There’s no denying it: Millennials—by most accounts, consumers born between 1982 and 2004—are a generation to be reckoned with. Their numbers are formidable—according to Accenture, more than 80 million Millennials live in the U.S. Their spending power is great—they account for more than $600 million in annual expenditures, Accenture’s figures indicate. So it goes without saying that addressing at least some of Millennials’ financial and payment-related priorities and concerns makes sense for businesses of all types.
Topping the list: Millennials grew up with and are accustomed to “digital everything.” This extends to making payments. The Millennial generation has completely embraced digital transactions; as these consumers see it, the idea of paying for goods and services with a check is, for the most part, unfamiliar and impractical. Given the size of the Millennial generation, it’s no wonder that checks will, according to NACHA, become obsolete over the next few years if the number of checks written annually continues to decline at its current pace.
At the same time, total transaction volume in the digital payments segment is, research from Statista indicates, expected to grow by 9.1 percent over the next four years, reaching $1.2 billion over the next five years. Millennials will surely have a hand in this growth.
Implementing an online self-service payment option is one way businesses can cater to Millennials’ preference for access to digital payment channels while satisfying their demand for a secure payment experience. Consider E-Complish’s HostPay online customer self-service portal, designed to enable quick, secure processing of online web-based payments made with major credit cards. Companies link their website to the HostPay payment site, which can be customized to meet individual clients’ branding and design specifications.
HostPay payments are processed in real time on Level One PCI-compliant servers, with customized email receipts and responses sent to consumers once their payments have been received (using their existing credit card merchant account and bank ACH). HostPay may be fully integrated with E-Complish’s mobile, recurring, ACH and EBPP (electronic billing, presentment and payment) solutions.
Millennials also crave flexibility and convenience of payments—meaning the ability to make them in “anytime, anywhere” fashion. Deploying a mobile payment solution, such as E-Complish’s MobilePay and/or Text2Pay, allows businesses to deliver on this front. Containing all the features of HostPay, MobilePay is a web- or app-based interface that simplifies the process of making mobile payments on smartphones and tablets alike. The solution automatically detects customers’ browsers when viewing email invoices and directs them to the MobilePay site or MobilePay app. Transactions made from personal or business bank accounts and using all major credit cards are processed in real time on Level One PCI-compliant servers. Processing can occur using saved credit card data or new payment credentials.
For added flexibility, MobilePay can be merged with any existing mobile app through E-Complish’s DevConnect development tool. This allows customers to check their balance and pay bills while also taking advantage of the other features and benefits of companies’ existing apps.
Meanwhile, Text2Pay permits companies to offer customers the option of receiving bills and completing payments via SMS text messaging technology. Customers can sign up to receive bill payment reminders through the service or register for a secure “pay by text” option in which E-Complish stores their account and payment information in a secure system. When ready to make a payment, customers submit a pre-selected PIN number to submit funds via a return text.
Efforts to fulfill the payment preferences of Millennial customers—or a lack thereof—can make or break companies in today’s competitive environment.
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