It’s a common question faced by businesses of all sizes and types: Funds for a new payment processing system or solution have been allocated, but on what type of system or solution should the money be spent? The menu of options is comprehensive and potentially confusing, spanning everything from mobile payments processing, online payment processing, and batch verification solutions to check verification and fraud protection.
The best way to grapple with this question and minimize any confusion: Concentrate on choosing the system(s) or solution(s) that best meet the needs of the business and its customers, in order to get the best bang for the investment buck. Carefully considering what we call the “five W’s” should make the job easier.
Specifically, who are the business’ customers, and what feedback have they provided on their payment pain points and preferences? All company stakeholders should weigh in on this issue, and it is a good idea to ask at least some employees about it as well.
Look carefully at customer demographics. Many older customers, for example, may not be comfortable using a mobile payment method, such as an app, and would prefer to pay by phone or possibly, via the web. Millennials, on the other hand, are would probably prefer mobile payment options, including those that enable them to handle their bills through a text-based system.
Worth considering as well as what percentage of customers fail to pay their bills on time, what is preventing them from doing so, and which options might help to overcome these obstacles. If forgetting to pay bills is a commonly noted problem, electronic billing, or text-based that remind customers when payments are due or are about to be due and provide them with a built-in mechanism for handling could be the best bet. If most customers simply want a more convenient way to pay bills, mobile and web payment systems should work.
A look at where—in other words, in which areas—a business should be removing payment processing burdens from employees’ shoulders and where the most significant changes are needed is always in order when shopping for payment processing solutions. If customer service team members must frequently put aside important tasks (like solving complex problems) so they can field phone calls about accepting payments, an interactive voice response system could offer the best return on investment. If existing resources are not sufficient to keep up with outbound calls to collect on seriously overdue invoices, an outbound interactive voice response system merits consideration. If members of a team who are working remotely are experiencing headaches or falling behind in collecting payments from consumers, a mobile payment acceptance solution that can be used on individuals’ smartphones would almost definitely be a viable option.
In some, if not many situations, more than one or two key areas would benefit from a new payment solution, system, or app. If the budget will not cover more than one option, it is important to identify which team would most benefit from an addition to the payment technology toolbox. Additionally, ensure that a real pain point felt by the internal team is being addressed with whichever payment solution, system, or app is being purchased. It helps to obtain buy-in for future improvements to the payment process.
Or better yet, what else, beyond demographics and the needs of customers, employees, and the business in general, should be considered when investing in a payment solution or system? The short answer: What improvements need to be made in the name of safety? The threat of payment fraud is real and should play into decisions about how payment solutions and systems monies are spent.
Seriously contemplate acquiring only those offerings that enable strict compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) and are themselves compliant with it. Consider only options that provide or are configured for the highest level of data storage security. Fraud detection capabilities are highly desirable as well. E-Complish has improved the fraud detection capabilities to include a BIN database. The database enables merchants to determine whether a card presented is a debit or a credit card, preventing them from approving transactions using fraudulently created cards or cards that they do not accept.
In other words, why are the new payment processing solution(s) and system(s) so important? The message may be worth repeating to reluctant stakeholders who are grumbling about putting funds earmarked for new payment technology acquisition toward other uses. The fact is businesses that do not upgrade risk damaging their bottom line with the inefficiencies that accompany traditional payment collection and processing methods, such as checks.
Businesses that delay upgrades to their payment collection capabilities also risk losing customers, who have come to expect digital payment capabilities from the businesses they patronize and/or want to pay for goods and services when and from where they desire. Millennials are an example, as we reported in this blog.
As soon as possible, for all the reasons noted above.
Deciding how to spend payment solutions and systems budget may not be the easiest task, but it does not need to be arduous, either. Letting the “five Ws” be a guide in this endeavor should bode well for businesses. For additional help, schedule a consultation with E-Complish here.