• Stephen Chun

Orchestrating The Future Payment

Seamless, and yet a transaction just happened! It glides down into the last mile journey, barely registering in the customer’s conscious mind. At the end, customers get a frictionless dopamine spike due to the enriching & seamless online shopping experience which is worth repeating till we called it shopping addiction.

But a perfectly seamless payments could be a daunting task in the global market especially since commerce is becoming digital-centric, cross border driven with customers’ preferential choice of payment methods becoming more diverse. Ultimately, because of not having enough payment methods and seamless experience, you may end up losing your well-targeted market at the very end of the sales funnel. Bounce rate, drop-out cart, whatever you call it.

In ASEAN with a highly fragmented market, businesses looking to do a good job at optimizing payments will tend to be caught in a rat race in the effort of signing up different payment providers in different regions to create a more robust payment ecosystem. Because other than localizing products or activating shipping checkpoints, the business needs to solve the task of the ability to successfully collect a payment to establish a customer relationship. Simply put, no money, no honey.

However, in recent years, the booming of the digital landscape during COVID-19 has created a new demand for payment innovation, particularly for successful startups or multinational companies which couldn’t escape cross-border transactions. Be it payment aggregation or orchestration, seasoned merchants need to equip themselves with new capabilities to offer highly diverse payment options to effectively and efficiently complete the transaction regardless of how, where or when they desire the most. More importantly, it has to be the right range of payment methods with a network of acquirers, to achieve the highest acceptance rate and the lowest cost possible.

Payment orchestration platforms implement a very specific payment ecosystem for each merchant that enables them to roll out all the cards and alternative payment methods they need in all their markets and across all their channels while streamlining the reconciliation services and facilitating backend processes like refund or chargeback management.

Moreover, payment orchestration puts a failover process into place via multiple acquirers, such that if a payment transaction fails, the system automatically reroutes it via a second or even a third alternative route in an attempt to ensure the highest success rate. The merchant is happy because they are not losing any sales and minimize the payment cost; customers are satisfied because they can pay using a method of their choice with the flexibility they need without hitting any roadblocks

Now, CHAIPort makes it simpler for merchants to quickly activate and operate a much more sophisticated payment ecosystem, and most importantly, to enable the cross border which ASEAN greatly deserve now. No more Thai for Thai but Thai for all, like we always dream of.

But don’t get me wrong, traditional payment getaways do have the basic necessity to fulfil the basic needs of any business especially if it is at the domestic level. But talking about beyond the country border with business transactions, especially a large volume of it, business becomes sub-optimal if you don’t upgrade your payment infrastructure.

Now, it’s not that Thai is always a welcoming country to the world with one continuously topped the chart with the most visited tourists, but now losing its grip especially to Mexico. Well, we will do whatever it takes to win it back, but since payment orchestration can play a role now –, particularly in the hard-hit travel market, where customers who want to visit Thailand are often paying outside of Thailand. The travel industry, which by its very nature has a large and diverse international customer base, could most acutely stand to tap into the power of payment orchestration. The industry as a whole has been turned upside-down over the last year, which has created "massive pressure" on the payment side with peaks of chargebacks and the massive volume of refunds to be processed.

Payment orchestration can help our travel & tourism industry to recover faster. It can help us reopen the travel destinations by activating all the payment methods and acquirers they need in the selected countries. It can also help streamline our airline's back-end processes to better manage chargebacks or offer vouchers as an alternative to refunds, with fewer people involved and more automation.

Thailand's travel industry could make it easier for people to go wherever they want, but the virus has made the travel experience much more cumbersome. At least well-orchestrated payment platforms will reduce the burden on the payment side, making it as frictionless and flexible as possible.

A positive side of the post-pandemic is that it will accelerate the need for travel companies to embrace payment orchestration and will ultimately simplify the payment experience for tourists.

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