More than 5 billion people worldwide now use social media platforms daily. An average person sits in front of a screen for 6 hours and 37 minutes daily, with 2 hours and 31 minutes spent scrolling through social media platforms. People stay connected with their close ones, gather local or international news, or just look at the photos and videos uploaded on the platforms of their choice.
With such a rise in social media usage, it has become a powerful tool for businesses to promote and sell their products or services. Merchants are setting up their business accounts and leveraging these platforms to establish their online presence and connect with customers. As a result, social media sellers have emerged as a significant force in the e-commerce landscape.
To effectively monetize their online presence, these merchants need reliable and secure methods to accept payments from their customers. Setting up a dedicated e-commerce website might look like the right way to go, but not every merchant has the budget or resources to manage a full-fledged website.
However, this doesn’t mean social media sellers can’t sell their products online. This article explores various social media payment options available to sellers and highlights the benefits of accepting payments on social media.
Different Options for Accepting Payments on Social Media
Social media sellers have several payment options at their disposal to facilitate online transactions. Some popular methods include:
Merchants can engage with customers directly through messages and accept social media payments. Customers can share their debit/credit card details directly with the merchant, and they process the payment. While convenient, this method may not offer the same security level as others.
Mobile Payment Apps
Sellers can leverage several digital payment apps like PayPal, Venmo, or Cash App to accept online payments. Sellers can create payment requests or invoices through the app and share them with the customers. This allows customers to complete the payment process using their preferred payment method within the app.
Another method is setting up your own online store or e-commerce platform. Shopify, Etsy, and WooCommerce are popular e-commerce platforms allowing users to upload and sell their products online. They also support a range of payment integrations so merchants can accept payments securely through whichever method they prefer, be it cards, wallets, or bank transfers.
Benefits of Accepting Payments on Social Media Online
Accepting online payments offers numerous advantages for businesses offering their products and services on social media. Let’s look at some advantages.
Accepting social media payment online gives businesses a more professional look. It shows that the seller is serious about the company’s operations and customer satisfaction. Since online payments have become the new norm, customers are more likely to trust and engage with businesses that provide secure and convenient online payment options.
Improved Sales Opportunities
Online payments open up new sales opportunities. Since there is no need to accept cash payments, the seller can cater to a wide market worldwide, promote the products online, run targeted marketing campaigns, and engage with customers directly to complete the transactions. Customers can purchase with just a few clicks, increasing sales and revenue.
Streamlined Inventory Management
Efficient inventory management is paramount for any e-commerce business. Merchants can integrate their online payment systems with inventory management tools to monitor inventory levels in real time. It gets automatically updated once a purchase is made, which helps ensure accurate stock management. This integration helps prevent deadstock or overstocking, enhancing customer satisfaction.
Access to Customer Data
Analyzing customer data can be a great way for online businesses to improve their sales and generate more revenue. Through the payments done online, a business can extract valuable customer data, including their purchase history, preferences, and contact information. This insight helps the business in improving sales performance by personalizing marketing efforts and creating targeted campaigns to improve overall customer engagement.
Reduced Operational Costs
Handling cash or physical payments and maintaining an updated ledger can be a burdensome task for growing businesses. Online payments, on the other hand, are much easier to handle. Not only do they take less time to process, but the ledger also stays automatically updated, and the operational costs get reduced. There are no rental or maintenance costs associated with online payments as well.
How Businesses can Accept Payments Through a Payment Link
A simple way for sellers to accept payments on social media online is by using payment links. It is a unique URL that directs customers to a secure payment gateway where they can complete their transactions. Here’s how businesses can set up and utilize payment links:
Choose a Payment Gateway
The first step is choosing a reputable payment gateway that supports payment link generation and has advanced security features. Some of the most commonly used payment gateways are Stripe, PayPal, and Paymes.
Create a Payment Link
Once you’ve registered with the payment gateway, it’s time to generate payment links for your products or services. The link is completely customizable, and you can add details like the price, item description, and quantities in the link itself.
Share the Payment Link
Now you can start accepting payments online. Just share the payment link of the product with the customer through their preferred channel, and ask them to complete the payment through that link. Customers can click on the link, securely enter their payment details, and complete the transaction in just a few minutes.
Advantages of Using Payment Links for Collecting Online Payments
While established businesses and merchants can set up their own e-commerce platforms, run marketing campaigns, and accept payments through multiple methods, unregistered or small businesses don’t have that many resources or infrastructure in place. For them, creating and sharing payment links can be very beneficial. Let’s consider some aspects that prove to be advantageous for such businesses.
Simplicity and Ease of Use
Payment links are quite easy to use. They eliminate the need for businesses to have complex integrations or an e-commerce platform in place to start selling. Small businesses can create a space on social media platforms and share payment links with customers. Unregistered businesses or social media sellers can generate payment links quickly and start accepting payments without extensive technical knowledge or resources.
Flexibility in Payment Collection
One of the biggest advantages of payment links is their flexibility. Sellers can create individual links for specific products or services, making it easier for the customer to understand how much they spend on everything. This helps the customer and rewards the seller with information that can be used to create a better-targeted campaign.
Seamless Integration with Social Media Platforms
Payment links can integrate with any platform. As a seller, ensure that every link is integrated with social media platforms so users can get notified if anyone’s made any transactions. Social media is the primary marketing and sales channel for many unregistered businesses or social media sellers. So be sure about what you post or keep on your device.
For small or unregistered businesses with limited budgets, payment links offer a cost-effective solution for accepting online payments. They eliminate the need for investing in expensive e-commerce platforms or payment gateway integrations, making it a budget-friendly option to start accepting payments online.
Accepting online payments is essential for social media sellers to capitalize on the opportunities presented by e-commerce. However, it’s crucial to prioritize security when choosing a payment gateway. Reputable platforms like Paymes offer secure payment solutions specifically tailored for social media businesses. Using a secure payment gateway, social media sellers can build trust with their customers and protect their financial information. In an increasingly interconnected world, leveraging secure payment methods is vital for social media sellers to thrive in the digital marketplace.