Q&A with YouPay Founder and CEO Matt Holme

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By Published On: October 11, 20230 Comments

We sat down with YouPay Founder and CEO Matt Holme to learn more about the rise of peer to peer gifting, wishlists and how brands can get involved in the trend. 

Peer to peer gifting wishlists have evolved beyond a christmas list or wedding registry and are now part of the everyday experience for digital natives and offer a huge opportunity for brands looking to connect with a younger audience. Wishlists are becoming more common in ecommerce especially among the younger demographic who have a focus on sharing and ability to engage with technology across multiple platforms. 

YouPay Founder and CEO, Matt came up with the idea for YouPay while trying to buy a gift for his wife. Realising the ecommerce checkout shouldn’t be a one-person experience, Matt developed a simple, secure and shareable link that could connect people at the checkout.

We asked him all about this trend and how brands can get involved.

What trends have you seen emerging in ecommerce?

To the general public, ecommerce and bricks and mortar are now the same thing. The customer expects to be able to see a product online and also see it in store, and vice versa. Instead of having one strategy and approach to eCommerce and another to in-store retail, we’re seeing brands put more emphasis on ensuring a true omni-channel experience. 

We’ve also noticed ecommerce retailers are suffering from vendor fatigue. YouPay was guilty of being one of the seemingly thousands of new and innovative payment solutions that popped up during covid time. ecommerce retailers are streamlining their checkout experiences and getting back to basics, ensuring customers can quickly and easily buy what they want, with little friction. From our perspective at YouPay, becoming a gifting platform that is retailer agnostic has been welcomed by retailers. If a retailer wants a more hands on, direct partnership, we can offer it. Alternatively, if they don’t, our users can still add gifts to their wishlists.

Can you explain the origin of this gifting culture online – where did it come from? Where did wishlists come in?

Amazon invented the segment decades ago with the original “Amazon Wish List”. Until recently, wishlists were restricted to individual sites. Much like how you could only use your Amazon wishlist on Amazon, you could only use your Myer wishlist at Myer, and your Peter Alexander wishlist at Peter Alexander.

We changed all of this at YouPay, by making the journey start with a wishlist, and making them website agnostic. A YouPay user can add gifts they want from virtually any retailer to their wishlist.

Another problem we solved was around privacy and shareability. Previous wishlist options were broken, as although you could send them to someone else, it was impossible to have someone pay for you without also revealing your private data (e.g. your shipping details). YouPay wishlists are designed to be shared while keeping the private data of each party (the recipient and gifter) separated. 

Why are younger consumers – specifically Gen Z, more inclined to participate in it?

Gen Z love to share. If it isn’t on Insta or Tiktok, did it actually happen? This mentality of everything being public and shareable translates perfectly to wishlists. The same generation understands how technology can be used to not just make their lives better and easier, but also improve the lives of those around them. They understand that sharing your list of birthday ideas on a wishlist makes their friends lives easier too. 

How can brands engage with the younger audience and meet these new expectations of them?

The brands need to exist where the younger audience exists. Existing on platforms like Insta, Tiktok and Youtube, while embracing new trends like wishlists is vital for a brand that wants to connect with a younger generation. Young people love the social media platforms because they are so easy to use, letting them share their lives with their friends. Think of YouPay as the gifting equivalent of this. People are not just creating shopping carts anymore. Their wishlist is the new shopping cart where that keep all the things they want to buy from the various brands they love. 

It seems easy enough to integrate an online platform with this, but how can in-store brands get involved?

In-store for us is actually easier from an integration perspective than online, thanks to the partnerships we have in place with gift card providers like Prezzee. Basically, if an in-store brand offers gift cards, they can offer YouPay. YouPay is a live gift carding solution, allowing customers who were previously unable to afford an item while in-store or don’t yet have their own independent form of payment, to add a request to their wishlist, and have someone from their support network (e.g. mum or dad) pay for it. Once the funding is completed, the in-store customer then has a fully activated gift card ready to be used at the POS in real-time.

To learn more about YouPay and create your Wishlist go to:

About the Author: Rosalea Catterson

Rosalea is the Editor of Power Retail. With a keen interest in consumer behaviour and tech, she covers everything ecommerce and hosts the Power Retail Power Talks Podcast.

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