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Unpacking Digital Transformation in Payments: How to Create an Effective Payments Strategy in a Shaky Economy

 

Like many professionals in the financial sector, rarely a day goes by when there is no news about how “digital” is shifting the commercial landscape. Companies are innovating to enhance not only user experience, but internal processes. How can companies prioritize digital on both sides of the interaction between buyers and employees?

Most of the time when I hear about “digital transformation,” it has to do with UX and how customers want to interact with a business website. But if a company wants to outpace competitors, they need to drill down into the details of what creates a meaningful interaction with their target customers. We all want the online experience to look pretty, but what about the back-office processes that go along with the payment experience?

The B2B payments experience is traditionally filled with pain points. In the U.S. alone, the use of paper checks in almost half of B2B transactions cost businesses over $550 billion in profit in 2018. Coupled with the rise of eCommerce transactions and the need for omni-channel payment options, most businesses are struggling to keep up with the digital needs of their business buyers. Internal processes for providing payment terms in B2B transactions are not digital-friendly, require personnel completing redundant tasks, and are not flexible enough to expand beyond a strategic buyer base.

Creating a scalable, digital experience for B2B buyers is key for companies in the next decade. Exploring their expectations can help with developing strategies for improving the end-to-end purchase experience.

In B2B transactions, relationships between sellers and their strategic buyers hinge on the payment experience. As more businesses take their catalogues online, frustration with the purchasing process can lead to cart abandonment and decreased share of wallet. The ability to pay with multiple options is crucial, with over 20% of B2B buyers citing lack of payment options as a key issue in online purchasing in the past year.

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