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SCA: Three things every merchant needs to know

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With online fraud on the increase, companies must take action to make sure they meet the updated version of the Payment Services Directive (PSD2) which will mandate Strong Customer Authentication (SCA).  The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has announced the deadline for implementing full SCA compliance for e-commerce transactions is now 14 March 2022.

The first PSD2 in 2007 levelled the playing field for payment institutions in the EU.  It increased competition and set out common payment standards and benefited customers and participators in the industry.  The revision in 2015 resulted in a more integrated and efficient payments market. SCA adds an extra level of protection for both merchants and their customers.

Why is SCA so important now? Here are three things every company/merchant should know:

  • SCA protects businesses and the customer from online fraud

SCA (or multi-factor authentication) assures the card issuer and acquirer that the transaction is genuine. If a customer pays online with SCA, but later claims it was fraudulent, the bank or card issuer accepts liability – previously the merchant had to refund the money and incur chargeback costs. 

  • SCA will become mandatory on 14 March 2022

The new deadline to meet the new PSD2 with SCA requirements is 14 March 2022, for all UK company transactions online (over £45 or 50 Euros).  The FCA will enforce the directive and repeat offenders of declined transactions may be fined for non-compliance, not to mention the possible reputational damage.

  • Working with the right Payment Services Provider helps achieve compliance

With some acquirers, secure checks are carried out separately from the transaction processing – which merchants must handle themselves. This is expensive to set up and requires resources and expertise to manage the mandatory technical and operational interfaces with third parties.

Working with an established payment services provider (PSP) like Encoded means the transaction process and administration is managed from start to finish.  The merchant captures the customer transaction and the PSP carries out all the secure checks required by the acquirer to verify the card with the card issuer behind the scenes. With checks authorised, the PSP issues a secure link that takes the customer through the online process to complete the transaction.

Choosing the right payment service provider early is an investment for the future. Now is the time to start thinking about how to protect your business from fraudulent transactions and comply with the new regulations.

Adam Bromage-Hughes is Technical Director at Encoded and to read the full article please visit Encoded.co.uk

76% of shoppers say convenience is the key priority in choosing an online retailer

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But what does convenience mean to the consumer, and what does this mean for retailers building an online shopping experience?

Today’s ecommerce marketplace continues to grow at an astounding rate. This growth has resulted from an accelerated shift from brick-and-mortar stores to online shopping during the COVID-19 pandemic — creating an ‘always-on’ experience for consumers. In the new, effortless economy, customers expect to shop when and how they want. Whether it’s searching on a marketplace, or discovering new products in their social feed, shoppers are increasingly influenced by convenience and a frictionless purchase journey.

Linnworks latest research whitepaper unpacks the five key customer experience trends that will drive your online selling strategy in 2021. From frictionless interactions at every touchpoint, to payment flexibility and shipping and returns policies on the customer’s terms, discover why convenience underpins the five key trends in ecommerce customer experience, and how optimizing these touchpoints will help you capture every selling opportunity in the new, effortless economy.

Every point of interaction is a chance to win over the consumer – and if a retailer gets it right, your customers will reward you with increased order values,  more frequent purchases and greater customer loyalty.

Get Linnworks’ latest online shopper research whitepaper. 

REPORT: Fixing failed deliveries, make faulty fulfilment a thing of the past

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In its latest report, loqate takes a deep dive to understand the true business cost of faulty fulfilment and discover the simple steps to help stamp out failed deliveries for good….

The Covid-19 pandemic has prompted a surge in consumers buying products and services online, accelerating a trend that was already well underway.

As a result, business is brisk across borders, with 54% of firms reporting an increase in international orders during the past 12 months.

But this boom in business has posed certain challenges for retailers – most notably, the issue of late or failed deliveries.

To get to the root of this all-too-common frustration, Loqate has surveyed 3,000 global online shoppers and 300 retail executives to bring you its latest report: Fixing Failed Deliveries.

The report reveals:

  • The financial impact of faulty fulfilment for retailers across the globe
  • The problems posed by disgruntled customers and the top five retail categories that are most likely to let them down
  • The top five frustrations customers face when buying online
  • Tips to help retailers deliver to customers first time, every time
  • 10 questions retailers should be asking when talking to a potential addressing provider

Download your copy of the report here.

Getting conversion right doesn’t stop at the buy button

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By Ed Whitehead, MD Europe, Signifyd

There is no great mystery behind the reasons conversion rate is the gold standard for measuring ecommerce success.

Conversion is where the money is. It’s the moment that the hard work of marketing, merchandising and customer acquisition pays off.

So, is it possible to be too focused on conversion rate? Well, yes. Or at least it’s possible to be too narrowly focused on conversion rate. Think about it? When is a conversion not a conversion?

There are fraudulent orders that result in chargebacks. There are returns that result not only in a lost sale, but additional cost for shipping, restocking or otherwise redistributing the product. There is friendly fraud, when the customer receives their order, but says they didn’t and gets a refund in addition.

All of these misfortunes befall an online seller after a customer clicks the buy button. And all of them can be better managed with a view of fraud management that is tailored for the new era of ecommerce.

First that new era: Few would dispute that the coronavirus pandemic has propelled ecommerce years into the future and that it’s never coming back to its 2019 status.

Global ecommerce sales rose 49% in 2020 over 2019, according to Signifyd’s Ecommerce Pulse data. In February, sales were still tracking 31% above their year-ago figures.

Consumers shifted to online shopping — and they liked it. Nearly 83% of UK consumers said they would be shopping differently post-COVID than they did before the pandemic, according to a Signifyd survey conducted by market researchers Upwave. In significant numbers they said they’d be doing more online shopping and more frequently availing themselves of click-and-collect.

These new realities call for a new way of looking at fraud management — a way that sees fraud management not as a defensive shield, but as a means of revenue optimization.

This new thinking starts with retailers examining the buying journeys they’ve created, so they can identify spots where they are unwittingly leaking revenue due to barriers they’ve placed in the way of customers.

In working with retailers, Signifyd has discovered that retailers are leaving as much as 10% of potential sales on the table due to revenue leakage. This loss occurs because of friction in the buying process — everything from poor user experience, overly conservative payment gateways, outdated fraud management and two-factor authentication.

And with new Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) enforcement coming to the UK in just a few months, it has never been more important to understand where the drop-off is happening.

The good news: Merchants can optimise their sales funnels. And while retailers aren’t oblivious to lost sales and damaged customer relationships, the issues often don’t get the attention they deserve.

Silos make it difficult to see where revenue is leaking

The lack of attention stems from the fact that it’s hard for any one team to see all the holes in the buying journey where revenue leaks. Teams often work in silos, relying on walled off data. By collaborating — marketing, payments, fraud management, customer support, operations and finance can build a more complete view.

Signifyd has developed a way to look at the revenue leakage problem that allows retailers to survey the entire buying journey and plug the leaks. Start with the way payment gateways operate, and rules governing transaction velocity and the like triggered by ecommerce platforms. Add the imperfection in some retailers’ fraud reviews. All of which leads to false declines.

Then, there are returned orders — which can easily reach 20% or higher — and chargeback claims to deal with. Before you know it, the initial set of customers that marketing acquired has shrunk by as much as 30% in some of the hardest hit verticals.

So, what do you do about revenue leakage?

What should retailers do to tighten up those journeys so they do not leak revenue?

The first step is to break down the internal, organizational barriers that prevent retailers’ customers from completing a sale. Data and communication silos have to go, so that all teams have a clear and unified vision of the buying funnel that encourages collaboration.

Next, merchants need to develop a revenue leakage dashboard that provides a comprehensive view of the buyer’s journey to help assess and plug holes. Retailers then need to establish a revenue-leakage benchmark. In short, merchants need to know where they stand in comparison to others in the same space. There is a whole industry of consultants whose expertise can be drawn on.

From there, retailers can identify the biggest leakage problems and go to work on those. The next part of that phase includes optimising that trouble spot; measuring improvements and testing effectiveness; then moving to the next problem and repeating the cycle again.

One likely suspect, where revenue normally leaks, is at the payment level. Significant progress can be made here and retailers should trust their fraud professionals to drive the relationship with payment gateways in their favour. Typically payment gateways try to dictate how risk management operations perform and so we advise that inhouse fraud experts strive to drive and control this relationship.

Fraud fear kills conversions

Beyond reviewing outside payment processors, retailers need to assess their own fraud tools and processes. Experts can, appropriately and easily, review and disable some rules and filters activated by payment gateways, ecommerce platforms and card processors to see what orders are not getting through systems. Also, retailers should strive to understand whether they are suffering from an unreasonably high percentage of declines from payment partners. Accessing benchmark data from the likes of Visa can help here.

Finally, merchants should evaluate the market for SCA solutions that will allow them to provide the best customer experience and minimise the number of step-ups caused by SCA.

Marrying modern fraud management with the right ecommerce platform, the right design and user-experience can stem revenue leakage and preserve lifetime customer value – giving retailers the confidence to serve more legitimate customers in the way they want to be served.

PSD2 is live – What are merchants experiencing?

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By Ekata

The revised Payment Services Directive (PSD2) went into effect this past January 1st for many countries across Europe. The payments ecosystem has been hard at work for the past year setting up their compliance for the new regulation. Now that the time has come to see the interactions play out, we wanted to investigate the merchant experience in the first months of 2021.

For merchants generally transacting in real-world goods, the online channel was a small subset of their total revenue. Once Covid-19 hit and all the shopping behaviours of 2020 impacted their business, most merchants became digital-first by necessity. This also means that understanding digital risk, fraud and PSD2 has happened incredibly fast for most companies.

THE OPPORTUNITY TO LEAD IN CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE AND TRUST

PSD2 Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) provides rich opportunities for everyone in the payments ecosystem to strategise and win long-term:

  • Issuers want to stay “front of wallet”. Thus, it’s in their best interest to focus specifically on the customer experience and reduce any friction experienced by the consumer that could lead to an abandoned transaction.
  • Acquirers/PSPs want to develop new fraud capabilities (real-time fraud checks, Transaction Risk Analysis (TRA) etc.) and differentiate against an increasingly commoditised space.
  • Merchants want to increase conversion and do so by building frictionless experiences that keep the consumer returning to make additional purchases.
  • Everyone wants increased authorisation rates because, ultimately, this key business signal is tied to the bottom line.

THE SURVEY

Ekata and Allyiz  (formerly STRATGranat) interviewed top global merchants on their experiences in the first months of 2021 to understand their strategy around PSD2, and learn how they are actively monitoring and assessing SCA performance to drive better customer experience and trust.

Of these merchants, 90% were truly global and 10% were spanning various European countries. In order to ensure good SCA knowledge, we focused on people in Payments roles.

You can access our full study here to understand what these global merchants are seeing in the market – the ultimate temperature check on all the effort undertaken by the various payments players in the ecosystem.

WEBINAR: Signifyd + Forrester | Creating a Winning SCA Strategy in 2021

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As the second phase of the payments services directive continues, the need for stronger customer authentication has serious implications for customer experience. However, the new regulation provides an opportunity for retailers to rethink their checkout process.

Join Signifyd’s Senior Product Manager of Payment Solutions Shagun Varshney and guest speaker, Forrester Analyst Jacob Morgan to explore the cost of compliance, new technologies, and potential negative customer impact. But with that also comes the opportunity to optimise payments for better conversion than ever before.

Register for Creating a Winning SCA Strategy in 2021 on 31st March 2021 at 10:30 am GMT where you’ll learn:

  • The current state of play for SCA in Europe
  • What eCommerce merchants can learn from their predecessors – the banks – through earlier implementations
  • How you can build an exemption strategy to protect your customers and your revenue now
  • Best-practice authentication strategies for the most seamless experiences in the long-term

Secure your seat and register here.

WEBINAR: The retail reset – Sign up now!

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By Summit

According to finder.com, there was a 21% increase in time spent on social media last year, with Facebook & Instagram expected to overtake Google’s share of UK digital ad spending.

To find out more about this trend, Summit recently conducted a Voice of the Customer survey looking at consumers and their social media and social commerce habits and we received some amazing insights…

Did you know that 45% of people often find new products through social media?

Did you know that 60% of users have purchased directly through social?

Did you know that social media users aren’t betrothed to one platform? In fact, on average they use 3.8 different platforms regularly, so you really need to diversify platforms to reach customers through social.

On Thursday 25th at 11am we are hosting the second webinar in The Retail Reset series, “Are you too socially distanced from your customers?” where we will be discussing these insights in much more detail.

Summit’s very own Carl Hutchinson, Marketing Services Product Owner and Darren Wright, Product Strategy Director, will be hosting the session and will be joined by guests Joel Williams from TikTok and Aynsley Peet from Cox & Cox.

If you don’t want to miss this session, please sign up here: https://www.summit.co.uk/the-retail-reset-sign-up-now/.

Resilience in Retail: How European businesses are adapting with payments

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By Nick Noyer, Head of EMEA Marketing, Stripe

Consumer spending has been moving online at a growing pace over the past 20 years. When COVID-19 hit, it further accelerated the ongoing trend, causing retailers and other businesses to evaluate and adapt to new consumer spending patterns. The most adaptive firms not only saw this as a challenge to survive, but an opportunity to flourish.

Stripe commissioned Forrester Consulting to research the payment technologies, strategies, and future capabilities firms are investing in to become more adaptive during the challenges of the pandemic and beyond. Forrester conducted an online survey of nearly 500 online retail leaders around the globe, with 221 respondents coming from Europe.

Here are three key findings of the study: 

  • Retailers plan to expand, rather than contract, their businesses during the pandemic. Instead of seeing the pandemic as a moment to retreat, the majority of retailers plan to expand their businesses in thenext 12 months by creating new revenue streams or increasing their global reach in an attempt to respond to evolving consumer behaviors.
  • Retailers face resource and expertise blockers as they pursue new business models andinternational expansion. Expanding into new markets and launching new business models requires significant domain expertise and often extensive internal resources. Meeting local requirements such as adding relevant payment methods and ensuring compliance creates massive overhead when handled in an ad hoc fashion. Additionally, as businesses grow and expand internationally, they can be exposed to new fraud
  • Businesses that invest in the right payments technology are able to quickly execute growthstrategies. Partnering with a tech-forward payments provider unlocks functionality beyond just payments. By arming retailers with powerful tools to manage fraud, more choice to offer consumers in how they pay, and the ability to make data-driven decisions, payments providers can enable businesses to expand into new global markets and layer new business models on top of their existing ones more quickly than their competitors.

To find out more about the respondents’ priorities and top initiatives, download the full Forrester Study Resilience In Retail: How European Businesses Are Adapting with Payments.

About Stripe:

Millions of businesses of all sizes — from startups to large enterprises — use Stripe’s software and APIs to accept payments, send payouts, and manage their businesses online.

Stripe provides payment solutions to some of the largest retailers in the world, including ASOS, Missguided, and Waitrose.

To find out more contact us at https://stripe.com/gb/contact/sales.

Everything you need to know about Payment Orchestration

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By BridgerPay

Payment orchestration is the next big trend in online payments, but why? What is it and how does it improve upon the traditional payment service providers (PSPs) that have dominated the market for years? Below we’ll discuss what payment orchestration is and how it can benefit your online business.

What is Payment Orchestration?

Payment orchestration doesn’t do away with PSPs, but rather, works with multiple processors and then routes payments for individual transactions to the most efficient one. Large-scale online merchants have been working this way for years, since they have the budgets to employ in-house teams that create contracts and integrate with multiple processors.

Small and medium-sized businesses, however, don’t usually have the “luxury” of hiring an in-house department to handle payment orchestration. The option they have traditionally been left with has been high-priced PSPs that employ a one-size-fits-all solution. This method slows the checkout process for the consumer and charges high fees to the merchant.

Payment orchestration platforms like BridgerPay, on the other hand, do several things. They:

  • Eliminate the need for a costly in-house team
  • Create a fast, convenient checkout method for consumers
  • Reduce merchant fees

How can a payment orchestration platform do all this? Through infrastructure, a unified checkout experience, optimization, and data reporting efficiency.

Infrastructure

For the past decade, mid-market businesses and SMBs have managed their online payments through one PSP, since using multiple connections proved too costly and complicated. With payment orchestration, these businesses can perform all the necessary connections to complete an online payment in one place.

The result? An efficient, streamlined payment system that increases revenue and security while providing a more convenient checkout system for the consumer. When this happens, business owners will have more time to focus on other things, like development, advertising, etc. 

Unified Checkout Experience

Payment orchestration creates a seamless checkout experience for both customers and merchants. BridgerPay’s payment orchestration platform does this by allowing customers to embed their solution or add its REST API to their stack. The result is that the merchant cashier has the same look and feel as the rest of the website.

Payment orchestration also enables online businesses to let their customers pay in local currencies. Tools like the Bridger Currency Converter allow the conversions to happen on the merchant’s end, not on the end of the PSP. This can lead to reduced cart abandonment, since customers will be able to use their preferred local wallets, and increased revenue for merchants.

Optimization

Payment orchestration routes payments through the most efficient processor, as opposed to routing all payments through the same processor. For example, if an online store needs to receive a payment from a US-based customer and a Europe-based customer, payment orchestration means that each of those payments gets routed to the most efficient processor.

Bridger Retry routes different payments to different processors and reroutes them automatically in case a payment is declined, which reduces failed transactions and the cart abandonment that usually follows. The Bridger Router allows merchants to set up routing rules according to currency, region, and transaction amount, which increases transaction speed and decreases the cost to the merchant.

Data Reporting

Payment orchestration provides a 360-degree view of a merchant’s transactions and data, since all PSPs are managed in the same place. Data reports suddenly become easier to access. Merchants can get a full view of all essential data, including approval ratios for all payment gateways, declined transactions, cart abandonment, total transactions, and more.

Online Retail Growth

According to Statista, global online retail totaled $3.53 trillion in 2019. By 2022, that number is projected to reach $6.54 million. While small to mid-sized businesses may not have needed payment orchestration in the past, as more people turn to online shopping, the need is now apparent. For online merchants that needed it but didn’t have the budget, payment orchestration is now affordable.

Payment orchestration can help online retailers reduce the cost of payment processing and the rate of cart abandonment, increase long-term profits, and make the consumer experience more convenient. As one solution that can achieve all of these goals, the question isn’t why should you go with payment orchestration, but how fast can you implement it.

How COVID-19 has changed perceptions of e-commerce

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By BridgerPay

COVID-19 has changed the way consumers relate to e-commerce and that according to this recent survey, the pandemic has accelerated a greater global shift toward online stores and digital solutions, especially in emerging economies.

This means that online platforms are faced with the need to provide seamless, speedy transactions that can be completed by anyone regardless of their location. As the market continues to grow, if you’re a merchant and don’t manage to adjust to suit the increase in digital traffic, you may find that you lose customers or become irrelevant.

Challenges today

While e-commerce has grown significantly over the past 10 years, it is expected to grow even further as the pandemic lingers. During this time marketplaces like Amazon, AliExpress, Rakuten, and eBay are all platforms which have needed to make adjustments. While their sites are used to heavy consumer traffic, online buyer behavior during the pandemic has stretched their capacity to handle the volume.

Medium to enterprise sized sites are going to face new challenges with the global increase in digital sales. Payments integration, transaction failure, and speed are three specific challenges that growing websites face today. These are challenges which need to be met immediately as according to this PwC study “in the first 6 months of 2020 US retailers online sales grew to US $347 billion, an increase of 30% from the same period in 2019.” In order to meet those challenges BridgerPay offers solutions that can help you address these issues.

Transaction Failures

Research shows that 62% of customers who experienced a failed payment will not return to the website the failure occurred on. Moreover, if a visitor has a payment failure, their chance to convert drops by 70%. These are startling figures you need to understand as they show the importance of successful transactions. As your site grows during this time you may find that your current payment solution can’t keep up with the new influx of customers, and as a result, transactions may fail. Loss of customers due to something that can be fixed isn’t a risk your growing business should take.

With BridgerPay’s Router, merchants can designate their desired cascading order for any transaction. Specific volumes can be customized according to payment solutions, countries, and currencies, and the solution also offers its own built-in routing models. The results are boosted approval ratios and a reduction in transaction failures in each region.

Payments Integration

When your online store wants to make its products available in another country, offering a local payments solution in that country can encourage customers to complete their transactions. Local solutions offer speed, convenience, and the potential reduction of shopping cart abandonment, and occurs 68% of the time in online shopping.

Which is why BridgerPay’s payments software, a proprietary smart cashier software that allows consumers to select their preferred payment method on a site is important in those markets. Cashier partners with global payment methods like major credit cards, e-wallets, and cryptocurrencies as well as with local payment methods so that merchants can offer their customers all the convenience of local transactions. Many platforms’ users are comfortable using local payment methods such as Boleto (Brazil), China Union Pay, Interac (Canada), and Sofort (Europe), and as a merchant you must find ways to accommodate users purchasing behavior.

Speed

Today, consumers expect transactions to occur in milliseconds, and anything more is considered unacceptable. According to a 2018 Google report, a page that takes between 1 to 5 seconds to load increases the probability of bounce by 90%. Can you as an online retailer afford that kind of loss in this ultra-competitive market? Merchants must work with a solution that allows them to offer speed-of-light transactions for local and global customers such as BridgerPay, which boasts an average load time of less than 0.5 seconds.

The above three challenges are not the only ones that exist for e-commerce sites, but they are certainly among the most pressing. The solutions covered above help deal with the challenges of data management, settlement tracking, and security. As an AI neutral supergate, BridgerPay

offers online merchants an easy, seamless way to meet your needs and the needs of your customers. To learn more about how these solutions can help transform your e-commerce business click here.