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Discover how much clunky ways to pay are costing your business

(and what you can do to put a stop to it)

Everyone hates queueing. And despite the stereotype, British consumers are no exception.

Our research shows that long queues could be costing retailers as much as £3,581 per day in lost revenue1.

The story online is no different, with the average British retailer losing £37,000 per year from abandoned baskets2.


2 Success depends on simplifying the payment process in order to improve customer experience, Luke Griffiths

The exact size of the missed opportunity will vary from business to business. But small and growing companies can rarely afford to miss a sale.

And that’s where this question comes in:

“What small changes can I make to get more people to buy my products?”

It’s especially important to ask this question in advance of busy periods. Quieter days are the perfect opportunity to ensure that you’re ready for the rush.

Answer three simple questions to get:

An instant estimate of how much clunky payments are costing you per month

Expert advice on how to make paying easier, faster and more flexible

A reminder of the upcoming seasonal events to watch out for


Let's start with a bit about you

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Next, tell us about your business

On average, what’s your monthly revenue from face-to-face sales?

I only sell online

Next, tell us about your business

On average, how much monthly traffic does your website get?

I don't have an online store

Clunky payments could be holding back your business

You could be making an extra 0 per month from face-to-face sales

Improving your online conversion by just 1% would increase sales as much as an extra 0 people visiting your website every month

The simple changes that make paying easier, faster and more flexible

Since May 2015, consumers have been making more cashless payments than payments using notes and coins5. 58% even claim they’d be more likely to shop elsewhere if it offered them more ways to pay6.

For small businesses, this means it’s increasingly important to be able to accept debit and credit cards. But it’s not just about cards. Contactless is booming. In 2015, 9% of consumers rated contactless highly, while in 2016 this number was 14%7.

These numbers are set to rise, with MasterCard and Visa mandating that all new point of sale terminals are able to accept contactless transactions. The same will apply to existing terminals by early 2020.

Sage Pay offers a range of card terminals with a contactless feature that you can switch on or off to suit your needs.

More about face-to-face payments

5 Page 17 - Sage Payments Landscape Report 2017

6 Page 4 - Sage Payments Landscape Report 2017

7 Sage Payments Landscape Report 2017

Here are some clever shortcuts our developers recommend adding to your payment page:

  • Flag errors as customers go through the payment form—don’t wait until the end and make them scroll through to find the mistake. If customers do have to go back and correct an error in the form, use auto-save so they don’t have to start from scratch.
  • Use credit card type recognition to show customers you know which type of card they’re entering: MasterCard always starts with two digits in the 51–55 range; Visa with 4 and AmEx with 34 or 37.
  • A lot of consumers like to register cards on their favourite websites, removing the hassle of re-entering details. Tokenisation is the technology that makes this functionality secure. It protects sensitive card data by replacing it with an algorithmically generated number.

More about tokenisation

Especially in the run-up to events like Golden Week, it’s worth thinking about how you can make it easy for international visitors to shop with you.

Dynamic currency conversion is a service that allows shoppers to pay instantly in the currency of their choice. You’ll still receive the settlement in your own currency, but the whole experience is that bit faster and easier for your customers.

Tell me more

Got a basement shop? You might want to consider card terminals that run off Wi-Fi instead of mobile networks.

Need a machine that won’t let you down during your busiest periods? Ask suppliers about their uptime. Sage Pay offers 99.99% gateway reliability.

Need to get card machines set up quickly and cheaply? Standalone terminals could be the answer. Simply turn the terminal on, connect to the payments gateway and you’re ready to go. No technical assistance required (although we’re always only a phone call away if you do need support).

Get in touch

There has been a 68% increase in mobile payments in the last six months8. Here are a few tips from our top developers to help you boost your mobile sales:

  • Don’t think pointy mouse cursors; think big fat fingers. Size up all your arrows, form fields, buttons and links to be touch-friendly. Customers will soon get fed up of pinching out and zooming in.
  • Make it easy for consumers to resume their shopping where they left it with easy-to-use shopping carts and sign-in options to save their progress on your website. Offer emailing options for them to send themselves a link to their checkout page.
  • If you’re starting from scratch, design your mobile payments pages first. This will prevent you adding too much clutter to your process. If you’re designing a mobile site based on existing web pages, pare it down ruthlessly.
  • Speed up screen load time by reducing the number of elements on each page. Avoid images in particular. Experts say that for every one-second download delay, you’ll get a 7–10% increase in dropouts.

8 Page 8 - Sage Payments Landscape Report 2017

The business owners we talk to don’t have time to conduct in-depth research into payment trends. However, new technologies are being released at a rate of knots.

For example, smartphone payments have quickly gone from cutting-edge innovation to high-street standard. Sage Pay customers have been using Apple Pay since the first day it went live in the UK.

Even if you’re not a customer, our annual Payments Landscape Report is a great way to stay up-to-date during quieter times. It gives you everything you need to know about payment trends in one place.

Get the report

When the online orders are flying in, the last thing you have time for is fraud. Sadly, UK SMBs are losing a total of £9.4bn each year to theft and human error9.

One way to get around this is to pick a payment gateway that comes with real-time analytics. Sage Pay customers have access to an online portal which displays all their online transactions – along with the associated fraud risk.

They can then use that data to arm their logistics people with the insights they need to cancel high-risk orders before the goods are packaged and shipped.

About Sage Pay analytics

9 Calculation based on the number of SMBs in the UK as of Nov 2015 and research by Viga (from Landscape Report)

Payment gateway downtime shouldn’t be a regular problem for your business. But even if it only happens once in a blue moon, make sure your staff are prepared. There’s nothing worse than having a customer who is ready to pay, but can’t – whether it’s online or face-to-face.

The solution to this could be as simple as printing out the phone number that staff need to call if they have any issues and putting it somewhere visible. Sage Pay customers can call our dedicated support team 24/7 on 0845 485 2537.

Get in touch

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James Heath, Owner, Ubyk I’m sold on Opayo
because they help me stay ahead

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