Despite continued disruptions, 2020 has proven to be the ultimate accelerator of retail trends both in store and online. Continuous changes in consumer behavior together with investments in technology They are said to have powered retail for several years, although as consumers become more comfortable, some trends have proven stronger than others.
For retailers who continue to earn consumer loyalty and trust, it has meant embracing a seamless, often touchless experience at every point of contact.
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Simply put, Greg Lisiewski, Vice President of Global Pay Later Products at PayPal, says that as attitudes continue to change, they are choosing the merchants who make it easy for them. “They want easy returns, no lines, and the ability to get help when and indeed if they need it. Retailers that empower their customers to have a sense of control over their experience are winning. “
Here, Lisiewski talks to WWD about the evolution of consumer behaviors in a pandemic, PayPalcontinuous innovation in payment methods and new trends in e-commerce that have staying power.
World Water Day: In your own words, why have flexible payment options become vital for retailers to reach consumers?
Greg Lisiewski: Even before the pandemic, consumers were already beginning to blur the lines between in-store and online shopping behavior. But the pandemic has accelerated that behavior significantly. And with this behavior comes the demand for more flexible payment options. Consumers demand choice and flexibility in all their shopping interactions, be it at the grocery store, how they dine, and especially how they shop for things like fashion, accessories, and health and beauty products.
PayPal offers full wallet capabilities including multiple Pay Later solutions. For example, our newest product, Pay in 4, allows consumers to divide their purchases into four equal payments. PayPal Credit provides a line of credit that can be used anywhere PayPal is accepted and offers six months interest free for purchases over $ 99.
WWD: Are consumers more likely to shop with retailers that offer these reliable payment options?
GL: According to Forrester Research’s April 2020 Acceptance of Alternative Payments Report, more than 40 percent of online consumers who are aware of installment payments are currently using them to purchase products. This may seem obvious due to the flexibility that post-payment solutions provide, but it is clear that consumers are looking for these options and that is influencing their purchasing decisions.
WWD: How has PayPal continued to innovate in the space?
GL: PayPal is the creator of the Pay Later industry, since it acquired Bill Me Later in 2008. Following the acquisition, PayPal has evolved Bill Me Later into PayPal Credit, allowing consumers to apply for a line of credit that can be used anywhere place where PayPal is accepted. . Additionally, through our partnership with Synchrony, we are able to offer six months interest free on purchases of $ 99 or more.
More recently, we have started offering additional Pay Later products globally. We have introduced these products in the US, UK and France, providing flexible payment options to consumers in these markets at no cost to the merchant. Providing flexible payment options that do not carry any risk or cost to our merchants means that we can help our merchants grow their business. We win when our merchants win.
WWD: From your perspective, are these consumer behaviors towards more payment options likely to continue?
GL: Absolutely. COVID-19 has really accelerated consumer behaviors when it comes to online shopping. For example, curbside pickup from stores, including grocery and non-grocery locations, increased 17 percentage points during that time period, from 19 to 36 percent. After the pandemic is over, shoppers will continue to demand online convenience even in their traditional retail experiences, so retailers should invest in true omnichannel experiences (curbside pickup,[BOPIS}etc)butalsoofferflexiblepaymentoptionsthatallowconsumerstocontrolhowtheymanagetheirfinancesetcbutalsoprovideflexiblepaymentoptionsthatallowconsumerstocontrolhowtheymanagetheirfinances[BOPIS}etc)perotambiénofrecerflexibilidadopcionesdepagoquepermitenalosconsumidorescontrolarcómoadministransusfinanzas[BOPIS}etc—butalsoprovideflexiblepaymentoptionsthatallowconsumerstocontrolhowtheymanagetheirfinances
WWD: From your perspective on the market, what will be a notable trend or issue facing the retail industry in 2021?
GL: I believe that we will continue to see the growth of post payment solutions as well as omnichannel solutions. Whether it’s installment or post-delivery payment, or experiences where a customer uses their online wallet at a physical point of sale to pay as they prefer, these types of trends won’t go away overnight. Consumers have experienced the convenience of the innovative solutions developed during COVID-19 and are unlikely to abandon them.
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