News

The Fight Against Fraud

BY CSA STAFF

Like to many companies with high-ticket items, Long Beach, Calif.-based vehicle accessory company Performance Plus Tire takes extra precautions to protect its online payment system from fraudulent activity.

The company, which has an e-commerce site, a catalog and one bricks-and-mortar location in Long Beach, Calif., offers its customers a variety of payment options for its products and services. Performance Plus Tire uses PayPal and provides shoppers with several credit-card payment methods.

However, the company still sought a 100% fraud liability solution that could also make the entire checkout process easier and more efficient for shoppers.

“We wanted a creative way to generate more business and a more secured way of getting paid,” said Hank Feldman, president of Performance Plus Tire.

After meeting with Chicago-based mPayy, an online and mobile payment provider, Performance Plus Tire implemented its secure debit solution. mPayy’s scalable payment platform now helps the company improve its margins by reducing fraud and transaction costs.

“We also chose mPayy for its speed of checkout,” Feldman added. “It’s important to give customers the best online experience, and providing these different, easy payments is important to appeal to all shoppers. Plus, if someone becomes frustrated during the checkout process and is faced with too many pages and clicks, they might abandon the site.”

Although many retailers are providing shoppers with alternative shopping methods, others have been slow to jump on board.

“I recently went to a conference that focuses on retail fraud and payment, and was shocked at how many big retailers are limiting their payment channels,” Feldman said. “Perhaps the larger companies are slow to react to adopting alternative payment options because they are more bureaucratic. Being a smaller business gives us that leading edge.”

mPayy’s secure debit solution is built around the mobile number and enables secure, convenient purchases and bill payment directly from customers’ checking accounts. Shoppers log into their accounts by typing in their mobile number—regardless of whether they are checking out via a computer or a hand-held device.

By logging into their mPayy account, shoppers can avoid typing their billing address, shipping information and credit-card number. And since mPayy already knows who its members are—it runs a background credit check on everyone with an account—it keeps track of who’s making a purchase with the retailer.

“Retailers don’t usually have an idea about who is entering a credit-card number during an online checkout process,” said Conrad Sheehan, founder and CEO of mPayy. “If the purchase turns out to have a stolen identity, mPayy would reserve against it and eat that money. Performance Plus Tire will always get paid.”

Performance Plus Tire accepts the orders online, confirms the inventory and invoices customers via e-mail for any of the tires, wheels or rims customers purchase each day.

mPayy’s e-mail invoicing also allows customers to complete the checkout process with a single click and reduce payment processing costs by half, as compared with other payment solutions available in the marketplace, Feldman said.

“Not only did we want another channel to direct customers to help us save money, but we also wanted a solution that was more user-friendly—and that’s exactly what we got.”

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Walmart brings back $10 toys

BY CSA STAFF

BENTONVILLE, Ark. Walmart announced that it is bringing back its $10 toys section in all stores and expanding its $10 holiday assortment this year to more than 100 toys.

According to the company, the $10 toys assortment is the first of several programs Walmart will announce this holiday season to bring 12 weeks of added savings in a year that has been increasingly tough on consumer wallets.

 

“With the popularity of our ’10 for $10′ toy program last October, we knew it was important for customers that we bring it back and offer an even greater amount of $10 toys this year,” said Laura Phillips, chief toy officer and VP toys for Walmart. “We began working months ago to ensure we could also introduce many toys at just $10 for this holiday program, as well as roll back prices at a time when our customers were ready to make purchases.”

 

Toys in the $10 assortment include Transformers Action Figures, board games and Play-Doh.

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ECRM names new VP general merchandise

BY CSA STAFF

CLEVELAND, Ohio ECRM has named Cheryl Gherlone VP general merchandise. Gherlone joined the ECRM team in June of 2009, assisting with various sales related responsibilities and researching potential new events. In her new position, Gherlone will work jointly with Paul Wendling of ECRM. This organizational change will become effective on Oct. 1.

Prior to joining ECRM, Gherlone held the position of marketing manager for Longs Drug Stores, with responsibility for general merchandise including stationery, electronics, housewares, hardware, automotive, soft goods as well as liquor & beverages.

 

“With such a solid background, Cheryl will be an exceptional complement to ECRM and the GM category. We look forward to her expertise to lead the advancement of this important category. Her leadership will strengthen our ability to improve existing GM shows and expand show offerings in 2010,” said Charlie Bowlus, CEO of ECRM.

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