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Buy and pay everywhere: solutions from SIX helps to meet customer expectations

Saferpay, a payment solution provided by SIX Payment Services, allows merchants to connect various customer ‘touch points’ in real time, adding customer-value via its omnichannel solution.

The majority of today’s customers do not expect merchants to distinguish between their physical and online stores. They expect to be able to replace and return goods bought online at in-store locations. In order to create a contemporary omnichannel experience, merchants must ensure a seamless process.

According to a recent retail study by IBM, one of the most important factors for consumers in omnichannel commerce is that they can return online-purchased goods in-store.  A recent guide from the German digital association Bitkom also refers to this emerging consumer expectation. If merchants are to be able to enrich the collection of information through digital channels, it is crucial to connect the online with the offline world. Ideally, merchants should allow customers to choose their preferred channel for purchase, delivery and return.

Merchants must embrace the digitisation of trade, and let customers exchange online-bought goods on the spot at the store: If a customer buys a product online, they pay by their preferred electronic payment method. The replacement or complaint process with an online retailer can sometimes be long and inconvenient.

At this point, the merchant can offer added value to customers by leveraging their physical stores. With the trend picking up, efficient processes will become crucial for the merchant to run this offering. Using Saferpay and cCredit from SIX Payment Services, merchants are able to provide a true omnichannel solution in that the value of the goods is automatically credited to the payment method previously used online. This happens through the cross-linked payment system and means that customers do not need to re-submit the previously used method of payment.

Consumers consider online as just one store out of many – Buy and pay everywhere

For many merchants, the logistics of linking different sales channels is not yet in place. As a result, in order to meet customer expectations, the refund should be processed immediately, via a networked system and without significant delay. The various components of the entire purchase process intelligently exchange information with each other. Thus, the point- of-sale, the financial data of the POS terminal, the ERP system, the stock management and the online shop are all inter-connected.

Merchants visiting the Internet World Business Fair in Munich earlier this month confirmed their interest, showing that there is a clear appetite for this sort of solution, which meets modern requirements and satisfies customer demand for a digitally rich shopping experience.

The linking of different sales channels is not fundamentally new. Previously, merchants could choose between catalogue and telephone sales to complement their traditional retail business, today the possibilities are extended to additional areas including mobile and online sales. It is necessary to connect the online with the offline world and to adapt to the changing purchase and payment behaviour of customers.