Consumers Want More Payment Flexibility in Their Shopping Experience

BrandPost By Chris Nerney
Aug 22, 2022
IT Leadership

User-friendly consumer experiences spur innovation of smartphone integration, in-store digitalization, and secure payment options

Woman shopping with device
Credit: iStock/kupicoo

Creating a seamless and secure customer experience from start to finish means listening to and embracing customers’ expectations, including offering the latest in digital payment capabilities. In fact, consumers are 63% more likely to shop with merchants that offer their preferred payment options.

The COVID-19 pandemic brought a shift in consumer expectations, including a rise in popularity for multichannel shopping options. At the heart of this popularity is ease of use: the ability to initiate and conclude transactions with little or no data entry; multiple mobile and digital payment options; and choices around in-store or curbside pickup and delivery.

The 2022 Global Digital Shopping Index from Cybersource, a Visa solution, clearly showcases U.S. consumers’ evolving behaviors and expectations:

  • 39% of local shoppers—a projected 64 million U.S. consumers—now use their smartphones at least once during their shopping journeys, whether to order online for delivery, use an app to locate items in-store and/or pay with digital wallets at the point of sale
  • 28%—or roughly 26 million Americans—use their smartphones to enhance in-store shopping experiences
  • 11% who ordered online received their most recent eCommerce purchases via curbside pickup
  • 47% of those who pick up their orders in-store wind up purchasing more products in the store during that trip

Giving more choice to consumers will go a long way to building brand loyalty. For example, by offering shopping applications and mobile-friendly web pages, shoppers get incentives via notifications on their smartphones with promotional codes, coupons, in-store discounts, and free shipping for digital purchases.

The need for “protect me” features

Digital wallets have emerged as a popular online payment option because they increase the ease and simplicity of transactions by storing a consumer’s payment information and enabling “one-click” purchases. Often, digital wallets also leverage solutions to protect sensitive payment data.

In addition to wanting their sensitive payment data protected during transactions, consumers are looking for post-purchase security with “protect me” features. These types of features include secure data storage, frictionless dispute resolution, and simple returns. Ultimately, according to the Index, what matters most to consumers is knowing that:

  • Retailers will refund fraudulent charges
  • Refunds will get credited in-store or online
  • Returns can be in-store or through mail (and that mail returns are free)
  • Customer support is available 24/7 via multiple channels (phone calls, online chat, text, email)

By offering these consumer-friendly options, retailers can increase trust, confidence, and greater brand loyalty among customers. That loyalty serves as a critical building block that will pay off in long-term relationships and revenue growth.

It’s possible to deliver these capabilities with a digital-first approach. Cybersource helps businesses enhance their customer experiences with a feature-rich platform. It includes automated fraud protection and easy tech integrations to offer customers multiple digital payment options across channels. The platform also ensures the security of sensitive payment data for improved compliance and data security.

According to Eric Ritger, eCommerce operations lead at Harley-Davidson, “We needed to allow the customer to buy how they want to buy—and pay how they want to pay. Partnering with Cybersource makes that possible.”

Learn more about Cybersource here.