by Shannon Martin
Research on the spending habits of typical consumers indicate that people who have credit cards are more likely to use them than other forms of payment. Typically, card holders purchase 2.5 times the number of products or amount of services as their non-credit card buying counterparts. This not only speaks to a degree of impulse shopping from credit card holders, which increases potential revenue for your business, but it also suggests that consumers feel safer when they pay with a credit card. The electronic nature of the card transaction suggests easier returns or the handling of other disputes. Simply put, people think it's easier to "get their money back" when they pay with a card or by some other electronic means.
In a practical sense for the business, credit card transaction processing occurs in real time. There's less trouble involved with managing the accounts receivable, and your business is more physically secure with less cash on-site. If you deal with foreign customers and have an international merchant account, currency conversion is built in to the processing of payments. Your customers are dealing with numbers in their native currency, which are meaningful to them, and you are receiving payment in numbers meaningful to you. In terms of online transactions, companies with credit card purchase options dramatically increase their hours of operation by introducing a low-cost, automated payment solution on their website. This also leads to a broader customer base.
Working from the core concept of increased customer convenience, accepting credit card transactions is a clear benefit to your business. Consumers who use credit cards spend more money, with greater confidence. Particularly in the online environment, customers will choose to do business with a site that accepts cards over one that does not. These factors combined with emerging payment technologies tied to smart phones make facilitating credit card transactions an obvious "best strategy."
Author info: Shannon Martin of Merchantseek.com