For years, you’ve endlessly heard how “consumer expectations are changing at the speed of light,” and how your business has to be agile enough to keep up. As if things weren’t complicated enough, the coronavirus pandemic came thundering in and completely changed the rules for how you interact with customers all over again.
Organizations of all types and sizes have had to pivot from in-office operations to remote workforces (almost overnight). Restaurants and retailers have had to drastically reduce their store hours, move to carryout and delivery services, and find creative ways to ensure the safety of their staff and customers.
There is no such thing as a “normal” shopping experience right now.
While it all feels like a sci-fi novel that the world would like to put down, businesses do have tools and resources to fight back against the disruption to their operations while they do their part to protect their staff and patrons and help flatten the curve. One simple way to do that is by using a real-time mobile payment solution to complete transactions.
Here’s why it matters.
All Money is Dirty Money
A recent study on the germiness of cash and debit cards revealed some shocking results. The average coin has twice as many germs as a subway pole, while payment cards were crawling with more germs than a Penn Station public restroom. No judgment here if that sent you running for the nearest bottle of hand sanitizer.
With so much left to be discovered about how long the novel coronavirus can live on surfaces like cash and debit cards, mobile payments are suddenly much more than just a convenience. Couple that with the physical separation between employees and patrons, and it’s clear that mobile payments have become a basic technological need.
Mobile Payments Protect Both Parties
As restaurants and grocers pivot to carryout and delivery, consumers need a fast, contact-free way to pay for their food without handing cash or a card to an employee and then having it handed back to them.
The same thing applies to healthcare providers, veterinarians, non-profit organizations, and other essential businesses that need to collect payments or donations on the spot but have either closed their doors or simply need a contact-free way to accept payments.
Many businesses may not realize that the infrastructure to support on-the-spot payments without exchanging currency could be just a few clicks away.
Agility Doesn’t Have to Equal Complexity
Flexible communications platforms like Vonage Business Communications (VBC) are designed to support business-critical applications like mobile payment solutions—without creating headaches for IT or requiring implementation resources.
For example, Vonage Business Communications customers have access to Vonage App Center, an ecosystem of business applications and productivity tools that integrate directly with VBC to streamline workflows and create better experiences for customers and employees. VBC customers can browse and select the apps they need, right as they decide that they need them.
Authvia is one of the many Vonage App Center partners helping businesses pivot and sustain operations during the current public health crisis. Their TXT2PAY solution integrates directly into the Vonage Business Communications application, providing employees with the ability to make real-time payment requests and track successful payments from inside VBC—whether they're sitting at their laptop or taking a curbside payment from their mobile device.
As Chris Brunner, Founder and CEO of Authvia, describes it, “Now, more than ever, customers want transactions to be mobile, fast, and secure. TXT2Pay guarantees that neither the business nor the customer has to touch a physical method of payment. And because the solution is PCI DSS compliant, the customer never has to share their credit card number with the business, ensuring a secure transaction for both parties.”
Keep Pressing On
As you bend and flex to support your employees and customers in new ways during this surreal business climate, believe that you will emerge on the other side of this crisis with new tools in hand, unafraid of what the “changing customer experience” world may throw at you.
(Unless it’s a debit card. Those things are filthy.)