For SMEs, the complexities of online payments often make them reluctant to offer goods or services via the web.
To assist such businesses into the e-commerce field, PayU has launched EasyMerchant, a simplified solution that enables companies to accept credit card payments by using the provider's merchant account and processing network.
Highlighting the benefits of the system, CEO of PayU Mark Chirnside comments, "Start-ups and SMEs need a quick and simple way to take their business online. This system enables an online business to get up and running, quickly. Once the client has such an account, the company makes e-business simpler, increase sales, cuts paperwork and reduces the risk. The company authorises credit card purchases, processes them and deposits the proceeds into the client's account. It's simple."
This system will assist SMEs to leverage their websites from marketing tools into active, high profit retail sites, engaging with an important and big sector of the market. According to the SME Survey 2012, which is the original representative survey of SMEs in South Africa, conducted by World Wide Worx, 410 000 SMEs in South Africa have a website, representing 63% of active, formal SMEs. The research further shows that SMEs with a website are far more likely to turn a high profit than those without.
As noted in various reports, a significant number of consumers are already online with a steady growth in users. This has a ripple effect as it inevitably translates into more people going online to find services, creating an ever-increasing market for online merchants.
"As reported in the Internet Matters report earlier this year, approximately 150 000 SMEs in South Africa would not be able to survive without their web presence. With the internet becoming the single most important means of searching for a service provider, SMEs without an online presence will find themselves at an ever-increasing disadvantage, which is why our goal is to make it as easy as possible for businesses to sell their goods and services online," concludes Chirnside.