The global payments landscape is rapidly evolving and growing thanks to the world becoming more and more composed of "global citizens." For example, a customer in Nigeria using their smartphone can purchase clothing from an e Commerce headquartered in Brazil, Canada, or the U.S.
As the global commerce becomes more accessible, it's more important than ever to leverage global payments to help your business grow. And, here are nine places to start that process.
1. Understand and adapt to local preferences.
Whenever you're dealing with customers overseas it's best to first understand and adapt to their needs and preferences. This means that you should become somewhat familiar with trends and traditions in marketplaces where your goods or services are being sold. You also should know who your competitors are so that you can differentiate yourself.
PayPal PassPost is an excellent resource to get started with your research.
But, how does that relate to payments as well?
If you have a lot of business in China, you may want to look at a payment gateway like Alipay. It's one of the most popular gateways in China, but can also be used here in the States, as opposed to a gateway like Amazon Payments or Dwolla.
2. Update your website.
In today's global economy your economy should be responsive so that the screen size can adapt to the device being used by your visitors. This allows you to have one website for PC and mobile users.
Also clearly point out on your site that your business accepts global orders, list the global payment options, and even consider adding a multi-language toggle so that customers in various languages can read the information on your site.
3. Look for a transparent, secure, and real-time global payment solution.
Both customers and businesses are demanding payment solutions that are transparent, secure, and occur in real-time. For example, your local bank may provide a global payment service, but transactions take several days, if not weeks, and the fees can be outrageous.
, on the other hand, offers a flat 2.7% per transaction price, with transactions being finalized in just one or two days. And, we're serious about the security of our users.
Another option are payment platforms that use the blockchain, such as bitcoin. These cryptocurrencies are secure, fast, and transparent since every transaction is recorded on a public ledger.
4. Provide local currency pricing.
Converting money from Euros to Dollars isn't the end of the world. You can simply just Google that. But, it's an unnecessary step that may be more challenging if you're shopping on a mobile device. That's why you provide your online shoppers the price of your products in local currency.
One method is to have a toggle with a list of various local prices. It doesn't have to be every currency, just the popular currencies with your customers. Another way to do this is to offer a payment solution that can offers a multi-currency functionality, such as PayPal, Braintree, WorldPay, Stripe and Due.
5. Establish trust.
Today, customers are more informed than ever. That's why it's necessary that you build a solid reputation and become an authority figure in your industry. For example, make it a point to deliver your products faster than your competitors, offer painless refunds, accept multiple forms of payments, and have a blog with valuable information that your customers can use to enhance their lives.
6. Offer related services.
Another way to establish trust is by providing omni-channel support, such as chat, email, and phone, 24/7. This isn't because you want to please your customers who are insomniacs, it's because you're dealing with customers living in different time zones. When they have a question or concern, they expect you to answer that question immediately.
Of course, hiring a full-time staff may be out of your budget. In that case, you can at least automate the customer service process. For example, if you receive an email or direct message on Twitter, have an automated response informing the customers that you're looking into the matter and will have an answer within 24 hours. Or, you could outsource your customer service if you want to always have an actual person available.
7. Invest in people.
Don't skimp on hiring talented, diverse, innovative, and cultured people - both at home and overseas. These are the team members who are aware of the preferences and trends of your customers, as well as up-to-date on the latest technology that makes global payments more convenient for your customers.
8. Research local finance regulations.
Compliance is a big deal these deal for businesses involved in the global economy. That's why
, technologies that emphasize on compliance and regulatory-related activities, are taking-off. This will make it easier for you to be aware of various taxes, duties, customs regulations, and rules you must follow to sell in local markets. You also can't neglect local market averages, inflation rates, expectations, and currency conversions.
9. Give back.
, are more likely to support businesses that give back to society. Find a cause that aligns with your company's values and culture and use global payments solutions to make it easier for your customers to donate to that cause. Or, you could donate a portion of your proceeds to that charity.