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Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) – The Future Of Commerce?

E-commerce has been on the rise in recent years, with consumers becoming more and more sophisticated in their shopping habits. One major trend that’s emerged is buy now pay later – or BNPL for short. This payment method allows you to pay for items later, after you’ve already received them and can check them out without any hassles. Whether customers are looking for a convenient way to pay for their upcoming holiday purchases or just want to save on your monthly bills, BNPL is an excellent option. Read on to find out more about the options available to e-commerce stores such as; Affirm, Afterpay, Sezzle, etc. With so many options available, it’s hard to go wrong!

What is BNPL?

BNPL is one of the leading trends consumers are using, you can think of it as an installment loan more/less. It’s convenient for shoppers that want to purchase now and prefer to backdate payments. BNPL offers shoppers a way to save on their purchase without having to put the entire amount of money down immediately. Rather, buyers can pay for the item over time- usually with interest and monthly payments- or in installments. This allows them to convert immediately and buy on the first entrance vs coming back at a later date.

Are People Really Using Buy Now Pay Later Services?

According to a nationally representative poll of 2,174 American adults (PDF) conducted by Consumer Reports in January 2022, roughly one out of every five Americans has used a BNPL service. Several individuals who have discussed these services and say they would use them again.

Is BNPL a good option for ecommerce?

BNPL is growing in popularity for e-commerce stores, which was propelled by the pandemic as well. Why? BNPL offers a low-cost monthly subscription and is a very easy way to increase website conversions once installed. This all may sound to good to be true, but it’s important to have a solid P&L on your e-comm store and know exactly what is going on with payments if you choose this route. For example, one survey found that over 40% of buy now, pay later users have defaulted on their loans.

Top Options For 2022

Although there are many Buy Now Pay Later Options here are the top choices on the market in 2022:

Affirm

Affirm is a top choice for BNPL boasting a 20% repeat purchase rate, a lift of 85% related to average order size and they’ve served over 12M users. They use AI and big data to help businesses grow. Their platform is easy to use, customizable, and can help you streamline your operations. If you’re looking for a platform that can help you grow your business, Affirm is definitely worth considering.

Afterpay

Afterpay is quickly becoming the go-to BNPL solution for many e-commerce stores. Afterpay offers users four interest free installments and the ability to budget the purchase. In addition, users can earn rewards when shopping to encourage loyalty. Some the notable statistics boasted by Afterpay are a 40% increase in average order size and increased frequency of shopping. I.E. Users that use Afterpay shop 50% more than users that do not.

‘Pay in 4’ with PayPal

With ‘Pay in 4’, PayPal has made it easier than ever for shoppers to pay for their online purchases. Paypal offers interest free payments and gives user the options of bi-weekly installments with zero late fees. Some caveats to note are the 4 payment structure only works for purchases ranging from $30-$1,500. Users will need to setup or link their credit card, debit card or bank account to use the feature. Although Paypal has recently tarnished it’s reputation, there is no doubting that it has a massive ecosystem of users and has a large market share. If you are looking at BNPL, paypal should at least be in your due diligence phase.

Sezzle

Sezzle is a bit under that radar, but I personally started noticing it quite a bit more in 2021 and 2022 with several e-commerce clients that I brought on for SEO or PPC. Some of the benefits of Sezzle are; 4 interest free payments, no impact on users credit and ecommerce stores do not hold any liability. Not to mention I personally like the interface and the ease of implementation with Sezzle.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can BNPL help my business grow online?

BNPL offers businesses a simple and easy checkout process that makes it easy for customers to buy from your store. Mainly adding a BNPL feature to your website you are offering fast order processing without the full purchase price upfront. That can be a massive advantage to the right target market. I’ve personally seen niches such as; vape, fashion and sports equipment doing quite well by offering BNPL to their audience. BNPL offers a white label e-commerce integration with your existing CMS such as Shopify so it’s not like e-commerce stores have to code excessively to begin using the feature.

Conclusion

BNPL is a payment platform that allows businesses to easily process payments online and give more value to their prospective buyers by delaying payments. It is fast, reliable, and easy to use, making it a popular choice for ecommerce businesses. As we head into a possible recession with consumers very sensitive to pricing no doubt will we see a positive correlation for shoppers opting in for BNPL. As a marketing director or e-commerce store owner you should absolutely look into the power of Buy Now, Pay Later.