The Retail industry is facing challenges to gain and maintain the cost of payments due to internal and external factors. The margins had gone down as consumer spending has decreased due to unstable economic conditions. In this situation, I believe optimising
the payment is very critical for the success of the business.
Payments are the core of any Retail business and making the process simple, convenient through multichannel creates a win-win situation for both Customers and Retailers. I have been engaging Multi-National banks and Retailers in rationalising their payment
strategy to create a seamless payment experience across multiple channels. This had helped me to realise that any random investment in the technology will not necessarily provide the required benefit. Instead, a careful approach to the market and its customer
needs and aligning the internal resources to deliver the desired outcome will immensely benefit the business.
Some of the key considerations are as follows:
1. Creating a Vision – Identify the steps to improve the overall vision of Customer Experience through simplified payments
2. Utilize payments as a strategic lever to enable seamless, personalised interactions with customers
3. Improving the overall cost of payments. This can be achieved in multiple ways :
· Evaluate the existing vendor relationships and investigate the possibility of reducing the cost of acceptance
· To develop various alternative acceptance models and forms of payments
· Incentivize customers to opt for a lower-cost form of payments at checkout
· Reduce the cost of frauds and chargebacks
4. Improve the existing payment risk management strategy by following different approaches for the Card present and Card not present. For example, Card Present strategies for risk management may not be suitable for a Card not Present, as it will be the
least customer friendly.
5. Satisfy the compliance requirements
6. If the organisation is an International Retailer, they may need to Identify partners best suited to support local and Global Strategic directions
7. To use payments to enhance the revenue
8. Leveraging payments as a loyalty tool to grow business. This can be achieved by integrating rewards earning as well as redemption into the payment and checkout process and create a personalized experience. For example, providing an option to the customers
to earn and burn the loyalty points
A seamless payment experience will enable Retailers to improve customer experience and boost revenue. It is also critical to keep a check on the cost of acceptance and make sure Retailers negotiate on better pricing. The technology trends are moving in a
rapid phase, and the channels to accept the payments are also growing. The challenge for the Retailers is to keep up to the trends to provide better customer experience and also reduce the cost of payments. Though the considerations mentioned above may be
helpful to an extent, the key is to challenge and evolve the payment strategy based on the market needs. Is there any more to be considered for a better Retail Payments Strategy?