Blog Posts

How Convenient Payment Options Fuel a Better Customer Experience

June 16, 2020

Customer service is everything to your business. According to a 2018 Gartner report,

81% of businesses said they expect to be competing mostly or completely on the basis of customer experience (CX) in two years’ time. Done right,

CX is your biggest competitive advantage. And believe it or not, a great customer experience includes a great way to graciously get customers to pay for your amazing service. But all too often, businesses provide an outstanding product or service only to fall short when it comes time to collect payment. Many miss these two important facts as they strive to provide a great payment experience:  

1. Convenience and speed matter. According to PWC, 80% of American consumers say that speed and convenience are among the top five pieces of a positive customer experience.

2. Mobile experiences are crucial. There are 5.1 Billion unique mobile users according to data by HootSuite. The same study reveals that in 2019, mobile internet use accounted for 48% of all internet traffic. That’s nearly half!

So, when you look at a customer’s journey from finding you all the way to paying you, are you keeping convenience, speed, and mobility in mind at every step? Are you finishing strong? Most businesses focus on everything that happens before a bill, not realizing that convenience matters as much—if not more—when it comes time to collect. Getting this right is the difference between a happy customer who loves your service and a customer who’s annoyed because you nagged them for payment.

The good news is that payments are evolving. The bad news is many local businesses just aren’t keeping up. It’s likely because they don’t understand how valuable convenient payment options really are.

The Power of Convenient Payments

You deserve to get paid; you earned it, after all. But few businesses stop to consider why this part is so critical. Here are some things to consider about payments.

It’s Part of the Business/Client Relationship

When a customer shells out their hard-earned dollars for something you provided, that means something. They got something they wanted, they’re happy, and they want to settle up and move on. Is that the time to create friction by making it hard to pay? Of course not. Why put even a small stain on your relationship if you can help it?

Convenient Payments Matter

Your customers expect everything to be convenient. Billing can be particularly annoying if your business sends invoices. If you’ve ever had to call a business just to give them your credit card number to pay for an invoice you got in the mail, you’ll know what I mean. It’s annoying. Your customers have things to do. They’ll wonder why they can’t just pay online. These days it’s online payments, transfers, or mobile payments for just about every good or service you can get—even hippies at the farmer’s market take Venmo.

Tough Payments = Delinquent Payments

If paying your business for goods and services is a time-consuming, inconvenient or annoying process, you might get more delinquent payments that force you to waste time calling, emailing, or otherwise hunting down money you should have received. This only makes customers more unhappy. Don’t be the “where’s my two dollars” guy. Make it easy and people will pay faster and enjoy working with you more.

Fixing a Payment System You Didn’t Know Was Broken

So, when it comes to payments, what does easy look like? Here are things you should start doing right now:

  • Accept Multiple Forms of Payment– Customers expect to be able to pay however it’s convenient for them. That means credit card, debit, bank transfers, Venmo, PayPal, and even mobile payments through Apple Pay® and Google Pay®.
  • Make it Mobile – Customers don’t want to send you checks. They don’t want to call you with a credit card. They don’t want to sit at a computer to pay online. They want to pay using their phone. Make sure you can send payment requests to a customer’s phone via text, so they can pay in seconds.
  • Keep Payments Secure – Security matters to your organization and to your customers. Make sure your payment platform is secure and fully PCI compliant, so your customers feel comfortable paying wherever they are.

Inside Swell Pay

Swell Pay is a product baked right into Swell, a powerful growth platform for local businesses. On top of tools for streamlining customer communications and gathering feedback, Swell gives your customers a convenient way to pay through a link in a text message. Swell Pay lets you:

  • Accept Many Forms of Payment – Customers can pay however they want. ACH, credit card, debit card, Paypal, Venmo, Apple Pay® and Google Pay®.
  • Send Requests by Text Message – Texting is fast and easy and gets higher response rates that calling or email. Swell makes it easy to send customers a payment request through text message, so they’re only a few taps away from paying a bill.
  • Keep Transactions Secure – Fully PCI compliant. Transactions are handled by mobile payment leader, Stripe®, so you can be positive payments are secure.
  • Report, Reconcile, and Adjust – Swell Pay makes it easy to see when you’ve been paid, or if a customer has a question or a change is needed. You can also pull invoice information, issue refunds, or cancellations.

CX Your Customers Actually Enjoy

A fantastic customer experience includes a convenient payment experience but extends to every interaction you have with your customers. Business poised with growth should consider how to use the following three things to help them grow:

  • Discover – Learn from honest online reviews and surveys to improve customer service, your online reputation, and search ranking.
  • Connect – Create meaningful interactions and build trust through text, Facebook messenger, online chat, and more.
  • Grow – Use feedback to fuel a stronger online reputation and to get higher search rankings, so you can attract more business.

If you want more convenient ways for customers to pay along with effective tools for engaging with prospects, Swell has everything you need baked into an incredibly easy-to-use app.

Want to learn more? Sign up for a free demo and we’ll walk you through it.  

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