How COVID-19 is shaping the way we shop
Platforms are a powerful force in today’s commerce landscape. They have disrupted several verticals, including retail, accommodation, transport and business services. And they have kick-started a sharing economy that has left many traditional industries reeling.
As a platform, this is an exciting time, especially as you gather speed. But of course with growth comes complexity. To begin with, the very nature of a platform is complicated; you have all the challenges of an ecommerce store, plus a whole lot more. You don’t just have customers to take care of, you have users as well – that’s twice as many stakeholders.
And, as you expand internationally, things become even more complicated. Each new market comes with its own set of challenges, from regulations to cultural nuances and payment preferences.
When you reach this stage of your business growth, optimization is everything. It is time to drill down into every component of your business, including platform payments, ensuring it’s performing at its best. This is the foundation for sustainable growth. And this is what will keep you competitive well into the future.
Here are 3 areas that hold the key to the next phase of your platform growth:
So you’ve expanded to several regions, but you’re still only accepting credit cards. This is fine for initial growth, but you’ll never reach your full potential if you don’t offer the payment methods expected by local buyers.
Diversify your payment method mix, and tailor it to local preferences.
Your next step is to diversify your payment method mix and tailor it to local preferences. But managing multiple payment methods can become unwieldy, especially if you have separate agreements, integrations and reporting for each one. The best solution is to connect via a payments partner like Adyen, which lets you manage everything in one place. That way you can see at a glance how different payment methods are performing in different markets, and optimize for the best results.
In addition to easy platform payments for your buyers, you need to consider fast payouts for your users. This is easily achieved by working with a global payments service provider (PSP) with local coverage in all key markets. With our platform payments solution Adyen for Platforms, you can pay out to users, via their preferred method. Through our international network of local bank accounts, we have excellent coverage, giving you faster payment times with local rates.
Regulatory bodies have recognized that platforms are not only here to stay, but are also becoming the new normal. Consequently, new regulations are being written with platform specifically in mind.
Work with a PSP that can process and hold funds in a compliant manner.
This means that in Europe, the days of platforms easily achieving exemptions from platform compliance are over. The new PSD2 mandates dictate that platforms, which accept platforms payments from buyers and pay out to users, are faced with two choices:
1. Take on the lengthy, and costly, task of applying for a payments license.
2. Work with a PSP that can process and hold funds in a compliant manner, taking on the regulatory burden on your behalf.
The US is also no exemption to growing regulatory requirements and you need to work with a partner that has a Money Transfer License in each state.
Adyen has a European banking license, meaning it has very strong ties with EU regulators, guaranteeing watertight compliance. On top of that, it has local knowledge of the diverse regulatory environments in Europe and the US. This frees you up to focus on your continued growth, safe in the knowledge that your business is compliant in all markets. Adyen can also take care of all Know Your Customer (KYC) requirements, from identity verification to tax filing.
Getting your processes right now will serve you well into the future.
With the right tools, you can quickly onboard new users, increase conversions and payout swiftly, splitting payments as needed. All the while keeping a laser focus on optimizing your card approval rates and blocking fraud.
Onboarding users can be a pain point for all concerned. Users balk at lengthy onboarding forms, the need to submit ID or share bank details. And manually vetting each user is a daunting task. However, compliance and KYC checks are necessary to ensure you’re not inadvertently supporting terrorism or money laundering.
The trick is to make the process as frictionless as possible. Automate as much as you can, and use an API-powered provider like Adyen that lets you integrate flows, which never leave your site.
It’s crucial that your PSP adapts to your needs, not the other way round.
When it comes to onboarding, be pragmatic; get new users up and running quickly with low entry barriers that require minimal user information. Then, increase the required details as their volume ramps up.
Of course, no two platforms are the same. While ecommerce sites tend to operate with a similar buyer flow, each platform has its own way of doing things. It’s crucial that your PSP adapts to your needs, not the other way round. For example, perhaps you have a complex beneficiary flow and you need to move funds around to multiple accounts, or you need to deduct commissions or payment fees.
So you can maximize your conversions while paving the way to future growth.
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