and pens, you can look around for deals and sales. This also allows you to spread out the cost of paying for their back to school items. By spreading out the cost it makes it much easier to pay for because you do not have to pay for it all at once, which sometimes can be a bit much with the price of things these days.

It is okay if you wait to buy some clothes until after school starts. There is no rule written down somewhere that you have to buy their whole wardrobe for the year before school starts. You can buy things periodically throughout the year as items go on sale.

These are all great ways to save money when back to school shopping. There is no reason you have to spend a ton of money at once or not pay a bill one month because you have to pay for your child to go back to school. Knowing little tips and tricks can help you get everything they need, while helping you save money at the same time.

Become Financially Ready to Have a Baby

Having a baby is an exciting time, and for many it is a little stressful. You have a lot of things to prepare before the baby comes; getting your finances in order is one of those things. Raising a child is expensive; some estimates say that it will take between one hundred to three hundred thousand dollars to raise a child from birth until they are eighteen. It is this reason that you have to make sure that you are financially ready to have a baby. Here are some ways that you can become financially ready before the baby comes.

One of the first things that you should do is to take a look at your insurance. Now that there is a child on the way you will need to make changes to your policies to include the child. Make sure that your medical insurance will cover having a baby and all the doctor visits and treatments that go with it. Make sure that you update all insurance policies to show that you have a baby and that your baby will be covered by the policies.

Insurance

Many experts suggest that when you find out that you are pregnant that you should sign up for disability insurance if you do not already have it. Not all employers will offer it that is okay, you can get it yourself. Make sure that the disability insurance that you get does cover being pregnant and all the troubles that can come along with it. You do not want to end up on bed rest and not have any money coming in. Do not forget the cost of a baby starts to add up before the baby is born.

You may want to hold off on some of the purchases you make for your baby. While there are things such as car seats and cribs that you do not want to get second hand unless you know that they will meet current safety regulations, but there are many other things that you can get second hand. Find out if any of your family or friends who have had a child recently if they have items they no longer need. You could get clothes and all sorts of things from someone whose baby has grown out of them. This is a great way to save money while preparing for the baby.

Talk with a financial advisor about the different tax deductions you can get. Parents can get tax deductions on daycare and more. Find out what kind of deductions you can get and what the best way is to go about getting them. These professionals are full of information that can help you while planning for the baby.

There are many things that you need to get ready when you are pregnant. Getting your finances in order should be on the top of that list. There are many financial things you should do in order to prepare. Talk with a professional to get any and all questions you have as far as finances and the baby go. If you prepare before the baby comes, it will be much easier after the baby is born.

Safety Tips for Women

There was once a time where you did not have to worry much self-defense and women’s safety. Those days are long gone. These days women need to make sure they are able to take care of themselves if necessary. Women today are more independent than ever and are being targeted by those who want to do them harm. Women need to know how to make sure they are looking out for their safety.

If you do not know any self-defense it is a great idea to sign up for a class. It will help you understand the basics of how to defend yourself should you ever need to. Every woman thinks that it will never happen to them but the truth is that you never know if the next victim of women’s violence will be you or not. This is a great reason to make sure that you are prepared in the event that a criminal chooses you to attack.

You should always be aware of your surroundings. Always take mental notes of who is around where they are, where vehicles are, and so on. A lot of women who fall victim to violence do not make sure there are aware of their surroundings before they were attacked. This is something that you must make a habit of doing.

Stop sign

Stop sign (Photo credits: roadtrafficsigns.com)

A woman’s intuition is usually spot on. Listen to your intuition. If it tells you that something in a particular situation is wrong, then listen to it! Ignoring your intuition could wind up making you a criminal’s next victim. If a situation feels like something is wrong, get out of that situation as soon as possible and if needed find someone to help you.

There are sporting goods stores that sell pepper spray, or you can find some online. It is a good idea to get some to carry around with you. Pepper spray can give you the opportunity to get away from an attacker when you would not be able if you did not have that pepper spray. It is a good idea to practice getting the pepper spray out of your purse and getting ready to use it. Should a time come that you need to use it you do not want to get caught fumbling around with it.

When you get into your car, no matter where it is, at home, at the shopping mall, wherever, lock your doors right away. This will make you safer by making sure that no one can hop in your car while you are at a stop light or a stop sign. It will also help you not be a victim of a carjacking. This happens more than people realize, and simply locking your car doors as soon as you get in can help keep you from becoming a victim of it.

Women today have to make sure they do what they can to be safe. Unfortunately not very many women have safety at the front of their mind, but they should. You probably have heard the saying better safe than sorry, make it your mantra, say it to yourself every day, and live it!