Take a moment to think over your activities in the past few days. Maybe even make a special note of anything you bought, whether it was gas for your car or gum before a date. Do your purchases have anything in common, as far as you can tell? Statistically speaking, four out of five purchases we make are convenient impulse buys. Even when you go to store with something specific in mind, your cart may be filled with a bunch of other things you ‘spotted’.
In such cases, you might not have been able to make the additional purchases if you were paying cash. Why? Because you may only have carried enough money for your planned purchase. Also, there is more of what economists have called the ‘pain of paying’ when you buy in cash, which means that you’re statistically less likely to shell out a few extra dollars even if you have them on you. So in most cases like this one, accepting credit cards greatly increases sales.
Physical vs virtual
Online, the same principle applies, and it’s vastly amplified. Think of all those moments you started out Googling the spelling of a certain word, and then found yourself hours later, you found yourself on Wikipedia researching something like rainbow crabs, or on YouTube learning about pottery in Aramaic or what have you. Translate this experience into virtual shopping. Your customers may arrive at your storefront looking for, say, a colored pen and end up with three notebooks and an easel.
If this customer had walked into your physical store and paid cash, they may have left with a set of colors and one notebook. Online, they can order a truckload and have them delivered to their studio. The difference? Purchasing power – the credit cards gives them a lot more than cash would. And convenience – they don’t have to think about getting their shopping home. Also, the ability to use their credit card allowed them to give in to their impulses.
Digital display made easy
The beauty of a virtual store is it’s much easier to push sales. In a physical shop, you’d have to design a display case, maybe hire promotional personnel, print banners, and create offers. Online, you can reskin your website in minutes to reflect a seasonal sale. You can set your shop front to rotate every day, or even every hour or every reload, so that site visitors get added exposure to the items you want to push. You can use targeted design principles, heat maps, star bursts, animations, and other visual cues to nudge readers towards a particular part of the webstore, all of which cost very little to produce as compared with physical displays. You can also position flash sales and hourly offers.
Accepting payments online allows last-minute buyers to purchase immediately, which grows business. Ensure the payment provider you use allows instant verification and swift processing. Efficiency builds trust and encourages repeat customers. Accepting online payments is essential, but you have to pick the right payment partner. Make sure they have military encryption, offer pocket-friendly merchant fees, and provide 24/7/365 live phone technical support to help you get set up and stay set up.
For more information on accepting online payments to grow your businesses, or to sign up for a merchant account, please call (888) 924-2743 or go to Charge.com.