A good payment service provider does more than just sell online merchant account solutions. PSPs, the serious ones, are invested in their online merchants as far as providing resources and maintaining contact. Everybody wins when an online business is thriving.
We like to think we’re among those PSPs that enable their merchants to succeed and flourish, that do more than just set them up with the best payment gateway solutions for their particular industries. PSPs have a degree of responsibility to keep online merchants processing payments by offering education such as:
- Mitigating chargebacks and fraud
- Updating merchants on regulations and changes in payments
- Assisting merchants in growing their online presence
That last one is the most important task for a merchant, yet most online merchants are falling short. We read some disturbing statistics recently about how small businesses have failed to make the most of their online footprint, such as establishing profiles on popular and powerful business listing platforms. According to the State of Local Marketing Report, only 33 percent of all business listings on Yelp have been claimed; while only 44 percent of Google My Business profiles have been claimed. Worse, the report said, only 23 percent of businesses faithfully update their pages.
After an approval for an online merchant account, establishing your online presence should top a merchant’s to-do list. Below are three easy tasks any merchant can tackle.
Merchant profile: Google, Yelp, BBB and Trip Advisor
Quick: What’s the first thing a consumer does when in need of a specific product or service? They search for it online, and have been for the last 18-20 years. It may be difficult for a small business merchant to get his/her website ranking on page one of Google (more on that shortly). What likely might appear in a search query for a product of service you offer is your company on Yelp, Google, the Better Business Bureau or, if your business applies, Trip Advisor.
How powerful are these four consumer platforms? In terms of page authority on a scale of 1-100 (with Google being 100), Yelp and Trip Advisor both score a 96 while the BBB is an 83. That means millions upon millions of consumers are consulting these pages every day to look at product and service reviews and what other consumers are saying; contact information, directions and other important details.
Not having a profile page (or updating it faithfully) on one of these platforms sends the wrong message – that a merchant doesn’t care enough about his/her business to monitor the activity on an important consumer website. Such negligence, in this e-commerce climate, can endanger a business, therefor its online merchant account. We recommend not just having a profile, but engaging consumers by responding to reviews and messages.
Write a blog. No, really…write a blog.
Everyone is a writer. Some folks may not realize it. Don’t know what to write about? There are ideas all around.
- The benefits of a product or service
- A positive customer experience
- The launch of a new product or service
- The story behind starting the business
- Struggles overcome in the early stages
- Customer success stories
- Supporting a charity or cause
A blog shows a consumer several things: that a merchant is active on his/her site, which is always positive.
And back to our point about the difficulty in ranking on Google’s page one for search: writing a weekly or even monthly blog, with a dedicated keyword pertaining to your business or service, will only boost your website closer to page one for Google searches. Google very much values websites that consistently add quality content, such as blogs, videos, photos and infographics.
Open a modest Adwords account, then build on it
When a merchant’s business is online-driven, not having a Google Adwords account is unthinkable. Online merchants who own a small business should start small, choosing 5-10 relevant keywords at whatever s/he can afford per month. Upon improved rankings and growth in traffic and sales, it is good practice to monitor an Adwords account, to moderately increase spending and perhaps target new keywords every 6-8 months.
Online merchant account solutions – growth and good practices by Instabill
Instabill has done more than offer high risk online merchant accounts for nearly 20 years. We connect merchants with the best acquiring banks that specialize in their industries, and remain on hand as a consultant for the life of the online merchant account relationship. Speak directly with an online merchant services expert at 1-800-530-2444.