PayPal say SMEs are lagging behind customer expectation on payment methods

PayPal hmPayPal say that British small businesses are losing sales by limiting themselves to familiar forms of payment like cash, bank transfers and cheques. The survey of 2000 small businesses and 2000 consumers show a disparity between what customers want and what SMEs offer.

For businesses doing trade in person, cash (70%), bank transfer (62%) and cheques (56%) are still the methods of payment most relied upon by the majority of small businesses, despite contactless card payments overtaking cheque books for the first time in 2016.

Almost two thirds (63%) of consumers admitted to abandoning a purchase whilst shopping online in the last three months because they couldn’t pay the way they wanted. Meanwhile, 56% of consumers have abandoned a purchase in a bricks and mortar shop over the last three months for the same reason.

Nicola Longfield, Director of Small Business at PayPal UK says: “For small businesses, understanding the number of new ways to take payment may seem daunting. At times it can feel like a new “pay” launches almost every week. However, consumers are embracing these changes and opting to use digital wallets, contactless cards and their smartphones when they go shopping. Businesses that don’t join the 21st century stand to lose out.”

“The good news is that much of this technology is designed to make life easier for small businesses, as well as consumers. Integrating a simpler check-out process, where customers don’t have to enter their card and delivery details every time on a tiny screen can help convert more sales. Meanwhile, NFC-enabled card readers such as PayPal Here mean businesses of any size can accept Chip & PIN, contactless payments and even Apple Pay on the move. No long term contracts and low pay as you go processing fees make PayPal Here suitable for a wide range of businesses previously solely reliant on cash, cheques and bank transfers, such as plumbers, taxis or market traders.”