Selling guitars and other high-ticket instruments can be a daunting task for independent music stores, especially with big box retailers providing competition. The Guitar Sanctuary decided to hit the right note with its consumers by giving them an alternative mobile financing option that allowed them to pay for their instruments in six months’ time instead of upfront.
Since implementing the financing program from provider Blispay in June 2016, average order value (AOV) for buyers using the service has doubled compared to the purchase amounts of other consumers.
“We do deal in more high-end, custom and boutique instruments, but a lot of the time for our customers, it isn’t the fact that financing suddenly makes them able to buy it,” said Brian Meader, Sales Manager at The Guitar Sanctuary in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. “For them, it’s more about money management. We integrated a Blispay banner on all of our products on our web site, because it gives us the option to offer financing for customers that aren’t physically in our store, but may be in California, Florida or New York.”
The team also uploaded Blispay banners on its social media pages, as well as in digital picture frames in its brick-and-mortar location in McKinney, Texas. Meader noted that the Blispay platform took only one afternoon to launch, including free setup which only included a small line of code and graphics for the site.
The retailer already offered in-store financing with another provider, but it couldn’t extend the existing option beyond the store’s four walls, because offering it online would require Guitar Sanctuary to assume all the fraud risk.
Making Deferred Payments…Interest-Free!
In signing up for Blispay, shoppers at The Guitar Sanctuary have the option to make a purchase above $199 in six months without any interest. Interest will be charged to a shopper’s account at an APR of 19.99% from the posting date if the purchase balance is not paid in full in six months.
When a customer walks into the store and either can’t or doesn’t wish to pay for the item in full, they can sign up for Blispay on their phone. Upon sharing personal information such as name, email, password, phone number, address, DOB and Social Security number, the app either approves or declines the application for financing.
Upon making a first purchase online, the shopper receives a Blispay Visa card in the mail to use on other purchases. Adding onto the payment benefits, the card gives shoppers 2% Cash Back on all purchases via an automatic credit each statement period.
“Most people when you say the word ‘credit card,’ you just hear ‘interest,’” Meader noted. “With this you hear, ‘It’s six months deferred,’ so you don’t have to worry about interest as long as you’re taking advantage of that deal. It puts a more positive spin on the payment process.”
Blispay Caters To Industry Events
Although the retailer funnels most of its sales through the physical store and its e-Commerce site, the company also can incorporate the payment alternative when there is travel to industry trade shows and other music-related events, since it doesn’t require an employee to oversee the mobile application process.
“It seems like a modern take on financing for the modern world we live in, where everyone has a smartphone with them,” Meader said. “From the retailer’s standpoint, it’s pretty simple. I’m not having to deal with contract paperwork on our end or new training for employees for that type of procedure. We just inform the customer that they can download the Blispay app on their phone or go to Blispay.com and complete their application right away. As soon as you get your approval, we run it like any other credit card transaction.”