Global Payments Integrated recently hosted a webinar where our Director of Business Development, Kevin Thompson, shared insights on fintech and payment trends that ISVs can use to their advantage. Read on for a deeper dive into current payments trends.
Current Payment Technology Trends
The payments space is ever-changing. To stay competitive, independent software vendors (ISVs) need to ensure they’re keeping up with the latest advances in payment technology. Here are a few current payment trends ISVs should make sure their software solution supports in order to increase software sales, revenue, and customer retention, as well as differentiate their solution in the marketplace.
Contactless payment methods have been in use for years, but recently have seen a large increase in use. Most people have used some form of contactless payments, whether that’s NFC technology, or digital wallets on a smartphone. Overall usage of contactless payments rose 200% between January 2020 and January 2021 in the United States alone, and further, the contactless payment market is expected to hit $4.7 trillion by 2027.
Offering contactless payment functionality within their software solution is now a must for ISVs. The good news is that this technology should come “out of the box” when ISVs integrate with their payment technologies partner.
QR codes are another technology that has been around for a while, but started seeing a major increase in use over the past year or so. Many restaurants now use them to allow patrons to browse the menu, place an order, read customer reviews, and pay their bill, all from their smartphone.
QR codes can be used in many other verticals as well. Global Payments Integrated’s QR code technology is used in the salon management vertical to deliver streamlined checkouts. Our medical practice management/EHR partners include QR codes on statements to streamline patient payments. Our automotive dealership management solutions use this same technology to enhance the customer experience in the service department. We’re even working on ways to use QR codes to pay at the pump.
By the end of 2021, it’s estimated that 30 million Americans will scan a QR code, so ISVs should make sure their solution offers this functionality.
Text-to-pay is another payment method that has become popular due to its convenience recently. In 2020 alone, Global Payments facilitated 26 million transactions via SMS.
When ISVs evaluate the opportunity of embedding text-to-pay in their software, they’ll need to weed through several ad hoc products that are on the market. Global Payments Integrated is one of the only solutions delivering this experience end-to-end for ISVs, from the SMS communication itself, to payment reminders, to scheduling appointments, attaching statements/invoices - all white-labeled to our partner’s solution.
Digital Wallets/Auto Complete
When most people hear the term “digital wallets,” they think about using Apple Pay®, Google PayTM, or Samsung Pay® inside of a brick-and-mortar store. However, the fastest-growing segment of digital wallets is in card-not-present environments. Visa estimates that 48% of online transactions will be through digital wallets by 2023.
To keep up with how consumers pay, ISVs should ensure they offer digital payments technology within their software solution. We offer a single API that supports digital wallets. This same API also supports auto-complete with all major browsers (such as Chrome, Internet Explorer, and Safari). Auto-complete is a functionality where a consumer clicks on the “credit card number” field, and the browser automatically asks, “Do you want to pay with your American Express card ending in 1234?”
In addition, this same API also supports OCR technology (which allows a consumer to use their smartphone camera to make a payment), as well as tokenization, which allows ISVs to facilitate follow-on transactions and recurring payments.
While many payment companies will say they have international capabilities, most simply have third-party relationships that they resell throughout the globe. This means different APIs, different workflows, different support structures, and added costs. Other payment providers claim to have international solutions but they’ll simply process on US rails then do a dynamic currency conversion to the local country. These solutions are rarely viable and even more difficult to scale.
When ISVs research international payments, it’s important that they find a partner who has a local presence in the regions, not only as the gateway provider but also as the processor and/or direct acquirer.
Alternative financing, also often referred to as “buy now pay later,” allows consumers to purchase a product now and pay later, in installments. It has recently become a very popular payment trend. When the pandemic forced many people out of work, consumer financing volume hit its highest level since the 2007 recession.
Processors, such as Global Payments Integrated, have built “consumer financing” into the same API that supports all of the features previously mentioned. This streamlines ISV development work and provides a unified commerce experience for consumers and merchants.
Card Issuing and Accounts Payable
In 2019, Global Payments acquired a company called TSYS, which issues over 90% of credit cards in North America (both physical and virtual cards). These solutions were traditionally only available to our largest banking partners throughout the world, but we’ve opened up the platform to our strategic ISV partners.
That means our payments technology will not only make it easier for ISVs’ customers to accept payments, but it will also make it easy for their customers to make payments as well. Whether it’s helping a medical practice with accounts payable transactions, helping a salon with payroll or electronic tips to stylists, helping construction companies pay third-party contractors, or helping an automotive dealership pay vendors and suppliers - the use cases are endless and apply to nearly every vertical.
ISVs can embed this feature into their solution through our API and offer end-to-end banking and payment functionalities that close the loop in the payment ecosystem. This creates a stickier solution that merchants want and need.
Top Things ISVs Don’t Anticipate
ISVs have a lot of things to consider and evaluate when choosing a payments partner and planning a payment technology installation. Here are a few items they might not anticipate - but should.
MVP Rarely Works
Software providers’ development teams are usually quite busy, and understandably want to get through installation projects quickly. The key for ISVs is to balance that goal while not sacrificing features and functionality that are needed in order to have a competitive advantage.
Think about all the new emerging trends that were listed above. Emerging technologies are rarely considered minimum viable product (MVP), and they’re rarely evaluated when analyzing competitor watermarks - but that innovation and ability to differentiate your payments solution is typically what drives the most customer adoption.
Payments Don’t Sell Themselves
SaaS providers will build a strong payment solution and integration and they’ll have it priced well. They’ll make it easy to sign up: “Just fill out this one page and click ‘Submit.’” Yet some still struggle with adoption. Sometimes all that is missing is a simple marketing and sales strategy. This should be a joint effort between the ISV and their strategic payments partner. Global Payments Integrated has dedicated marketing teams to help partners with this very objective.
Competition and Technology
When going to market with a new payments strategy, ISVs need to understand that their customers have been approached by five different payments companies within the last month. Their customers are constantly inundated with pitches, so ISVs need to make sure their solution - and their marketing strategy - stands out.
Incorrect Go-to-Market Strategies
No two ISVs will have the same go-to-market strategy. The key to success is for ISVs to consult with their payments partner and collaborate to determine the best path to take. A strong payments partner will have a lot of experience in this area, whereas an ISV will have detailed knowledge about their software and customers. Marrying that expertise will set the foundation for success.
Contracts and Requirements
The best payments companies in the industry are constantly evaluating how to make it easier for merchants to enroll. We even offer instant API-driven activations and also enrollment forms that ISVs can embed within their applications.
However, there are several banking regulations, federal requirements, and laws that financial institutions must obey. It’s important that ISVs understand why payment providers are required to comply with regulations like the Know Your Customer Act or the Office of Foreign Asset Controls.
Risk & Liability
Whether you’re an ISV wanting to become your own payments company and handle the risk and liability, or if you prefer that your integrated payments partner handle that responsibility, it’s important to at least understand the risk involved.
Here’s a quick example: a gym opens and accepts 1,000 members for a $1,000 annual membership fee. Two months later, the gym goes out of business. If that gym cannot pay back the ten months’ worth of memberships, then the processor is on the hook for the $833,000 owed back to the cardholders.
We manage this type of risk every day, but it’s something ISVs don’t always have the infrastructure to support when evaluating becoming a full-blown payments company.
How Global Payments Integrated Helps ISVs
As you can see from the above, there are a lot of moving parts that ISVs need to keep up with when it comes to payments functionality. Global Payments Integrated can help. There are several benefits to partnering with us.
At Global Payments Integrated, we have a unique payments ecosystem - we are the gateway provider (which is the front-end or API that software developers integrate to), we are the processor, and we are the direct acquirer to the card brands. In several cases, we’re even the issuer as well. There are no middlemen or third parties involved. This ecosystem helps maximize your revenue opportunity, consolidate support issues, and gives ISVs an end-to-end solution through one partnership.
We help our software partners deliver unique solutions through innovative technologies, and we do it in a way that future-proofs your payment strategy. Global Payments Integrated has clearly defined our go-forward platform. We’ve also built APIs that allow you to integrate once, and as we add new features and functionality, they are delivered without our software partners needing to reopen the hood.
Using Customer Engagement to Drive Commerce
Payments are a huge part of the customer experience, and commerce enablement has many benefits to merchants. To give you a glimpse, our platform supports customer engagement solutions like smart scheduling, appointment reminders, intelligent phone systems, data analytics, SEO and social media management. These are all things that the traditional payments provider doesn’t typically provide.
Our business is driven through strategic software partnerships - we grow when you grow. A partnership with us comes with its own set of dedicated resources - from development, to consultations, to strategic partner management, to dedicated sales, marketing, and support.
The payments world is rapidly innovating and involving. It’s now much more than just credit card processing, and it’s an exciting time to be involved. Global Payments Integrated will help keep you ahead of the changes through innovative technology and specialist insight. For more information on how we can help ISVs, contact us today.
Apple Pay® is a trademark of Apple, Inc. All trademarks contained herein are the sole and exclusive property of their respective owners.
Google PayTM is a trademark of Google, Inc. All trademarks contained herein are the sole and exclusive property of their respective owners. Any such use of those marks without the express written permission of their owner is prohibited.
Samsung Pay® is a registered trademark of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.