As a business owner, it is sometimes helpful to put on your ‘customer hat’ for a few minutes.
What’s your favorite place to shop, and what do you like about it? Now think of your least favorites. What are they doing wrong? Apply that same level of scrutiny to your own business. If you were a customer, would you buy from you? What can you do to fix that? Some steps in your audit could be expensive and technical, while others are a quick fix. For example, just by speeding up your payment process, you can make your customers considerably happier while increasing sales volumes. Allow customers to pay by card – either on keypad or mobile app, which is 20% faster.
Customers have different reasons for buying things. Sometimes, they really need the product or service. Other times, it’s an impulse buy, or a low priority by-the-way purchase. These two categories add up to a surprising amount of your income. So if a shopper comes in and finds a long queue, they’re likely to drop their cart and walk out of the store. They do it all the time online – abandoned carts are almost as common (and frustrating) as bounce rates. By speeding up your check-out process, there’s less likely to be a line at the cashier, and your shoppers can easily get in and out.
Similarly, any delays in card processing make customers uneasy. It doesn’t matter if they’re at the ATM, a cashier’s desk, or the checkout section of a web store – that delay sets off a primitive panic. They imagine some miniature hacker sitting inside the electronic keypad, till, or teller machine, harvesting their details. Their reflex response is to halt the transaction, and depending on how far it had gone, you could even end up with chargebacks. You can’t really control how quickly your system processes cards, but your merchant processor can. As you shop around for one, check how quick the verification process is. Some are instant, which goes a long way in validating your customers’ sense of cyber-safety.
When customers like the service at a business, they keep coming back. Once you become known for fast check-out, more and more customers will arrive. They know they can dash in two minutes to spare (whether it’s a physical store or a last-minute online sale) and still check out in time. Plus, if your card system is effective, you can create a card-based loyalty program. If customers know they can earn discounts and even pay for stuff using their store cards, they’ll become regulars. The biggest advantage is cards allow you to apply analytics. You can easily see what items are most popular, what times of day they’re bought, and more, all with a single swipe. Just be sure to protect your customer data at all costs.
For more information on the benefits of quick and easy merchant payment options for your customers, or to sign up for a merchant account, please call (888) 924-2743 or go to Charge.com.