People used to think that payments were just about driving conversions and sales. Some still do. We don’t. And judging by the calls I’m getting, not many of you do either. The conversation has moved on: it’s no longer just about getting paid.
Sure, that’s how it used to be. When I started out in 1999, all anybody cared about was conversions. Online shopping was starting to flourish, and to compete you needed a functioning checkout. Period.
It’s clear today that we’re way beyond that. In an increasingly crowded marketplace, payments are evolving to address several new challenges.
For one thing, your brand is under threat from price comparison engines and online marketplaces fighting to reduce you to little more than a price tag.
Consumers today have a very clear picture of what they want, whether it is a jacket or sofa, but they are not as fussy about who or where they get it from. How do you stay top of mind in this free-for-all and keep your customers from looking for a better deal somewhere else?
Then there is the ever-increasing competition from local and regional players, and from further afield, who are not only competing with you on price but for eyeball share, putting even more pressure on your customer acquisition costs.
With everyone bidding for the same ad space and exposure, prices are going up, making customer retention more than a matter of lifting conversions and approval rates. How do you manage your media spend so that you reach the right customers, loyal customers?
Then there’s the question of whether customer retention is about offering the best price or is it about tying in consumers through subscriptions or recurrent billing. Can you be challenged, or challenge others, using new business models?
It is a jungle out there. For you to survive, let alone compete, your payments have to evolve beyond checkout. Today it is as much about the overall brand experience and consumer journey as getting the money in – and that’s where we can help.
Come back on Thursday to find out how…
– Senior Vice President of AfterPay, Arvato Financial Solutions