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Flexible Payment Options: The Solution to Driving Home and Garden Sales in Today’s Economy

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Given current economic conditions, it’s no surprise that brands and retailers have seen a shift in consumer spending. With the rise of inflation, high home interest rates, and layoffs, budgets are tighter and shoppers are more conscious of their purchase decisions.

While today’s headwinds impact all industries, they are hitting home, garden, and furniture brands especially hard. According to Business of Home, the economic state has led to a decrease in sales of big-ticket home goods, such as furniture and appliances. As reported in a survey by Dentsu, 29% of consumers claimed they reduced their spending on furniture products in February. 

Home decor spending is also down, with Dentsu’s survey showing that more shoppers purposefully chose to save than spend on these products in the month of February.

It’s safe to say the US is in the midst of economic uncertainty. With no answers on when conditions will change for the better, brands and retailers need to be strategic to generate sales during these times.

Listening to consumers and making adjustments to meet their needs is the key to staying resilient. 

It’s clear that many of today’s shoppers don’t feel comfortable fronting a big purchase, like a new couch or outdoor furniture set. To ease their anxieties and encourage sales, brands need to offer flexible payment solutions — like Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) — build a frictionless checkout experience by accepting multiple payment types, and create enticing promotional opportunities.

Creating comfort with BNPL

Over the past few years, BNPL has made a strong name for itself in the retail landscape, offering shoppers the opportunity to pay for products in installments.

This form of payment has become widely popular among Millennial and Gen Z shoppers, with consumers 35 and under accounting for 53% of BNPL users.

Home and garden brands have the opportunity to capitalize on the popularity of BNPL. With a large portion of today’s shoppers feeling uneasy purchasing expensive household products, brands in this space can create comfort for these consumers by allowing them to pay smaller amounts over the course of several months rather than one large sum.

An article by Furniture Today interviewed consumer credit industry experts to get their thoughts on home goods brands offering flexible payment solutions. The consensus? Flexible financing options are key to attracting consumers and generating sales in today’s economy. According to Mike Rittler, Head of TD Bank Retail Card Services, “Financing is one of the biggest tools retailers can use, especially for the times we are in now.”

BigCommerce offers a range of flexible payment solutions — including Klarna, Sezzle, and Affirm — designed to eliminate anxiety for shoppers who may feel wary of making one large upfront payment. 

Canada’s leading bedding company, QE Home, is an example of a brand on BigCommerce that takes advantage of its BNPL integrations. The brand uses both Afterpay and Sezzle, and has seen many shoppers opt for paying in installments with these tools instead of in full.

Eliminating friction by accepting alternate payment methods

While BNPL is a great way to attract shoppers to your online store, there are other ways to optimize the checkout experience and entice customers. Offering multiple payment options in addition to BNPL creates a convenient and frictionless shopping experience, encouraging more sales. This means accepting more than just credit cards and expanding your checkout to allow customers to pay with anything from Venmo to a digital wallet — like Apple Pay.

According to a 2024 study by Baymard, 13% of shoppers surveyed claimed they abandoned their carts because there weren’t enough payment options. Not offering someone’s preferred payment method may be the deciding factor in whether or not they’ll go through with buying the new chair they’ve been on the fence about.

To ensure you never miss a sale, BigCommerce offers over 65 payment gateways that enable you to accept a wide range of payment types.

Furniture brand Jennifer Taylor Home takes advantage of these different integrations to ensure shoppers have a frictionless checkout experience. The company accepts various payment types — from Apple Pay to PayPal — to create a top-tier purchase journey. Optimizing its checkout experience has contributed to its 373% increase in revenue since moving to BigCommerce.

Attracting shoppers with promotions and discounts

Everyone loves a good discount. Finding opportunities to offer sales is a great way to bring customers to your site and help them feel more comfortable making purchases.

With tools like Klaviyo, businesses can send targeted messaging to previous customers informing them of exclusive deals and discounts. Brands that send personalized messaging highlighting discounts and promotions make consumers feel valued and create a sense of urgency for them to make a purchase — resulting in more sales. 

Another way to promote sales is to offer bundle kit options. With bundle kits, shoppers can package multiple products into one order, providing a discount and raising the brand’s average order value. 

Molly Mutt is an example of a BigCommerce brand that takes advantage of this tactic. This pet-loving dog bed company built a custom bundle kit feature that rewards customers who bundle by providing a discount on items. Since launching features like its bundle kits, Molly Mutt’s average order size has grown by 13%.

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The final word

In today’s economy, it’s more important than ever for home, garden, and furniture brands to incorporate methods and strategies designed to attract shoppers. 

Some of the most effective ways they can do this is by offering flexible payment options, accepting a variety of payment types, and creating promotional discounts. 

Brands that create a flexible and convenient checkout experience are more likely to generate sales and grow their business — especially during times of economic uncertainty.

Check out our 2024 Global Ecommerce Report to learn other trends and predictions we expect home and garden online brands to see this year.

Annie Laukaitis

Annie is a Content Marketing Writer at BigCommerce, where she uses her writing and research experience to create compelling content that educates ecommerce retailers. Before joining BigCommerce, Annie developed her skills in marketing and communications by working with clients across various industries, ranging from government to staffing and recruiting. When she’s not working, you can find Annie on a yoga mat, with a paintbrush in her hand, or trying out a new local restaurant.