Does Acquiring Need to Change for Retailers?

A recent UK Survey stated that 63% of retailers operate across four or more customer touch points; but that only 34% believe their current customer touch points were well integrated according to eDigitalResearch/Portaltech. This was not a payments survey, but one about customer service and technology, but it has implications for payments as a key part of the integration is the payments piece. 65% of retailers state that their current technology systems make creating a seamless multichannel customer experience challenging. By not understanding the customer journey or the payment process retailers are likely to find it increasingly difficult to improve their overall customer experience and close the online, offline experience, thus putting themselves ahead of their competition, writes David Parker

A recent UK Survey stated that 63% of retailers operate across four or more customer touch points; but that only 34% believe their current customer touch points were well integrated according to eDigitalResearch/Portaltech. This was not a payments survey, but one about customer service and technology, but it has implications for payments as a key part of the integration is the payments piece. 65% of retailers state that their current technology systems make creating a seamless multichannel customer experience challenging. By not understanding the customer journey or the payment process retailers are likely to find it increasingly difficult to improve their overall customer experience and close the online, offline experience, thus putting themselves ahead of their competition, writes David Parker

We are also likely to see customers becoming increasingly frustrated as they expect what they do through one customer touch point re payments to be replicated and supported in another. Click to Brick purchasing (buy online pick up in-store) is the ultimate example of how customers are driving the integration of channels.

It cannot be said that retailers do not recognise the importance of where the world is going with 48% of those surveyed prioritising digital integration to their established store presence to help improve their overall multichannel customer experience, as well as to generate more revenue. And 34% of the retailers believe that improving their websites is the most support to drive the customer experience. But very few are looking at a standardising their payment strategies across channels to create a unified payment landscape.

But retailers can only change if the payments companies support them. Whilst retailers are trying to becoming more and more integrated in their channels nearly all Acquiring companies are still split between the ‘Physical World’ of POS terminals and the online business. Yes we are seeing some MPOS and RFID solutions making their way into retail outlets but these are still relatively far and few. If retailers want a seamless experience for their customers surely they will also start looking for payment partners that can deliver flexible solutions in a seamless manner, with the same customer experience across all their communication/sales channels.

Click here for a full copy of the retailer research: Challenges of Realising a True Multichannel Vision’