Payment data: the valuable insight merchants want

By: Pat Ward, Vice President, Integrated Payments at North American Bancard

Data is driving decisions. This isn’t some newly-found idea or concept. The rise of ecommerce, and subsequently, big data, has given merchants various touch points where they’re able to impact the customer journey. An analysis of payment data can give you insight into your customer’s experience. As merchants continue to look for ways to remain relevant, data presents specific benefits that can help you optimize your business.

Here are five specific benefits that data and analytics can offer to merchants:

Online payment reporting.
Online payment reporting is particularly useful in auditing and monitoring purchases. Merchants can view reports online like transactions, returns, and chargebacks in daily, monthly, or customized time periods. These reports minimize the need to manually search for payment information because the merchant can quickly review information, analyze the data, and make actionable change to drive new sales promotions or improve existing ones.

Loyalty programs.
Loyalty programs are quite possibly the best strategy to encourage customers to return and spend more. Payment data can help support the value of loyalty programs by keeping track of unique offers and discounts that customers use, then detailing the success of those offers. This information lets merchants analyze increased sales and visits, as well as frequency to determine the overall program effectiveness.

Sales portal.
Another great way to capitalize on payment data is by utilizing a payment portal or analytics dashboard for your business. A tool like this helps merchants track and monitor important data points like sales growth, loyalty programs, offers redeemed, geographical location of customers, and more – all in real time.

Fraud protection.
With ecommerce so prevalent today, a large focus has shifted to merchant websites and their capability to combat fraud – without negatively impacting the customer experience. Ecommerce merchants are able to implement secure solutions that not only give an added level of security to their customers, but offer valuable insight into their customers’ purchasing habits. Identifying unique behaviors and preferred payment type help merchants build customer profiles and create unique experiences that drive return business. With this information, Merchants are also able to tailor their levels of fraud security to set specific security rules that will help protect their customers when purchasing in an ecommerce environment.

Optimize the performance of your marketing.
Payment data analytics is a powerful tool that can be used to measure the efficiency of your sales and marketing efforts. As it relates to reviewing campaigns for performance-based metrics, merchants can directly attribute efforts of how efficient their marketing campaigns are. Merchants are clearly able to identify who made a purchase, did not make a purchase, or made a purchase and asked for a refund/chargeback, to customize marketing efforts.

Using data is a great way to monitor business performance, drive new sales opportunities, enhance the effectiveness of marketing, and create a business that is taking full advantage of all the tools available for use. By implementing the right payments solution, it can mean having a business that is a step ahead with the latest trends – or a business that succumbs to the changing trends.

Pat is in his second decade in the Payments Industry. Throughout his career he’s focused on creating long-term and profitable partnerships with best-of-breed Independent Software Vendors. Since joining North American Bancard (NAB) in 2014, Pat has been instrumental in building out NAB’s Integrated and Semi-Integrated Partner Programs, and for bringing some of the best POS companies into the NAB Family.