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Why small businesses choose pay-over-time

Buy now, pay later (BNPL) continues to grow as a payment method that many shoppers prefer—the market is forecast to see double-digit growth through 2026. And the businesses that benefit from this spree are not just big-box retailers.

Small businesses are also enjoying gains by offering BNPL, also known as pay-over-time. In many cases it’s easy to add to your site with a few clicks, since many BNPL providers like Affirm have integrations with major e-commerce, web hosting, and payment processing platforms.

In reviewing some of the small businesses that partner with Affirm, we see some common benefits that help explain why they offer pay-over-time to their customers.

Buy now, pay later is a great option for customers who want financing

Many shoppers looking to buy luxury or hand-crafted items expect merchants to offer consumer financing options. If your small businesses sells similar expensive items, you may find that a BNPL option is a convenient way to provide what those customers want.

Tucci Di Lusso, maker of luxury leather shoes and accessories, is a small business that implemented pay-over-time options with Affirm because of customers’ preferences.

“A lot of my customers prefer to use Affirm monthly financing and some the 4-installment option via Shop Pay Installments (powered by Affirm), which has brought lots of customers to my business ever since I started using Affirm,” said Tochukwu Mbiamnozie, founder and CEO of Tucci Di Lusso. “Customers shop with confidence without having to pay the total for their order up front.”

You can offer financing without having to do the work

Kristin Coffin Jewelry, known for custom engagement rings, also had many requests for customer financing, but the business didn’t have resources to offer layaway or financing plans on its own. Enter the pay-over-time option with Affirm.

“Finding a company like Affirm not only took the liability off of us, but it also did away with the cumbersome paperwork that typically burdens the business owner,” said Kristin Coffin, founder and owner of the small business.

In selecting a financing partner, Coffin said she chose Affirm over Klarna in 2019 largely because the transfer of funds to her business was more immediate. Another benefit she shared about partnering with Affirm: “It hasn’t added to our workload!”

Offering a BNPL option increases access for more customers

When you offer BNPL to your customers, you remove price as a barrier. The result is that more customers are able to buy who otherwise might not have purchased if pay-over-time wasn’t an option.

CEFALY Technology, maker of a wearable device to treat migraine headaches, experienced this benefit when they offered pay-over-time with Affirm. “Those experiencing the pain and disability of migraine disease don’t have the luxury of waiting until the most financially convenient time to purchase a CEFALY device,” said CEO Jennier Trainor-McDermott. “Affirm gives us the ability to provide flexible, stress-free payment options for our customers so that they don’t have to delay this purchase.” 

BNPL can boost cart sizes and conversion

Many small businesses discover that offering a BNPL option can also increase cart sizes. With flexible payment options, shoppers are able to purchase more and still stay within their budgets.

Monoprice, a maker of high-end video and audio equipment, sells both lower-cost items like cables as well as high-tech sound systems. The average order value (AOV) is about $90. But after implementing pay-over-time with Affirm, the AOV jumped 400% for sales made with this payment method.

Richard Tseng, Vice President of Marketing, E-commerce and Technology, also noticed an increase in sales conversion on orders purchased with Affirm. “For customers shopping specific categories, like audio and video, we do see a 20% to 30% higher conversion rate,” he told Digital Commerce 360.

For more examples of how pay-over-time is helping small businesses grow conversion, cart sizes, and more, see these case studies with ONDO, Whisker, and Layla.

If you’re looking to partner with a BNPL provider, check out these 5 questions to ask to help you decide which provider is best for your needs.

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