Payment integration lets retailers rest easy year-round
December 02, 2013

The ability to easily accept credit card payments from a variety of channels is a strong safeguard for owners of small and medium-sized retailers who are worried about charting steady sales numbers year-round. In fact, integrated payment systems may reduce the stress often associated with the busy holiday shopping season.

The weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas have the tendency to place independent store owners in a dangerous guessing game wondering whether to prioritize brick-and-mortar or e-commerce sales from target customers. Events such as a Black Friday and Cyber Monday have unpredictable results, which makes it difficult for brands to strategize for the season. The most recent data from the National Retail Federation revealed Black Friday marketing events were relatively successful for stores around the country. For example, the organization estimated 248 million consumers waited in line to take advantage of limited-time discounts both online and in-person over the four-day weekend of the Thanksgiving holiday. Individual shoppers spent an average of $402.02 between Thursday and Sunday during the same time period, which is is slightly less than last year's average. However, the NRF said it still expects to see overall holiday sales increase nearly 4 percent this year compared to 2012.

Other industry experts are hesitant to make any early interpretations from the opening weekend of the holiday shopping season. Forbes said the dynamic of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday likely changed because of a large number of stores opting to remain open on Thanksgiving Day. While many companies expected to generate substantial sales, the numbers are likely no better than they were in previous years. The results from Cyber Monday will ultimately provide a clearer picture. However, store owners don't necessarily have to spend the holiday season biting their nails wondering whether they've done everything they can to maximize revenue.

Eliminating uncertainties with advanced payment tools
Brands can avoid the stress of the gift-buying rush by simply investing in technology that makes it easier to gather, manage and view transaction information from multiple locations in one user-friendly location. Industry developments in recent years have leveled the playing field between small businesses and larger corporations. As a result, local shops can now leverage e-commerce channels as much as their brick-and-mortar counterparts. Payment integration services are a simple solution for companies that want to take the guessing game out of the holiday retail season and ultimately rest easy knowing transactions from in-store, online and mobile purchases are seamlessly connected and accurately stored.

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