A strong payments strategy is an advantage to any eCommerce industry, but none more so than the heavily regulated sports betting sector. As more and more bookmakers respond to growing consumer demand by shifting from land-based betting shops to online operations,
the market grows increasingly competitive.
To gain an advantage over competition, operators focus on optimising the one direct consumer touchpoint available to them: the payment process. An integral feature of a strong payments strategy, the payment process must be engineered for ultimate consumer
The customer journey culminating at conversion on checkout is challenging by nature of the genre. In sports betting, transactions go both ways. Consumers expect ease and convenience, as well as security, when placing bets, but also in receiving their winnings.
Any friction caused – in either direction – can result in poor conversion and/or retention.
Conversion by design
As the final potential stumbling block in the customer journey, the payment page itself must ensure that players follow through with their bet and complete their intended transaction. Not only must checkout be adapted to all possible devices, including desktop,
mobile, and tablet, but it should also combine brand recognition, e.g. same colour scheme, font, theme, etc. as the merchant website, with a simple, intuitive user interface.
Equilibrium between conversion and security
In essence, all online bookmakers are attempting to find the ideal compromise between conversion and security. After all, heavy security measures risk alienating prospective players, while high conversion at the expense of limited security makes the operator
a target for fraudulent activity. Any payments company will be able to offer a selection of both conversion-boosting products and risk management technologies, but it takes an experienced payment service provider to combine the efficiencies of both in order
to achieve higher revenues for their client.
Communication is key
To establish reliability, any online merchant must enable effective communication with their target audience to resolve potential payment issues. Of course, their payment partner will be available to advise, but it is the operator’s responsibility to address
customer complaints. In integrating a live chat on their website – or any other means of instant communication – merchants can settle disputes directly and protect against available losses.
As the conduit through which online bookmakers and gambling operators generate their profit, payments play a key strategic role. Investing time and resources into finding a reliable partner with whom to construct a comprehensive payments strategy will pay
off in the long run, ensuring that merchants are best-placed to defend against potential risks, provide a convenient customer journey, and delicately balance targeted conversion with security.