COVID Update: Rise in cashless payments amid coronavirus

Are you opting for cashless payments in light of COVID-19?

Since the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak, concerns have circulated about the possible hygiene implications of handling cash.

While it may not be the main mode of transmission, it is suggested that COVID-19 may stick to surfaces for hours and even days. This means that touching your mouth, nose or eyes after handling cash could potentially encourage the virus to spread.

Regardless of whether these concerns are founded or not, the notion that cash could be a carrier for the disease has seen both consumers and businesses alike alter the way they choose to operate.

 

Health concerns about cash payments

The potential for coins and banknotes to house bacteria has been acknowledged for many years yet largely unacted upon. However, this seems to be changing rapidly due to the unfolding pandemic and serious risks associated with the COVID disease.

With these concerns circling the media and propelling public concern, many businesses are now opting for cashless payments.

 

Cashless payments

The increasing push away from cash has ultimately pulled consumers towards cashless payments like Eftpos and Tap and Pay.

This presents an opportunity for businesses to enhance their electronic payment methods in order to accommodate consumer preferences.

And while COVID-19 has seen many shy away from cash, this move has actually been in motion for many years.

Whether for convenience, security, hygiene or other factors, payment via debit card in Australia has almost tripled since 2007, while cash payments have more than halved in the same period.

Of course, some people are adopting this technology far more quickly than others, with late adopters generally being older Australians and those with lower socioeconomic backgrounds.

Despite this, the shift towards a cashless society is clear; COVID-19 has exacerbated (not instigated) the preference for cashless payments. 

 

Source: Consumer Payment Behaviour in Australia | Bulletin – March Quarter 2020

 

Other benefits of cashless payments

Aside from the hygiene factors present in the current COVID-19 climate, there is a range of other great benefits to using contactless payment methods for business. Some of these include:

  1. Ability to take more payments in less time
  2. Reduced possibility of unbalanced cash floats
  3. Reduced security risks & potential for theft 
  4. Ability to action refunds and discounts more easily
  5. Understand your customers better with reporting and analytics on all transactions 

 

Coronavirus update: Business as usual at Latpay

In light of the evolving COVID-19 crisis, the team at Latpay are committed to maintaining normal business and payment processing operations over the weeks and months ahead.

Our office is closely monitoring the advice of local governments. We have tried and tested contingency plans ready to implement to ensure there is no change in the level of support we currently offer you across all our teams. 

Our plan includes employees having the necessary technology to work remotely, regardless of office location. This course of action not only helps protect the health and welfare of our staff members but also ensures we can continue to deliver the support you need through these challenging times.  

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us via phone, email or Skype. And most importantly, stay safe.

Better payment processing for better business

Regardless of the industry you’re in, the way you take payments is integral to the success of your business. It can enhance or diminish customer experience, improve or impair administration processes and strengthen or undermine security measures.

If you’re unhappy with the service you currently receive or are just interested to see what else is out there, you’ve come to the right place! Check out our top 9 reasons you should make the switch to Latpay for all your business payment needs.

$0 Set up fees 

We really value the business partnerships we create with our clients and strive to build longstanding relationships with every one that comes on board. For this reason, we don’t believe in charging unnecessary fees or working in hidden costs. We’re dedicated to being up front and transparent. As testament to this, and to say thank you for choosing Latpay, we decided to drop all set up fees.

$0 Admin fees 

We really mean it when we say we won’t charge fees for the sake of it. We believe our partnerships can be mutually beneficial without hitting you with additional monthly fees. And let’s face it, no one likes paying admin fees. Staying true to our word, we’ve dropped all admin costs so you can spend your money on the things you really need to help your business grow.

Real time processing

Whether you conduct business online, through a shopfront or on the go, instant processing makes taking payments easier. There’s no waiting around for things to clear, and no annoyed customers getting impatient with the process. It also means you’re able to accept more payments in less of the time, boosting your sales and ultimately, your bottom line.

Forget interruptions

Have you ever been half way through a transaction only for it to drop out, forcing you to restart the entire process? Nothing is more frustrating. Your customers are busy people, and any friction in the checkout process could ultimately lead them to abandon the sale. With Latpay, we back our systems with a demonstrated 99.99% up time on our incredibly secure and stable environment over the past 17 years!

Better security

Fast and reliable payments are nothing without top security standards. At Latpay, we’re certified to process high volumes of payments with the highest level of PCI regulatory compliance to protect you and your customers. That means less work for your compliance officer and peace of mind for anyone making payments through your business. 

Low cost per transaction

So, if we don’t charge set up or admin fees, our transaction fees must be high, right? Wrong! With fee-free processing for the first $750 of sales* and 1.7% + 25c + GST as our standard rate, we’ll keep your fees super low no matter where your business takes you.

*T&C’s apply. 

50,000 transactions

Looking to grow your business? You’ll need a payment platform that’s ready to grow with you! With an unlimited transaction capacity, we can help your business reach new heights whenever you’re ready.

Stay with your bank

We don’t believe in pushing you towards one particular acquiring bank over another. If you’re happy with your current financial institution, then why change? Latpay has connectivity to over 90 acquiring banks around the world, meaning you can pick and choose who you’d prefer to do business with.

Payment options

Let your customers pay the way they want! Taking online payments is about so much more than accepting cards. If your customers want the option to pay with alternative methods, then that’s what they should get! Our payment systems offer just about all payment methods, from Visa and Mastercard to JCB, AMEX and everything in between.

Are you ready to make the switch? Sign up in less than 3 minutes and start taking payments today, or chat with our team on 1800 865 224 to find out more about making the switch to Latpay.

Can mCommerce Solve the Conversion Crisis?

Gertjan Dewaele of Ingenico ePayments argues that “mobile shopping has established mCommerce as a key sales channel”

Put your mobile where your commerce is

The vast majority of merchants understand that mobile innovation affects customer satisfaction and profitability, but this awareness needs to be matched by action if they are to make the most of the mobile commerce opportunity. No merchant can afford to ignore the revenue-generating potential of mCommerce.

More than three quarters of UK shoppers use their mobile to make purchases online while commuting or travelling, and 45% browse in their free time. It’s a growing trend. UK consumers now spend twice as much time on their mobile device as they do on a PC or laptop, and the use of mobile apps for shopping is on the rise as well. 83% of time spent on mobile is app-related and more than half of that is spent shopping.

On the other side of the Atlantic, 40% of online purchases in the US were made on mobile devices in 2017, a 29% increase over 2016.

Taking a closer look at Europe’s largest economy, Germany, we can see that mobile commerce has been a slow burner, but consumers have begun using their phones to make online purchases in greater numbers. mCommerce in Germany now accounts for 12% of purchased goods. Ready for a boom, it is estimated that mCommerce volumes will increase by 39% and represent 42% of total retail ecommerce sales in the country by 2021.

Avoid abandonment

In spite of this burgeoning international mobile trend, many merchants are falling behind in trying to meet their customers’ expectations. Research by Ingenico ePayments and InternetRetailing found that only 57% of those active in sectors such as travel and gaming declared having a responsive website for desktop and mobile as their main focus. Just 39% described themselves as being ‘mobile first’.

The negative impact of this lack of innovation in mobile is becoming increasingly clear. Our research has found that 60% of all shopping carts created are abandoned before payment and that one in five consumers do not complete the payment process. The result is a considerable amount of lost revenue for merchants and large numbers of unsatisfied customers.

A smooth customer experience

Fortunately, there are several steps that can be taken to ensure that more of these planned purchases are completed. Investing in a frictionless mobile experience is a good starting point: although just over half of the retailers we surveyed are currently investing in this area, 40% intend to do so over the next two years.

Firstly, merchants should ensure their mobile site is localized, meaning consumers can pay how they like based on where they are in the world.

As well as this, they need to be aware of the importance of optimizing the payment page, from using a numeric keypad, to automatically format credit card numbers to detect invalid inputs. Cutting out unnecessary steps in the payment process will improve conversion rates. After some merchants found that 3D Secure was showing a potential to negatively affect their conversion, they utilized it only for high transaction values or enabled tokenization to provide a fast-track experience for returning customers. 3D Secure 2.0 will use advanced data analytics to help determine cases where additional security measures are required, reducing the barriers for the majority of consumers.

Finally, consider the options available. There are payment methods that work better on mobile, such as PayPal and Apple Pay, both of which are helping merchants to shift away from a sluggish system to an omnichannel future, in line with high customer demands.

Next level mCommerce

Of course, now that mobile is becoming mainstream, it doesn’t mean the environment stops evolving. Innovations are always on the horizon to stay relevant to consumers.

Already there is a new sales channel for consumers which is ideal for the mobile device: chatbots. This tool is seeing great success with Generation Z and millennials, yet just 16% of the internet retailers we surveyed were investing in messaging bots for conversational commerce. Seeing more consumers turn to this sales device is certainly likely, though, as more than half of those surveyed plan to enlist it within the next two years.

We expect this to soon become commonplace. With the first pilot results, we’ve seen a six-fold boost in conversion while using chatbots versus a mobile website. These bots learn patterns of behavior and can target customers, offering the products or services that would be of most interest – a level of personalization that leads to better conversion rates and higher customer satisfaction.

Another – often overlooked – avenue for conversion is the moment after the purchase. Following the transaction, a merchant can leverage this time to entice customers to purchase additional items or encourage their return. Providing a related product (insurance, for example) or offering smart discounts via gamification will maximize the conversion on the initial transaction and help create a loyal consumer base.

The future is within our grasp

We aren’t losing the in-store experience just yet, though. In fact, mobile may be the key to revitalizing a practice that has fought a losing battle in recent years. We’re seeing a number of ‘scan and pay’ projects creeping into the market, which are using mobile devices to drive a better in-store user experience – and boost completed transactions in the process.

It’s clear that the sheer convenience of mobile shopping has established mCommerce as a key sales channel, which means that merchants have to optimize their mobile site and payment processes in order to be in the sales game.

Source: The Paypers – http://bit.ly/2C7xDJe 

We’re on the list of Visa Global Registry of Service Providers

Our commitment to compliance has once again been showcased after recently being announced as a service provider on the Visa Global Registry. For merchants, this means that Latpay is compliant with both the Visa program requirements and Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) to store, process or transmit Visa cardholder information.

The Visa Global Registry of Service Providers:

The Visa Global Registry has been compiled to make it easier for customers to choose the best merchant service provider for their needs. It’s important to note that:

  1. The Registry now distinguishes service providers that support secure technologies, such as EMV, tokenization and point-to-point encryption.
  2. Merchants can now check how long the provider has had a relationship with one of Visa’s clients or partners, which can be useful for a technology partner looking for a start-up versus an established company.
  3. The Registry also features service providers that are early adopters of the most recent version of the PCI DSS 3.2, which was released in April 2016. The key changes included a multi-factor authentication for administrators accessing cardholder data and additional security validation steps for service providers.

To learn more, visit the Visa Global Registry of Service Providers.

Why our compliance is good for your business:

  1. Protect yourself

Acquiring a compliant merchant service provider ensures that your business is meeting all legal and compliance requirements. In order to be cleared to take payments both on and offline, there are numerous hoops to jump through to ensure you’re providing a secure service for your customers. Working with Latpay takes the stress out of compliance obligations so you can get back to business.

  1. Protect your customers

As well as meeting all your legal requirements, working with a highly secure and compliant merchant service provider like Latpay ensures that your customers are protected from theft and fraud. Your customers are the lifeblood of your business, so protecting them against unauthorised transactions is critical. More than this, it also safeguards your business against reputational loss that often follows a financial breach.

  1. Allow customers to shop with confidence

When shoppers are confronted with unknown or untrustworthy payment systems, it forces them to think twice about making their purchase. Offering the highest security measures and trusted payment platforms can help your customers feel confident with their purchases and therefore less likely to second guess their decision. The transaction journey should be smooth sailing, allowing the customer to pay for goods or services without a second thought. Latpay can help you offer the peace of mind your customers need to shop with absolute confidence.

If you find that your payment service provider isn’t offering you the highest levels of data security and PCI compliance, it’s time to start shopping around.

Why choose Lateral Payment Solutions:

As a leading Payment and Merchant Service Provider in Australia, UK and Canada, Latpay offer superior fraud management capabilities and data tokenisation services to online businesses around the world.

With industry-leading technology, exceptional Level 1 PCI compliance and fraud management proficiencies, Latpay are proud to provide a truly complete payment solution for companies of all shapes and sizes.

Talk to us on 1800 865 224 to see how we can alleviate the hassles of security and compliance, so you can get back running your business.

Getting Started for Business with Merchant Services

Whether you’re starting up a new venture, taking your business to the next level or expanding your avenues, having the right Merchant Services for your needs is absolutely essential. To help you kick off sales this quarter, let’s run through what Merchant Services are and the various options available to you.

What are Merchant Services / MSP?

Merchant services are the terminals, technology or software employed by a business to take payments by EFTPOS, credit and debit cards. Therefore, the MSP or Merchant Service Provider is the company that manages the operation of these systems. After taking card payment, the chosen system would then settle the payment into the bank account linked with the terminal or software provider.

So which payment system should I choose for my business?

It all depends on your business needs; small businesses, for instance, would have different payment requirements to a large corporation. By the same token, a brick-and-mortar retail store would have different needs to a professional service provider.

There are loads of options available to all kinds of businesses. Let’s take a look at some of these now.

In-store terminals / Point of Sale (POS)

An in-store terminal or POS system is the method employed by a business to take payment for their goods or services at the cash register. This is a combination of software and hardware, including a monitor, barcode scanner, card reader, receipt printer and cash draw. The software component of a POS terminal may be deployed on premise via installed software or through a cloud-based system commonly known as Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). Cash and Eftpos terminals are primarily used in brick-and-mortar stores as they lack mobility or capacity to take online payments.

mPos (mobile POS)

 mPos solutions are a really convenient way of taking payments on the go. You don’t even need a website to get started, as payments are taken directly through an app on your mobile. This type of payment solution is perfect for pop-up businesses, personal trainers, sales reps and anyone who needs to take payments while on the road. mPos software also allows you to accept a range of payment options, including tap-and-go, to ensure you’re offering your customers the method they’re most comfortable with.

eCommerce / Shopping Carts

For eCommerce businesses, having a secure and reliable online payment solution is critical. Essentially, your chosen shopping cart will be integrated into your website, which will then connect with your MSP. Reliable shopping carts can provide seamless checkout processes for your customers and therefore encourage repeat purchases. Most innovative MSPs will be looking to expand their integrations and offer custom integrations, so keep an eye out for this when acquiring their services.

Hosted Payment

A hosted payment page allows you to accept payments through your website by redirecting customers to your MSPs hosted payment page. This method is an economical way of taking payments as there are no development or security fees involved with implementation. A good MSP will also be able to offer a branded page that reflects your website to make users feel like they haven’t moved away from your page.

What to look for when choosing an MSP?

For obvious reasons, merchants are eager to partner with a reliable and reputable MSP to manage their business transactions. However, this market is becoming increasingly saturated and it can be difficult for new businesses to distinguish which company will work best for them. If you’re looking to acquire your first MSP (or are unhappy with your current service), here are a few of our top tips to choosing the best MSP for your business:

  1. Before approaching an MSP, do some research into the options you are interested in acquiring for the specific needs of your business. If an MSP doesn’t offer the services or systems you’re interested in, move on to the next one.
  2. Look into the costs and recurrent fees of each MSP, making sure that your chosen one is good value for money compared with their competitors.
  3. Read the terms and conditions in the product disclosure statement or financial services guide to make sure you fully understand the level of service they are offering and whether it aligns with your needs.
  4. Look for online reviews and customer stories about their customer support; if many of their customers seem unhappy with the service, then maybe this particular MSP isn’t the best choice.

Why Latpay?

Latpay have more than 17 years’ experience delivering merchant facilities and bespoke payment systems to businesses of all shapes and sizes. We deploy robust, secure and innovative technology to allow your business to thrive – all with Level 1 PCI compliance. We also offer 24-hour dedicated technical support to ensure we’re here when you need help. To find out more about Latpay’s Merchant Facilities, follow the link or give us a call on 07 5515 0402