Here’s why flexible payment options could increase your customers’ higher-priced fashion purchases

By Higor Torchia, Managing Director, Vend EMEA

Allowing customers to leave your store without immediately paying for purchases might seem like a crazy idea. However, many retailers offer credit options at the checkout for customers who want to defer payments. Historically these transactions have involved lengthy, drawn out processes around identity verification, financial checks and information sharing. But times are changing.

Vend, the preferred point-of-sale software of the British Independent Retail Association, has just partnered with global payments provider, Klarna. This brings together a number of different flexible payment options to the storefront checkout, and allows customers to pay later in a number of different ways. It will help boutique retailers to craft the personalised, friction-free shopping experience that customers increasingly expect.

Jake Jarvis, co-owner and co-founder of Hot Futures, an independent eyewear and apparel brand said: “Breaking down the payment of slightly larger investments over three payments is an attractive proposition and something our customers appreciate us being able to do. It means our customers can make decisions based on their personal cash flow.”

There are three key reasons for adopting the power of deferred payments in store.

  1. Boosting the spending power of your customers

Sometimes items are simply not affordable when at the right time. It might be that pay day is on the distant horizon, or the cost of an item is too much to handle all at once. This experience is particularly true for customers of boutique retailers, who are often shopping for items that can’t be found anywhere else and are therefore more expensive.

Tanya Brown, co-owner and co-founder of Hot Futures adds: “Our target audience is a fashion-conscious customer, aged between 25 and 35 that use fashion as a platform for their personal experience. Many of our customers are looking for something different and not readily available. A big part of what we do is encourage customers to take that first step into buying a better product that’s handmade and longer-lasting.”

Dividing a purchase into bite-sized, manageable chunks, means people become more willing to entertain those larger (and previously inaccessible) purchases. Klarna has shown that these systems convert customers that may otherwise walk away from a potential purchase. For in-store purchases, this has the potential to convert the everyday window shopper into a likely customer.

Introducing a more convenient way to pay for items at the cashier’s till also helps to satisfy the need for ‘instant gratification’; a growing trend among today’s shoppers. For small business retailers, bringing this offering out of the online world and into stores is essential in order to craft a superior customer experience. Doing this in collaboration with Vend means payment will be reconciled at the end of each day, ensuring retailers receive the money for items sold, even if the customer chooses to pay for the item later.

2. Growing business revenue

Enabling more convenient payment options is also key to boosting bottom lines. Businesses that engage with shoppers who are able to pay later will enjoy the benefits of higher sales, experiencing up to a 68% increase in basket size. By opening up new payment channels, high street retailers will be able to access a broader customer base that prioritises convenient check-out options.

3. Providing a better checkout experience

Innovative flexible payment options will bring in-store offerings in line with what has been available online for some time. The new breed of payment solutions is designed to make things as simple, smooth and straightforward as possible for the customer, by enabling them to make decisions based on their personal cash flow over a longer period of time. With near instantaneous approval times and greater personal financial autonomy, consumers experience no waiting, missing out, or the dread of discovering they don’t have enough money for items.

Final words

Part of staying relevant in today’s competitive retail landscape means giving customers the freedom to buy in the easiest and most cost-effective way possible. Vend and Klarna enable this.

Jake says: “Getting Klarna set up on Vend was lightning quick; it was super simple to set up and super easy to install. We’re really impressed with how seamless the integration is.”

So, want to improve the customer experience with easy-to-use technology solutions? Suddenly letting customers leave without paying up-front for the item might not seem so crazy after all.

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