How would you feel when you are a newbie starting in a new company within an unfamiliar industry scope? Well, I can tell you that you’ll feel very excited and overwhelmed by uncertainty at the same time. Recently, I had the chance to travel on a business trip to Singapore with Omise. Throughout this trip, I attended 2 events; The Singapore Fintech Festival (SFF) and Omise’s first Open House in Singapore. Both events were eye-opening and considered one of the best training experiences for newcomers like myself.
The Singapore Fintech Festival was the first fintech event I’ve ever participated in. The most helpful and interesting insights I found came from panel discussions on current payment trends. These trends include good customer experience, interoperability, cross-border instant payments, and increasing demand for lower-cost payment methods such as e-wallets.
One of the topics I found interesting was the importance of user experience in fintech. Previously, I did not think that UX mattered so much in the finance industry but I’ve come to learn that payment is actually the evidence of a customer’s behaviors. A customer is more likely to drop-off when the user experience is bad and will complete the purchase when the user experience is good. Consumer-oriented payment experience is the key for payments to survive. Joop Wijn from Adyen quoted that “Everyone is a consumer at some point and nobody wants a bad experience when it comes to making payments.”
Southeast Asia is a big market with a lot of room for potential opportunities but at the moment, it is still very fragmented. The payment community must collaborate together to develop this market in the right and healthy way. Customer experience and interoperability should work hand in hand to improve the payment ecosystem.
I had the chance to participate in some innovation labs as a part of the SFF event. In those labs, I saw some good examples of cutting-edge technology and how they are making an impact on our lives. For example, a simple table at a restaurant can be turned into an interactive table where customers can browse through menus digitally and pay using a simple projector. Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are more examples of technology that have already started to transform a customer’s shopping experience. And as a payment gateway, we should really keep an eye on the newest trends, adapt to newer technologies, and take an early part in these developments to better serve our customers.
During the week of the SFF, I also attend Omise’s first open house in Singapore. There were lots of delicious food and desserts throughout the event and many prospective merchants attended. Nick (Omise’s country manager for Singapore) gave a presentation about Omise’s latest payment method, PayNow and talked extensively about how it will benefit businesses.
As a merchant, user engagement and low drop-off rates are crucial for business. Having multiple payment methods that match the customer's preferred choice can help close sales quicker and drive more revenue. I believe that the collaboration between Omise and PayNow will add value to businesses in Singapore by providing users with a seamless payment journey. Through PayNow, users can simply scan or upload a QR code from their device to make hassle-free instant payments. If you’re not familiar with PayNow, you can see how easy it works here.
I received an overwhelming amount of information and insight on the payment space during this trip to Singapore. Although I might not have absorbed everything all at once, it doesn’t mean that it’s not worth it. It was truly exciting to see what Omise is doing as a company and how we are moving forward to make positive changes to the world. After some time, I will be able to look back and recall the valuable lessons I learned from these events.
Lastly, I am very grateful for the opportunity given and I have learned so much throughout this trip. I would also like to encourage anyone who is interested in Omise and the payment space to knock on our door and join us on this exciting journey.
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