Recurring payments: Attract customers and improve conversion with Credential-on-File transactions

November 25, 2019
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Artur Zaremba, Account Management Team Lead at ECOMMPAY
Arthur Zaremba
Customer Relations Team Lead at ECOMMPAY

Consumers value quick, simple solutions. Luckily, payment service providers assist eCommerce merchants in facilitating a smooth, streamlined user experience by connecting technologies like recurring payments, payments in one click, and an optimised checkout page. ECOMMPAY’s Arthur Zaremba, Customer Relations Team Lead, shares insights on how conversion can be bolstered by introducing recurring or repeat payments.

Quick repeat transactions

Customer-Initiated Credential on File (CI COF) is a type of payment that enables a merchant to save their customer’s card data upon receiving consent. Consent can be provided when the customer makes their first purchase with the merchant in question. If consent is granted, the customer data is securely stored and accessed if the same customer wishes to make another purchase from the same merchant. The first payment may require completion of a one-time 3D-Secure identification procedure, such as entering a code received by text message, but all further COF payments require just a single click. This sort of payment scenario is most relevant for industries offering inexpensive items that tend to be purchased spontaneously (e.g. online games or items of clothing).

Used by well-known outlets, such as Aliexpress or Yoox, the OneClick Payment technology is quickly gaining popularity. Regular customers prefer to entrust their card details to the merchant rather than look for their physical card every time they make a purchase. The data is secure, reliably stored by payment service providers using encryption and tokenisation technologies.

OneClick Payments streamline the checkout process, increasing the number of repeat visits and repeat purchases. Consequently, customer loyalty and customer lifetime revenues also increase.

Automatic debiting for recurring payments

Merchant-Initiated Credential on File (MI COF) are payments based on the agreement between merchant and consumer that the latter party will pay a certain sum every month (or any other period of time, as per the agreement). In this case, the payments are initiated by the merchant. This method is commonly used in subscription services or in the automatic crediting of a customer account (with an IP telephony provider, for example) once a certain limit is reached.

The schedule of subscription charges and automatic recurring payments should correspond to local consumer preferences. That is to say, the most convenient payment schemes depend on regional factors: when residents of a particular country or area receive their salary, for instance.

For the merchant, an obvious advantage of this approach is that the risk of a customer’s failure to make a payment due to the lack of funds on their account will be minimised.

Optimised checkout

For the abovementioned payment instruments to work efficiently and effectively, consumers must trust the eCommerce store from where they intend to make a purchase. The webpage or app must feature a clear, customer-friendly payment page capable of validating the data entered. For instance, the space in which customers will enter their card number should only accept numeric values, so that if a customer starts typing their name instead of their card number, the system will not accept it.

The design of the payment page should also be easily adaptable to the website or application on which it is displayed. Checkout must be concise, intuitive, and not overloaded with unnecessary logos and/or information.

A useful tool is a dynamic list of payment methods. When a customer selects the payment method with which they intend to complete a purchase, their previously selected options will be at the top of the list. For future purchases, this dynamic list of payment methods will automatically adjust to the customer’s region and offer the most relevant payment options.

Technology, especially repeat or recurring payments, assists the eCommerce merchant in driving conversion and customer loyalty. In summary, any payment model based on saved card data, coupled with an intuitive payment page and effective security measures, offers an excellent resource for increasing customer lifetime spend and, ultimately, merchant revenues.

For more information, please contact our regional experts.

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