In today’s digital age, furniture customers expect convenience and flexibility regarding payment options. This blog post will explore the importance of offering alternative payment methods and how they can benefit your business by providing enhanced customer experience and driving increased loyalty.
The value and appeal of flexible payment solutions
In the era of online shopping, furniture consumers are actively searching for a range of choices regarding where to shop and how to pay. In fact, over half of Americans (54%) would be more inclined to shop at a retailer that offers flexible payment alternatives, such as Lease-To-Own (LTO) or Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL).
Younger generations, in particular, are highly motivated to use non-traditional payment methods, with 60% of Gen Z and millennials indicating that they would be more likely to shop from a vendor that provides flexible payment options, compared to 45% of Gen X and older individuals.
BNPL has gained traction as a popular option for customers who prefer to spread out the cost of their purchases over time. However, individuals with no credit or a damaged credit history often need to meet the requirements for BNPL or comparable solutions, which leaves them with limited options for obtaining the essential items, such as furniture, they need.
A world of overlooked consumers
Lack of access to credit is not a niche issue. Traditional financing options overlook at least 30% of American consumers. This void leaves a sizable minority of consumers unable to obtain the essential items they need. As a result, durable goods such as furniture that impact the quality of life often need to be put within reach.
This group of consumers is also facing an extra burden from inflation. According to a 2022 survey, Americans identified inflation as the most pressing issue affecting the nation. As a result of the skyrocketing costs, consumers are under more significant pressure, reducing demand and making business more challenging for merchants. Those already living paycheck to paycheck are suffering the most significant impact. Nearly two out of three Americans (62%) say that higher prices due to inflation are causing them to delay or skip purchasing the big-ticket items they need.
Expanding reach to loyal customers
The relatively higher prices associated with durable goods like furniture can be a barrier to purchase. By creating a more comprehensive funnel for incoming shoppers, alternative payment options such as LTO can help move more inventory for steadier cash flow and more significant average order value.
LTO payment solutions are becoming increasingly essential in today’s economic and retail environment, benefiting merchants and consumers. By using these solutions, retailers can attract and retain a large and loyal consumer base while previously marginalized consumers gain access to essential products. Katapult recently surveyed customers of a leading online furniture retailer and found that without Katapult’s offering, almost 60% of the retailer’s LTO customers couldn’t have purchased their items, and 25% would have gone to a competitor.
Those excluded by traditional payments in the past highly value inclusive and welcoming merchants. Furniture merchants can provide an enhanced customer experience by offering accessible and flexible payment options at checkout, which opens financial opportunities for their customers. These choices foster strong customer relationships and ensure long-term loyalty and retention.
To learn more about how alternative payment options can help open a world of new and loyal customers, get in touch with a leading LTO provider, Katapult here.