Buy Now, Pay Later: 6 Reasons Why Your Website Needs It Right Away

As your online store get bigger and bigger, you’ll definitely want to explore new and different strategies to attract more consumers and subsequently increase the top line. Adding additional payment methods – in particular alternative payment methods (APM’s) at your website is one way to do it. The introduction of buy now, pay later (BNPL) payment methods to the market has shown its value in the last couple of years, and if you own a business where your average order value (AOV) is around the $100 mark or more, then this is absolutely something that you should be considering.

What is buy now, pay later?

Buy now, pay later allows your customers to make purchases right away while paying over time through instalments, allowing you as a business to get paid upfront and in full without taking the risk of potential defaults. It’s a fantastic approach to make high-ticket consumer products and services more affordable while also increasing your overall cart value and pleasing existing and new consumers with greater financial flexibility. The immense benefit that the payment method is providing makes have made more and more business adopt it in the past years.

But how does BNPL exactly work, and how can it benefit your business? In this article, I’ll go through everything you need to know about the payment type, and what you should be aware of prior to adopting it to your business.

How does buy now, pay later work and which providers can you choose?

The name says it all. Buy now, pay later services are a credit payment structure that gives consumers greater financial control and purchasing power by being allowed to pay over time through instalments. You as a business are essentially allowing consumers to purchase your products or services today and make payments in stages, which gives them more freedom to shop your site as less capital has to be provided up front. BNPL payments are usually divided into four to six interest-free instalments, but the payback time really differs from provider to provider, from industry to industry, and the like.

To start accepting BNPL on your E-Commerce site, you must pick between a number of different BNPL providers, such as Affirm, SplitIt, Afterpay, Klarna and ViaBill. Depending on where you are located, you may select from a variety of alternatives, and in case you are targeting customers in multiple countries, you might even want to add several different BNPL providers to your website. Shoppers can then pick the provider that works best for them, finish the transaction, and start making payments over time. Your business will always get the full payment upfront, minus the fees that the payment providers requires.

The 6 reasons for why you should add BNPL to your online store

1. Large opportunity to drive more revenue

Adding BNPL to your store will most likely allow you to tap into a new audience base, that might not have been as likely to purchase from you in the past in case your products or services are in the more expensive side of the cost spectrum. This is especially seen in the furniture and home decor industry, consumer electronics, high-end fashion, and the like. When consumers are allowed to split their payments, they’re more likely to make larger purchases. A $2,000 item is far more appealing when it can be divided and paid in ten $200 instalments.

2. Increased average order value (AOV) and conversion rate (CR)

Numerous studies have assessed and concluded that BNPL increases the average order value, and in particular the conversion rate, on higher value items. Buy now, pay later is a clever technique to split the total sum of your clients’ purchases. When consumers fill up their carts, the total may mount up to be quite significant. Knowing they have the option of dividing their bill interest free encourages them to keep shopping, increase the basket size, and completing the purchase.

3. Minimum risk for you

From the standpoint of the business adopting the payment method, one of the most worrisome aspects regarding completing online purchases before receiving payment is what would happen if the consumer did not pay – i.e., defaulted. Because you’ll always receive the full payment up front with BNPL, this danger is minimized. BNPL pays you straight and takes care of non-paying clients. Most BNPL providers even cover the risk of fraud and chargebacks, so the risk is really minimal. Of course, since the BNPL provider takes up the full risk, this will also be reflected in the fee that they will charge in order for you to be able to apply their service.

4. More flexibility at checkout

Consumers are generally becoming more demanding when it comes to having more payment options available on a website. Combining BNPL with other payment alternatives gives shoppers greater financial freedom and may also increase the possibility for repeat purchases and hence als the life time value (LTV) of your customers. They’ll appreciate the option to select, and you’ll gain customer acquisitions and loyalty in return over time.

BNPL’s popularity is on the rise, with more and more online businesses adding it as a convenient payment option. As your competitors implement this popular payment method and include BNPL on their websites, you don’t want to be left in the dust. This may result in missed sales opportunities and reduced consumers loyalty. For more information about payment methods in general, you can read this article about ‘The 6 Most Common Online Payment Options’ and for information about local payment methods across multiple countries, I’ve also created the following article: ‘Local E-Commerce Payment Methods To Consider When Internationalizing’.

Additional marketing value is also something that should be considered. Some providers will add your products to their online network once you connect their BNPL to your store, allowing visitors of their website to get introduced to your brand. Klarna as an example have their own shopping universe, where your products could be featured as well.

6. Increased trust

As mentioned in one of my other articles about trust badges, payment methods added to a website do also create value as a trust badge. When consumers see trustworthy, reputable payment method being available on a website, this will also increase the general consumer trust towards a brand. Considering how much the demand for BNPL solutions have increased in the past years, and how large some of the providers have become (e.g., Klarna, Afterpay, and the like) these providers will only increase the trust towards your site further.

The 5 most effective types of e-commerce offers and promotions

Running promotions and offering deals from time to time is very common within the consumer space, and is sometimes a necessity in order for your business to succeed in case your brand pull isn’t large enough for the business to run without any types of deals or promotions. The most popular and highly successful deal and promotion types will therefore be outlined in this article, so that you know what to consider when pursuing certain campaigns throughout the year. Please note, what we cover here are the deal / promotions types and structures, and not the campaign theme’s themselves. For information about which types of campaigns you can run throughout the year and combined with some of the offer types that are outlined in this article, I suggest that you read the following article: ‘The Complete E-Commerce Marketing Calendar for 2022‘.

Percentage discount

A percentage discount is flexible; you may give a specific percentage value off of a particular product or the entire purchase. You can grab your consumers attention by using smaller percentage discount values (such as 10% off or more), while bigger discounts (think +50% off or more) are ideal for large sales seasons like Black Friday or to simply liquidating slow moving unsold items.

If you sell goods on your Shopify store, I recommend choosing between giving a percentage or dollar discount for each item. Use a percentage price reduction if the item you’re discounting originally costs less than $200. If it costs more than $200, use a dollar discount instead. This approach helps customers see the most value for their money.

Dollar value discount

Offering a dollar-value reduction, such as $10 off, may make customers feel like they’re receiving “free money” rather than simply saving it through a percentage discount. There is no doubt that adding strong discount values to your site can increase the conversion rate and the overall revenue value quite substantially.

You can either make the offer permanent or contingent on how much a customer spends, for example, by offering $10 off orders over $100 and $25 off orders over $150 at the same time. The latter approach may help you increase the average order value by encouraging consumers to put more items in their carts to receive a bigger discount.

It’s important to remember that such strong percentage or dollar value discount campaigns can reduce your margins significantly, and your brand is also at the risk of being diluted if the discount values are too large, and/or if the frequency of your discounted campaigns are too high.

Buy One, Get One – BOGO

The acronym BOGO stands for “buy one, get one.” A BOGO discount might be expressed as “Buy one, get one 50% off,” whereas another option is “Buy two shirts at full price and receive the third for $10.” This deal format encourages customers to buy additional items and spend more than they had initially intended.

Free gift with purchase

Another excellent approach to increase sales is to provide a free gift with purchase. For brands which are hesitant when it comes to offering discounts, this is an excellent way of increasing conversions by framing the “discount” as a gift with purchase – it is essentially the same as a BOGO campaign, just framed differently. Offering items as gifts is also a great method to sell unsold inventory. This present can be a mystery or something that is transparent when purchasing; however, according to studies published in the University of Miami, offering a mystery gift with purchase has the potential to boost the conversion rate even further compared to if the gift is presented upfront, in certain industries.

I recommend including a free present when a purchase minimum is met. This encourages consumers to add more products to their cart, thereby increasing the average order value of the purchase. Furthermore, the Journal of Marketing discovered that individuals who received a product for free discussed it 20% more than those who paid for it — this is essentially also free word of mouth advertising!

Free shipping

Free delivery can be one of the most successful kinds of deals, and something that I would almost always recommend to do – as a fixed strategy. One of the primary reasons customers abandon their carts before finishing checkout is because of high shipping fees. While many shops always provide a free shipping option, offering limited-time discounts on shipping charges as a special promotion for those who don’t may be a smart idea. You may as an example always have free delivery if a certain threshold is met, and the from time to time have free delivery on all orders, if the conversion rate is to be boosted further from time to time.

An interesting fact is that customers are more likely to accept a free shipping incentive than a $10 total purchase discount, even if the cost of delivery is less. Even if shipping charges are lower than $10, customers may find a free shipping deal more appealing, and if the free shipping is dependent on a certain order value, you may use this as an instrument to increase the average order value. Making sure you have the appropriate ecommerce fulfilment approach in place so that the experience of the free shipping is smooth for the customer. A bad shipping experience can often result in bad reviews, and ultimately also in the customer not returning even though the products expectations are met.

The Benefits of Shopify – 11 Reasons Why You Should Choose This Platform

It’s not an easy choice when it comes to selecting an e-commerce platform, especially if you want it to be cost-effective while also having outstanding assistance and the ability to be scalable for the future. As of 2021, there are numerous E-Commerce platforms available on the market, including Shopify, Magento, PrestaShop, WIX and WooCommerce – each of which have their pros and cons. Shopify, however, is in my opinion the absolut best platform to go for when starting from scratch, and here’s why.

1. Extremely Quick/Easy to Set Up and Utilize

Shopify makes it simple to set up an e-commerce store without the issues that comes with having your own servers or development expenses that come with self-hosted platforms like Magento. The admin interface is simple and user-friendly, and it’s quite easy to understand, meaning that even if you don’t have experience with operating an e-commerce platform, then you will most surely learn it quite quickly by using Shopify.

2. No Tech Worries Whatsoever – Focus on What Matters!

Some great news! To establish a basic Shopify store, you don’t need any technical expertise; Shopify does everything for you. Not only is this convenient, but it’s likely that Shopify’s hosting will be faster and more secure than what you could achieve on your own, as well as easily accommodating any spikes in traffic. The Shopify app updates are also handled by the platform. So you can concentrate on on building your brand and promoting your products / services without having to worry about technical difficulties.

3. Reliable and Secure Platform

If you run an E-Commerce business, you’ll be handling delicate consumer information such as credit card numbers and impatient customers. This implies your website must be quick, safe, and always accessible. One of the biggest benefits of using a hosted solution is the degree to which it is reliable. The hosting for your store will be handled by Shopify. It will maintain and upgrade your site and shopping cart to ensure that they are accessible at all times, and that pages load quickly.

Shopify includes a secure connection with SSL certificates, which can be used to encrypt all data and send it via a secure link. Shopify also takes care of PCI compliance for you (needed when dealing with credit cards).

4. Accurate Marketing Tracking

For many, this might not seem as an obvious variable when considering which E-Commerce platform to go with, but it is in fact a variable that is of utmost importance. Having accurate tracking when it comes to ones marketing activities across various platforms (e.g., Facebook advertising, PPC, etc.) is extremely important in order to navigate your business in the right direction, and Shopify does allow you to plug in most of your marketing platform seamlessly, ensuring that the tracking is properly in place from the beginning. When using more open source based platforms like Magento, or when building a store from scratch, there are much greater risks associated with getting the integrations done inadequately, resulting in your tracking being off, which ultimately results in you operating blindfolded. I am personally aware of two major E-Commerce brands, which purposefully switched to Shopify mainly due to the need for more accurate and reliable tracking.

5. Mobile Optimized From The Beginning

Today, mobile visits to websites are more common than desktop visits. It is critical, not optional, to have a mobile optimized website. Shopify understands this. All of Shopify’s themes are mobile responsive and the platform includes a free built-in mobile commerce shopping cart, ensuring that your store looks great on all devices and your consumers can shop without any hassles.

There are also free iPhone and Android applications that allow you to manage your store on the move if desired.

6. Customizable

There are +150 Shopify themes to pick from in the Shopify Theme Store (both free and paid), as well as hundreds more on sites like ThemeForest. Each theme is also fully modifiable, allowing you to create a stunning and distinctive online store that complements your company’s image.

7. App’s For Almost Everything

The app store for Shopify is a gold mine of capabilities that you may use to enhance your business. You can add customer feedback, loyalty programs, purchase wishlists, receive detailed statistics, print labels and packing slips, connect with accounting software, shipping systems, and social media sites, among other things. Over 1,500 apps are available, so whatever you want to accomplish is most likely already covered. Many of them are free, but over half of them are priced.

8. Various SEO & Marketing Tools Available

It’s great to have a well performing, good looking online store, but if no one visits you’ll be closing up your business soon. Shopify has some of the most advanced Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) tools available, which will assist your website rank higher in search results and allow customers to find you organically. You’ll be able to use a variety of marketing and data tools to tell where your customers are coming from, allowing you to adjust your marketing accordingly.

The Shopify app store currently includes a number of marketing resources, including social media integration, product reviews, and email marketing. Shopify offers you the option to develop discount codes by default. Gift certificates are available at the next level up. Social media icons are included in all themes. If you’re concerned about the amount of time it takes to manage digital marketing, Shopify Kit is also available to assist. It serves as a virtual employee, suggesting and executing marketing activities based on your items, audience, and store performance.
For more information about SEO tools that you should consider to use, i suggest you go through the following article: ‘Best Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Tools For E-Commerce

9. Standard Abandoned Cart Recovery Flow

What if a customer adds something to their basket but then leaves without making a purchase? According to statistics, over two-thirds of potential clients will do this. Shopify offers an abandoned checkout cart recovery solution that automatically monitors and notifies these possible customers to encourage them to make a purchase; it’s an easy way to increase sales.

10. Various Payment gateways

Shopify has partnerships with numerous payment processors, but it also includes its own Stripe-powered system. If you choose this option, you will not be charged any transaction fees and will receive lower credit card processing costs. It also doesn’t need a merchant account to use. For more about payment options, please go to the following page: ‘The 6 Most Common Online Payment Options

11. Customer Support 24/7

Customers are another key advantage of using Shopify. Customer support at both Shopify and WordPress is fantastic. They’re accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and response time is quick, so your company is never alone. You can reach out to them by phone, email or online chat. There are also a number of community discussion boards, as well as extensive documentation in the Shopify Help Center and a host of professional Shopify University courses.

Facebook Advertising Post IOS 14.5: What To Do?

It is critical to protect one’s privacy, and you’d be hard-pressed to find someone who disagrees.

That was the motivation behind iOS 14’s release—to offer customers more control over the data they (sometimes inadvertently) share with advertisers and publishers. This update has been heavily advertised via national advertising across TV, digital, and public relations.

The reality of the iOS 14 upgrade, from a marketing standpoint, is that Facebook and Instagram ad campaign effectiveness has dropped across the board. The iOS 14 release negatively impacted Facebook advertising in three key areas:

  • Targeting of Ads
  • Reporting on Performance
  • Optimization of Ads

Those three elements are critical to the success of your paid social media efforts, whether you know anything about advertising on social media—which I’m guessing you do.

We’ll go through how iOS 14 affects the Facebook advertising environment and provide you with a few pointers on how to optimize your campaigns moving forward within the constraints of iOS 14.

What Did the iOS 14 Update Actually Do?

Simply defined, Apple has reduced the amount of user activity that advertisers and app developers may track.

Cookies are not used on mobile devices the way they are on desktop computers. Instead, Apple provides something called IDFA (Identifier for Advertisers). Every iOS device is assigned a unique, entirely random ID number known as IDFA (Identifier for Advertisers). IDFA also allows you to monitor activity in apps. IDFA does not store any personally identifiable information (PII), and it may be deleted by the user at any time.

On April 26, 2021, Apple delivered the iOS 14.5 upgrade, which disabled IDFA by default. That implies that each user will have to individually enable each app for IDFA to be enabled.

Another way to look at it is that the user will encounter this prompt.

IMAGE IMAGE IMAGE

Approximately 17% of people globally are opting into tracking, and 10% of American users have opted in, which is obviously a very low number, and a large challenge for advertisers.

This is the new reality for marketers, whether they like it or not. So, how will this change our advertising efforts?

How iOS 14 Impacts Facebook and Instagram Ads

Any reputable Facebook media buyer will confirm that performance has gone down since the April 26 iOS 14 upgrade. And this is a big deal for Facebook—the company has run multiple full-page adverts in publications like The New York Times to voice their disapproval of Apple’s decision, as well as creating a comprehensive help page on their site.

As stated earlier, the Apple update has had an impact on three key aspects of the Facebook advertising platform: targeting, reporting, and optimization. I’ll go through all three aspects in the following subsections.

Targeting

Lookalike audiences and retargeting have long been a mainstay of advanced Facebook advertising, but they’ve lately become less popular or ineffective.

The problem with retargeting is self-evident: since the vast majority of iOS users are opting out of tracking, your target audiences will be a lot smaller. If your advertising campaign was heavily reliant on retargeting website visits, you’ve probably seen a significant fall in performance. In the following section, we’ll look at how to overcome

Lookalike audiences based on data sources, such as pixel conversions (such as purchases or leads), are no longer being tracked accurately either. As a result, the quality of your lookalike audiences have most likely dropped, and so has your associated ad performance.

Reporting

Advertisers have used Facebook Pixel conversion statistics like ROAS and CPA to assess the success of their campaigns. Most advertisers have witnessed wild variances in these metrics as a result of iOS 14.5’s release.

Apple has also stated that the Private Click Measurement (PCM) protocol will result in a three-day delay in attribution data from iOS 14.5 users. This affects advertisers’ data significantly, as conversions from IOS users are reported with a long delay.

Optimization

As you probably know, sophisticated Facebook advertisers have used the algorithm to aid in the optimization of their campaigns. In other words, you give the algorithm data— conversions from your advertising—and it automatically displays ads to consumers who are comparable to those who have converted before.

With iOS 14, this approach is likely to fall flat. One reason is that Apple now restricts Facebook advertisers to eight “conversion events” per website, which means there are less data points for the algorithm to consider during optimization. This will have a significant impact on smaller advertisers who lack access to large quantities data due to limited advertising budgets.

So, there you have it — the annoying news. However, you may still do a lot to keep your campaigns on track.

5 Actions You Can Take to Combat iOS 14

If you’re ready to take action and address the concerns caused by iOS 14, here are a few ideas for you.

1. Verify you domain

Use the instructions in this article to validate all of your Facebook Business Manager domains. This is a hint to Facebook that you are authentic, so if you have any account difficulties, it will be beneficial.

2. Use re-engagement audiences

The data from Facebook users who are still active on the site allows marketers to create re-engagement audiences. These include targeting individuals who have engaged with your content or Page in the past, people who have watched one of your videos, and individuals who have clicked on an ad.

If third-party data is unavailable or limited, you may always attempt your luck with Facebook’s own first-party data.

3. Explore new audiences via whitelisting

If your Pixel lookalike audiences are no longer returning results, test Lookalikes based on the followings of your influencers. To gain access to their followers / audiences, you’ll have to use whitelisting, which comes with a slew of other advantages.

4. Develop fresh ad creative featuring UGC

If you don’t have a lot of targeting choices, one of the most effective ways to improve your results is to improve the creatives for your Facebook ads. Incorporating user generated content (UGC) into your ad creative works for a lot of brands when it comes to ROAS.

Trying out a variety of types of UGC, from unboxing films to product evaluations to lifestyle photographs, will help you A/B test various ideas and see how your users react to the content.

5. Implement the Conversions API

Since many of the problems are due to the Facebook Pixel itself, you may input data directly from the server to Facebook using the Conversions API. Such implementation require tech resources; however, there are numerous guides for how to use the Conversion API, and the implementations is not too complex.

Local E-Commerce Payment Methods To Consider When Internationalizing

Understanding the best payment options for online enterprises targeting a global audience is critical, yet in order to sell in certain local areas, you must first understand how preferences differ from one region to the next. Some markets, for example, have a stronger preference for cards, whereas others prefer eWallets.

There are numerous methods of payment which are used globally, which aren’t necessarily similar to the “usual suspects”, which I’ve written an article about here.

In a country, local payment methods can vary from 10% to 50%, so keep that in mind when building an E-Commerce presence in a new market, especially if it’s an “exotic” territory compared to your home market.

Europe

In general, most European buyers prefer cards or eWallets for their online purchases, with different markets showing distinct preferences for certain online payment methods.

PayPal is popular in Germany, with 32% of online consumers using it. In comparison, just 16% of French customers use PayPal. Germans are also quite fond of SEPA Direct debit, which they utilize for one-time and recurring payments alike. SOFORT and Klarna is also very popular in the German market.

In the Netherlands, iDEAL is the most popular payment option, with 44% of consumers selecting it as 2Checkout’s 2019 digital benchmarks report shows. It comes as no surprise that online customers like iDEAL, a standard internet banking-based payment method with a high adoption rate on the internet.

By contrast, in countries with a lower banking penetration, such as Russia, eWallets are more widely embraced. In Russia, payment methods include Qiwi wallet, Yandex Money and WebMoney.

Shoppers in France, which has a high degree of banking penetration, may pick their cards. However, as a merchant, you must still be aware of their preferences. According to 2Checkout’s benchmark research, 14% of customers here prefer Cart Bancaire, a local payment option that is only available in this market.

In Turkey, 17% of consumers prefer local credit cards, but they do so because these local credit cards have installment capabilities. Here, 80% of card transactions are done using installment cards.

North America and Latin America

In the Americas, credit cards and debit cards continue to be the most popular online payment methods, with over 50% market share in each region. Beyond cards, however, preferences differ considerably.

Most North Americans use their PayPal or other preferred digital wallet, whereas most South Americans rely on a local credit card with installments. In Brazil, for example, almost a third of internet buyers opt for local credit cards with installments. If you’re selling on the Brazilian market but haven’t set up Boleto Bancario payments yet, it’s time to call it a day. Brazilian consumers use a variety of alternative payment options, with 13% paying with their Boleto Bancario and 28% utilizing local credit cards that include payments. Only 20% of the cards in use here support foreign currencies, so unless your payment provider accepts these payments, you’ll need a Brazilian business partner to have a strong positioning in the market.

Asia Pacific

In the Asia-Pacific region, mobile/digital wallets are preferred by more than half of all online transactions.

When it comes to digital wallets, and shopping through mobile, Chinese consumers are the most enthusiastic, with AliPay and WeChat Pay taking up the majority of the entire market. They have over 1 billion users, a penetration rate of over 90%, and a market share of well over 90% between them. Alipay has 520 million active users; WeChatPay has 300 million active users per month, meaning that if you are to operate in the Chinese digital space, it is a prerequisite to have one or both of these payment methods. Asia Pacific’s second-favorite method is bank transfers, which follow cards.

In Japan, more than 5% of people prefer Konbini, a cash-based payment method that allows customers to place orders online and then pay in a convenience store. This is in particular a payment option which is used by individuals who don’t hold a credit card, as they can pay with cash in their local convenience store. The convinence stores include – but are not limited to – 7/11, FamilyMart and Lawson. JCB payments are also very popular among the Japanese consumers, with the card’s large usage – more than 55 million JCB cards are in use in the country.

Africa

Due to the fact that a large part of African internet customers do not have access to conventional banking services, mobile payments and e-wallets as an alternative online payment approach are becoming more popular in these areas.

Mobile wallets are popular among buyers in Africa who purchase online, yet cash on delivery is preferred in countries like Egypt, while others still use prepaid cards.

The 7 Most Common Online Payment Options

One of the most important – and to many, most difficult – task you’ll face as a business looking to expand into E-Commerce markets in different geographical locations is determining which online payments are used most often. Knowing which online payment option is best for each respective market you want to enter is critical, since customers are substantially more likely to complete a purchase if they’re offered the right payment methods

I am sure you’re aware of how popular credit cards and PayPal are, but can your organization really satisfy the demands of all audiences you’re seeking to reach? If you only take the aforementioned two payment methods into considerations, then I can assure you that you won’t fulfill all customer expectations when it comes to payment methods.

Let’s take a deeper look into the best payment options online to see if you’re making any mistakes, or if you’re fully covered.

International E-Commerce payment methods

Consumers nowadays want to see a variety of payment options available on the websites of online retailers, so they can pick the one that best fits their needs. To appeal to the broadest audience, you must ensure that your site offers support for the most popular payment methods online – both on a global level, but also in markets where more localized solutions are a must.

If you’re casting a wide net and want to include any of the planet’s 4.6 billion internet users, your payment option list should certainly include:

1. Credit & debit cards

Credit and debit cards are still one of the most popular online purchasing options across the world, although their market share has been declining in recent years due to eWallets. Cards made up more than 35% of all E-Commerce transactions worldwide in 2020 and are expected to decline towards 2024 according to Statista. Cards have a stronger preference in longer established E-Commerce markets such as Europe and North America.

The popularity of cards as online payment methods was helped by the security benefits they offered – card transactions have been governed for decades by global and regional compliance standards as well as consumer protections enforced by payment processors, such as those upheld by Mastercard, American Express, and Visa.

In Western markets, credit cards have a slightly more obvious preference vs debit cards, owing to their additional capabilities. Some consumers are encouraged to use credit cards to participate in bank reward programs, for example. In the US, particularly, credit card spending influences a user’s credit rating and adds to the incentive of using it as an online payment option.

Card’s position as the number one solution in consumer preferences for E-Commerce payment methods has been challenged substantially in recent years, which will also be outlined in the following sections.

2. eWallets

eWallets, also known as digital wallets, are a type of online payment method that is quickly becoming one of the most popular ways to pay for goods and services across B2C E-Commerce sites all around the world. By 2022, eWallets are expected to account for half of all global eCommerce sales.

Using an eWallet, you can pay for items without applying your credit card. Instead of customers have to enter their bank account information, they are redirected from the checkout to the eWallet’s site where they simply has to log in using their username and password to finish a transaction.

PayPal (mainly in the West), AliPay (particularly popular in Asia Pacific), ApplePay, GooglePay, WeChat, or Venmo are the most common digital wallets. eWallets may also be used with mobile wallets to take advantage of a smartphone’s biometric capabilities, which allow consumers to authenticate faster and complete their transactions faster.

3. Bank transfers

Customers may pay using their bank account and funds directly. It is seen as having a higher level of security because transactions are authenticated through the user’s bank. In essence, when chosen as payment option during checkout, a bank transfer sends the customer to their internet banking site, where they must log in and authorize the transaction.

In 2020, around 8% of worldwide E-Commerce transaction volumes were paid with bank transfers, which was mostly used in Europe.

4. Buy now, pay later

Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) is a relatively new online payment method that has seen tremendous growth in the previous two years. This is a form of instant lending that more and more young consumers are seeking out.

Customers may choose to pay later, over time, without having to open a credit card for this when opting for this option. According to reports, availability of this choice at checkout has been able to persuade 30% more customers into finalizing a transaction that they would have otherwise abandoned.

Despite the fact that this alternative payment approach is still in its early stages, with just over 2% of global E-Commerce transactions in 2020, it is anticipated to grow rapidly in the coming years. Some of the payment providers which offers this payment options include SplitIt, Klarna, Bread, Viabill, and Afterpay. For more information about, I encourage you to read the following article.

5. Prepaid cards

Alternatives to credit and debit cards include prepaid cards, which are popular among unbanked people and minors, allowing users to choose a specific amount of money on the card that they can spend online when shopping.

Prepaid cards are yet to experience significant penetration in the E-Commerce market, with just about 1% of all global E-Commerce transactions currently using them. Some of the most popular prepaid cards chosen by customers include Mint or Paysafecard, which have a limited usage among users. Gaming is one industry where this payment method has seen increased use.

6. Cash On Delivery

A “cash on delivery” transaction is one in which payment is made upon delivery rather than at the time of order. Although the term “COD” commonly refers to cash on delivery, it may also refer to collect on delivery. You do not have to provide a cash payment. You may offer the amount owed with any sort of payment that the merchant or delivery company accepts, such as a credit card or money order. The payment method took up a bit more than 3% of global E-Commerce transactions in 2020, and is expected to decline quite significantly in the coming years.

The payment method is especially used in developing countries, where the fraud rate on online transactions can be quite high in certain markets.

7. Electronic checks

Acceptance of e-checks, which are subject to ACH rules, entails drawing money from a checking account. The payment is authorized directly from the user’s internet bank account and carried out in the same manner as paper checks, but quicker.

Electronic checks are popular among American companies with large sales volumes and a high average order values, as they are seen as an inexpensive online payment option. E-checks were the first Internet-based payments used by the US Treasury to make major online purchases, which may explain their popularity in areas where the payment values are very high.

Trust Badges That Will Most Certainly Increase Your Conversion Rate

Abandoned shopping carts are one of the most frustrating things to witness as an online brand. We’ve all done it; we’ve gone online, browsed around, added certain products to our basket, and then not completed the transaction at the end. We abandoned our shopping carts with goods still inside. It’s similar to going grocery shopping, putting items in your cart, then walking away leaving the products in the basket.

Shopping cart abandonment can occur for a variety of causes. According to Barilliance, online merchants lose, on average, 75% of their revenue to shopping cart abandonment. Statista discovered in 2015 that 15% of lost sales were due to security concerns. According to the Baymard Institute, the proportion of lost sales increased to 19% in 2017 for the same reason. This growth emphasizes how essential online security is to most customers.

Simply gaining the confidence of your consumers would allow you to potentially increase your sales by ten percent or more, as demonstrated by this example. For some of you, it may not appear to be much, but it’s a significant gain.

Surprisingly, it is a simple fix.

So, how do you build trust with your consumers? You may begin by using trust badges. Read on to learn about the top five trust badges that may help you improve your conversion rate.

A trust badge – what is that?

A trust badge is a small graphic that you display on your website to convey trust. They’re typically seen during the checkout process, but more and more stores are putting them on their landing or homepage pages. They’re simple elements that may increase sales and user satisfaction with your website.

These trust badges (but not always) come with security measures to safeguard payment card and personal information. The Secure Sockets Layer, or SSL, is a complex internet safety mechanism that encrypts data sent over the web. In general, trust seals are granted when these secure technology is in place.

You can determine if a website you’re visiting is using an SSL security protocol by looking for the little lock symbol next to the URL, or by comparing that the web address begins with HTTPS rather than HTTP. However, not everyone knows this, which is why displaying the trust seal on your site is so crucial.

Types of “Trust Badges”

There are five different sorts of website badges that you can use on your website. Each one has a specific meaning and purpose. You may pick the trust badges to employ on your site depending on the intended result.

Below, you’ll find explanations for five different kinds of trust icon, as well as examples of each and how to acquire them.

1. Safe Checkout Related Badge

The site badge may be the most essential of the five. These are the badges you earn when you join up with a firm that offers an SSL certificate. SSL stands for Secure Socket Layer, and it’s a little bit technical, but in essence, it secures all internet connections and data flowing between them.

If you put a trust indicator on your site, it implies that the checkout process is secure and safe, that data is encrypted, and that your customers’ identity or credit card information will not be stolen. Introducing this level of confidence in your organization will have a significant impact on your overall conversions.

Using the most trusted and recognized secure checkout badges will quickly boost your consumers’ confidence in you. The SSL badge from Symantec is considered the most well-known and trusted SSL badge there is. VeriSign, Norton, and LifeLock are all under the control of Symantec. All of these names are well-known and reputable certificates.

PayPal is another well-known and trusted security solution. You can get PayPal protection just like Symantec, and you’ll get the recognized security badge for your site in the process.

Shopify is another example of a well-known SSL provider. If you set up an ecommerce store on Shopify, you’ll get integrated SSL certificates right away. Customers who buy from a Shopify shop know that their personal information will be kept safe.

The first three examples are of trust badges that must be purchased, however there are free SSL certificate alternatives such as Flywheel or Cloudflare. Keep in mind, though, that because they are known, one of the reasons safe checkout protection charms perform so effectively is due to brand recognition. Brand awareness plays a significant role in establishing trust.

Place these badges next to your “Add To Cart” buttons and at the end of your checkout process. They must be distinct in order for their purpose to be effective. They may also be shown on the bottom of your landing page or homepage.

2. Accepted Payment Badges

Seeing a company that you know instills more confidence than anything else. That’s precisely what these trust badges are designed for. Having Visa, Mastercard, and PayPal acceptance marks as valid payment options on your website may increase the level of trust in it without requiring a lot of effort.

According to a study by ConversionXL, which included 1,000 respondents, Visa-Mastercard was chosen by 42 percent of participants as the most recognized brand and PayPal was voted as the most trustworthy. In addition, ConversionXL claims that “the hypothesis that familiarity accurately predicts a population’s perception of safety is generally accepted. In most cases, greater knowledge result in a stronger sense of security.

The best thing about these trust badges is that they are both free and simple to obtain. Visa has a Verified By Visa merchant program that allows you to obtain a Visa Vericated badge for your site, which will improve confidence and conversion rates if you join up.

Badges are often seen at the bottom of each webpage on your website. They don’t have to be in the spotlight or venerated in any way.

3. Third-Party Endorsements

Third-party endorsements can help your consumers trust you by demonstrating that you are credible. Before receiving the badge, these programs generally include an application procedure and a site evaluation.

The Better Business Bureau Accredited Business badge is one of the most trusted badges available. According to the Better Business Bureau, 173 million people search BBB.org each year for current business profiles in order to verify their ratings. After you’ve earned this badge, your consumers can click a button to confirm your accreditation.

The Google Trusted Store symbol is also a well-known and trusted badge. Please note that the Google Trusted Store badge will be phased out in favor of the Customer Reviews badge. The Generation Y group (under 30 years old) in the ConversionXL study recognized and trusted the Google trust seals over the Better Business Bureau.

To obtain the Google trust seal, you must first submit an application and fulfill the criteria laid out by Google. After purchasing items from your business, clients will begin receiving surveys. After Google thinks the reviews are adequate, you get a badge.

You may be wondering why you’d bother with these trust badges. Although they take a little extra effort and time, they are well worth it, and they can help you improve conversions on your online store. It’s a simple way for you to display your excellent ratings without having to worry about them looking fake or cheesy.

Consider it this way: if you’re looking at a product on Amazon.com and see that it has excellent ratings, you’re more likely to buy it than if the same thing has no ratings. The same goes for your ecommerce site. Consumers are more inclined to do business with you if they know that others have had a wonderful experience with you.

The trust badges are usually positioned near the bottom of the website and are generally larger than accepted payment badges.

4. Money-Back Guarantee Badges

This badge, sometimes known as the “Homemade Special,” is completely free and continues to foster trust with your online consumers. You may either make these badges yourself or purchase ready-made versions if you don’t have the graphic design skills.

Sales increased by more than 32% over an 11-day period for an internet learning firm, according to a “30 day money back guarantee” experiment conducted by Visual Website Optimizer.

The objective of the trust badge is to help consumers overcome their anxiety and avoid worrying about making a purchase online, which is one of the most common causes of conversion rate issues. This confidence badge does not address website security like the SSL and safe checkout badges do, but it does offer assurance that you have your clients’ backs in its own way. They feel safer and are therefore more inclined to buy from you as a result of it.

This is the type of trust badge that should be proudly displayed, since your consumers may not pay attention to it if it isn’t. These badges are frequently positioned near the Add To Cart button or the Checkout button in the same region as the safe checkout badge.

5. Free Shipping and Returns Badge

The free trust icon, which is a badge that informs your clientele that you provide free delivery and/or returns through your online store, is the third option. The “Free Shipping” or “Free Returns” badge may convey trust and a sense of safety to your consumers, removing some of the inherent risk associated with purchasing online. It draws attention to your store policy and exceptional client service.

This trust badge should be added close to the money back guarantee badges.

It’s natural for customers to be hesitant about providing personal information on the internet. With so many data breaches and identity theft being such a big topic of discussion these days, it’s easy to see why consumers are cautious about their online transactions. This is why establishing their confidence is so important to us. We realize that your time is valuable, and some of these trust badges may take work and money to acquire, but the increased sales and ROI will make it worthwhile.

Why Is Site Speed So Crucial? Conversions, Loyalty, and Google Search Ranking Are Affected by It

Ecommerce success is highly dependent on the speed of your site. It has a direct impact on conversion rates, repeat business, and search engine rankings – and it will be even more important over time, when Google Search ranking changes take place.

Let’s look at why site speed is so crucial, how it will become an important component of Google Search rankings, and how you may enhance your site’s speed.

What is Site Speed?

When a customer enters a café or a restaurant, slow service from the staff very often results in poor customer service reviews and a negative word of mouth (WOM). Similarly, slow site speed on your website can result in bad rankings on search engines, negative user experiences, and overall lower site traffic.

A visitor’s experience with your website, also known as website speed, is defined by how quickly a browser can load fully functional webpages from your site. Users may click away from websites that take too long to load. Sites that load rapidly, on the other hand, are more likely to receive traffic and convert better.

Why is the speed of your website so crucial?

Lower Bounce Rate

Site speed is a sliding scale that ranges from 0 to 100, with 0 representing the slowest and most problematic sites and 100 representing the fastest and best performing ones. According to Pingdom, sites that load in two seconds have an average bounce rate of 9%, whereas those that take five seconds have a 38 percent bounce rate. Hence, the faster your website is, the larger base of customers you’ll have that will move further onwards throughout the purchasing funnel.

Conversion

As mentioned above, the quicker a website is, the lower its bounce rate will be – meaning the greater its conversion rates. According to Google, a one-second improvement in site speed may improve mobile conversions by up to 27%. And with 70% of customers buying on their phones, poor site performance has the potential to severely damage your revenue. Even if a customer doesn’t bounce during the first interaction of the website, then there’s still a high likelihood for this to happen if the site speed is bad throughout the complete customer journey.

Google Search ranking

Higher ranks on search engines like Google help your company attract more prospective consumers. As of January 2021, Google uses site speed as a ranking criterion for search results. Starting in May 2021, sites that are faster will rank even higher on Google, making them simpler for new consumers to locate.

Loyalty (repeat customers)

“It’s cheaper to persuade current clients to make a repeat purchase than it is to attract new consumers,” right? This is something that many businesses probably believe. Site speed does, however, have a significant impact here. In fact, Skilled discovered that when customers are “dissatisfied” with the site’s performance, there’s a 79% chance that they won’t come back again. So speed can have a very important effect on your customers’ lifetime value (LTV).

Site speed updates to Google Search ranking

Google Search’s goal is to assist people in finding the most relevant and high-quality websites on the internet. It accomplishes this by employing a ranking algorithm, which aims to sort through billions of web pages and connect users with what they’re searching for.

Since May 2021, the Google search ranking started to include new page experience signals. These fresh signals integrate Core Web Vitals with current search indicators to measure how people think a website is; they examine how quickly users believe your site is.

Core Web Vitals are user-centric metrics that serves to help users perceive a page as fast:

  1. Largest Contentful Paint is the metric that measures how quickly a website loads. This statistic indicates whether a website is useful by measuring how long it takes for the majority of the page’s main content to load.
  2. The First Input Delay (FID) test is used to evaluate how interactive a website is. The time between when a user first interacts with a page, such as by clicking hyperlinked text or a button, and when the browser can actually respond to that interaction is recorded and measured in milliseconds.
  3. The Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) is used to evaluate the visual stability of a website. This metric ensures that users have the best experience possible by tracking how often users are subjected to an unexpected layout change.

What does all of this imply for your business? As a result of increasing the speed of your website, you will be able to rank higher in Google Search and be discovered by more prospective consumers.

How to improve your site speed

Online stores created on Shopify are already fast by default, with a quick global network and lightweight picture files. However, adding new features to your online business—such as videos, multimedia products, live chats, or consumer reviews, for example—can slow down your site speed and reduce your Google Search ranking.

Follow these measures to increase your website’s speed:

  1. Recognize your present site speed. Check out the online store performance report in your admin to see how fast your site is currently loading.
  2. Make continuous site speed improvements. There are a lot of tools which can help you identify places where you can optimize your site speed. The state of perfection more or less never exists – there are always areas where you can enhance the load time.
  3. Repeat the process! When making any modifications to your online store, keep site speed in the top of your mind. Keep track of your speed score and implement changes as needed to always be optimized for conversion, loyalty, and Google Search rankings.

8 Things To Do When Internationalizing Your E-Commerce Business

Internationalizing your E-Commerce business can sound like a substantial project, especially when you want to localize your activities in all the new markets that you are about to enter. However, due to the substantial improvements which have taken place from a operational and technological point of view in the past decade, creating a global infrastructure for your E-Commerce business does not have to be as complex as it may sound – and you (and your team) don’t necessarily have to even leave your current physical location to realize the project.

Things to Consider When Internationalizing Your E-Commerce Business

1. Bespoke Website for Each New Market

Similarly to other major successful E-Commerce business (e.g., Amazon, Zalando, Asos, THG) I definitely suggest that you should develop a localised website for each market in which your firm operates. By fulfilling various requirements for each website (which will be outlined in the next sections) the idea is to create localized consumer facing experiences which will make the customers comfortable as their shopping experience resembles the experiences of actually shopping on a local website from a national company. The localised setup will naturally increase confidence and trust, and thereby the appurtenant conversion rate on the website – even though that and your company might not be physically present in the country form which the consumer is from.

2. Local Languages

By launching a new country-specific website in the local language, it will be easier for the national consumers to navigate around on the site. Think about yourself: Assuming you are from an English speaking country, you would most likely not visit and shop on a website in an Italian or Spanish language. It’s the same mentality in most Non-English countries. Even though the English language in many ways is seen as an ‘international standard’, consumers from Non-English speaking countries still very much prefer to shop on websites in their local language. If you already have an English flagship website, then you don’t necessarily have to hire – say – a Spanish person to be able to launch a Spanish store. Your master information from the English page can easily be translated through freelancers whom you can create a close partnership with. In many countries where local marketing channels doesn’t necessarily have to be used to grow an online business, one English speaking E-Commerce Manager will be able to manage several localized stores through a network of external or internal translators.

3. Local Currencies

Adding the local currency does naturally increase the conversion rate as consumers always prefer to shop in their natural currency. It’s a habit. Even though the credit card fees might be the same, it’s almost certain that 10 out of 10 would always pick his / her national currency in a transaction, if it’s available. For this reason, it is always suggested to launch the local currency on every local sub-site which you may launch. If you only have one master store, then it is suggested to have multiple currencies on that store – ideally covering all the markets which the website has a present in.

4. Local Payment Methods

Similarly to the local currencies, local payment methods will also reduce the checkout abandonment, thereby increasing the conversion rate on your website. Alternative Payment Methods (APM’s) – also known as digital wallets – have become of substantial importance in the past years, and in some countries it is in fact close to impossible to build an E-Commerce business which only accepts credit cards and other more basic payment solutions like Paypal. In China, the majority of the transactions do as an example take place through Alipay, WeChat Pay and a few other APM’s – more than 50% of all transactions do in fact take place through APM’s. So regardless of where in the world you’re launching, make sure to implement the right APM’s from the very beginning, as this will enhance your conversion flow. A separate article will be written on APM’s at a later stage.

5. Local TLDs – Country Level Domains

So this one is actually tricky. Whether to launch a localized E-Commerce setup through Top-Level Domains (TLD’s) or subfolders have always been a large discussion point in the E-Commerce community. However, I’ve always been a strong advocate of a localized setup through TLD’s – and here is why. When using a country level domain structure (i.e., when a German website as an example uses the .de domain, a French uses the .fr domain, and a Korean uses the .co.kr domain) the presumption of consumers is usually that they are shopping from a national company. A foundation for the store is here created, where consumers can feel completely comfortable, as the domain structure doesn’t deviate from the local competitors. This is the absolute most important tricker to facilitate conversions; that is, trust. Having just one .com website, which then has several other languages in a dropdown is also a good solution, but will never be the same a launching a local store with a TLD. With people becoming more digital and e-commerce savvy over time, the importance of TLD’s will slowly vanish, but for now I would still very much do it. The main downside is of course, that you’ll have multiple stores that are separated from one another when launching them with local TLD’s, and this means that your SEO strategy in particular have to be executed on a more granular level.

6. Local Logistics Partners

As a function of the rapid adoption of E-Commerce in the past decade, consumers expectations towards your service level have also sky rocketed. In the past years, the delivery times have been reduced exponentially on a year on year basis, now reaching a level where many brands have same-day delivery in certain markets. Having a one week delivery time is simply just not acceptable any longer, which is why it is very important to establish an adequate operational infrastructure from day zero. The good news is that most international courier companies now have established a global infrastructure which allows them to ship goods cross-border from one day to another, meaning that local storage for fast deliveries isn’t a necessity anymore. Large brands such as Zalando, The Hut Group, and others, fulfill a global demand from just a few warehouses globally. In fact, I’ve once worked for a brand which generated +£100 million in a country, without having any local storage our people situated in the country. The point here is that you can create an international e-commerce setup with just a few warehouses globally – even one is enough in the beginning – the only requirement is just that you find a 3PL partner which has good agreements with courier partners that can deliver to all your core markets within a short time period.

7. Local Customer Service

Having a customer service function which is localized for your core markets is very important to consider early on in your internationalization journey, in the markets where the average English language skills of your target customers aren’t very high. Of course, if your brand primarily targets English speaking markets, as well as markets where the target consumers on average have adequate English language skills (e.g., Scandinavia, Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, and the like) then an English speaking customer service agent can be sufficient. However, if you enter various different markets, where the target consumers don’t have adequate English language skills, then customer service agents for each of these markets will become important. If you are a part of a company which have limited capital, then it is recommended to use other functions internally for this work stream on an initial basis, where the “pressure” from the consumers isn’t very high. In case you have a Country Manager or Market Manager structure in your company, then these functions can manage the customer service work stream in the initially, whereafter local agents can be hired internally or externally when the amount of tickets / inquiries exceeds a certain level.

8. Local Campaign Strategy

A local pricing and campaign strategy can be crucial for your success when localizing, especially if you are internationalizing across multiple territories which are very different from a cultural perspective. Establishing prices for your product(s) / service(s) is more an art than a science, and the campaigns which you may be running from time to time will differ substantially if the markets that you operate in vary a lot.