CNP Expo: Payments Strategy Requires Prioritization, Adaptability

May 21, 2013

For retailers that operate in the card-not-present space, articulating a coherent strategy governing how payments fit into the company’s overall strategy is becoming increasingly important, according to panelists at a Tuesday session of the 2013 CNP Expo. In “Building a Payments Roadmap,” experts sketched out the importance of devoting as much energy to payments as other business functions.

Creating a payment strategy that fits a company’s overall strategy often is difficult to create. But, the role of payments is crucial to the long-term success of any merchant, said Louis Kearns, director of payments for e-commerce solutions provider Shopify. Building a payments roadmap requires the ability to prioritize and work on the most important problem first. And, Kearns said, merchants need first and foremost to involve their customers and identify their needs.

While mapping out a payments strategy can be an in-house project, many merchants use a consultant to lead them through the maze of payment options. If you want to go that route, Kearns said it’s important to designate an internal leader to oversee decisions.

Being nimble and adaptable should be a foundational tenet of any payments strategy, according to Jimmy Scarborough, vice president of business development for Bank of America Merchant Services.

“Anticipate new technologies, regulations and emerging competitors, and change quickly,” he advised. “You’re always going to have disruptors out there.”