hile traditional businesses faced a severe test in 2020, retailers that were able to capitalize on the expansion of online business, digital streaming, and video gaming found the digital channel to be a lifeline. The pandemic has clearly proved that agility is the secret to success, and electronic and hybrid modes will continue to thrive in the post-pandemic era while physical commerce recovers.
Merchants must remain on top of the rapidly changing digital payments market in order to flourish in digital commerce. Payments are an important aspect of the customer journey, and their ability to provide a streamlined, efficient, and expedient checkout procedure may make or break the consumer experience. For merchants, a successful money transfer strategy, and in particular six important success elements, is critical to creating amazing customer journeys:
- Conversion rates are increased by harmonizing choice and simplicity.
- Efficiency, conformity, and security on a slender path.
- Making payments inconspicuous.
- Smart transaction orchestration reduces costs.
- Taking advantage of data to improve operations and customer insights.
- Choosing a payment system that meets a merchant's unique requirements.
Merchants who are serious about achieving these goals should examine the advantages of a national payment platform that not only eliminates bureaucracy and integrates existing payment solutions into a single launch pad and also futureproofs the firm by enabling constant innovation.
A data-driven plan is crucial in this more diverse and disruptive environment to coordinate payments based on cost and dependability while shoring up analytical skills to combat fraud and manage the customer experience as smooth as possible.
What Makes Ottu a Fantastic Checkout Experience?
Payments are an important yet time-consuming aspect of the consumer journey, increasing the likelihood of checkout abandonment. Security is arguably the most pressing issue, especially when new restrictions exacerbate rather than alleviate tensions. However, the entire procedure's simplicity, the need to acquire information about consumers, and outdated systems and attitudes stifle innovation and severely impact the checkout process. To avoid disturbing the overall customer journey, the best possible outcome is to make the payments inconspicuous, or at least as smooth as feasible. Six major success elements must be addressed for a great checkout experience:
1. Conversion rates are increased by harmonizing choice and simplicity
Customers who shop online frequently have a lot of doubts, but they are asked to give personal information, especially highly sensitive information like credit card numbers. They have no alternative but to rely on a merchant to uphold its commitments as a data keeper, to use information uprightly, and to instate the necessary security methods to protect records and transactions. The desire for a business to know its consumers is natural, but it adds friction to the checkout process, especially when long data forms, bad user interfaces, and unnecessary data gathering are combined.
Many clients have a favorite form of online payment, whether it's a local payment method like Oxxo, Giropay, Sofort, or a digital wallet like Apple Pay or Google Pay. A universal payments platform will assist merchants by allowing them to swiftly add and integrate such partner products while also allowing them to centrally manage, organize, and monitor a rising number of players. Finally, the better the conversion rates, the more efficient and familiar the checkout procedure is for customers.
2. Accessibility, accountability, and security on a slender path
The process of making an online payment can be tedious and time-consuming at times, especially for those who aren't frequent internet buyers. The new Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) rules, which were implemented in January 2021 as part of the 2nd Payments Services Doctrine (PSD2), have made online payments much more difficult for both customers and merchants. Unless the transaction is designated "low risk" or an exemption applies, SCA requires two-factor authentication (2FA) in all electronic transactions. While the exact impact of the rule is unknown, IDC reported that approximately 50% of Card-Not-Present (CNP) purchases would require robust client verification.
Merchants confront the difficult task of adhering to SCA regulations while also providing a positive user experience for customers. SCA may increase cart abandonment in the short term while customers have grown accustomed to two-factor authentication, and SCA exclusions can be enhanced, for example, by leveraging background analytics to efficiently filter low-risk transactions. A data-driven strategy to decrease the number of transactions susceptible to SCA includes using transaction risk analysis (TRA) to designate transactions as "low risk." TRA searches for unusual spending or activity patterns, like adjustments to the user's phone or suspect payer or payee locations. The usual fraud percentage of a PSP, the purchaser, and the issuer are also taken into account by TRA. In other words, a processor's capacity to reduce transaction risk through data analytics, as seen by lower fraud rates, is becoming a critical factor for merchants in selecting a suitable partner.
Provisions, such as low-value payments, reoccurring transfers to the same recipient, or whitelisting vendors as trustworthy beneficiaries, are entirely up to the PSP to classify. Choosing the proper partner will provide merchants with a competitive advantage once again.
3. Making covert payments
In the future, Ottu anticipates a trend toward invisible payments, which is simply an endeavor to eliminate all friction from payments. To remove friction for both physical and digital transactions, this method combines technologies like analytics, biometrics, the internet of things, digital identities, smart contracts, smart analytics, and low-risk transaction types like direct debit, as well as ecosystem collaborations.
The smaller the risk in a transaction, the more of these components come together. The greater will be the complexity of delivering these experiences reliably and efficiently in the back office. Partners who specialize in data-driven transactions will excel in this area. They combine state-of-the-art protection and identity tools running in the background with new technologies like artificial intelligence to organize and optimize transactions based on what is already known. This will reduce the friction for frequent consumers, but it will also make the checkout process much easier for first-time customers. In the end, this might lead to a trusted commerce environment in which merchants and customers each have their dynamic trust rankings that reflect their trustworthiness. For merchants, this offers up chances for "trusted" consumers to receive special treatment and to augment, or serve as the foundation for, loyalty programs. Beyond security, trust scores might consider a wider set of requirements, like corporate social responsibility (CSR), sustainable product sourcing, or customer happiness based on service levels, fulfillment, refunds, and so on. The reality of "trusted commerce" is still a long way off, requiring a delicate balancing of privacy, confidentiality, and social responsibility. Nonetheless, new techniques to establish trust in a virtual environment will be a powerful catalyst for future growth.
4. Smart transaction orchestration reduces costs
Customers' preferences and convenience must, however, be balanced against the realities of running a profitable business. Due to the proliferation of new payment methods and types, merchants must evaluate transaction costs and encourage customers to use low-cost options whenever possible.
Smart routing allows merchants to analyze the pricing from different payment providers and prioritize the ones with the best fees and acceptance rates. The capacity to incorporate developing forms of payment like account-based transactions and digital wallets on the back of new real-time payment infrastructures, as well as the ability to integrate new payment sources including local, regional, and worldwide players, will also represent a competitive advantage.
5. Taking advantage of data to improve operations and customer insights
Data is sometimes referred to as the "new oil," and financial data is no exception. Operational knowledge is the greatest immediate return of a data-driven payments approach. This translates to actionable data that can help you enhance payment operations, increase acceptance rates, improve charge awareness, free up cashflows, or make better liquidity decisions. Improving acceptance rates necessitates a better understanding of "when" and "why" clients quit shopping carts, as well as why banks reject transactions. Analytics can reveal useful information about how to address the underlying issues.
There are numerous reasons for unsuccessful transactions, including suspicious and odd activity, incorrect data entry, strange locations, failed authentication, expired card info, and insufficient cash. By analyzing the fundamental reasons for failed transactions, retailers may handle them more effectively and increase acceptance rates. Data analytics also aids merchants in improving their cash flow by allowing them to better utilize resources and free up illiquid capital to invest in innovation rather than operational efficiency. Cashflow forecasting enables merchants to weigh the pros and cons of various choices, such as offering early payment incentives against drawing on a credit line or asking for a factoring loan.
Getting access to and managing a payment solution that is tailored to a merchant's needs.
Payments are one of the most disruptive and fast-moving industries, driven by technological advancements, regulatory changes, and changing customer expectations. The majority of retailers already have solutions in place to meet certain payment locations. While some companies may want a single payment provider to handle all transactions, others will choose a best-of-breed approach, necessitating the development of modular, adaptable, and transparent solution designs.
Modern microservices-based structures powered by APIs provide merchants with the flexibility, security, speed, and choice they need to customize solutions to their individual needs. Collaborating with the best suppliers in the market will be a strategic advantage in a volatile environment such as the payments space. This also makes it easier to evaluate payment providers on a regular basis to see if they can stay up with the ecosystem and continue to supply innovation, reliability, and best-in-class data insights.
Due to recent developments in consumer behavior and the ecosystem, merchants must consider digital payments as a critical success component in order to meet the difficulties of digital commerce. Payments take center stage in order to provide a consistent customer experience and boost conversion rates, brand loyalty, and client retention. Due to the rapid evolution of the payments landscape, merchants must have an adaptable, accessible, and standardized payments gateway to keep up with the industry and provide the greatest customer experiences possible. Digital commerce is getting the shape of a team sport.
Written by Hrayr Baboyan
Customer Engagement Manager, Ottu