While often fun, predicting the future can be risky for individuals and companies that focus their resources and investments on the wrong initiatives. I find inspiration in the words of Malcolm X: “The future belongs to those who prepare for it today.”
This article explores four trends that underscore the importance of true partnerships that are built on a shared vision of the future.
Trend #1: Omnicommerce Experiences
Omnicommerce—also known as omnichannel payments—refers to a business’s ability to use one solution platform to accept payments from customers any way they choose to pay: in-person, online, curbside, in a shopping cart, email/postal invoices, over the phone, on a mobile device, or as part of recurring payments or subscription plans.
People prefer when businesses provide a consistent payment experience across all channels throughout the customer journey. While digital interactions are increasing, it’s notable that in-person transactions still make up 80% of retail purchases. Enabling in-person payment acceptance requires understanding terminal features, integration and connectivity methods, and data security impacts.
ISVs mitigate financial and operational impacts by working with a partner whosegateway platform and API tech stack seamlessly support in-store and online payments. A dynamic product roadmap helps ISVs stay ahead of evolving norms by quickly introducing payment features that help them stand out.
Trend #2: Reputation Management
Successful ISVs have worked hard to build customer trust by delivering reliable software backed by outstanding service. The last thing a software provider needs is to spend time and energy embedding payments into their software, only to learn that the provider they chose delivers a substandard experience for their business clients. The result is a ripple effect that reflects poorly on the ISV, leading to brand damage and attrition.
A myriad of payment providers are vying for access to your customers through your software and relationships. The best way to avoid reputational damage is to partner with companies that align with your culture and go-to-market approach. Everyone has a great pitch, so it’s imperative to do your homework.
Measuring a company’s reputation is easily accomplished by reading reviews from actual customers or from experts who closely follow the payments industry. Start by simply searching “company name” and “customer reviews” (or “employee reviews”) in your favorite browser. Additionally, you search for reviews on sites including Merchant Maverick, Capterra, Trustpilot, and Glassdoor.
Trend #3: Data Management and Analysis
Data is vital to driving business improvements, but collecting data just for the sake of it can leave you drowning in a sea of information. Intelligent data management improves the commerce experience and helps you evolve with industry norms. The goal is to glean insights that define and drive actionable improvements to the business.
A significant amount of data is collected when accepting payments, from sensitive card credentials to customer demographics and purchase preferences. The challenge for ISVs and their payment partners is to leverage that data to improve the customer experience by, for example, reducing the number of clicks required to make a purchase or making it easy to buy online and return in-store.
Trend #4: Meaningful Partnerships
A critical growth strategy for many ISVs involves integrations with complementary business solutions that promise to help win new business, deepen customer relationships, generate additional revenue and increase lifetime value. However, without a data-driven conversion strategy and an engaged payments partner, the anticipated revenue stream never materializes.
Uncertainty is an innovation killer. Difficulties abound when a behemoth bank or tech platform purchases an ISV’s payment partner. Focus is often lost as these once-nimble fintech companies try to navigate bloated organizations filled with red tape and competing priorities.
A full-service partnership program provides ISVs, developers, and their customers with a robust, turnkey embedded payments solution backed by high-touch services. Modern APIs create a superior developer experience, while high-touch sales and marketing programs increase customer attachment rates. The right partner invests in helping you retain customers by providing direct support from real people for any help needed.