They say all purchases have an emotional element. And before continuing with the transaction, we justify this emotion with rational reasons.
But impulse purchases are a little different. They, too, are driven by emotion. But any logical justifications are retroactive (long after the transaction has already taken place).
Credit cards lend themselves well to impulse buying. That's because they remove money from the equation. It’s as though you're not spending cash — you’re spending credits (which is why casinos use chips and carnivals rely on tokens).
The link between credit card processing and impulse purchases is well documented. According to a study by The Checkout, 90 percent of Americans are impulse buyers, racking up as much as $200 a month in credit card purchases made on a whim.
But with a few simple strategies, it's possible to increase this rate and encourage even more impulse buying with intelligently designed credit card processing.
Below are some of the more common strategies:
Credit Card Processing Tip #1 – Ironclad Return Policy
This first tip applies to all purchases (credit cards, cash, bitcoins, etc.). But by providing customers with risk-free guarantees or ironclad return policies, you reduce the potential for "buyer's remorse."
Some shoppers will abuse the system. But the extra sales will more than cover the losses generated from returned items.
Credit Card Processing Tip #2 – Advertise That You Accept Credit Cards
A surprising number of Americans don't carry cash, with 78 percent of shoppers holding $50 or less at any given time. Make it known that you accept all major credit cards.
Once you sign up for a merchant account, Visa, Discover, AMEX and MasterCard will likely send you decals for your store window (or banners for your website). Use them liberally. They help reduce transaction barriers — especially for those who don’t carry cash.
Credit Card Processing Tip #3 – Enable Mobile Credit Card Processing
Invest in mobile credit card processing that allows you to take the "check out" counter directly to the shopper.
When you can process transactions via portable smartphones and tablets, this reduces waiting times. You can even target consumers off-site — on the street, at conferences, and pretty much anywhere people with credit cards go.
Credit Card Processing Tip #4 – Accept Virtual Wallets
Credit cards are great because they remove cash from the equation. But with a virtual wallet, you can streamline the purchasing process even more. Customers can instantly buy what they need with a simple wave or tap of the phone. No signatures or carbon paper necessary.
Credit Card Processing Tip #5 – Saved User Information
If you operate an online store, allow customers to save their credit card information and user details. That way, they can make future purchases with one simple click.
If you doubt the effectiveness of this approach, just look at the success of e-commerce stores like Amazon or iTunes.
Making Credit Card Processing Even More Impulse-Friendly?
Any one of the above tips can help remove barriers and make in-store and online buying more convenient. Combine them together, and you can dramatically increase both the size and frequency of impulse purchases.
But if you need additional help streamlining your credit card processing, schedule a free consultation with our expert support team today.