ISO owners are facing a double whammy right now, as business owners and as consumers. While there is no escaping the squeeze of rising prices, and their impacts on business and household budgets, the story doesn’t end there. A well thought out and realistic go-to-market strategy can help sustain your ISO in this uncertain economic climate.
Examine your portfolio
Every single merchant that makes up your portfolio was hard-earned. They stay with you for many reasons, not the least of which is your relationship, and the customer experience you deliver, providing service they won’t find elsewhere.
Make no mistake though. Some of these business types will be better equipped to remain solvent no matter what the economic environment looks like. Others won’t. To minimize your risk, it’s prudent to examine your portfolio through this lens. How much of your business is tied to merchant categories that rely on discretionary spending?
Whether it’s the majority or only a portion, your ISO will be well-served to broaden its go-to-market strategy.
Explore emerging verticals
Consider diversifying your portfolio by entering other markets. This is a move that can help stabilize your portfolio.
If you need proof, look no further than what we learned from Covid. Hospitality and travel-related spending categories plummeted, while online ordering soared. The pandemic brought into sharp focus two key lessons. Firstly, that anything can happen. Secondly, disposable income levels will ebb and flow, often unpredictably so.
It’s really no different than the long-standing wisdom of value-based investing. Diversification is a proven strategy to weather losses and realize gains, through economic recessions and expansions.
Choose new markets wisely
Take the petroleum industry, as an example. It’s about as recession-proof as you can get, but like anything else, you need more than enthusiasm and jumping in with both feet if you want to succeed.
It starts with educating yourself on the industry – the technical aspects but also the nuances that are less obvious, yet still critically important.
You also need to be able to speak to the pain points of the merchants in this vertical, and most importantly, have the solutions to solve for those problems. Without that last part, you won’t be able to deliver positive outcomes for the merchants in that vertical, and you will lose credibility quickly.
Partner with nimble players
Cut through the conversational noise and evaluate payment partners that bring a proven track record of thinking differently. Take time to understand prospective partners. Are you philosophically aligned? Does the potential partner have experience in the verticals you want to serve?
This just so happens also to be what we’re best at – ready to talk?
firstname.lastname@example.org | 866-464-3277
First American Payment Systems (First American by Deluxe®) is a leading payment technology company that provides powerful in-store, online and mobile payment solutions paired with the latest in payment security and backed by superior customer service. https://www.first-american.net