Source: @technology via Twitter
As we are only a month into 2018, many businesses in Canada probably remain hard at work considering how they can refresh their services across the coming year and ensure they are providing the best possible service to both clients and their customers.
One of the many issues which may well be coming under their microscope is payments methods, with customers now using a range of tools to pay for both goods and services. While more traditional methods remain as important as ever to both consumers and businesses, is now the time for the latter in particular to be offering the option of online payment tools?
A variety of tools
A range of such services now exist, from household names like PayPal and Interac e-Transfer to a number of other methods. For example, the online casino industry has embraced web wallets using encryption technology, with CasinoQuest.com outlining how such deposit methods allow the public to safely store funds online with significant levels of protection. There are also other services like Apple Pay, a cashless ‘mobile wallet’-style service which allows people to make secure purchases with their iPhone or other devices.
According to research by Payment Canada released at the end of last year, online transfers were the fastest growing payment method in Canada in 2016 with transactions increasing across the year by nearly 48 per cent. However, perhaps more tellingly the same study found that only around 10 per cent of online transfers were actually made by businesses. While this marked an increase from previous years, it still showed there is a long way to go for companies to embrace the concept.
Source: @AustinCarr via Twitter
So, why should they? Well, there is a strong argument that even on a basic reputational level offering such methods could be a good idea, as it would highlight that a business is forward-thinking and is embracing technology. In addition, there are the obvious benefits for consumers, with RingCentral for example outlining how there is clear convenience to such methods and that they also eliminate issues such as having to exchange physical currency. Finally, in many cases such transactions tend to eliminate the fees that can be associated with payments on credit card, for example.
A key part of modern business
Of course, while offering online payments may be a sound idea, it does not mean that a business should move away from offering many of the traditional payment methods which have proven so popular down the years. After all, it should be noted that while online transfers may be growing, the aforementioned Payment Canada research did confirm that the likes of cash, credit and debit card payments remain among the most widely used methods for transactions.
However, with a growing number of consumers and businesses seemingly ready and willing to embrace the online payment concept, failing to offer such services could mean that an organization is running the risk of being seriously left behind by their competition. Businesses face many challenges at present, but finding and offering the right online payment methods could be an important step on the road to success.