Article written by: JP Fabri; CEO Insignia Cards, Co-Founding Partner Seed.
People want their payments to be fun and effortless – even invisible. Powered by tech giants, especially mobile phone manufacturers, today payments are much easier than ever before. Indeed, the magic of seamless payments is today everywhere: on e-commerce sites, music services, investing apps, buses, and brick-and-mortar stores – wherever customers spend their time.
In this context, the modern payment card essentially gives people a new tool in their hands – that lets them use, move, and understand money in completely new ways. It also gives businesses, who increasingly demand the same convenience and ease of use as consumers, new ways to manage spending, increase employee satisfaction, and save time by integrating payments with their accounting systems.
Up until a few years ago, payment cards used to be rather static, single-purpose commodities handed out by retail banks. But with the rise of fintech, cards – regardless of shape, form, or material – have indeed taken on a novel, positively disruptive role in the financial ecosystem. Whether physical or virtual, they are now a key touch point to smarter financial services and form the very core of modern value propositions.
Instead of just enabling rote transactions, the new generation of payment cards is catalysing a whole new commerce, business, and payments landscape. At the heart of this development is increased urgency around privacy and security – on the part of consumers, businesses as well as service providers.
We are already seeing innovators reach a global scale and unprecedented loyalty thanks to their card offerings. Instead of relying on costly and time-consuming account transfers, users can instead receive their funds by getting access to their payment card in minutes. Another exciting example comes from subscription service providers – offering for instance spending management – who rely on custom digital cards or mobile wallets. Moreover, integrating services like merchant cashback programs and powerful reporting tools can change the way people interact with commerce and money, resulting in more meaningful relationships with cardholders.
With an active user base, there is data around customer behaviour, which forms the building blocks of personalised services. Card data can enable, for instance, an emerging fintech or payment provider to glean key insights from customer lifestyles and transactions, to bolster customer engagement.
Having your own corporate card product and program
Advances in cloud and mobile technology have ushered in a veritable card-issuing revolution. Today, many types of tech and retail companies can design, launch, and scale cards tailored to each individual customer. And they can do it in weeks rather than months. The onset of virtual cards means that such cards are available instantly.
This is possible largely thanks to focused partners that understand the card business and the payments space. Insignia Cards is one such partner. Today, we have bundled together the essential components of seamless card issuing, providing scheme memberships, e-money licenses and payment service provider integrations, often through a flexible turnkey white-label solution.
Modern solutions allow companies to leverage the benefits of card issuing primarily due to the possibility of having:
- Dynamic spending controls – automatically prevent the card users from paying more than a certain amount and concurrently increase security for the issuer by limiting unexpected cardholder behaviour.
- Card features tailored to niche audiences – one can set specific merchant codes to where the card can be used or limits on spending.
- Virtual payment cards – Fast becoming an industry standard among card issuers as they enable users to start making online payments just minutes after completing their card application.
- Add-on features – the integration with digital wallets or else the possibility of linking up to “buy now pay later” features enable companies to enhance customer loyalty.
- Integrated and embedded payments experience – with a variety of payment instruments, companies can create seamless payment experiences throughout different sales channels.
These are just a few examples of the options that are open to issuers eager to reshape their industries. Innovation is also driven by game-changing regulations such as open banking, as well as advances in payments, web3 and other technology. New opportunities naturally add complexity – however firms need knowledgeable partners that can help them navigate the payments industry.
Insignia Cards is a white-label card issuing partner. Licenced by the Malta Financial Services Authority and a VISA principal member, it leverages its experience in card issuing and payments.