As merchants push for single payment platforms, eCommerce providers look poised to win the omnichannel race ahead of POS giants
Modern-day shoppers have become accustomed to using multiple channels when making a purchase. You’ve probably done this many times without even realising it. Imagine you’ve started a search for the perfect pair of shoes on your smartphone, purchased from your home computer and returned them in-store for a different size. You’ve used three different channels and hopefully, had a great customer experience throughout. This increase in sales channels and touchpoints have caused retailers to re-evaluate strategies and focus on the benefits of a well-structured omnichannel sales strategy.
As shoppers seek a seamless shopping experience, this also includes their check-out interaction and how they pay. Transactions completed at a brick and mortar, online from a computer or by mobile device, should all be the same. For retailers, they want to ensure they can reach their customers regardless of channel and of course, they want to make sure they aren’t missing out on opportunities to convert sales. Offline and online commerce are important and incorporating a single payment platform helps to accept payment and control the shopper experience.
This new customer experience is pushing eCommerce platforms to look into expanding into card present through a unified solution. Through the right omnichannel product, retailers can ensure that they achieve the following:
One face to the customer: Shopping is becoming a more engaging experience for shoppers and merchants with merchants striving to offer a unified experience across all different channels. Omnichannel payment solutions play an important role in enabling this seamless shopping experience.
Adapting to shopper’s lifestyle: The shoppers’ lifestyle is changing with rapidly evolving technology. Retailers must adapt in order to keep up with their customers’ service expectations. Introducing solutions such as NFC, mobile options, shop kiosks, endless aisle and more are a result of shopper demand for more convenience and speed.
Empowering staff: Equally important than for the shopper, new solutions on the merchant’s shop floor are making it easier for sales staff to better serve their customers. With product information and stock as well as customer information at their fingertips, staff is empowered to sell better and more. Unified offline and online ERP systems help merchants to run their business across channels.
Most merchants don’t want to use separate platforms for transactions based on sales channel. So, the demand for omnichannel offerings is higher than ever before. The connection of online and offline payment acceptance is vital for all parties involved. The payment providers who enable their merchants to open channel agnostic experiences for customers will be the winners.
eCommerce is leading the race
Trends such as digitalisation, internationalisation and the unification of payment infrastructure are driving omnichannel and both eCommerce and POS providers face challenges to bring these elements together. Bringing omnichannel solutions quickly to market are hinged on two factors: advanced technology and expert knowledge of the Point of Sale. While POS providers have the needed knowledge, most unfortunately aren’t working with updated technology which allows them to integrate or develop eCommerce solutions. Traditional POS players have also developed a purely local outlook which limits their global reach which eCommerce already has.
On the other hand, eCommerce providers, while they lack the needed POS expertise, they bring a more technologically advanced solution. As eCommerce draws on technologies such as mobile commerce, online transaction processing and more, most of these providers have developed their solution with advanced APIs to ensure all of the needed technologies are able to integrate and work seamlessly together.
eCommerce players are currently in a better position to take on omnichannel due to their focus and structure being heavily driven by digital innovation with an international reach. This means their initial approach to the setup of their systems and business has never been static, something which cannot be said for POS providers.
Through their proven experience working with partners to enhance their solutions, such as online payment acceptance and integrating with customer service platforms, and for omnichannel solutions they can use this experience to better utilise partner technology and easily integrate with companies who have POS expertise. The addition of POS technology partners allows eCommerce players to quickly bring competitive omnichannel products to market.
Overall, the forces driving omnichannel are not completely foreign trends to eCommerce players. They understand the impact of digitalisation and internationalisation on consumers as they’ve had to account for these changes in their own business. Unifying the two worlds of offline and online payments is something that is inevitable. Both sides are fighting hard to make omnichannel as easy as possible, but the eCommerce providers who have been able to integrate POS technology with their existing systems in a simple and structured way, are the ones who will lead the market.
Omnichannel with Payworks
With the growing trend of eCommerce businesses expanding to brick and mortar, Payworks is enabling eCommerce gateways to effortlessly and quickly transform their platforms into full omnichannel solutions. This is done through seamless integration into existing eCommerce platforms.
Payworks gives eCommerce gateways access to global connectivity and the required technology to cater to new POS requirements. These providers can, in turn, provide a complete and modern omnichannel solution with advance Point of Sale capabilities to their merchants.