This year’s Black Friday is no ordinary Black Friday: More South Africans than ever before will be shopping, and paying, online. According to a recent McKinsey & Company consumer sentiment survey, 40% of consumers intend to continue online shopping spend even when the Covid-19 pandemic is over.
Thomas Pays, CEO and co-founder of digital payments company Ozow, says the sharp rise in online shopping and ecommerce has highlighted the need for innovative technology-driven solutions that allow shoppers to shop and pay safely online – including consumers who don’t have credit or debit cards.
With this year’s Black Friday deals running over four weeks at many retailers, Pays’ says the way to successfully navigate Black Friday responsibly relies on four factors:
- Stick to a plan and set budget. The overwhelming number of deals makes it incredibly tempting to spend more than you have. Make a list of what you need, familiarise yourself with the available deals, set a realistic budget, and stick to it.
- Shop with trusted ecommerce retailers. Trustworthy sites like Takealot can handle large volumes of transactions through a safe, automated checkout process. Most popular ecommerce sites will protect you from online fraud and cybercrime over this busy time.
- Don’t trust non-secure checkouts. Checkout security is critical, as it is the most vulnerable point in the shopping process for cyberhackers to attack, says Pays. A secure encrypted checkout should always have a small padlock icon next to the site’s URL in your browser.
- Research the checkout payment options. You don’t need a credit card to shop and pay online. Ozow enables you to pay instantly online with only a bank account, allowing most South Africans to skip the queues and transact safely and hassle-free. Regular Ozow users can speed up their online transaction even further with OzowPIN.
“As online shopping grows in popularity, it’s even more important that we drive towards financial and digital inclusion for all South Africans by empowering them with equal accessibility to a safe online payment solution. We also hope to encourage and assist consumers to shop responsibly with the cash they have in their bank accounts to avoid unnecessary debt”, says Pays.