2020 has introduced an immense amount of uncertainty and change to an already complex and evolving commerce landscape. Over the past eight months, we have assisted our customers across the world in navigating sudden shifts in consumer buying behavior brought about by forces outside of their control.
Although it is difficult to predict behaviour trends, many signs are currently pointing to a fundamental, indefinite change in how consumers want to transact, including an acceleration of the shift from cash to digital forms of payment moving forward. So much so that global ATM usage is down 50% since the beginning of the pandemic, and in the United Kingdom, 40% of consumers say they plan to avoid cash for health-related reasons.
At Global Payments, we have seen this digital payments trend take hold firsthand. We quickly helped our customers enable no-contact commerce solutions like Mobile Pay, contactless payment with links and digital wallet acceptance, to name a few. We also saw online payments grow over 30% during the first quarter of 2020 and equipped three times as many businesses with e-commerce capabilities in March than anticipated.
Today's companies recognise the need to connect with their customers through a variety of commerce channels. Companies need simple, secure and innovative payment solutions they can trust to quickly adapt and keep them ahead of the curve. With the right payments partner, they can do just that.
Here are five ways the right payments partner can help you take on tomorrow:
1. Adopt an adaptive approach
You have heard time and time again how your organisation needs to be agile, especially during times of change and variability. But being agile is no longer enough. To persevere through adversity, your business now needs to truly adapt to the current environment as well as your customers' preferences. That's where your payments partner can help.
Even before the pandemic and now accelerated by it, we have seen an increase in demand for seamless payment experiences across channels, for both issuers and businesses alike. And as consumer buying preferences continue to shift, connecting with your customers wherever they are, however they want, has become even more important. A payments partner that can equip you to address these preferences is the foundation for building a more resilient business to withstand countless future challenges that may come your way.
2. Future proof with advanced payment technology
As time goes on, new commerce channels will inevitably emerge, and consumers will continue to adopt them. To stay ahead, your payments partner should proactively collaborate with you to uncover which payment models, channels and technologies are best for your business and how to be ready to evolve when customer preferences change once again.
Take e-commerce, for example, which was originally designed to accept and make payments online. However, as consumers' preferences evolved, so did the channel. And thus, omnichannel shopping was born.
A payments partner that truly understands the entire payments landscape and how technology can support a unified, personalised experience will help you better connect with your customers in person, online and on the go.
A payments partner that's been around and weathered the highs and lows of economic unpredictability and has helped its customers do the same can better position any business for whatever the future holds.
3. Transform payments into valuable insights
On its surface, a payment is the facilitation of commerce between a consumer and a business. However, with the ability to dig a bit deeper into those transactions, you can get a more holistic view of your customers that can help you make better decisions for your business. It's important to have a payments partner that has the technology that can wrap this kind of value around your transactions and can show you how to effectively use these types of insights.
Analytical insights, like how recently customers last shopped, how frequently they purchased and how much they spent, can give you a better understanding of their needs and assist you in developing marketing campaigns or loyalty programs that revolve around them.
4. Improve payment acceptance and expand your reach
Working with a payments partner that has their finger on the pulse of what can be done to ensure smooth, successful transactions is important for profitability and growth. Those capabilities include vast domestic acquiring in major markets around the world, robust fraud management and account updater services, as well as the ability to support multiple payment methods so your customers can pay however they prefer.
Additionally, it is helpful to work with a payments partner that has visibility not only into the merchant acquiring aspects of a transaction but also the issuing side as well. This holistic view of the payments ecosystem helps to improve acceptance rates overall and reduce fraud.
5. Tap into proven performance
A payments partner that is at the forefront of innovation and can adapt to economic unpredictability can better position any business for whatever the future holds. When looking at your payments partner, consider how they can help you not only keep up but truly grow and thrive in the years to come.
A payments provider with this kind of insight can provide invaluable guidance on things like emerging payment types, new commerce channels, the latest technology and ways to connect with customers anywhere in the world. They can also share industry-specific knowledge on how payments embedded into existing software creates a better, more seamless customer experience.
Adapting to stay ahead
The payments industry is extremely complex and constantly changing, which makes it difficult to stay on top of what is new and what your customers expect from their buying experiences. But with the payment solutions, technology and long-standing expertise that Global Payments offers, we can help you stay ahead and win.
With innovative technology solutions, a team of 24,000 experts all around the world, an on-the-ground presence in 38 countries and in-depth knowledge of hundreds of vertical markets, we are here to support you no matter what comes your way today, tomorrow and well into the future.