The Future of Merchant Payments in a Shifting E-commerce Landscape

As commerce continues to evolve, merchants must adapt to it and the shifting landscape in which it resides. This means, for example, adapting to e-commerce needs, the rise of mobile payments, as well as the expected ease at which transactions can be completed.  

In a recent interview conducted by Karen Webster thanks to a PYMNTS Masterclass, Amy Parsons provided insight on this, and how merchants can prepare themselves for the future of commerce.  

Having worked at Discover Financial Services for over 26 years, Parsons is one of the most influential women experts in payments. She is the senior vice president of global acceptance at the company, as well as Discover Global Network, which is Discover Financial Services’ respective payments brand.  

As of now, her focus is on digital payments, which was well-reflected in the interview. Parsons said that “consumers can search for an item, find the store in which it is located, find directions to the store and even pinpoint the aisles and shelves where the item is — with laser precision to speed the transaction along.” 

Parsons also pointed out that consumers expect the payment process to be quick and secure. It is therefore integral that merchants are prepared to uphold these expectations with services for better data security and consumer protection.  

This should happen before curating to other parts of the consumer journey, as well as the deployment of machine learning and language processing for the sake of value-added services.  

“You want to make sure that consumers feel comfortable with the way you are using their information, that it is something they think is [okay],” she told PYMNTS. 

In the interview, Parsons also noted that the increasingly complex technological landscape is what merchants must now navigate. Contributing to this complexity is the growth of multiple engagement channels, and, along with it, the increasing risk of parties committing fraud.  

In addition, she said that a way to bridge traditional brick and mortar stores to digital ones is for merchants to work with “an ecosystem of partners.” Involved stakeholders, therefore, should be able to bring in their own expertise to this kind of ecosystem. With this level of expertise, be it inventory tracking or loyalty programs, merchants should then be able to focus on better end-user experiences.   

Here at Accept/Pay, we understand the importance of bridging that gap between physical retail stores and digital ones through the use of quality credit card processors. With our team of experts, we guarantee merchants the best rates on the market.  

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