A popular theme in the discourse around payment solutions is the influence of fintech on customer satisfaction and business innovation. Technology has always played a key part in disrupting and improving financial services and products, so much so that the two industries overlapped. This month, we looked at the ways new and small businesses could empower themselves and the influence of fintech was present throughout. Here are the highlights:
Mind the (generation) gap
Research has shown that different age groups exhibit different buying behaviours. Baby boomers predictably hoard their wealth, but unpredictably, they welcome new transaction methods like mobile payments. Members of Generation X are loyal to card payments but are also the second-highest users of mobile payments after millennials, who seek convenience and personalisation above all else. These generational insights allow businesses to cater for the specific needs of their customers in smarter ways.
Securing small business capital
One of the hardest parts of starting a business is getting the capital you need to get it off the ground. We looked at the different sources that can help new entrepreneurs finance their business ideas. Banks are the most common options, but business starters should ensure that they thoroughly compare interest rates and repayment options as these differ from bank to bank. Crowdfunding has become a viable option too, thanks to the likes of Kickstarter and Startme. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) also has a range of grants and programmes that focuses on entrepreneurs who are women, the youth or the previously disadvantaged. Securing capital for a new business can seem overwhelming, but if you have a well drawn business plan with financial projections, a business account and a healthy credit record, you’re already halfway there.
<h3>Walking the talk</h3>
Contactless and cardless payments are two closely related yet different payment methods. We took it upon ourselves to set the record straight, so that retailers can be confident about what they’re referring to at all times. We also outlined some fundamental contactless dos and don’ts for retailers who are looking to introduce tap-and-go payments. The tips included training your staff properly, promoting contactless payments and using the right POS (point-of-sale) payment solution. Contactless payments are gaining popularity and a business owner who takes advantage of this will surely reap the benefits.
<h3>Get to know South African fintech</h3>
We also highlighted some of the exciting things fintech companies are doing in South Africa, what Entrepreneur magazine calls the fintech hub of Africa. We shone a light on businesses like Wealth Migrate, LulaLend, 22Seven and ThisIsMe; they are optimising all kinds of processes in financial services while improving customer and stakeholder experience. It’s exciting to wonder what else is on the horizon for fintech in South Africa.
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