In the driving seat
Customers develop loyalty and a long-term relationship with stores that supply essential services. Don’t drive them into the arms of your competitors by overlooking the potential benefits, writes Gillian Hamill
10 July 2014
AT A GLANCE: FOOTFALL DRIVERS
- PostPoint retailers process over 18 million transactions every year
- The One4all Gift Card is accepted in over 5,400 retail outlets nationwide
- PostPoint supplies electronic services to almost 2,400 retailers nationwide
- Payzone drives over 1,000,000 local consumers into retail stores every week to complete payments
- On average a Payzone user will visit their local store 1.5 times a week
- Prepaid utility payments have grown considerably over the past 12 months with approximately 220,000 meters installed across Ireland to date
- 70% of Payzone customers buy additional items when completing their transaction in-store
- In addition to over 1,000 established outlets in the north, over 580 retailers provide the PayPoint service to over 100,000 customers per week in the Republic of Ireland
Footfall generators such as ATMs, mobile top-ups and bill pay are vital in terms of driving repeat custom and creating differentiation between stores. Often, customers will visit a store due to a specific need for such products. If they cannot find them located in-store, they will not be back – instead they will take their auxiliary spend to the nearest competitor who does provide these services and keep returning there.
PostPoint retailers can offer their customers the largest portfolio of electronic payment products and services in the Irish marketplace. Over the last year alone, PostPoint has boosted its bill payment facility to over 150 billers, one of the largest in the country, allowing customers to pay the majority of national and regional bills through their local PostPoint shop.
In addition to regular utility bills, customers can also pay their local property tax and TV licence renewal as well as many of their local waste payments and local City and County Council payments through PostPoint.
PostPoint retailers process over 18 million transactions every year, including essential footfall driving services such as mobile phone top up, bill payment, waste management, tolling, parking and international calling cards.
Added to these services are exclusive An Post products such as postal products, stamps, TV licence renewal and One4all Gift Cards, as well as new innovative online payment products like Ukash and Paysafecard.
The One4all Gift Card is Ireland’s leading multi-store gift card and is exclusively sold through Post Offices and PostPoint outlets. The One4all Gift Card makes the perfect gift for any occasion as it is accepted in over 5,400 retail outlets nationwide.
PostPoint retailers can offer ParkMagic’s excellent TollTag to their customers. This tag can be used on all nationwide tolls and is similar to a ‘ready to go’ option on a mobile phone in that it can be topped up through PostPoint stores.
Part of the An Post Group, PostPoint was established in 2000 and was the first company in Ireland to perform an electronic top up. Shortly after, PostPoint also became the first electronic services provider to develop BillPay in retail stores.
Now, PostPoint supplies electronic services to almost 2,400 retailers nationwide and works hand-in-hand with thousands of retailers in every town and every village across Ireland. By joining PostPoint retailers enjoy the support of a dedicated customer services team as well as an award-winning sales support team on the road.
PostPoint works with all major retail brands including Spar, Centra, SuperValu, Tesco, Gala, Mace, Londis, Costcutter, Daybreak, Topaz and Applegreen. If you would like more information about joining PostPoint, telephone1890 20 42 20.
PayPoint – driving footfall into your store
PayPoint’s added-value payment service and technology help retailers toprovide a valuable service to their local community and differentiate their store from others in the area.
By having a PayPoint terminal, retailers give their customers the convenience of paying at their local store for a wide range of essential household expenses, including Electric Ireland, Eircom, Bord Gáis, Airtricity and Vodafone, as well as for local authorities such as Wexford, Laois and Meath County Councils, Dublin City Council and household waste to Panda Waste. Customers can also top up their mobile phones with Vodafone, O2, Meteor, H3G, Lyca and Tesco Mobile, and a wide range of international and rechargeable calling cards such as Swiftcall, First National, IDT – Unity, Lime and Super cards. They can also purchase e-money vouchers, which enable them to make internet payments on various websites through Ukash and Paysafecard vouchers purchased on the PayPoint terminal.
The result of having such a wide range of payments available to customers is that the average utility bill payment shopper visits the shop more frequently and spends more on each visit than the average shopper, amounting to an additional spend per week of as much as 50% (excluding the service payments).
No investment is required by the retailer as the terminal, installation and training are all provided free of charge. PayPoint also merchandises – again, free of charge – every site with eye-catching window, interior and counter-based POS materials to advertise the availability of the service.
Today, the convenience of paying at PayPoint is available across Ireland as a whole, as, in addition to over 1,000 established outlets in the north, over 580 retailers provide the service to over 100,000 customers per week in the Republic of Ireland.
Q & A with…
In the battle for consumers’ spend retailers need to make sure they are a ‘destination’ for their customers; how can Payzone’s retail offerings help drive significantly higher footfall and increase loyalty?
Payzone drives over 1,000,000 local consumers into retail stores every week to complete a wide variety of payments, primarily across four key categories; transport, utility, financial services and telecoms. We offer retailers a unique bundle of services that cannot be obtained from any other payments provider, from loading prepaid debit cards, tolling payments, Leap Cards and mobile top ups right through to essential services such as household utility bill payments, local property tax payments and prepaid gas and electricity metering services.
These services work to drive customer traffic resulting in increased spend within the local Payzone locations. On average a Payzone user will visit their local store 1.5 times a week, creating strong customer loyalty and a long-term relationship with that store.
The retail space is hugely competitive now in both margins and choice. How do you differentiate your solutions in such a crowded marketplace?
Our offering stands out from competitors for a number of reasons. At Payzone, we offer the widest number of retail payment services in the market, working with over 80 clients to provide our retailers with a unique bundle of services. These unique services differentiate the local retailer from the big multiples and provide valued support to their local community.
For the retailer, Payzone continues to invest in future proofing technology. We have broadband enabled terminals in all our stores and work with our retailers to provide the most convenient processes for them, including a retailer web portal where they can access their invoices and statements.
Over the last 12 months what innovations have delivered the greatest sales for retailers?
Prepaid utility payments have grown considerably over the past 12 months with approximately 220,000 meters installed across Ireland to date. We have also seen a large increase in Leap Card transactions as the integrated ticketing service for public transport has expanded to Cork and more operators have joined the scheme.
In the past 12 months Payzone has also launched the Parcel Connect service, so customers can now send and collect parcels and return online purchases via their local Payzone retail agent.
The introduction of new services on the network has resulted in an overall increase in the number of customers using the Payzone retail channel. According to research we recently carried out, 70% of Payzone customers buy additional items when completing their transaction in-store.
Are there plans for any new products in the pipeline?
Payzone is always striving to offer the best range of services for our retail agents – we are constantly seeking out new business opportunities and investing in the introduction of innovative new services to add to our extensive portfolio.
In the coming months, we expect to launch and rollout a number of new payment services, including an offering to facilitate the new water payments. Leap Card is also due to extend its offering in the coming months with Galway and Limerick cities expected to be added to the locations where the card is in operation.