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Posted September 23, 2020 by FreedomPay

Top 2020 Trends in Financial Technology

Named one of the Top 25 Women Leaders in Financial Technology of 2020, Courtney Kelly Peters has positioned herself as a key influencer in the fintech space. Her ability to cultivate partnerships, opportunities, strategic relationships and innovative thinking continues to set her apart.

Courtney, Director of Business Development at FreedomPay, shares her thoughts on the leading fintech trends of 2020 and the impacts of COVID-19.

Touchless Commerce

Enabling an efficient, almost invisible interaction with consumers has been top of mind for merchants and consumers alike. With the sudden social and economic impacts of COVID-19, there was an immediate need to understand how to continue to drive revenue through new channels that were not previously prioritized such as eCommerce, or to reinvent the in-store checkout experience.

A successful eCommerce channel is important now more than ever. As the initial impact of COVID-19 has subsided, increased functionality as it relates to ecommerce platforms has opened up the discussion for most verticals.

Businesses are taking advantage of various new Touchless Commerce technologies to best serve the consumer. Virtual kiosks allow for order and payment right in the palm of your hand has helped to keep revenue flowing while providing a sense of safety and security during the pandemic.

Alternative payment types such as Apple Pay and Google Pay, PayPal, Venmo and more allow the customer to easily convert cart to purchase with the payment type of their preference.

When shopping in store, more and more merchants in the US are looking to offer a completely touchless payment experience. Digital wallets are further gaining traction as well as QR-based payments that can be completed swiftly and securely right from your own device.

Business Intelligence

The payments ecosystem has been forced to evolve quickly over the past 6-12 months. There have been major shifts in consumer buying trends that have been impacted by COVID-19 and the associated technologies that support them.

Now more than ever, insight into who customers are and what they are purchasing is at heightened importance but appears to be quite fragmented when merchant look at an entire enterprise. With multiple commerce channels driving revenue potential, there is a growing lack of consumer insight into the full consumer journey.

A fully integrated Business Intelligence tool is key to data success. Merchants can now have a holistic view of the consumer journey, whether purchasing in-store or online. With the aggregation of data, a strong Business Intelligence tool can produce actionable insights at the press of a button – allowing merchants to push discounts and incentives at the point of purchase and much more.

While COVID-19 has been devastating to businesses across the globe, it has encouraged merchants to upgrade their technology to better meet the demands of the modern-day consumer. I expect to see continued innovation in the fintech space driven by advanced technology to facilitate a frictionless, safe and secure consumer experience.

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Posted September 08, 2020 by FreedomPay

Struggling to Get Executive Buy-In for Business Intelligence? Five Ways to Get the C-Suite on Your Side

Here are 5 ways to convince stakeholders of Business Intelligence benefits

Securing C-level commitment for tech-investment is always a challenge. Strategic priorities, like business intelligence often get pushed off the board agenda by short-term challenges and stakeholder pain-points.

In some cases, it is simply hard to make them understand the competitive advantages of business intelligence. It is not a new IT-fad, the icing on their ‘digital-transformation-cake’, or a ‘nice to have’.  Instead it is now a critical requirement for all businesses that want to respond quickly to change – a prerequisite for survival in a post COVID-19 world. 

In fact, the right business intelligence solution can not only make businesses more successful but can also provide the insight they need to make many of the board’s operational headaches disappear.

What’s preventing the C-suite seeing business intelligence potential?

It may simply be a case of baggage – especially if they have had a bad business intelligence experience in their current role or in a previous organization. They may be anxious about poor ROI, failure to meet expectation, lack of in-house expertise, or creaking legacy systems. Perhaps the company already has a business intelligence system, but it may be outdated and with limited functionality.

They may also be unaware of current business intelligence advancements. These days, next level business intelligence solutions offer near real-time intelligence and rapid return on investment. Deployment over-the-cloud is fast and simple and integrated dashboards and tools make them easier to use and link to martech, finance and logistics.

So how do you shift the decision-maker mindset and build a winning case for business intelligence?

Here are five ways to bring business intelligence benefits to life:

1. Paint a new reality
Start by showing the board what a new, truly data-driven future looks like – and remind them that other organizations are already there. Then explain why your legacy platform simply can’t match this new ambition. Make it clear it is about taking the huge amounts of real-time data (SKU-level data) they already have and making it work even harder.

2. Fast-forward expectation
Old legacy business intelligence systems processed data in batches, so intelligence was historic. With a real-time business intelligence platform, you can move the clock forward and start making decisions based on real-time data. Ask your C-team if they are happy knowing what customers, resources and stock were like yesterday when they could see how things are across their operations, right now, today?

3. Secure a smooth business intelligence partner
Reduce decision-friction by making the business intelligence journey as smooth as possible. That means making sure you choose a partner with the expertise to set KPI, SLAs and ROI right from the start. They can help minimize disruption, optimize return and provide a migration path that lets you wrap around all your existing technology stacks (Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Marketing etc.), and integrate third party data as well.

4. Create compelling use cases
Focus on areas that are important for your business and are already on the management agenda. Whether that’s getting customers to choose short-life or high-volume stock items, encouraging upselling, reducing queues and walk-aways, enabling in-the-moment personalized push-offers, keeping track of partner franchise operations, spotting fraudsters faster, or building feedback loops to support better product development. There is a myriad of ways to highlight the value of a new business intelligence system – just make sure they’re relevant! 

5. Show it is easy to get and share
Finally, illustrate how easy it is to get from ‘theory’ to ‘reality’. And emphasize that their buy-in and commitment is the first step to get there. Reassure them by demonstrating the dashboards, customizable fields and automated reports that help them dig deep into their business – across channels, locations, partners, and parameters. Let them see how easy it is to get the exact information they need and to share it with others.

To discover more about bringing the benefits of business intelligence to life for your C-suite, download our latest whitepaper: How to Unify Commerce Data into Actionable Next Level Business Intelligence

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Posted July 22, 2020 by FreedomPay

Business Intelligence: Actionable Commerce Data

Why millions of merchants fail to manage and optimize their Business Intelligence

1. Stay on top of customer demands

With enhanced Business Intelligence and smarter understanding of transaction-level data, merchants can improve their visibility of product cycles. This is essential for reducing waste, streamlining business operations and reducing costs. Enabling smarter business intelligence is a great way to boost profitability without impacting service quality or user choice.

In today’s world advanced machine learning and modern tech is emerging to make understanding customer demands in near real-time easier. This revolution in Business Intelligence means that management and optimization of data will become second nature; it will be simple, just plug-in and play.

It will have a profound effect on strategic business decisions and for the end user.

2. Why should businesses boost promotion and cross-selling

Product-level insight enables businesses to improve market basket analysis and unlock previously unseen cross-selling opportunities. It is also more straightforward to analyse the impact of promotions and loyalty incentives more effectively. The results will predict and influence future behavior.

3. What can merchants do to exploit near real-time data to keep ahead of competitors

With near real-time data on products and stock units, businesses can also flag important trends as they happen. It suddenly becomes a lot easier to initiate a fast response to optimise an opportunity. Overall predictive services will be more accurate, and the business can operate initiatives like dynamic pricing strategies more effectively.

4. Build Business Intelligence feedback loops to support product development

Transaction-powered Business Intelligence that’s full of stock-keeping unit data gives businesses better visibility of factors like product performance, trends, and insights. With this kind of understanding, businesses can manage and market product offerings based on greater insights. They can also develop new products, create new product bundles and ultimately generate sharp uplifts in revenue. But surprisingly 87% of companies do not have business intelligence capabilities and tools.

5. Capture unexpected events and prevent fraud

Near real-time transactional data doesn’t just help businesses establish patterns for ‘typical’ behavior or product demand cycles. It also helps spot unexpected events, making it much easier to identify fraudulent activity. Equally, this capability can be used to catch and react quickly to a sudden spike in demand.

6. Learn how to explore fresh outlooks with third-party data

Finally, you can also synchronize your transactional data with other third-party data to achieve richer and contextualized analysis. Businesses can overlay transactional data with a third-party weather app to find out if the weather is triggering sales behaviors. Ultimately, you can use this kind of analysis to predict demand, drive seasonal promotion campaigns, and achieve a new level of profitability and efficiency.

To talk about how Business Intelligence can be used for your enterprise, or to discover more about Next Level Commerce™ click here.  

Business Intelligence Solution with transactional data report

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