How electronic payment processing changed one entrepreneur’s business
Fiona Collins is an entrepreneur. She started her fashion line business, Fiona’s Finery, three years ago, and has worked hard to build it from the ground up. She began with a brick-and-mortar location, later added an eCommerce website, and soon thereafter established a sizeable presence on the top social media sites. Even as she continues to gain local and regional acclaim, Fiona knows she could do even more to grow her business and boost her revenue—and electronic payment processing is one way to help in that endeavor.
Let’s take a look at how Fiona is using electronic payments to help expand recognition of her brand and boost customer loyalty.
Ramping up payment card security
When Fiona learned that 42 percent of shoppers have experienced credit or debit card theft or fraud, she knew credit card data security had to be a top priority. Since 76 percent of shoppers consider EMV chip cards to be more secure than traditional magnetic stripe credit cards, and 61 percent of consumers say that EMV chip cards are their payment method of choice, Fiona knew she needed a payment solution that is EMV-enabled. She had also heard about security technologies like encryption and tokenization that protect sensitive cardholder data. So, she felt confident in her decision to work with a payments provider that offered all of these security options
Expanding electronic payments options
Since 68 percent of consumers shop online once or more per month, Fiona knew she had to have an eCommerce website. With 42 percent saying digital payments like PayPal are their #1 preferred method for shopping online, Fiona integrated a “Pay using PayPal” option on her eCommerce checkout form for her customers to use when shopping online.
Additionally, with shoppers increasingly using digital wallets like Apple Pay to pay in-store via Near Field Communication (NFC) payment technology, Fiona invested in an iPad-based POS system equipped with EMV and NFC readers. She knew that by offering different payment options (instore, online, mobile, etc.), she would meet all her customers’ preferred methods of payment.
Creating seamless shopping experiences
Sixty-four percent of shoppers say consistency between in-store and online (including website and social media pages) is important, and 69% say that a retailer’s consistency across various touch points affects their loyalty to that brand (Source: Infosys)—and that’s what omnicommerce delivers.
Infosys research found that lack of technology is the most common factor that prevents retailers from creating more integrated commerce experiences. Always the forward-thinker, Fiona has been an early adopter of the latest payments processing technology to help her deliver a consistent, on-brand experience to her customers across all touch points.
Because 72 percent of shoppers say consistency in range of products online versus in-store is important, Fiona implemented an automated inventory control system that tracks across in-store and online purchases . With this system, Fiona and her staff always know which items are in stock at the touch of a screen.
In terms of appearance and branding, Fiona makes sure the brand voice, imagery and fonts are on-brand both in-store and online. By sticking to a predetermined theme, customers enjoy the same experience whether they are shopping on Fiona’s website, viewing one of her offers on social media, or visiting the brick and mortar location.
Driving brand engagement through online channels
Ninety-two percent of retailers say their customers interact with their brand online, with 80 percent interacting via the retailer’s website, and 66 percent via their Facebook page (Source: Infosys). With this in mind, Fiona understands the importance of interacting with customers wherever they are, and one way to attract new customers is via online channels.
This year, Fiona has been pushing promotions and coupons to drive traffic to her boutique and her website. Since 68 percent of shoppers agree that consistency across online and in-store promotions and offers is important, Fiona strives for consistency in her offerings to keep her customers happy.
Because she is always looking for ways to grow her business, Fiona has more plans to use payment technology to boost her business in the future. For example, she would like to work with a software developer to create a mobile app that incorporates online shopping, personalized recommendations, shopping history, and the Fiona’s Finery loyalty program.
Fiona also plans to open a second brick-and-mortar location. With this expanded geographic footprint, she knows she will face new challenges with inventory controls, merchandising, and employee management. However, with the right payment processing partner on her side, with commerce and technology know-how, she knows she is up for the challenge – and she can’t wait to see how her fashion line continues to grow in the coming months and years.