Seemingly overnight, the landscape of commerce, hospitality and retail changed in 2020. According to a study conducted by FreedomPay, U.S. eCommerce has seen “10 years of growth in just three months.” The simple art of the transaction became an enormous struggle for people and businesses all over the world.
As a result, touchless technology and other digital solutions rose to the occasion to step in and solve the global economy’s most pressing problem – continuing transactions in a healthy way. Though this new tech helped save industries and businesses worldwide, it also presented new problems and pain points for customers as consumers struggled to intuitively pivot to a new form of payment. Additionally, customer trust in the process wavers with new digital tech, and brands have struggled to retain their loyal customer base amid doubt and fear.
Restoring Confidence in Payment Solutions and Exciting Innovations
With the central issue of restoring confidence in consumers at the core of developing new tech, touchless payments and eCommerce transactions continue to develop in real time. As we look forward to a future economy more deeply embedded in eCommerce, payment security is the prevailing character in America’s payment revolution.
Whether shopping at a restaurant, airport or online, technology should enhance hospitality, not replace it. Though digital solutions make transactions easier, they lack the human element and experience that shoppers so enjoy. In the age of COVID-19, online shopping and in-store pick-up has been one solution that delivers a seamless user experience.
Still, this method of commerce presents room for fraud. As a solution, merchants have banded together to share customer data in efforts to identify unusual shopper behavior and tamp down fraudulent transactions. The result? Customers who shop confidently and feel safe.
Lasting Changes in the Wake of COVID-19 and the Payment Revolution
Digital technologies are, without a doubt, becoming commonplace. Any possibility of a reversion back to old shopper behavior seems to disappear on the horizon more and more each day. But every customer is different, and each will adapt to new technologies in their own time.
For this reason, it is important to meet customers where they are at. The guest experience should be seamless for everyone, no matter how fluent they are in digital tech. Touchless technology, for example, is brand new to many shoppers, and adapting quickly to this change presents frustrations. As a solution, retailers should provide the customer with choice, and not force the transaction down a single path.
Though touchscreen transactions faltered for a short time amid fears of shared surfaces, many customers are finding familiarity, comfort and confidence with touchscreens and continue to embrace it as their primary method of purchase.
Mobile apps and QR codes have also erupted onto the eCommerce space as a novel solution to touchless transactions. They let people shop in a way they are used to while changing just one element of the purchase process. As a result, mobile apps are reshaping the user experience, intersecting technology and eCommerce in a way that adds value to the user.
Looking Ahead at the Future of Payments and Trust
With touchless payments becoming more and more commonplace, it’s clear that digital-first technologies are the future of retail, hospitality and commerce. At the heart of the development is the issue of trust. As these technologies evolve, brands should maintain a laser focus on being transparent with customers and using data to provide rich value back to the consumer.
FreedomPay published a White Paper The American Payment Revolution: Next Level Commerce which is designed to help merchants of all sizes understand the need for technological advancement at the point of sale and why businesses should respond to the catalyst of change caused by COVID-19 to enable America’s economic recovery. Click here to download the report.
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