Bridging the Gap Between In-Store and Online Retailing

Retailing has gone through some pretty radical changes since the internet came into widespread public use. The days of retailing being defined as selling from a store made of bricks and mortar on a piece of land anywhere in the world are long gone. More often than not, a retailer must balance his physical store and online presence carefully and wisely. How successful are most merchants at pulling off this balancing act?Continue Reading

5 Ways to Optimize Your Site for Cross-Border E-Commerce

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PYMNTS.com recently released their latest quarterly X-Border Payments Optimization Index, and it’s chock-full of fascinating information about the state of global cross-border payments today.

As we all know, cross-border e-commerce is the present and future of global commerce. If you have a website for your business, you have the opportunity to reach billions of customers worldwide. The big question remains: Is the average merchant ready and able to serve customers who reside both across the street and on the other side of the world?Continue Reading

What’s the Deal With Millennials?

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As Millennials have come of age in recent years, there is a greater sense of urgency among merchants and other industry players to better understand their consumer habits. Are they big spenders? Do they save? Do they just want experiences and not material objects?

A recent white paper put out by Synchrony Financial attempts to answer some of these questions and help us to gain more insights into how Millennials spend their money.

In order to better understand this new generation, the white paper draws comparisons between Millennials and the Baby Boomer generation, the latter still having the most disposable income. Boomers are responsible for almost 50% of retail sales compared to about 10% for Millennials

According to their research, it turns out that Boomers and Millennials share many digital shopping habits. Both Boomers and Millennials are comfortable with online shopping, browsing and researching. 55% of Millennials and 68% of Boomers have visited a mobile retail site on a tablet, while 90% of Millennials and 86% of Boomers research products online. Millennials are only somewhat more likely to own digital devices. 66% of Millennials and 54% of Boomers own a smartphone, while 46% of Millennials and 31% of Boomers own a tablet.

There are differences as well. The most significant for the payments industry is that Millennials are much more likely to use their mobile phones for a wider variety of shopping-related tasks, such as research, coupon usage and using mobile retail sites. Boomers have the devices, but are not as likely to use them for shopping.

The core insight about Millennials is that even if they as a generation don’t have the money right now, they are the future of retail sales. According to Synchrony, this means that “retailers who do not fully understand and engage the millennial customer may eventually find their strategies out of touch with their future core shoppers.”

For the payments industry, this insight highlights the importance of a providing a seamless omnichannel payment experience.  Providing a seamless, effortless consumer interaction experience is increasingly becoming a necessity, especially if merchants want to increase sales with Millennials.

As our own Yana Persky wrote in the recent Rich Merchant Services 3.0 Brief:

Payment service providers can play a very important role in providing the omnichannel payment solution that would drive transactions from all channels through a single payment processing platform. Unfortunately, a single payment processing platform still remains a buzzword rather than a reality and to change it merchants need to make significant technology investments.

 

If you haven’t done so yet, be sure to read the whole brief. It’s full of great stats and insights on the latest industry trends.

Cross-Border E-Commerce: Challenges and Solutions

 

World Wide Shopping

It is generally agreed in the payments world that Europe is one of the world’s biggest e-commerce markets. However, growth in cross-border e-shopping has not followed the general growth in online retail. Indeed, in 2013, only 11% of Europeans shopped cross-border ie: from retailers based in another European country, according to ECC-NET.Continue Reading

Are You Ready to Take On Global E-Commerce?

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When it comes to global e-commerce, there’s no reason for US merchants to be limited to North American customers. As the saying goes, there’s a whole world out there! Global e-commerce is growing by leaps and bounds every year. In 2013, sales grew 17% YOY and hit $1.2 trillion in 2013. Cross-border e-commerce sales reached $300 billion, or 25% of global e-commerce flow, and is growing in excess of 45% YOY.

For many online merchants, the main challenge is how to reach global customers with minimum fees and headaches and maximum ROI.

Today’s merchants expect a great deal from their payment providers. This usually translates into a number of key demands. Among them:

  • A single platform for regional and global sales
  • Business-friendly perks such as:
    • Low transaction costs
    • Few or no correspondent/receiving bank charges
    • Reduced decline rates
    • Increased authorization rates
  • Multiple payment methods
  • Expertise in regional preferences, compliance rules and legislation

This is a tall order for the average payment provider and requires competence in a number of different areas. However, from our experience, these elements are crucial to successful cross-border e-commerce. It’s a complicated puzzle, but without all of the pieces—platform, cost-control, flexibility and expertise—reaching global customers can be hit or miss.

Case Study: TransNational Bankcard

One great example of this is our partner, TransNational Bankcard. The company is a Chicago-based, privately-held payments company with a large merchant portfolio primarily focused on SMBs. The company’s vertical focus is retail, service, hospitality and medical.

TransNational’s challenge to us was to provide their e-commerce merchants with comprehensive financial management services to enable merchant client growth (particularly ISVs). The company was looking for both expertise and management of all payment-related issues for their clients.

The solution: Credorax’s global acquiring platform, with features that allow our partners to benefit from:

  • Comprehensive reporting capabilities
  • Lower bank and exchange fees
  • Reduced chargeback rates
  • “Client-centric” approach

So, what was the company’s response? According to Jae Haas, TransNational Bankcard President: “Credorax realizes that our firm’s success can and should be replicated in other global markets. We are particularly impressed with their ability to use creative reasoning to help eliminate barriers while maintaining appropriate levels of compliance in European markets.”

We are dedicated to providing all of our clients with this kind of service. These kinds of client responses make all of our hard work worth it!

If you are interested in hearing more about entering the European e-commerce market, Rod Kazfey, VP of Sales at Credorax and Justin Brown, VP Products at TransNational Bankcard will be hosting a seminar on the topic at TRANSACT15, taking place in San Francisco on March 31, between 1:45-2:45 pm. If you’re at the conference, be sure to catch the seminar!

 

To Combat Fraud, Bring Payments Out of the Dinosaur Age

Payment design, vector illustration.

Our CEO Benny Nachman had a great conversation on retail security and payments fraud issues last week with Jeff Peters, host of the Cybercrime and Business Podcast. You can listen to the whole exchange here. Below are some of the highlights that we’ve summarized for quick reading.Continue Reading

Why Today’s E-Commerce Needs Smarter Acquiring

e-commerceOur CCO, Koen Vanpraet recently wrote an insightful article in Bobs Guide, an online resource for financial technology. The article, entitled “Smarter Acquiring in the Era of Global e-Commerce”, describes the e-commerce challenges faced by merchants and PSPs and how smart acquiring can solve them.Continue Reading