To your customers, a receipt may just be the little piece of paper they hold on to in case they need to make a return or exchange, but proof of purchase means so much more to small business owners.
Receipts represent data about your customers’ spending habits, the popularity of your products or services, and when you combine all your receipts, they paint a picture of your business’s health. If you’re still keeping a manual ledger or record of your daily sales and don’t have a digital view into every purchase and every customer receipt, you’re not alone. But you are leaving key business insights on the table.
We’re not suggesting you ditch your your physical receipts. Customers still like to have them. We are suggesting, however, you consider digitizing your daily purchases. Here are three reasons why it’s time to incorporate a digital record of sale.
Digital receipts are more secure than physical receipts
There is still a good reason to require proof of purchase when a customer makes a return or exchange. Even if what you sell is extremely specific and serves a niche market, it’s still plausible that someone in your area sells the same thing. You don’t want to be mistakenly processing returns for your competitors.
But that doesn’t mean you need to rely solely on a piece of paper. The truth is, digital receipts are safer and more secure than paper receipts. If a paper receipt goes missing or is damaged, a digital record is a handy backup.
Even if your customers aren’t making a return, there are dozens of scenarios where a customer may come to you for help to remember what exactly they bought from you in the past. A digital record lets you look it up in seconds so you can focus on helping customers, not thumbing through notebooks or digging through a box of receipts.
Digital receipts are easier to manage
Keeping track of receipts can be annoying. At some point, like most people, you’ve probably found yourself in a situation when you needed a receipt but didn’t have it handy. And it’s frustrating for both the customer and the business when it can’t be tracked down.
Customers don’t want to worry about holding on to a small piece of paper, and businesses don’t want to worry about turning away a customer because their receipt was lost. With digital receipts, it’s a win-win. As a business owner, you won’t have to worry about being able to validate a purchase with a quick search, and your customers will appreciate the extra effort on your part to make their life easier.
Digital receipts serve multiple purposes
Receipts may just be a record of purchase for your customers, but each purchase can help you understand your customers and business better. A receipt is a small summary of each transaction. With a digital process in place to record, store, and search past purchases, you put every transaction at your fingertips. When you add all those transactions up you, have a daily snapshot of how sales, foot traffic, and customers are trending.
Over time, those transactions tell you what your average day, week, month, and year look like in terms of revenue. They tell you which months of the year are you busiest, which holidays and seasons are your best money-makers, and more. Digitizing your receipts will give you a handy record of customer behavior and sales insight that is specific to your business.
Your credit card processing company already captures this information. You deserve to unlock a deeper level of insight and control over your own business data.
Most customers still like having a receipt at the time of purchase. Physical receipts are not bad or dangerous, but, like dial-up modems, they are a thing of the past.
Womply specializes in helping small business owners harness, process, and understand their customers’ behavior to see the bigger picture of what is going on inside their business. Learn more, plus get free reputation monitoring and customer insights when you sign up for Womply Free!