Mastercard has introduced new tools designed to help small businesses drive online commerce, the company announced Wednesday (June 8).
As businesses try to attract customers to their online and brick-and-mortar stores, Mastercard expanded ShopOpenings.com, an online search tool that tells which shops are open, bringing the search capability to the U.S. and Canada.
The site includes retailers from boutiques to restaurants and identifies merchants that accept contactless payments. ShopOpenings.com is targeted for mobile phone use to support consumers on the go. It is regularly updated to ensure the reliability of the information.
The company also introduced Digital Acceleration for Small Business, a global initiative to deliver insights and resources for small business owners looking to expand their business digitally and build an online presence. The project is being rolled out first in the U.S., Latin America and the Caribbean.
“Businesses large and small are the engine of growth for economies around the world and right now they need our collective support to navigate these uncharted times,” said Jess Turner, executive vice president products and innovation in North America for Mastercard, in a statement.
Leveraging Mastercard insights, the expanded ShopOpenings.com, built in partnership with data analysis company Sixth Sense, provides customers with an updated place to determine which local shops and businesses are open, Mastercard said.
This includes businesses reopening after closing in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Last month, Mastercard debuted its Recovery Insights tool that promises to help businesses and governments assess data during the pandemic to make smarter decisions.
The initiative will make some of Mastercard’s insight tools available for free. The company said the tools use data from a pool of information to give the best possible picture of financial health.
“At some point, the federal government has got to take it away from the states, and you’ve got to have clarity,” he said. “This is so hard on businesses, it’s so hard on our employees.”
Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank President Raphael Bostic said it would be important to look at how much of the economic and job losses would be permanent going forward due to the constantly shifting circumstances.