By Emily King, Commercial Director, Tug
Digital payments are surging in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the CEO of Clear Junction reporting a 9000%+ increase in transaction volumes over the past year alone. The trend is only set to continue, with Accenture predicting that over 400 billion transactions worth US$7 trillion globally will shift from cash to cards and digital payments by 2023.
But not all businesses are satisfied with their current payment solution provider (PSP). A recent study reveals that while the majority of UK business leaders believe the right payment technology is critical to the success of their company, 90% are experiencing issues with their current solution and over half plan to make a switch in the next six months.
These circumstances present an enormous opportunity for PSPs to gain new business by targeting companies that are dissatisfied with their current payment solution, but only if they can make their product visible and accessible. The survey indicates that 34% of decision-makers experience difficulty identifying the best payment solution, with over a quarter confused by the plethora of options available and one in five struggling to understand how payment solutions work.
PSPs can address these issues using a digital marketing strategy that spans the many channels decision-makers value and visit. Only then can they boost online visibility and drive real business advantage, ensuring their solution is the clear choice in an increasingly competitive market.
Optimising online search
Business leaders are, of course, incredibly time-poor, so PSPs need to make sure their solutions are quick and easy to find online – particularly when you consider that 41% use online search when looking for a new payment solution. Yet, almost a third of decision-makers say it takes a lot of time to find the right payment solution online, while around 20% say they don’t have the time for research, so helping them find the information they need through channels such as search will significantly speed up the process.
Ideally, PSPs should combine paid search and organic search in their digital marketing plan for optimum results. By identifying keywords that have a high probability of engaging their target audience at different stages of the purchase journey, they can implement a strategy that works at all levels of the funnel. For instance, they can target keywords and phrases that relate to specific pain points for upper funnel search, and focus on brand and product terms for lower funnel search where decision-makers have a clearer idea of what they are looking for.
Embracing digital advertising
Paid media is another way to help business leaders find payment solutions quickly and easily, and decision-makers are more than twice as likely to look at digital advertising than print, according to the survey. The most widely used sources when looking for a new payment solution are financial and IT media, so ad placements in these types of online publications will help PSPs increase visibility.
The use of programmatic technology allows PSPs to automate the media buying process, enabling ads to be served to the right audiences, in the right place, at the right time. But the human touch is also vital to continually adjust ad campaigns and drive incremental improvements. PSPs must pay as much attention to ad creative as to placement, ensuring ads address how their payment solution can make business processes quicker and more efficient, rather than just showcasing the product’s features.
Making use of finfluencers
The role of financial influencers, also known as ‘finfluencers’, in guiding business decisions should not be underestimated. In fact, over a quarter of the survey’s respondents say they use financial blogs and influencers to find information on payment solutions. Collaborating with influencers can therefore be a highly effective way for PSPs to raise awareness, as long as they find people that align with their brand and post content that is relevant and useful for their target audience. As well as being genuine, engaging and authentic, influencers need to be specialists in the payment solutions niche, with in-depth subject knowledge.
PSPs can work with finfluencers to create easy-to-follow short-format content, which quickly tells business leaders everything they need to know. This could include video clips and simple graphics that are used to illustrate product features or deliver competitor comparisons.
Improving the on-site experience
Using search, digital advertising, and influencers to drive website traffic is just the start of the story – PSPs also need to optimise the on-site experience. According to the survey, almost 20% of decision-makers have difficulty navigating payment solution websites, making it unlikely that they will select a platform from these providers.
PSPs can address this issue by using conversion rate optimisation (CRO) to ensure their websites are accessible, simple to navigate, and fast to load. They can also cut-down on clutter and make sure each page has a strong call to action, with a clear route to conversion – whether that’s an information request, a contact form, or a sign up process. They can use blogs or other content to answer common questions, explaining how the solution meets business leaders’ needs, makes their lives easier, and improves their company’s bottom line, rather than focussing too heavily on product features. Delivering a positive overall online experience promotes interaction, engagement, and ultimately conversion.
Looking ahead, it’s clear the digital payments boom is only going to escalate, meaning many business leaders will look to change their PSP to garner the best results for their organisation. This opens up valuable opportunities for PSPs to attract the attention of decision-makers and position their payment solutions well. By implementing an effective digital marketing strategy that combines search, digital advertising, influencer collaborations, and an enhanced on-site experience, PSPs can gain a real advantage over their competitors and make the most of the digital payments boom.