Archive for March, 2011

LEC – FAQ for Ecommerce Merchants

E-commerce Tips

Looking to lift ecommerce revenue? Need to reduce cart abandonment? Then it’s time to learn more about adding LEC (Local Exchange Carrier) billing to your checkout process.

What is LEC billing?

LEC billing is using local phone companies to bill consumers for your digital goods and services. When a customer chooses the option at checkout, the purchase is charged to their home phone bill. The transaction is handled by a third-party payment processor.

What will LEC billing do for me?

  • Increase revenue by allowing you to access new markets, such as consumers without credit cards or bank accounts or customers who do not want to share sensitive financial information online.
  • Reduce cart abandonment rates by providing an easy-to-use payment option that requires only the customer’s home phone number and the last four digits of their Social Security number.

Can we offer LEC billing in addition to traditional credit card options?

Yes! The key to attracting and maintaining customers is to provide them with a variety of payment options. Phone billing can be used in conjunction with checkout options you already offer on your ecommerce site.

Which ecommerce stores can add phone billing to their checkout?

Some of the merchants who utilize this alternative payment method (APM) sell digital goods, internet services, content, downloads, games, etc. Phone billing is also ideal for subscription services because the charge is conveniently added to the customer’s monthly phone bill.

Will it be a hassle to integrate LEC billing into my ecommerce store?

Not if you invest in the right APM processor. Look for a partner with a simple, easy-to-integrate system that works with your existing infrastructure. In addition, your alternative payment processor should offer validation services to reduce the risk of bad debt and chargebacks.

ILD is a trusted name in LEC billing.

Our Bill to Phone team offers the technology and expertise to lift revenue potential by adding APM options to your ecommerce checkout. Talk to one of our specialists to learn how Bill to Phone will help you build a better business.

Alternative Payment Options

Still not offering an alternative payment method (APM) on your ecommerce site? Now you have one more reason to put finding the right APM on your to-do list. Debit-card using customers now face increased decreased spending limits, according to a CNNMoney report. Some of thape nation’s biggest banks, including JPMorgan Chase, are considering placing a $50 or $100 limit on debit card transactions—even those that are run through as credit.

Why? The Fed is considering rules that would require banks to lower credit card interchange fees, capping them at 12 cents per transaction instead of the industry average of 44 cents. It doesn’t sound like much, but experts estimate it will cost Chase alone more than $1 billion per year. Banks claim the interchange fees help them offset fraudulent charges. If the fees are lowered as proposed, the banks may choose to limit their exposure to potential fraud by lowering the amount a consumer can spend per transaction.

If those limits go into effect, where will that leave the customer who wants to buy from your digital business—but wants to spend more than the bank will allow?

Don’t give your customers a reason to shop at a competitor’s ecommerce store.

Consumers who want to purchase an item that’s over a potential spending limit will need safe and easy alternative payment options. With ILD’s Bill to Phone APM, your customers are able to easily charge their purchase to their phone bill without worrying about a $50 or $100 spending limit.

Bill to Phone is convenient for customers—and profitable for you. Contact ILD Teleservices today to learn more about lifting your ecommerce business with Bill to Phone.

Check Your Phone Bill

What is cramming? How do I stop it? If you’re a consumer with questions, we have answers. Here’s our FAQ guide to cramming:

What is cramming?

Cramming is when unauthorized charges are applied to your telephone bill. Since the amounts are often small—typically a few dollars—they can be easy to overlook.

How do I recognize cramming charges?

First, it’s important to examine your phone bill every month. By becoming aware of “normal” charges, it will become easier to identify fraudulent or unauthorized transactions. The charges often have generic—but legitimate-sounding—names, such as activation fee, membership fee, or use fee. You might also discover charges for web hosting or long distance phone service you did not order.

How do I stop cramming?

  • Contact the company who applied the charges in question. If the fee’s description is unclear, request a more detailed description. Ask the company to explain the charges, and, if necessary, adjust them.
  • Alert your local phone company and tell them the situation. Ask the representative to explain the procedure for removing the charges from your bill.
  • If you’re unable to resolve the issue, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) recommends filing a complaint with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) if the charges are related to phone services or the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) if the charges are related to non-phone services.

ILD Teleservices provides consumers with a safe and reliable way to shop online with Bill to Phone. Our service allows you to charge goods and services directly to your phone bill. Our company’s U.S.-based customer care team is an industry leader, offering dispute resolution and self-help tools. ILD is a BBB Accredited business and has earned an A rating from the organization.

If you have questions about an ILD transaction, please contact our help center.

Lift Your Business

Most digital merchants are familiar with offering a credit card payment option to their ecommerce customers. If you’re trying to decide how to incorporate alternative payment methods (APMs) that lift your business, check out our tips:

Define your goals.

The first step in choosing a profitable ecommerce payment method is to define the problem you’re trying to solve. Here are some possibilities:

  • Do you need a payment alternative for the risk-adverse customer? These are the consumers who avoid sharing bank account or credit card info online to avoid the risk of credit card fraud and identity theft.
  • Are you trying to reach the unbanked or underbanked sector? These groups have little or no access to traditional banking institutions, relying instead on businesses like check cashing services.
  • Is your ideal customer a college student who hasn’t been able to get a credit card?
  • Do you need a simple way to retain customers or maintain subscriptions?

Find an experienced payment processing partner.

Invest in an alternative payment processor who wants to do partner with your business and help it grow. Ask if your potential APM provider will:

  • Provide an interface that’s easy for customers to use and easy to integrate into your current infrastructure
  • Provide metrics to help you analyze your business so you can make profit-building decisions
  • Give you access to the markets you’re currently not reaching, whether it’s the security conscious or the unbanked
  • Offer a professional staff with the experience to walk you through the implementation process
  • Provide a customer verification system to reduce uncollectibles and chargebacks

ILD Teleservices is a Florida-based APM processor with the tools and support to expand your business and enhance profit potential. Contact us to learn more about Bill to Phone, an easy, secure, and reliable payment alternative that allows customers to charge digital goods and services directly to their phone bill.

Boost Revenue with APMs

Selling digital goods and services to the lucrative college set isn’t always easy. While it’s challenging enough to stay ahead of trends and fads, it can be even trickier to find the perfect ecommerce payment method to offer. Why? Not every college student has a credit card, and those who do may not want to add to their debt by making online purchases.  

Here are a few facts about young adults and credit card use:

  • Only 51% of 18-24 year-old Americans had used a credit card in the preceding month. (creditcards.com,  from Javelin)
  • The average credit card balance for undergrads is about $3,100. 21% of those had balances between $3,000 and $7,000. (creditcards.com,  from Sallie Mae)
  • Only 17% of credit card using students paid off their balance each month. (creditcards.com,  from Sallie Mae)

Give your college market the option to pay without a credit card.

Between college students who don’t have credit cards and those who have them but don’t want to add to their debt, you could be losing revenue if you don’t offer alterative payment methods (APM), like Bill to Phone, also known as LEC billing.

ILD Teleservices’ Bill to Phone is one of the easiest APMs to offer your target market. It works by allowing college students who want to buy your ecommerce goods or services to simply charge the purchase to their phone bill.

Grow your business with Bill to Phone.

Our system is easy to integrate into your checkout process and it comes with a management portal that allows you to access the account information that will help you make profit-building decisions. Learn how ILD will lift your revenue with LEC billing.