Payments' new diversity will falter without innovative gateways

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One of today’s most important e-commerce trends is the quicker, smarter checkout process. It is a cliche but, when shopping is personalized and convenient, people are more likely to convert.

There are several technology upgrades that enhance the checkout experience. Installing a modern payment gateway, for example, makes the checkout process more convenient, speeding up order processing while offering alternative payment methods, saved customer information and location-specific options.

As technology changes the way retailers sell across channels, e-commerce best practices also evolve. Emerging trends transform the way people shop (think mobile-first), and those who don’t adapt accordingly fall behind.
When a business establishes price and becomes competitive, priority shifts to brand differentiation and improving the customer journey. Customer habits change over time, creating the need for businesses to track consumer preferences and implement technology to match.

For example, in the early 2000s, the rise of e-commerce led brick-and-mortar stores to offer online alternatives. Around 2014, responsive design helped mobile shopping surpass desktop counterparts in total sales. Today, artificial intelligence, machine learning and predictive analytics drive the success of the world’s most profitable e-commerce stores.

How does one adapt a business to capitalize on the latest market preferences? The answer: become an e-commerce scientist. Dive into Google Analytics to learn about user behavior. Ask questions and test solutions to see if conversion rate improves. Are you a lifestyle brand where content and community are king? Do you sell B2B and B2C commodities to clients who prioritize customer service and brand reputation?

Lifestyle brands often see increased customer engagement after enhancing content strategy and social media presence. Large retailers expect more traffic and repeat business by streamlining order fulfillment, improving customer service and offering individualized search tools.

As new and improved technology emerges, the line between lifestyle and retail brands will blur. In fact, many B2B clients already expect personalized B2C content. At the same time, lifestyle brand consumers seek optimized shopping features.

An ultimate goal in today’s business environment should be a multichannel or omnichannel experience. With the right blend of technology and content, customers will enjoy a seamless sales environment, whether they shop from their phones, tablets, computers, social platforms, by phone or in-store.

The most important thing e-commerce businesses can do is stay on top and take advantage of the of the innovative technology and shopping trends that emerge. Conversions will hang in the balance.

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