Today we feature an AMN Q&A session with Chris Morse, senior PR manager and head of merchant communications for PayPal. Morse explains why PayPal is ready to expand its successful consumer business in the commercial arena and explains the myriad options PayPal has for merchants and consumers alike.
AMN: PayPal is well-known in the consumer retail arena and is now making an effort to grow in the commercial space as well, particularly in the auto parts business. Tell us a little about this. What is it about the auto parts business that appeals to PayPal?
Chris Morse (CM): PayPal has a network of more than 148 million active global customers and millions of businesses of all types and sizes that trust us to make safe and secure payments. The auto parts business is an ideal market to use PayPal as we can scale for businesses of all sizes, services and products; for example, we have direct integration with Advance Auto Parts nationwide and millions of merchants have committed to accepting PayPal in store.
AMN: What segments of the auto parts industry can you serve – parts retailers, repair shops, or both?
CM: All parts of the auto industry as well as their customers can benefit from using PayPal. No matter the size of an auto parts merchant, we have a way for them to accept PayPal and other forms of payment, whether in store, online or on a mobile device:
· Sole proprietors: PayPal Here
· Small and mid-sized: We have partnerships with mobile POS systems like ShopKeep, Revel, Vend, etc.
· Large: We have struck deals with folks like NCR and Micros
· Online/mobile: You can accept PayPal online
AMN: What are some of the business tools you provide to parts retailers/service providers?
We have several tools, but here is a quick snapshot of just a few:
· Bill Me Later: Our ability to enable merchants of all sizes to offer credit to their customers – online or in store.
· Invoicing: Create, send and manage invoices all from within Excel.
· PayPal Working Capital: A way to offer small merchants access to capital quickly to grow their business.
AMN: Describe the various payment options PayPal offers and the benefits they can provide to business owners.
CM: Here is a list of the options we offer:
· PayPal Mobile App (in store): Use our app like a wallet to pay at the counter, from the table, or from around the corner; your order is in your hands. Or simply select PayPal at the register to log in and pay, just like online.
· PayPal Express Checkout (online): If you already offer credit cards, add PayPal to your checkout. Express Checkout is optimized for any device and is trusted by more than 148 million PayPal users. The button can be added to any site within minutes and can benefit any business.
· PayPal Here (on the go): Start accepting payments on your iPhone, iPad or most Android phones with our app and card reader. With no long-term commitments and live customer support, it’s quick and easy to start getting paid.
AMN: Security is of utmost importance in e-commerce. Talk a little bit about the measures PayPal takes to keep a customer’s data secure.
CM: PayPal has built industry-leading security, anti-fraud and risk management technology that allows us to detect unusual activity on our system the moment it happens and often, before it has an opportunity to impact our customers. To help protect merchants – which has also helped us gain consumer trust – we will not share financial or personal information with the merchant in the transaction process. In fact, according to a 2013 Javelin Strategy & Research report*, consumers rate PayPal above Visa and MasterCard for privacy protection.
*2013 Gang of Five: Apple, Google, Amazon, Facebook, and PayPal-eBay: Threat of the Mobile Wallet Disruptors, October
AMN: What makes your product different/better than other e-commerce vendors today?
CM: Payments have been our one and only focus for the past 15 years. We are continuing to learn and evolve and develop an open platform that supports a range of hardware readers, POS systems, software solutions and works with existing acquirer systems – retailers do not have to rip out existing systems. We are an open infrastructure that builds a platform for the next generation of payments.