How providers can enhance the payments experience

JUSTIN JACKSON | September 21, 2018

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When it comes to making payments, consumers care about the experience. They use person-to-person payments because it’s fast and convenient. They'd be more likely to sign up for auto-pay if they could do it online. They like mobile banking and they are interested in a variety of improvements that provide faster access to information and even more control over cards and accounts. Understanding the importance of experience is key for any financial organization that wants to deepen customer relationships and assume a leadership position in the payments space.Consumers expect financial institutions to understand the way they live and work today. They expect financial institutions to know them, anticipate their needs and to look out for their interests.Customers want choices, access to multiple channels, and security. All of this, and they want their financial institution to sort out the complexity and make payments simple for them.Deciding where to start is key as financial institutions are tasked with quickly responding to trends, offering new products and continuously delivering excellent service. Because payment capabilities tend to influence the overall customer relationship, they are a good place to begin to improve the experience.

Spotlight

Reebonz - Your World of Luxury

In late 2013, members were introduced to an all-rounded ecosystem where they could not only buy, but also sell or consign their pre-owned Reebonz purchases to us. In early 2015, we launched Closets, to add to our growing suite of services for local and global online shoppers alike. Fashion lovers can now buy and sell pre-owned luxury designer fashion through the Reebonz mobile app. Our latest addition to the suite is Reebonz Marketplace, where we bring independent multi-brand boutiques, pre-owned luxury merchants and vintage dealers from across the globe onto one single platform.

OTHER ARTICLES

Getting smart about payment terminals

Article | April 15, 2021

For many years, payment terminals have been a vital tool for businesses that complete their customer transactions in-store. The familiar hand-held devices have reliably taken card payments and offered simple additional services like mobile phone top-ups, cashback or electronic tipping solutions. However, with recent technical innovation, boosted by the urgency surrounding Covid-19, the humble payment terminal is shedding its hard exterior - no longer is it, as some would argue, simply a commoditised, hardware-based necessity. As many within the payments space have predicted, the payment terminal is truly becoming a digital enabler and vital pivot point of modernisation for any business that accepts electronic transactions. The Android Operating System leads the way Today, payment terminals come in many forms. Though the traditional, handheld counter-top devices remain, many businesses now use off-the-shelf smartphones or tablets enabled with SPOC and CPOC technology. Regardless of their physical form, truly modern payment terminals share a commonality – enhanced functionality which allows businesses to update and adapt quickly to changing performance, environments, and customer needs. The Android operating system has been at the centre of a latest wave of innovation, facilitating the rise of mobile payment devices - pushed hard by the likes of Visa - and supporting the budding versatilities presented by Open Banking and PSD2 initiatives. Combined, this new choice and flexibility has the potential to deliver significant advantages to businesses deploying Android point-of-sale (POS) solutions. These include integrated EPOS, strong authentication, and an array of alternative payment methods such as bank-to-bank payments, QR codes and even crypto currencies. It’s about more than being just Covid-ready Getting the timing right to make adjustments and improvements is now a focus for businesses across the UK as we start to emerge from Covid-19 restrictions and resume face-to-face interactions. The conventional payment terminal can play a central part in engineering the essential adjustments needed to create a Covid-safe environment – the new £100 contactless limit being the most obvious example. However, functionality provided by the latest payment terminals allows businesses to do more than just make their premises Covid-ready. For more commercial gains, payment terminals running on the Android OS allow for this same POS functionality but combine it with other essential business systems such as stock management, visual itemisation, and centralised booking systems. As well as providing greater visibility of a business’ health and finances, more information also means friction points such as wait times and queues in store can be better managed. More data about customer behaviour also makes the in-store experience more customisable, for example, businesses can use this data to identify their busiest periods, explore seasonal changes or test new product lines and structure their staff planning and stock levels accordingly. Coupled with more vital operational efficiencies, payment terminals can allow for a speed and flexibility of payments that can directly enhance the bottom line. As the pace in retail environments ramps up to match that of the pre-Covid days, meeting new customer expectations and new environmental changes will be critical in staying relevant. An ability to accept the latest types and methods of payment could actually play a part in helping a business survive through difficult economic times. Bolstering cash flow will also take on added importance as businesses rebuild. Payment terminals powered by better internet connections mean transactions are already faster, but internet speed alone is not enough. Today, terminals can be updated in ways that allow merchants to process those transactions faster still and get funds deposited into bank accounts in batches throughout the day, often completing within the hour. Payment terminals and Big Data With data becoming the bedrock of all modern businesses, it is the Android operating system’s ability to generate such an impressive wealth of data that adds to its compelling proposition. The value of Big Data and analytics to filter large volumes of information and uncover actionable insights is well known to the business world. Useable information can help leaders learn about their customers, make better decisions and, ultimately, produce more revenue. Customer data, for example, makes it possible for a business to learn about the buying behaviours of an individual customer or of defined customer segments. When a business knows the time of day (or night) their customers shop and what type of purchases they make, it becomes easier to plan when inventories are stocked and with what items. Android payment terminals can provide data in a way that offers easy visibility of key trends and which specific hours of the day produce the most sales, allowing businesses to investigate possible reasons and react accordingly. Such knowledge can then be used for a variety of purposes including the ability to upsell to future customers with greater success and the tactical arrangement of items in store. Crucially now, it will also enable businesses to maintain a Covid-safe environment by planning ahead for in-store activity and capacity limits. With hundreds of applications already available to download from the app store, it’s important that SMEs are able to use this scale of choice to their advantage rather than become overwhelmed or distracted by it. Indeed, by taking the time to explore the apps available, smaller businesses can find the tools which allow them to level the playing field by bringing their operational efficiencies in line with larger brands and by leveraging the solutions that allow them to compete on customer service.

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Amazon could win big in the post-coronavirus retail economy

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Pundits are already speculating about the post-coronavirus culture and economy. Among the lasting, potential changes are more diversified supply chains, the mainstreaming of online education, more companies embracing work from home, stricter hygiene rules for restaurants and hotels (that survive) and other public places. And beyond all that, a great deal more online shopping. Unlike any other single event in our lives perhaps, the coronavirus and related economic fallout have the potential to massively shift U.S. consumer buying patterns. For the several years before the virus, we were seeing store closures and retail bankruptcies — the so-called retail apocalypse. That will be exacerbated and accelerated by the coronavirus and impending recession.

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Spotlight

Reebonz - Your World of Luxury

In late 2013, members were introduced to an all-rounded ecosystem where they could not only buy, but also sell or consign their pre-owned Reebonz purchases to us. In early 2015, we launched Closets, to add to our growing suite of services for local and global online shoppers alike. Fashion lovers can now buy and sell pre-owned luxury designer fashion through the Reebonz mobile app. Our latest addition to the suite is Reebonz Marketplace, where we bring independent multi-brand boutiques, pre-owned luxury merchants and vintage dealers from across the globe onto one single platform.

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