The Green Sheet Online Edition
April 09, 2007 • Issue 07:04:01
A real sticky merchant service
With rising competition, it seems everyone is questing for magic merchant flypaper. If you've been to a recent acquirers' association meeting, you may have been advised to partner with providers of value-added services to increase the longevity of your merchant relationships.
Assurz Inc. provides one such service. The company recently unveiled a shopper-satisfaction guarantee program for online merchants that acquirers and ISOs can offer as a third-party value-added service to their clients.
The guarantee gives shoppers an extended 90-day evaluation period for online purchases; a full refund on returned merchandise, including taxes and shipping; and free return shipping and packaging.
"One of the main reasons consumers abandon shopping carts is a lack of trust, either because they're on an unfamiliar Web site or because they're concerned that they may have a difficult time returning merchandise," said Gregg Gumbinger, Vice President of Business Development for Assurz.
"Our 100% satisfaction guarantee equips payment processors with an enhanced consumer satisfaction solution that helps merchants close sales," he said. The program, which has no software to install or set up, is easy for ISOs and acquirers. "They don't have to do integration, buy software or do anything," Gumbinger said.
Assurz charges the merchant a percentage on each trans- action and shares revenue with the acquirer or ISO. "It means they have a new revenue stream from a value-added service," he said.
The target market consists of Internet retail merchants selling hard goods online. Merchants decide whether to charge individual customers for the guarantee. "Most merchants want to offer it so they have a guarantee service built in, like the leaders in the industry," he said.
Merchant customers can file claims by calling Assurz's 800 number. "We take over from there," Gumbinger said.The Assurz service requires no recurring fees. Merchants and acquirers have the option to co-brand the service with their own logos. Some ISOs want to roll it out as a self-branded service to the merchant "so it's more sticky."
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