embedded finance inclusive.
Editor's Choice Embedded Finance Fintech for Good World-Region-Country

How Is Embedded Finance Ensuring the Checkout Experience Is Financially Inclusive?

This April, The Fintech Times is focusing on all things embedded finance, the integration of financial services into non-financial products and services. As the space rapidly develops, we look to highlight the latest developments, initiatives and challenges embedded finance has to offer and overcome across the globe. 

Having looked at everything in the banking-as-a-service (BaaS) space and online marketplaces, our final focus in April is on embedded finance in e-commerce and the checkout experience. Fintechs are in a prime position to make the e-commerce and checkout experience easy and accessible. But historically, some people have been excluded when they get to this final point in a transaction. We hear from industry experts on how embedded finance ensures the checkout experience is financially inclusive.

Local situations require local solutions
Arthur Ribakovs, head of financial partnerships at Ecommpay
Arthur Ribakovs, head of financial partnerships at Ecommpay

Embedded finance can be adapted to serve in specific situations that can ensure those without access to traditional finance, can still get involved explains Arthur Ribakovs, head of financial partnerships at Ecommpay, the online payments solution provider.

“A simple way to ensure financial inclusion is being considered is to provide an extensive array of payment alternatives beyond conventional credit and debit cards, such as digital wallets, BNPL options, and alternative payment methods, like PayPal.

“Doing so accommodates individuals who may not be able to access traditional banking services, or those who prefer to use alternative payment methods.

“Taking this a step further would be customising financial offerings to meet the unique requirements of various sectors. This may involve personalised pricing, credit assessment methods, or providing financial education materials to empower businesses to make informed decisions.

“Adapting embedded finance solutions to local frameworks and regulations ensures greater accessibility across different regions and demographics.”

Bridging the gap
Marius Galdikas, CEO of ConnectPay
Marius Galdikas, CEO of ConnectPay

Marius Galdikas, CEO of ConnectPay, the all-in-one financial platform for online businesses highlights the importance of APMs.

“In terms of financial inclusivity, the checkout experience centres around the integration of APMs. Good examples would be local APMs like PIX in Brazil or Yape in Peru, which cater to 80 per cent of customers in emerging markets without card access. To enhance accessibility and tailor experiences for diverse customer segments, AI is being employed as well, to better evaluate customer integrity and issuer risk appetite, as well as to automate payment testing.

“These strategies bridge gaps for the underbanked and those new to digital payments.”

Everyone is a winner
Peter Galvin, Chief Growth Officer at NMI
Peter Galvin, chief growth officer at NMI

For Peter Galvin, chief growth officer at NMI, the embedded payments solutions provider, embedded lending is a possible solution which allows every member in the checkout experience to be a winner.

“In most cases by embedding finance into their applications, merchants make it easier for them or their consumers to interact with financial products. One advantage of this model is that the financial products that merchants or consumers might want to use already have much of the information needed to easily decide on creditworthiness.

“One example is embedded lending for merchants. By providing access to their credit card payment volumes, merchants can more easily get a small loan for working capital and in many cases, they have flexible payment terms as the payment is based on the percentage of daily revenue the merchant receives. Because of this, more of the loan is paid back when the merchant is earning more money but less during slow times as the percentage stays the same.”

Growth must be centred around equity and innovation
Sophie Flynn, CFO and Co-Founder of Nucleus365 embedded finance inclusive
Sophie Flynn, CFO and Co-Founder of Nucleus365

Firms need innovative ideas to stay ahead of competitors and grow sustainably. However, forgetting about equity and inclusivity will exclude a massive part of a consumer base explains. Sophie Flynn, CFO and co-founder of Nucleus365, the payment service provider. As a result, firms must equally prioritise equity and innovation in their roadmaps.

“Currently, fintech providers are making progress in ensuring financial inclusivity by creating solutions that have the population of their target market at the core of their propositions. For example, focusing on mobile-first designs that cater to underbanked populations who may lack access to traditional banking services. Additionally, embedded finance is being leveraged to include solutions within payment processes that provide unbanked populations with more flexible payment options.

“Promoting financial literacy and transparency is crucial. This empowers consumers to make informed decisions about the financial services they use and how they use them. It ensures that individuals understand the terms, fees, and implications of financial products.

“When embedded finance solutions are seamlessly integrated into digital platforms (such as e-commerce, accounting software, or mobile apps), transparency becomes essential. Users need clear information about the financial services available to them. This benefits both parties as transparent communication builds trust. Users are more likely to engage with financial products when they feel informed and confident.

“Ultimately, the most successful embedded finance strategies will be those that proactively address financial inclusion from the ground up. By supporting local financial institutions and centring equity alongside innovation, the checkout experience can be reimagined to work for all consumers, not just the privileged few.”

Ensuring there is an avenue to engage
Michael Pierce, VP of Sales at Toqio embedded finance inclusive
Michael Pierce, VP of Sales at Toqio

Michael Pierce, VP of sales at Toqio, an embedded finance platform, explains how the more alternative payment methods a firm offers, the more inclusive they will be as consumers have more choice.

“Financial inclusion has the primary goal of making financial services accessible and affordable to everyone. Throughout this year, we can expect to see corporate-embedded finance platforms focus more on the topic. This will involve developing new products and services that are specifically designed to reach the people who need it most.

“More specific to the business sphere, ‘affordability’ will become a heavy focus for brands to increase customer loyalty in both the B2B and B2C spaces. Brands will seek to offer customers and partners more financial product options when banks will not or cannot engage, such as turning down a loan based on traditional scoring methodologies or opening up lines of credit in light of restricted cash flow.”

Breaking traditional habits
Louis Carbonnier embedded finance inclusive
Louis Carbonnier, president and co-founder of Hokodo

Traditionally, to get a loan a consumer would have to go to a bank. However, with embedded finance solutions, this is no longer needed, providing end customers with more power and flexibility over their finances. Louis Carbonnier, co-founder and president of Hokodo, the provider of flexible payment terms for European merchants and marketplaces explains: “One of the many great things about embedded finance is that by default it helps to improve financial inclusivity.

“At Hokodo, we provide a digital payment terms solution that B2B merchants and marketplaces can integrate into their e-commerce checkouts. In short, it’s an embedded lending product. The digital nature of our solutions means that we’re able to calculate credit scores for buyers using an expanded range of data sources, which ultimately means that a greater number of businesses get access to lines of trade credit. This is particularly helpful for SMEs and sole traders who are often locked out of credit schemes – which is ironic when you consider the fact that they are most in need.

“This is true across the vast catalogue of embedded financial services currently on the market. Embedded finance not only seeks to simplify transactions but also to make financial services available anywhere at any time. For example, embedded finance means you don’t have to go to a bank to get a loan, and empowers you to defer a payment without a credit card.”

Author

  • Francis is a journalist and our lead LatAm correspondent, with a BA in Classical Civilization, he has a specialist interest in North and South America.

Related posts

Fintech Founders: Lisa Cheng

Mark Walker

UK Poised to Become Natural Global Home for Fintech in the Face of Brexit

Manisha Patel

Rising Search Trends Confirm Growing Interest in CBDCs; Latest Insight Indicates

Tyler Pathe