If you do not have an online means to process transactions, you will officially be losing business.
There is a long list of must-haves in business, and technology is becoming an ever-expanding portion of that list. While computers, printers, phones, websites and business software may be the basics, the “extras” are starting to blur the line between luxury and necessity. One seemingly simple digital resource customers expect, and many
businesses seem to overlook, is an e-commerce portal.
If you work in an industry that provides a service and not a product, you may feel online sales are not important; however, customers are carrying fewer and fewer forms of payment. In the near future, if you do not have an online means to process transactions, you will officially be losing business.
Paypal, Stripe, Amazon Pay, Fast Spring, Google Pay… the list of portals lining up to process your online transactions is seemingly endless. And there are a number of local vendors providing options, too. First off, yes, every single reputable vendor will take a processing cut. A common 3 percent transaction fee is standard, but just like any business, these vendors are offering a vital tool. The value of that service far exceeds the 3 percent fee.
Whereas in-person transactions can be a simple credit card swipe, online transactions come with an astounding amount of customer data. After a single transaction, e-commerce will give you a customer’s name, contact information and new marketing contact. If half your customers go through this payment process, you will have a great data set to visualize who is buying from you, what they’re buying, and possibly even why.
Is online payment something customers actually want? Of course. There is a reason giant tech companies like Amazon and Google do mega business. Paying online is easy and immediate. Ordering goods and services online is almost an impulse purchase. Customers can make appointments, order goods and services, and review
your entire product line. The online portal would even work as a great in-person point-of-sale. Tablet-based
registers are a common site at restaurants, cafes and small businesses, but you don’t even need those. Imagine telling a customer to simply pay by visiting your website and adding your product to the cart. Everyone has experience with that and can do it without much effort. ♦
Patrick Boberg is a central Iowa creative media specialist. Follow him on Twitter @PatBoBomb.