Canadians are increasingly looking to shop online – but less than one third of small and medium sized businesses conduct business there
The report shares key insights and actionable tips for how to build and promote a website, market a business online, and set up digital payments – so small business owners can quickly digitize and avoid common pitfalls
TORONTO , Jan. 20, 2020 /CNW/ - Visa (NYSE:V) and a group of key industry organizations today announced Digital Transformations of Small and Medium Size Businesses: The Future of Commerce, a look at the opportunities and challenges Canadian small and medium size business (SMB) owners face in an increasingly digital world. The report provides a snapshot of how SMBs can capture revenue opportunities and move to more technology-focused processes. Developed with leading SMB advocates, the report also offers actionable tips for technology and digital upgrades that business owners can easily implement to grow their businesses.
"As consumer expectations are evolving, it is critical that small and medium size businesses evolve with them," said Brian Weiner , vice president, head of product, Visa Canada. "At Visa, our goal is to help businesses understand and navigate the complexities of today's consumer, and adopt digital processes to stay competitive."
Digital Opportunity for SMBs
According to the report, consumer purchasing behaviour is driven in part by websites and online experiences:
- Consumer behaviour is changing: 90% of consumers say they are motivated to shop at a business if they have an easy to use website. 87% of consumers also think it is important to support local businesses, providing a great opportunity for SMBs to further engage with consumers.
- An online presence is a must: Half of consumers often search online (46%) and/or check the business website (47%) before visiting a new business.
- eCommerce is a differentiator: Only 32% of SMBs sell their products and services online, with only 12% of their sales coming from ecommerce, demonstrating huge opportunity for Canadian businesses.
Digital Payments Improve Profitability
One immediate way for SMBs to seize a revenue opportunity may be by digitizing the checkout process:
- Consumers prefer card: 85% of consumers surveyed rank a digital payment method, such as paying with a card or wire transfer, as their number one preferred payment option. But only 52% of SMBs prefer to accept digital payments, despite the potential financial benefits.
- Digitization impacts the bottom line: 40% of SMBs saw an increase in sales after they started to accept digital payments – by an average of 7.1%1. Further, 61% of SMBs agree customers spend more when they use cards versus cash.
- SMBs recognize the benefits of going digital: 73% of SMBs agreed that utilizing digital payments helped them manage their business more effectively.
Offers & Loyalty are a must
Businesses are aware that rewards drive consumer preference and digital programs can offer instant value and gratification:
- Consumers enjoy digital rewards: 78% of consumers are more likely to choose a business that offers a loyalty program, and 89% of consumers prefer a digital loyalty program compared to a paper-based stamp or punch card.
- Loyalty programs add profitability: 81% of owners say their business is highly dependent on customer loyalty, and close to two-thirds feel that loyalty programs can have a positive impact on average ticket size, repeat customers and revenue.
"While more than 80% of consumers surveyed say digital beneﬁts motivate them to shop at a business, businesses are still underutilizing these preferred digital channels," continued Weiner. "With this report, Visa is sharing actionable ways SMBs can bridge the gap between consumer expectations and their current offerings, resulting in untapped profit and growth in this digital revolution."
Visa provides digital tools and technologies that SMBs can use to help grow their businesses. Visa further helps accelerate entrepreneurship through initiatives like She's Next, Empowered by Visa, which connects women small business owners with Visa's network and partners to help them fund, run and grow their businesses.
About the Digital Transformation of SMBs
The Digital Transformations of SMBs report is an independent study commissioned by Visa in collaboration with a consortium of trade associations, technology providers, financial institutions and researchers to help bridge the gap between consumer expectations and current SMB offerings.
To download the Digital Transformation of SMBs: The Future of Commerce report and learn how to begin growing your business, visit visa.ca/digitaltransformation.
Maru/Matchbox, a global consumer intelligence firm, surveyed 225 businesses that represent business payment decision makers and 2,000 consumers in 2019 to form the Maru/Matchbox 2019 Small Business and Consumer Surveys. ESI ThoughtLab, a leading economics consultancy firm, collaborated with Visa to develop equations that enable the cost analysis to realize the impact of digital versus non-digital payments.
About Visa Inc.
Visa Inc. (NYSE:V) is a world leader in digital payments. Our mission is to connect the world through an innovative, reliable and secure payment network - enabling individuals, businesses and economies to thrive. Our advanced global processing network, VisaNet, provides secure and reliable payments around the world, and is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second. The company's relentless focus on innovation is a catalyst for the rapid growth of connected commerce on any device, and a driving force behind the dream of a cashless future for everyone, everywhere. As the world moves from analog to digital, Visa is applying our brand, products, people, network and scale to reshape the future of commerce.
For more information, visit visa.ca/smallbusiness and @VisaCA.
18 The potential increase in revenue from acceptance of digital payments was calculated based on the experience of firms that recently began to accept (within the last 5 years) digital payments and that have been in operation for more than 5 years. Fifty-five firms met these criteria. Please see the Methodology for additional details.
SOURCE Visa Canada
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