By Durk Price

Unless you live under a rock, you know that mobile commerce – especially deals, offers and coupons – is taking off.

Many affiliates are looking for ways to promote our merchants and often want to do it via mobile. And while we’ve been encouraging our large roster of merchants to make mobile creative available to affiliates, some are moving quicker than others.

However, maybe that will change now that the Mobile Marketing Association recently released an updated primer on mobile couponing to help establish a standard ad unit for mobile offers and discount. Testing is expected to begin in the second quarter, according to the MMA.

Having a standard mobile coupon ad format is expected to help promote consumer use of on-device coupons for redemption both online and at the physical store locations. This could be a great boon for affiliates to expand into earning more revenue for offers redeemed in a brick and mortar store.

A Forrester report last week projected that U.S. in-store mobile payments overall will nearly double this year to more than $1 billion and reach $41 billion by 2017.

Still there are some hurdles. Not all retail locations are able to technically deal with the redemption as not all have optical scanners and point of sale systems vary in capability.

The new MMA report lays out a six-step process for developing a mobile ad unit to help address these issues. It includes developing a conceptual framework around mobile coupons and rewards, developing ad specifications, conducting field trials and launching a compliance program.

These steps coupled with options like Goggle Wallet and other methods of acquiring, validating and redeeming coupons should give consumers an easier way to use coupons. Meanwhile, merchants and affiliates also stand to gain if consumers embrace such innovations.

I see so many innovation possibilities. That makes me excited for our merchants and their affiliates to help diversify their revenue streams and continue a positive growth pattern.