June 25, 2013, 3:59 PM

PayPal makes TV shopping easier

It signs a deal with Delivery Agent to speed TV transactions.

Lead Photo

E-commerce services and technology provider Delivery Agent Inc. and eBay Inc.-owned online payments provider PayPal today announced they have teamed up to make it easier for shoppers to buy via their TV remote controls. The companies expect to complete the integration by the third quarter.

Delivery Agent provides technology that enables shoppers to make purchases or donations related to content they see during TV programs.

The deal will reduce the number of fields a PayPal user buying via his TV has to fill to complete a transaction, says Delivery Agent CEO Mike Fitzsimmons. Right now it takes about 12 minutes to input information via remote control each time, he says. The less information a shopper has to input, the higher retailers’ conversion rates should be, Fitzsimmons says.

The deal will also enable a consumer viewing a commercial on his TV to click on a pop-up box asking if he would like a coupon for the advertised product. After using his remote control to click a Yes button, he can log into his PayPal account to have the coupon downloaded to his PayPal account. He can then present the coupon in a bricks-and-mortar store.

The coupon enables a retailer or manufacturer to measure the impact of its TV advertising on sales, Fitzsimmons says. “It is incredibly valuable to see how a 30-second commercial can drive someone into a store,” he says.

Delivery Agent works with several large TV operations, including Comcast Corp. and AT&T Inc.’s U-verse, and programmers such as NBCUniversal Inc., CBS Interactive, Discovery Communications Inc., to enable marketers to offer consumers coupons or to make sales via TV. Fitzsimmons says Delivery Agent is also working on deals with many retailers in the 2013 Top 500 Guide to develop Smart TV applications.

The agreement continues PayPal’s push into what it calls t-commerce. PayPal last year began working with cable provider Comcast and set-top box maker TiVo Inc. to let consumers make purchases or donations related to content they see during programs. Then in April manufacturer LG Electronics Inc. began enabling shoppers to sign into their PayPal accounts to reduce the amount of information a consumer has to enter to make a purchase or donation.

Helping make buying via TV easier is all about giving consumers as many ways to buy as possible, says Mark Wenger, PayPal’s director of connected devices and iTV. “This relationship with Delivery Agent will offer our global community additional ways to interact and transact.”

And consumers are interested in those options, according to a new survey commissioned by Delivery Agent.

The online survey of 1,100 consumers conducted from March to May found that 68% of shoppers said they are “interested” in using their TV to shop and 76% said they would be interested in purchasing products or services directly from the commercial they’re watching.

The survey also found that 30% of consumers would be interested in saving products to a wish list and 25% in Liking products on Facebook via their TV remotes.

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