Mobile payments are becoming much more regular in South Africa

10 Things to know about mobile payments in Africa
10 Things to know about mobile payments in Africa

Mobile payments are becoming much more regular in South Africa
Mobile payments are becoming much more regular in South Africa.

Mobile payments are becoming much more regular in South Africa, with large retailers, hair salons, coffee shops, flea markets and even some informal retailers like hawkers allowing their customers to pay for goods and services from mobile wallets & banking apps on their smartphones.

  • The Sage Payments Landscape Report reveals that 65 percent of consumers say online wallets are likely to make a business seem modern and progressive. 47 percent say the same about in-app payments.
  • The global value of contactless transactions made via payment cards, mobile and wearables, will reach $1.3 trillion by 2019, more than doubling from an estimated $590 billion in 2017, according to Juniper Research.

Consumers are getting more comfortable with mobile banking apps and in effect, are transacting more from their smartphones.

By investing in modern mobile payments solutions such as SnapScan, Zapper, MasterPass, and FlickPay etc… business builders can positively delight and retain their customers. These solutions don’t require much technology infrastructure or technical know-how – with some solutions you can process digital wallet payments from your own smartphone or a low-cost terminal. Which will also make business banking much simpler for business owners.

Here are four ways mobile payments can enhance your growing business:

1. Improved customer experience
Your customers want to be able to pay as quickly and easily as possible, without digging in their pockets for money. Mobile payments are secure but they also offer the convenience of paying by tapping their phones or scanning a QR code. Most people keep their smartphones close at hand, so using them to pay is really simple.

2. Less cash, less risk
Managing cash isn’t just a nuisance – it makes your business a target for criminals. If you offer mobile payments, you can increase the proportion of payments received electronically, reduce insurance against cash on hand. This means you don’t need to keep as much change in your float, reducing the costs and inconvenience of depositing cash at the bank every day.

3. Faster checkout, happier customers
In a busy retail environment, time is money. If you can accept mobile payments, you can reduce the time it takes for customers to pay. Ensure that this is a highlighted benefit at the point of sale, similar to drop and go counters at the airport. Cashiers in store will be able to process payments faster as more of your customers opt for “Instant pay” counters. Queues will be kept moving, which is good for you and even better for your customers.

4. Lower costs for all
The new generation of mobile payments apps reduce the costs of accepting digital payments. This can either be done by using a simple app on your smartphone or a small mobile terminal – usually offering much lower costs than the traditional card machines supplied by the banks.

Making the final decision
Once you are ready to make the move to digital, it is worthwhile to explore which service provider and offering will suit your business. Read the terms and conditions. Also, be sure to inform your customers that you have implemented easier ways for them to pay.

By Charles Pittaway, Managing Director of Sage Pay