As of 2018, over 50% of American consumers prefer to shop online. As innovations in technology increase, this figure is likely to rise even higher. Business analysts and advisers recommend that companies enhance their reach and sales by offering e-commerce platforms. As a consumer, it is easy to see the appeal of online shopping: it is faster and more convenient, there are more options to explore, and review forums help make an informed decision before buying. But, apart from enhancing the customer experience and increasing sales potential, what are the benefits of online shopping for businesses?
- Instant payment and improved productivity
Online payments are processed almost instantaneously, allowing a fluid and efficient flow of transactions. This offers the company more time to spend on other aspects of business, like growth and marketing. The automated credit card acceptance allows funds to be deposited directly into your business account, and customers receive notifications of the transaction to reaffirm their purchase. You are also able to electronically track all of your transactions, thereby improving your records for both finances and stock.
Recurring payments are also much more convenient for both business and customer via online payment channels. If you offer a subscription based service or similar situation where users or customers need to make payments after certain periods of time, automatic online systems can easily manage your subscription reminders and payment collections for you.
- Quick and easy setup
A credit or debit card payment processor is very easy to set up. Many service providers offer affordable merchant accounts with no setup fees, and the system can be quickly implemented and will start operating and processing sales immediately.
- Credibility and reliability
An online payment method offers enhanced security for transactions, reducing the risk of fraud. Instead of having to deal with bounced checks and the associated fees, an online payment processor will immediately alert both the merchant and the customer if a payment is declined, and the transaction will end with no fees attached.
Merchants are also perceived as more reliable if they have online payment methods available on their site. Customers are more likely to spend their money at a business that has online payments methods, especially if their site appears secure and accepts all major credit cards and different currencies.
- Affiliate marketing
With an online payment system in place, your business can create an affiliate program where affiliates can earn referral commissions by sending buyers to your site. This will boost your sales and create valuable business networks and connections.
- Improving sales
It might seem obvious that an online payment system will increase your sales, as you are now reaching a wider market online. This is not the only reason why e-commerce businesses have improved sales, though. Firstly, having credit card payment processing can influence customers to spend, and spend more, because of their line of credit. Secondly, whenever you offer a special deal, you stand to gain more sales, as customers can make transactions right up until the last minute of the promotion. Likewise, shopping is not restricted to business operating hours, allowing for sales to take place even at night.
For more information about accepting online payments or to sign up for a merchant account, please call (888) 924-2743 or go to Charge.com.