“I missed a sale.”
In this day and age, a merchant should never have to utter those words. Unfortunately, many still do.
There’s a little flower stand close to where I work, on a busy street corner in the heart of downtown Vancouver. I love having fresh flowers on my desk, so as I was walking back to work from lunch I decided to grab a bunch. After mulling it over for a few minutes, I whipped out my credit card to pay. However, I walked away empty handed. Why? The merchant only accepted cash.
You can bet he tells potential customers that many times a day.
What hurts me most about this story is that the merchant did not have to miss a sale. The technology to accept payments anywhere, anytime, any place exists, yet many merchants still aren’t taking advantage of it.
Although there are many reasons why a merchant should accept multiple payment methods, we’ve outlined 3 below.
1. Increase revenue
Increasing revenue is a big motivator for accepting multiple payment methods. You can increase your revenue just by adding one other payment method. Limor Friedman, owner of Vancouver In The Box, was able to increase her revenue 20% simply by accepting credit cards.
Prior to this, Limor spent her time chasing down NSF check payments and turning away clients who wanted to pay via credit cards, not something any business owner should have to do. Now, Limor can focus on what’s important: growing her business.
By accepting multiple payment methods, you gain more business and increase your revenue, because you offer more potential ways your customers would want to pay.
2. Improve customer service
The customer is always right. During the payment process, friction should never occur. No matter how great the overall experience was, if the last memory a customer has with you is bad, that’s likely what they’ll remember. If a customer wants to pay by credit card, they should be able to pay by credit card.
Something as simple as offering the customer the way they want to pay can leave a lasting impression in your customer’s mind. Which brings us to our next point…
3. Encourage repeat business
We live in a culture of convenience. Sure, I could’ve walked two blocks to my bank, got cash, walked back, and purchased the flowers. But why didn’t I? Inconvenience.
Purchasing something should not be that hard for a customer. I was ready to spend my money right then and there. Had the merchant accepted mobile payments, he would’ve made a sale. I would’ve been happy with my flowers, and I probably would have been back the following week to grab a fresh bunch for my desk.
By offering your customers convenience, you encourage repeat business. The places we choose to shop at all offer one thing in common: convenience. No matter if you’re a B2B or B2C merchant, by offering your customers the chance to pay how they want, you will encourage customers to shop with you again.
Time to start expanding
The world is changing rapidly, and merchants need to keep up or get left behind. By offering your customers the ability to choose how they pay, you will ultimately improve your business.