Elevator Pitch: Touch Payments

Elevator Pitch is a regular feature on Lifehacker where we profile startups and new companies and pick their brains for entrepreneurial advice. This week, we're talking with Jonas A. Larsson, CEO of Touch Payments.

In 128 words or less, explain your business idea.

Touch Payments is Australia's first invoice-based checkout solution for online shopping. We want to simplify online shopping and make it more secure and affordable.

Customers choose Touch Payments and are not required to fill in their credit card details at the checkout; there is nothing to pay at the time of purchase. Instead, they are invoiced for the order and receive their order and have the benefit of receiving their goods before payment.

From shipment, the customer has up to 16 days to settle their invoice, with no interest or other fees, through BPAY, bank transfer, credit card, debit card or even cash at Australia Post.

It's 100% risk free for the merchant. Touch Payments assumes the risk, which means Touch always pays the merchant, no matter what.

What strategies are you using to grow and finance your idea?

We initially invested personal capital to start the company and, like many startups, we then leveraged financing from our connections. We are now looking to growth capital from private investors and venture capital.

We are constantly seeking feedback to build the best possible product. We have attended ecommerce conferences, tradeshows and startup competitions and received great feedback and new leads to grow our business.

What's the biggest challenge facing your business?

Our biggest challenge is educating retailers about the benefits of our solution for their business. They often have low technical resources and are already accepting basic credit card payments. By offering a streamlined purchase experience and more flexibility to the consumer, we aim to boost checkout conversion, reduce drop-out rates and increase the average basket value.

How do your differentiate your business from your competitors?

There is no direct competitor for Touch Payments in Australia. We are constantly learning from the mistakes of our competitors in other markets. In general, we are focusing to deliver the best customer experience and support as we possibly can.

What one phone, tablet or PC application could you not live without?

This is not an easy question for me as I love many applications! I have tried many project management applications but Trello is really my favorite. Trello is a very visually oriented, flexible application, which can be used for managing projects, mind mapping, making to-do lists, or categorising articles. At Touch Payments, we use Trello every day to manage our tasks internally and improve our productivity.

What's the best piece of business advice you've ever received?

Get your company culture right! A great culture can be the difference between success and failure for any small business. Probably the number one thing is to hire well, and hire using the right criteria. I look for passionate and proactive individuals. With the long hours involved you need to be able to work well together but also want to go for a beer on Friday night. The first few hires can make or break a startup!

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