Business and consumer needs change seasonally. With summer travel and tourism starting to pick up again, independent software vendors (ISVs) should ensure their software solution meets the seasonal needs of their merchants and end users. Here are a few tips on how to achieve that goal.
1) Offer Various Ways to Pay
Providing functionality in your software solution for multiple payment methods is imperative. Your merchants want their customers to be able to pay how they want to pay. This is especially important during periods of high travel, like the summer, where consumers are completing transactions at their destination and are not able to simply run back home if they forgot their credit card.
Providing payment functionality for newer payment methods like contactless cards and digital wallets will help your merchants gain access to every potential sale.
2) Ensure Payment Security
No customer wants to deal with a data breach or potentially compromised cardholder data, especially while traveling or on vacation. ISVs should ensure their software solution includes a robust suite of security features to protect sensitive data.
Proper payment security requires a multi-pronged approach. Here are a few security features to ensure you include in your software solution:
- Encryption - Encryption is a process that encodes cardholder data so that it is unreadable unless decrypted by someone with knowledge of the decryption key.
- Tokenization - Tokenization is a process that replaces cardholder data with one or more unrelated symbols generated randomly or by algorithm.
- EMVⓇ - EMVⓇ technology protects card issuers, merchants, and consumers from losses due to the use of counterfeit and stolen payment cards at the point-of-sale. EMVⓇ cards (“smart cards”) are embedded with a chip that interacts with a merchant’s point-of-sale device, ensuring the card is authentic and belongs to the user.
3) Provide Customer Engagement Tools
Help your merchants improve the customer experience not just for seasonal customers, but also year-round, by providing tools that help them engage their customers at every touchpoint of the customer journey, as well as streamline merchant operations.
Tools such as online appointment booking, QR-code check-in, and online forms management can make the customer journey quicker and easier, enhancing the customer experience.
4) Help Your Clients Manage Cash Flow
Research shows that 41% of small business owners said that seasonal swings make it more challenging to stay on top of cash flow throughout the year. One way ISVs can help their merchants in this area is to help them to enable digital B2B payments.
Digital B2B payments involve an online, electronic payables tool that provides businesses an efficient means to make payments to suppliers while reducing risk exposure. Types of digital payments can include ACH, credit cards, wire transfers, electronic funds transfers (EFT), or a payment gateway.
While 51% of all B2B payments are still made by paper check, businesses are starting to see the advantages of switching to digital B2B payments. Automated B2B payments allow businesses to more easily see cash flow patterns than when they use paper checks. In addition, a majority of respondents (51 percent) to a recent survey consider cost savings a benefit of electronic payments.
5) Provide Online Reputation Management Tools
A company’s online reputation is important. Almost 95% of consumers read online reviews before making a purchase. When determining whether or not to use a local business, 93% of local consumers use reviews to make that decision.
There are now a multitude of social media and review sites available online, and they’re easily accessible to on-the-go consumers via smartphones. With so many potential avenues for customer feedback, merchants can easily waste a lot of time logging into each one individually to reply to reviews. Online reputation management tools like the one from Global Payments Integrated allow your clients to manage their online reputation by responding to customer comments directly from within the tool.
Business and consumer needs change seasonally, and ISVs need to anticipate those changes in order to best serve their clients. Contact us today to discuss how we can assist you with helping your clients grow their business in the summer and year-round.
EMVⓇ is a registered trademark or trademark of EMVCo LLC in the United States and other countries. www.emvco.com.