Maximising conversion rates and optimising payment experiences – a PPRO approach

Wednesday 9 March 2022 08:07 CET | Editor: Irina Ionescu | Interview

Claire Gates, Chief Commercial Officer at PPRO, ‘Integrating and maintaining a single local payment method (LPM) for a single year can cost up to USD 1 million’

Over the last year and a half, ecommerce volumes have exploded. But lockdown has also prompted consumers to rethink, often radically, previously rock-solid brand and retailer loyalty. 

This makes conversion-rate optimisation even more important. When a user clicks on your display ad, there is a 0.72% chance they will convert and click through to the next stage. If that user then clicks through to the landing page, then the product page, and so on, by the time they land on the payment page, there is an 80% or higher chance of them converting. 

So, what’s the best way to optimise for the highest possible conversion rate? And how can you ensure the biggest possible return from your efforts in conversion rate optimisation?

What’s the most important thing for maximising conversion rates? 

I wouldn’t say there is a single thing. There’s no point, for instance, in optimising the user journey if your site is slow to load and doesn’t work well on a mobile device. To get the best possible conversion rates, you need to consider your ecommerce site, or app, holistically.

For example, is it optimised for the right range of devices? Does the user journey allow people to find what they are looking for, and complete the task, most efficiently and pleasingly? Is the checkout experience reassuring and straightforward to navigate around? 

But if there’s one thing that often gets neglected, it’s localisation. All too often, this is treated as a straightforward matter of translation – I call it the ‘lift and shift’ play. In fact, to get the best results, you need to localise almost every aspect of your site for each market. 

More than anything else, you need to localise your payment experience. According to PPRO’s own stats, if you don’t offer the payment method people in a market want to pay with, you’ll see abandonment rates could be as high as 80%

What should merchants do to optimise the payment experience? 

First, make sure you offer the preferred payment methods for each market. These can differ wildly, even between two countries right next door to each other. 

For instance, in the Netherlands, consumers pay for 60% of their online purchases using bank transfer apps, often with the local favourite, iDEAL. In neighbouring Belgium, on the other hand, consumers use bank transfer apps in just 19% of online purchases. If a Dutch merchant expands into Belgium without localising its payment preferences for Belgians, it’s almost certain to see low conversion rates.

The same dynamic is true for almost every market in the world. We can never assume that payment cultures we’re familiar with are the norm in new markets. 

Therefore, merchants and PSPs should get to work in integrating new payment methods? 

Yes and no. They need to integrate new payment methods, in many cases quickly. But often, doing the work themselves is not the optimal way to go. It takes considerable effort and investment in technical, legal, and process matters to integrate each new payment method. 

According to PPRO research, integrating and maintaining a single local payment method (LPM) for a single year can cost up to USD 1 million. Therefore, for a merchant expanding rapidly into many new markets, even with their PSPs supporting them, this simply isn’t viable to do at scale. 

The best option in such cases is to work with a partner that specialises in integrating payment methods and then making them available through a single API. Such a partner should also be able to provide much-needed expertise in how to optimise the payment experience for each LPM. 

Are there other ways in which working with a payments partner can help boost conversions? 

Payments infrastructure players should be able to help PSPs and their merchants integrate targeted value-added services. These might range from white-labelling, allowing the whole payment process to be seamlessly merchant-branded, to adding extras such as payment-status updates and even chargeback facilities.

With the right mix of value-added services, it’s possible to tailor your checkout and payment experiences precisely to the preferences of the local market. For instance, if you know that consumers are particularly low on trust, keeping them informed at every step of the payment process will help to calm fears and reduce abandonment rates. 

How can a merchant or PSP get started with payments integration and optimisation? 

Investigating the causes of low conversion rates should involve looking at everything – from the quality of the integration, through the efficiency of the money flow to the configuration of the technical handover between each different service in the chain. 

The team responsible must have visibility of the entire payment process and access to all stakeholders, internal and external, in the payments chain. It must also have the technical, UX, and other skills and knowledge required to fault find across the entire process. 

Sometimes, it’s possible to form such a team in-house. At other times, it pays to work with external experts. PPRO is one of the industry’s leading experts in optimising conversion rates at the point of payment. We have an entire team – with some of the industry’s best experts in banking, regulatory requirements, and technical integrations – dedicated to the task. 

To find out more about conversion-rate optimisation on the payment page, download the FREE PPRO eBook on the subject.

This interview was first published in our Cross-Border Payments and Ecommerce Report 2021–2022, which taps into the fast-growing cross-border market and provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments that are pivotal in this space, being the ultimate source of information for ecommerce businesses interested in expanding globally. 

About Claire Gates

Claire leads PPRO’s sales and marketing efforts, making sure that they are highly integrated and have a strong go-to-market focus. Prior to joining PPRO, she was the CEO for Paysafe Pay Later, which she helped to expand across EMEA and North America. A fintech expert with over 25 years of experience, Claire has also held positions at American Express, Virgin Money, Mastercard, and Citi. She is a passionate advocate of workplace diversity, and she mentors several startups.


About PPRO

PPRO is the top global provider of local payments infrastructure, powering growth for payment service providers and enterprises with payment platforms. Companies at the forefront of payments technology leverage PPRO’s unified platform, expert services, and local payment methods to boost sales in over 100 ecommerce markets worldwide. In 2020 alone, PPRO processed over USD 11 billion for its customers, including companies such as Mollie, PayPal, Worldpay, and many others.

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Keywords: ecommerce, online shopping, merchant, online payments, payments , payment processor, PPRO
Categories: Payments & Commerce
Companies: PPRO
Countries: World
This article is part of category

Payments & Commerce


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