PayU has launched a real time recurring (RTR) offering, called PayU Xpress, designed to boost security and convenience for both retailers and consumers.
The solution provides South Africa’s eCommerce stores with a platform for their shift to a one-click checkout, offering increased customer engagement and the potential for increased sales through improved customer conversions.
“It is our conviction that shoppers just want payments to “happen” and not to be an integral part of the online checkout experience. With RTR we can achieve this, says Karen Nadasen, Country Manager of PayU South Africa.
“Data shows that where shoppers are able to virtually tap and go whenever they see an item at a retailer they trust, they are more likely to purchase impulse items and keep returning to the same site for further service,” concludes Nadasen. “Online operators have experienced a drop off as significant as 30% due to poor functionality and user accessibility – it is a costly mistake to make.”
One-click checkout services have been implemented by numerous retailers over the past few years, with brands such as Amazon, PayPal and Uber taking advantage of its potential and capability. These merchants long since recognised the value of convenience and the importance of customer experiences in an increasingly customer-controlled world.
Uber’s payment platform uses RTR to accept recurrent payments upfront. For Visa Checkout and PayPal, the solution gives their customers a central stop for all their payment options. Amazon Mobile Payments has been available since early 2016 to overcome the barriers around mobile conversion and, along with one-click and Amazon Payments, is one of the reasons why the company achieved $US107 billion in sales in 2015.
The World Wide Worx Online Retail in South Africa 2016 report has found that online retail in the country is growing at a steady rate and it is expected to reach 1% of the total spend for the first time this year. The fact that shoppers still only spend small amounts may be ascribed to legacy issues hindering adoption, but can ultimately benefit the retailer if frequency of payments increases with the right payment solution in place.
Ultimately, some of the biggest barriers to customer conversion are delays, complexity and security on mobile devices, frustrating input methods. Mobile devices are with people 73% of the time according to Facebook and according to a Google / Ipsos study, 29% of users will switch to another site if the one they are on is too slow.
With PayU Xpress, consumers need only enter their details on their first purchase. The platform becomes their central payment repository for as long as they require. PayU offers additional fraud protection for merchants and consumers as users have the option to activate 3D Secure on a user’s first transaction without having to do it every time. For the retailer, the addition of the PayU Xpress button to their payment page is quick and easy so their consumers can use the feature as needed.
“PayU Xpress delivers a shopping experience which is safe, easy and requires only a single click for authentication,” explains Nadasen. “It is the ideal option for eCommerce stores looking to drive richer engagement and improve conversion rates, and gives returning customers a simple and safe space in which to transact. The system uses a PCI-DSS level 1 certified card tokenization service to assure all users of complete security throughout.”
PayU Xpress has been designed to simplify the checkout experience and bring a high-level of online sophistication to South Africa’s eCommerce culture and its simple system and easy controls will give the online merchant the support they need when it comes to reassuring the careful customer.
Showmax launches in Nigeria
Basketmouth and Bovi are the hosts of an exclusive Big Brother Naija recap show, Big Brother Naija Hot Room, as Showmax launches in Nigeria.
Showmax has launched its video-on-demand service in Nigeria. The video streaming service features a dedicated slate of Nigerian TV shows and movies, international hit series, Hollywood blockbusters, and a Big Brother Naija partnership with live streaming and exclusive new BBNaija shows.
The launch brings two important firsts: the first time a wide range of popular Nigerian series can be binged from the beginning, and a partnership with Big Brother Naija featuring live streaming of the Sunday night evictions as well as two new BBNaija shows that are exclusive to Showmax. One of the new shows will be hosted by comedians Basketmouth and Bovi, who will provide commentary on happenings in the Big Brother Naija house.
“We’re aiming for the sweet spot that other services may have missed,” says Niclas Ekdahl, CEO of MultiChoice Group’s Connected Video division. “Taking a generic service and tacking on a few Nollywood movies won’t cut it, so we’re coming in with a strong mix of bang up-to-date Nigerian shows, international hits and favourites from across Africa, and now, as something completely new: on-demand and live Big Brother Naija content.”
Showmax will live-stream all Sunday eviction episodes of Big Brother Naija as well as the finale, and recordings of the nomination shows will be posted on Tuesdays. In addition to this, two brand-new shows, exclusive to Showmax, have been produced. Big Brother Naija Extra View is a 25-minute compilation of unseen footage and will be added to the site daily from Tuesday to Saturday. Big Brother Naija Hot Room is a 25-minute satirical commentary on the week’s main drama and action, hosted by legendary comedians Basketmouth and Bovi, with new episodes coming every Sunday evening ahead of the evictions.
The following shows will be added daily, as they air on Africa Magic channels, with all past episodes available to binge from the beginning:
– Tinsel, one of Nigeria’s longest running TV series and Africa Magic Viewers Choice Best Drama 2017
– The Johnsons, featuring City People Award winners Olumide Oworu and Charles Inojie
– My Flatmates, starring 2018 Savanna Pan-African Comic of the Year Basketmouth
The new Showmax service will feature hundreds of Nollywood movies and thousands of TV show episodes and Bollywood shows. Telenovelas will also be part of the lineup, as will hits from the rest of Africa like Kenya’s Supa Modo, winner of 50 international awards, and South Africa’s big Africa Movie Academy Awards winner Five Fingers For Marseilles.
The lineup of international shows on the new service includes Chernobyl, Vikings, Power, Game of Thrones, True Detective (starring Mahershala Ali), Insecure, Billions, Ballers, and Luther (starring Nigerian BAFTA winner Wunmi Mosaku opposite Idris Elba). The latest episodes of Big Little Lies are added weekly.
There’s also a major focus on kids, with shows like Paw Patrol, PJ Masks, and Doc McStuffins.
To get Showmax, visit www.showmax.com. Showmax has a risk-free trial: once signed up, cancel within the first 14 days and pay nothing. Once the 14-day free trial is over, the cost is N2,900 per month.
Want a competitive edge? Unlock your business data
By Dr YUDHVIR SEETHARAM, head of analytics, insights and research for FNB Business
The businesses which will be able to count themselves amongst the most successful in the coming years will be those that have succeeded in fully harnessing the power of data. But while you’d be hard pressed to find many businesses that are not currently building or acquiring systems and technical resources aimed at unlocking the value of data, the same priority does not appear to have been given to embedding data-driven organisational cultures.
This failure to focus on culture in parallel with technology not only reveals a lack of understanding of the symbiotic nature of the relationship between the two, but also presents a real risk that the massive investments being made into data might not deliver the returns that companies are hoping for.
The problem lies in the fact that while data analytics and processing are relatively exact sciences, a data-driven culture is significantly more difficult to define. So while company owners, managers and executives may not be able to tell you exactly how data analysis works, they can tell you what they want to get out of it. The same isn’t true of their understanding of a data-driven culture, and so the creation of such a culture is either assigned a lower strategic priority, or simply handed off to the organisation’s Chief Technology Officer, Chief Data Officer or HR executive.
This approach is very unlikely to unlock the full value of being data driven. To do that, every person in the organisation has to recognise the importance of being fully data-driven as a competitive differentiator and embrace the need to build a data-driven culture within that organisation.
This is by no means a small ask. Apart from the significant challenges – both technical and human – that a business is bound to face en route to becoming truly data-driven, it’s likely that every person in a company has little to no idea of what the concept of ‘culture’ actually means in a company, let alone what a data-driven culture looks or feels like.
And that’s why the process of transforming a culture to be data driven must begin with the end in mind. That, of course, begs the question: What is a data-driven culture? Unfortunately, there is no simple answer as every business is different and will have different culture parameters. However, it is relatively safe to say that, irrespective of how businesses look or work, their data-driven cultures will have a few things in common.
For one, a data-driven culture will be built on the broad recognition of data as a vital, strategically essential business asset; one that allows the business to make well-considered decisions based on facts and figures rather than on intuition or past experience. Having a data-driven culture will also mean that the business fully recognises and embraces the ability of data and its application to empower all employees to perform their functions much more effectively. And lastly, a business will know that it has completed its transformation to a data-driven culture when it is able to identify and align its technical and business challenges and leverage data to solve both together.
When you consider these factors as characteristics of a data-driven culture, it becomes obvious that being data-driven is not solely a technical strategy. So, while it is important to recruit skilled and talented data scientists and technology professionals to give physical effect to the data-driven vision, trying to become data-driven in isolation from the business and all its other employees is almost certainly a recipe for failure. Which brings me to the second obvious question that will, or at least should, be asked by every business that wants to be able to unlock the full potential of data as a transformative, business building asset. And that is: How do we do it?
This, too, is a simple question without a simple answer. Most of the global organisations that are considered to have succeeded in becoming data driven still admit to being in the learning phase when it comes to embedding a data-driven culture. FNB is no exception. But we remain committed to the process and, I believe, have gained some valuable insights into the steps that businesses, and especially financial services organisations, need to take to move closer towards achieving a data-driven culture.
The first of these is to start by transforming thinking. You need to get the entire leadership body to commit to supporting and promoting a data-driven culture. Even if very few of them understand what that means, a good first step is to simply get board and executive management agreement to being willing to embrace a culture of openness and collaboration.
Then, with that leadership support, start to communicate with the entire organisation to create an understanding of the meaning and value of being data driven, both for the company and its employees and customers. Ultimately, any shift in culture is only possible when culture is mainstreamed. It cannot be the domain or responsibility of HR. So, an organised and strategic education campaign is essential to explain the benefits that embracing a data-driven culture will provide.
The next step is to commit to democratising data. When employees have access to data, its impact becomes obvious. Break down silos and protectionism. Make data, and its analyses, readily available, understandable, and transparent across the organization.
Obviously, it’s dangerous to just give everyone in the organisation unfettered access to all its data, since they probably don’t have the skills or tools to make use of that data. And that’s where the real culture shift happens, or must happen. Businesses need to focus on building collaborative, multi-functional teams. While tech experts may understand the technology and systems, data is first and foremost a business asset. So a data-driven culture has to be driven by the business. And since it’s unlikely that you’re going to find too many employees with a balanced combination of business and data skills, you need to build your data-driven culture on collaborative teams in which every team member is willing to acknowledge what he or she doesn’t know, and work closely with teammates that do. This approach should also inform all future recruitment decisions. In a data-driven culture, you don’t recruit just for a vacancy, you recruit to make teams stronger.
Finally, be patient. Changing a company’s culture takes time, effort and commitment. Even when the leadership sets the example, the shift only happens through organic growth and evolution.
Realise that there are legacies that have to be changed. The technology legacy systems are actually the easy part because you can throw money at those. But human legacies around how things have always been done in the past are much more difficult to shift. But it must be done, because it is impossible to change to a data-driven culture if all your people are not willing to recognise and embrace data as a key success facilitator.
While the need to build these types of data-driven cultures is becoming increasingly obvious, the unexpected, and valuable, side effect of achieving such a culture is that it has the potential to massively enhance employee morale and productivity. That’s not just because data-based decisions are infinitely more effective than those based on hunches. It’s also because employees grow as people when the work they do has meaning.
Data has the ability to quantify the impact that each employee is having on the customers and the business. And when staff see the tangible value of the contributions they are making, they become far more connected to the company values and their own professional goals, and the result is incremental improvements in personal performance and, of course, bottom-line results.