Surfing not on but ahead of the wave — how Blockchain technology puts you ahead of the curve
Like a tsunami, technological progress crashes over the retail industry and leaves its mark of modernization behind. In eCommerce as much as in brick-and-mortar retail, we could not do without without digital helpers nowadays: from flashing advertisements of discounts, filling and dispatch robots, and automatic and self-checkouts. Behind the scenes a lot has been happening, too. So let’s tackle how blockchain technology in particular facilitated a (r)evolution in payments.
Today, we are facing an overload of supply and offers in the streets and online. Clients have realized their strong position, making demands and augmenting their expectations for a shopping experience. They naturally expect a smooth, fast, and effective payment process with multiple flexible options. Studies show that clients would „opt to exit the check-out process if it offers only one payment option.“ Moreover, 47% of the respondents are hoping for a completely cashless future. While the desire for cashless might just be the beginning of a trend, its force might increasingly transform into the majority view with Gen Z and follow-up generations.
How can the retail sector prepare for the expected shift from cash to cashless? The Key is to remain pro-active and look for a reliable and future-oriented payment partner now, in order to take care of this headache of continuously integrating new payment methods into the existing payment infrastructure. Today we are talking cryptocurrencies and tokenized loyalty points, tomorrow it could already be digital fiat money like an e-Euro, and no one can say which other options blockchain technology will enable in the future. There is only one choice: remain flexible and forward orientated in your technological choices. These are crucial success factors. „We regard our clients as much more than just our clients. Instead we enter a partnership to take care of the payment processes and adapt it continuously to the changing demands from end-users. This way our clients can focus fully on satisfying their customers,” says René Pomassl, Founder and CEO at Austrian crypto payment software SALAMANTEX.
Offering variety in digital payment options natural has become the norm in e-commerce. On the high street, it’s a different story. This is problematic as currently still 90% of all purchases are made in bricks-and-mortar stores and it is forecasted for e-commerce to completement rather than displace physical stores. To satisfy the customers in the long-term, providing consistent easy and fast payment on all channels is crucial. Online-checkout to the POS or self-checkout in the stores all must offer seamless experiences and options. “The future is happening now, but it will still take a while until everyone has caught up with the latest developments. For us, it is extremely important to cater to all generations with an intuitive and secure payment process,“ adds Pomassl.
Some merchants believe it is still too early to adapt to digital assets and CBDCs (digital fiat money). However digital progress is known to sometimes happen extremely rapidly and the warnings are already here: only recently the ECB announced to have selected providers for the creation of digital interfaces for a digital euro.
Who wants to stand out against the competition these days can’t just go with the flow but has to surf ahead of the wave. Being ahead of the trends allows to snag first mover advantages and stand out positively.
 Business Transformation im Handel — von E-Commerce zu D-Commerce (eas-mag.digital)
 Are consumers driving the evolution of retail technology? (wundermanthompson.com)
 Der Handel im digitalen Umfeld (handelsverband.at)
 Studie: E-Commerce wird stationären Handel „nicht vollständig ersetzen“ (fashionunited.de)