Higher sales and customer satisfaction thanks to UnionPay
John Casagrande reports why UnionPay is the most important payment card for his business.
Mr. Casagrande, what is it that makes Casagrande & Co. so special?
Casagrande & Co. has been a successful family-owned business since 1949. The paths to the customer are short and we are always open to new things. This allows us to quickly respond to changes, such as in the case of China.
How would you describe your customers and their payment behavior?
The share of cash and card payments used to be more or less equal. After the introduction of the euro, customers initially reverted back to using cash to a greater degree. This was due to two factors: for one thing, the number of US tourists – who like to pay by card – was down, and for another, the increasing numbers of Asian tourists liked to pay with the euro. However, since we began accepting UnionPay, our share of card payments has again noticeably increased. I would even go so far as to claim that Asians now enjoy shopping even more because they can pay with UnionPay. This is why we have – successfully – accepted the card for three years now.
So the potential for doing business with Asian customers is high?
Absolutely! We already transact more than 30% of our business with Asian customers, in particular with Chinese customers – China is the nation with the second-highest purchasing power. Our guests from the Far East purchase expensive products such as watches, and have an extremely high level of brand awareness. A Rolex from Switzerland is worth much more than one purchased in Hong Kong. Switzerland continues to be perceived as a seal of quality.
What advantages does UnionPay offer you?
It’s all about “sale or no sale”. The number of Asian tourists is on the rise, and with it the demand for UnionPay payment options. Other advantages are the simple and fast payment processing. Customers are usually under time pressure since they are wanting to cross Europe in a very short period of time. Everything has to go quickly.
Would you recommend UnionPay to other retailers?
Absolutely. UnionPay is worthwhile for everyone who has Asian customers. Activation is free of charge and can instantly be processed on any UnionPay-compatible terminal. In our experience, customers tend to purchase significantly more using a payment card than using cash transactions. Payment cards always boost sales.
What do you appreciate about working with SIX Payment Services?
Even though we have been accepting UnionPay for three years, we unfortunately did not process the brand with SIX Payment Services from the outset. This gives us a direct comparison and we have to say that SIX Payment Services has got the total package right. We appreciate the high level of service quality. When we have questions, we can easily reach a customer representative and get an answer right away. Payment transactions are processed quickly and accurately. The principle of getting “everything from a single source” works perfectly for us.
About Casagrande & Co.
Casagrande & Co. was founded as a sole proprietorship under the name Casagrande by Carlo and Kyra Casagrande in 1949. Since 1986, their two sons Robert and John Casagrande have run the family-owned business. The product range comprises a range of souvenirs and gifts such as various brand-name watches, Swiss army knives, cowbells, Swiss chocolate and much more. With its varied offerings, Casagrande appeals to a wide range of international clients.