Offering a ride from A to B is not enough anymore.
I love the game of predictions and being visionary. You usually find me 2-4 years in the future. What have I learned? We typically overestimate the impact short term but underestimate the very same thing in the long run. I also learned that simplicity and complexity are the same beings. If you want to offer something simple to manage, you need to be ready to go complex internally.
Today you find people like me talking about the customer experience, simplicity, flexibility, and other features. Take one step back, and you will see that they have one thing in common; they provide more layers of quality on top of the actual product. Just offering a ride from A to B is not enough anymore. Is it just buzz words? Is it marketing mumbo-jumbo?
As the actual products get more and more aligned between competitors, adding new layers of experience and flavors into the solution is sometimes the only way for us and our competitors to stand out and attract customers. Without those, the price would be the only benchmark. And believe it or not. That is a scenario where the end-customer would be the biggest loser.
The layer-mentality is something we have addressed at Westpay. Big time. Adding more value to the rational, distinct offering has almost become a sport internally. Watching our CTO, COO, product managers, colleagues, and business developers brainstorm is a joy I wish you all could experience. Relax. It is not like I think that this is unique for Westpay. That’s not my point. My point is that this exemplifies whats needed doing business 2020. The 30-year-old-over-used buzz “customer first” (boy do I still hate that buzz) is more alive than ever.
The short story: the upside (read profit) of one’s business is a consequence of prioritizing the end-customer. The second you go for short term benefits, you will fail.
– So, that’s a lot of words to describe some generic features needed doing business. What does that mean for the fintech business?
I am glad that you asked.
When I look 1-2 years ahead, several features stand out. But let me pick two. Two that you should look for when selecting your fintech provider.
First, I think we all can, no matter business, understand that change is here to stay. And the demands are customer-driven. That means that providers that are stuck in a closed ecosystem should be avoided. Instead… go for freedom. You never know what kind of payment solution tomorrow will bring. But you know you want to be in a situation where you can be (pro)active and handle quick changes.
Second, look for a provider that plays well with others in the fintech and payment solution business in a way that strengthens the overall benefits to your advantage. If you find your provider being protectionistic, go for another one. Because we live in a time where the largest taxi company doesn’t own a car, the biggest music company doesn’t know what a studio is. I think it is fair to say that business models will change in ways we can’t even imagine. And when that happens, you don’t want to be in a locked room together with dinosaurs.
The time to be pragmatic is now. You know what you want. The next time you are in a situation when you are about to pick a new provider. Go for the one that offers layers. Like I said: layers mean customer experience, simplicity, flexibility, and other benefits that allow you to aim for the customer’s loyalty. Do that, and you will, as you can imagine, end up more profitable and successful.
Now, that’s a consequence I like.
Contact me if you need help to find the best payment solution. I will introduce you to some of our leading experts. They will give you the insight required, so you can identify a payment solution that increases your revenue and enables the customer experience. Now that’s what I call a win-win.
Hans Edin, CMO at Westpay AB.