Image Credits: S&D Magazine

The customer experience in the retail sector is constantly evolving. Over the recent years, we’ve seen consumers in retail world search for faster and simpler ways to make purchases. Whether shopping online or in-store, innovations such as self-checkout aren’t enough anymore. Mobile Payments has emerged as a way to enhance the customer experience and edge out the competition. Since its development, mobile payments, is proving to be the most revolutionary method to date. It is fast, secure, customizable and convenient. This method of payment allows customers to pay for items without even reaching for their purses or wallets and instead, all that is required is their mobile phone. It is because of the reasons mentioned above that large retailers are already using mobile payment options like M-PESA, TigoPesa, Airtel Money, HaloPesa and more, and seeing great results. For retailer and business owners, mobile payments present a unique opportunity to connect with customers and deliver value in a more personal way. It is a payment method that can enhance their relationship with existing customers as well as be a prime reason to attract new customers. So, what’s attracting businesses to mobile payments? Here we list some key benefit of Mobile Payments to both customers and businesses;
  1. It’s Convenient To Customers & Is User friendly
One benefit of mobile payments is that consumers find it convenient and easy to use. Unlike cash payment which requires one to move from one location to another i.e. going to a utility service provider to pay for your water and electricity bills, Tv subscriptions etc, mobile payments lets you make payments anywhere, at anytime and not just during designated working hours. For businesses adapting mobile payments, the biggest advantage is that it makes it easier for customers to pay you. This payment method offer customers access to goods and services without the need for cash, credit cards, or even a checking or savings account. Indeed, while numerous individuals in many African countries do have mobile phones, they do not have bank accounts.
  1. Mobile Payments Are Safe And Secure
Another benefit of mobile payments is that its a safe and secure payment method. What makes this payment method safe is that it uses USSD technology to process the payments. Furthermore, more safety and security features like PIN and password are embedded for user authentication which prevent fraud and unauthorized usage. Due to this convenience and improved level security, mobile payment systems reduces the possibility of fraud and malicious hacking.
  1. It Improves The Customer Experience
Whether it’s buying or paying bills, customers tend to like quick services. They are typically more willing to return if they don’t have to wait a long time in line to pay for goods and services. Mobile payments are fast and can logically speed up the entire checkout process for customers, especially during peak hours and even after working hours. The payment process allow for lower wait times at checkout which, in turn, improves customer experience and eventually leads to increased profits as it allows you to accommodate more customers in the same period of time. According to some estimates, the mobile payment system is 15 seconds to 30 seconds faster than swiping a traditional card, signing the receipt or entering a PIN. This benefit of mobile payments will therefore guarantee improvement of customer experience within any business.
  1. It Improves The Cash Flow
Running any business requires an accounting system that will allow you to invoice customers, pay bills and share all your payments with the accountant. Introducing mobile payment solutions can help your business achieve a better cash flow management. Businesses can get paid by its customers in real time and unlike with cash where it’s hard to ‘follow the money’, mobile payments always leave a trail which can be traced in the digital transaction records and payment history. This benefit of mobile payments therefore, offers businesses an easy and cost-effective solution for cash flow management and tracking transactions without the overhead costs of bank charges and bookkeeping costs.
  1. It’s Easier for Businesses To Integrate Loyalty Programs
One of the biggest benefits of using a mobile payment solutions is the ability to integrate loyalty and incentive programs. For examples businesses can leverage this solution and reward customers when they make purchases and pay using mobile money like offering discounts, loyalty program points, cash back on purchases and more. This is mutually beneficial on both sides, as retailers can better understand customers’ habits through mobile devices. And by better understanding consumer purchase behaviors, which can aid in targeted marketing campaigns, retailers can then provide personalized messages and offers directly to a customer’s phone. Creating relationships with customers in a way that’s unique to their own individual needs and preferences will lead to return visits and help create a multitude of loyal brand ambassadors. Should Your Business Start Using Mobile Payments For? Research has shown that mobile payment users, on average, spend approximately twice as much than those not using mobile payments. In Kenya, 93% of the adult population uses the mobile money services available (mostly M-PESA mobile money), and that’s about the highest witnessed, not just in Africa, but in many parts of the third world countries across the globe. Businesses, both big and small should think of modernizing the way they do business. So, whether you run a busy restaurant or are a hardware retailer, mobile payment solutions gives you an edge on competitors. If eliminating friction from the customer experience is your number one priority, exploring mobile payments technology can help you achieve it. Processing transactions doesn’t have to be slow or inconvenient. In fact, when done right, it improves the in-store experience and boost your business growth. Leverage Bongo Live’s Mobile Payments Service At Beem, we are offer a single payments platform. To leverage and take advantage of the benefit(s) of mobile payments solutions, contact us today and we can help you send or receive mobile payments anywhere locally and across Africa. Also, you can try out our integrated platform that combines our existing communication and financial services as well as flexible APIs to integrate with internal platforms here.