By Paul Parisi, President, PayPal Canada
The ripple effect of the coronavirus and the adverse effect on the economy have been devastating for small businesses, not just here at home but around the world. Business owners are finding themselves facing difficult questions on how to move forward in such a climate.
For many businesses, e-commerce has become a lifeline that they’ve embraced wholeheartedly. Without fail, every single day I have been moved by the sheer entrepreneurial spirit of Canadians and the innovative ways businesses are now keeping their businesses afloat through e-commerce. Kudos to them and just as importantly, kudos to everyone who has been steadfast in supporting the local businesses that stitch together their community.
We all have a role to play, and we at PayPal are no exception.
We’ve always operated with a firm belief that we have a responsibility to help small business owners survive and thrive. While all our products and services are geared to do just that, the impact of COVID-19 has prompted us to take additional steps that we hope will help ease some of the pressure entrepreneurs are feeling in order to encourage them to stay the course and do what entrepreneurs do best – overcome adversity and seize opportunities.
Here is how PayPal can help:
- Waived fees on chargebacks: We are waiving chargeback fees for eligible account transactions if your customer files a dispute with their credit card issuer between March 26, 2020 and April 30, 2020[i].
- Instant funds transfer: We are waiving fees to instantly withdraw money from a PayPal business account to a bank account or Visa® Debit card through April 30, 2020.[ii]
- Extended customer dispute resolution period: We are extending the time you have to respond to most types of customer disputes—doubling it from 10 to 20 days through April 30, 2020.
- Extending seller protection to cover eligible digital goods: Starting on 13 April 2020 with no expiration. Other Seller Protection limits still apply.
These steps to help strengthen the position of our small business customers are important as e-commerce sales have doubled for Canadian merchants since March 11, the day the World Health Organization declared a global pandemic, according to research firm Absolunet.
This study by Absolunet has remarkable insights. Their research looked at sales over a 19-day period and found that some sectors, such as food, electronics and appliances saw a remarkable 161 per cent surge online after March 11. Furniture, home décor and sporting goods are also seeing more than a 100 per cent increase in online sales. Customers are buying what they need to get through these uncertain times.
Being armed with the right tools to meet new demands is essential. Here are a few ways PayPal can help:
- Setting up a Virtual Terminal: As many of our local governments have mandated that non-essential businesses stay closed, we offer a way for you to still take orders and process them on the phone. With Virtual Terminal, you can use your computer to process phone orders, fax orders, and mail orders from around the globe in an instant online. It's an online version of a credit card swipe device you use anywhere you access the Internet[iii].
- Invoicing: Staying on top of invoicing can take a lot of time – time that frankly, many business owners just don’t have right now. Our invoicing solution makes it really simple to send professional, customized invoices on nearly any device. You can even set it for subscriptions, setting up scheduled invoices ahead of time. Best of all, it’s organized and summarized all in one place, making it that much easier to work through your finances as you file your taxes.
- Discounted shipping: Canadians have said loud and clear over the years that high shipping costs are a significant barrier to their business. That’s why last year, PayPal partnered up with netParcel and as a result, are able to offer their customers up to 75 per cent off on both domestic and international shipments. We’ve heard from merchants who have said that thanks to these kinds of discounts they are now able to afford to sell – and ship – their products to a global market.
- Access to a global market: Your customers already know and trust us as a safer, easier and more secure way to pay. In fact, there are 281million people with active PayPal accounts in 200 markets around the globe.
If you are a small business owner and would like to get set-up to sell online, visit www.paypal.com/setup. And if you need any help along the way, we are here to assist you www.paypal.com/help. For more tips on how to strengthen your business and make the most out of e-commerce opportunities, please visit paypal.ca/smallbusiness.
Over the coming days and weeks, we will be doing all we can to support our incredibly innovative Canadian entrepreneurs as they explore new ways of selling. We are here to support you now and we will continue to support you once this global crisis passes.
I wish you and your families well and look forward to the day when we can go about our daily lives with a sense of normalcy. In the meantime, please know we are all in this together. Together, we will come out stronger.
[i] Eligible payment transactions include standard-rate PayPal payment transactions as well as standard-rate payment transactions made through PayPal Pro, Advanced Credit and Debit Card Payments (also referred to as Custom Card Fields) and Virtual Terminal; all negotiated-rate transactions (made through any product or integration) as well as Braintree transactions are ineligible.
[ii] Transfers typically take just minutes and vary by bank; debit card transfers may take up to 30 minutes. Eligible debit cards or bank accounts only. Limits and holds may apply.