The majority of online SMBs (small to medium size businesses) rely on seasonal business to keep them afloat, but around half (52 per cent) say they have experienced checkout issues during these vital surge shopping periods, up from 43 per cent in 2021. That’s according to new research with over 1,100 merchants in 12 countries commissioned by payments platform Paysafe.
Almost three-quarters (74 per cent) say the checkout continues to be a serious competitive advantage, perhaps in part due to the impact when things go wrong. Nearly a third (31 per cent) of businesses who have experienced a surge-related issue with their checkouts lost upwards of US$100,000 – with common issues including checkout system slowdown (46 per cent), and a failure to authorise payments (31 per cent).
This problem takes on more significance if you consider the effort merchants make to get customers to the checkout stage in the first place. Nearly three quarters (74 per cent) cite cart abandonment as an ongoing issue in 2022 (up from 69 per cent in 2021) and 61 per cent say abandonment has increased in last 12 months (up from 49 per cent in 2021). Technical issues including checkout screen crashes (14 per cent) and customers being unable to pay with their preferred method (17 per cent) were cited as expected reasons.
Merchants are increasingly eager to explore new payment technologies in a bid to make their checkout experience more streamlined, secure, and reliable and as one way to gain competitive advantage. Around three-quarters, (73 per cent) of merchants surveyed believe that adopting some of the newer ways to pay would help add value to their business. In spite of the interest in newer ways to pay, debit cards (75 per cent) and credit cards (72 per cent) continue to lead the table of payment processing methods offered.
Afshin Yazdian, president of Merchant Solutions at Paysafe, commented: “During the holiday season, payment processing systems will be put to the test, highlighting the importance of payments efficiency as a business differentiator. Offering more payment methods gives merchants the opportunity to gain an advantage by offering a frictionless customer experience, improve conversion rates and ultimately avoid losing business during their peak season.”