Maksuturva’s Director of Financial Products, Joona Hertola, emphasises the importance of an active and open consumer- merchant relationship. This is a foundation that functions both when developing services within the company and in co-operation with partners.
The way consumers are paying is changing drastically as the payment directive is renewed. The mobile payment trend that has been going on for the last couple of years will get a new lift when banks open their technical interfaces to third party operators, i.e. payment service providers. Even though a serious change is occurring, Joona Hertola believes that consumers will continuously choose a payment method that is easy to use, suitable for the situation and safe.
Experience is a significant advantage
Joona ended up in the payment business in 2009 when Kreditor, now Klarna, was looking for a new employee for their sales department. At that time, credit-based payment methods were a completely new area for merchants, as was the digital payments business. Joona thought that selling completely new products seemed very interesting and on top of that the work suited very well in the busy athlete’s schedule. “I was immediately hooked on e-commerce and payments. Payment methods play a big and important role in e-commerce, because if payments don’t work as they should, the whole purchase process fails”, Joona explains.
Joona is a real team player. ”I played handball for 11 years on the Finnish Championship and national team level. I remember many fun matches and stories from my sports career, unfortunately I had to retire due to injuries”, Joona says. Fluent in three languages, Joona is finalizing his Hanken Executive MBA program at the moment and is expected to graduate in March. In 2012, after working at Klarna, Joona moved to Intrum Justitia and worked with the development of B2C and B2B services until the end of 2017. Of these the last three years were spent launching Avarda’s business in Finland. All in all, Joona has nine years of experience from the field.
”During these nine years I have had the opportunity to get to know many different merchants. Active and open communication is key in creating a good co-operation with merchants. Planning need not be altogether confined to meeting rooms, but sometimes it’s good to let loose with customers in an appropriate way”, says Joona.
Close co-operation produces results
Joona’s work at Maksuturva started in December 2017. Joona’s job is to make sure, that customers always have access to the best services. ”My goal is to develop our partners’ payments methods according to the needs of the merchants. We need to listen to merchants as in the end, they are the ones that know what consumers want. In this way I believe that we can create a great continuum to Maksuturva’s business, because in this rapidly changing field nobody can keep up with development without a good co-operation. The merchant’s view is undoubtedly our most important resource and we should make good use of their valuable knowledge and skill. I also believe that a close co-operation with merchants produces the best possible result”, says Joona. ”The first phase of my job has started with a fast pace. We have big plans that we will be revealing later but let’s just say, that the future is full of possibilities. I believe that in the years 2018-2020 Maksuturva will be taking on an even bigger role and at the same time will be offering an even better range of services. Maksuturva’s service platform is already unique – sometimes I almost can’t even remember all the features without cheating a bit”, Joona clarifies.
"We have big plans that we will be revealing later but let’s just say, that the future is full of possibilities. I believe that in the years 2018-2020 Maksuturva will be taking on an even bigger role and at the same time will be offering an even better range of services."
Services create added value
Joona says that it not enough anymore that you ”payment methods are in order”, but it is increasingly important to offer a practical and comprehensive range of payment methods. This way both the merchant and the consumer are satisfied. ”In today’s world credit-based services that create added value are in demand. Consumers might for example want to apply for credit for purchases that they have already paid for. Even though I have only been with Maksuturva for a little less than two months, I have already been able to participate in the launch of completely new credit-based services, of which Kesko’s Hehku web store is a good example”, Joona says.
Joona says that merchants should invest in building a good customer experience and especially in making new customers regular customers. Because of this, communication with the customer also after the purchase is important. Product returns can also be made to be a competitive advantage for web stores, that can increase sales. ”When communication between merchant and customer is good, it creates value for the web store. Customer experience plays an important role, because a satisfied customer will gladly return to the same web store. Efficient handling of returns is important also from the merchant’s point of view – a less laborious process for handling returns decreases the amount of returns and increases the merchant’s profit”, Joona summarizes.
The merchant comes first
Online shopping should be as easy as possible for the consumer. Old trend words such as conversion are still central, but Joona thinks this should already be a no-brainer. ”We at Maksuturva want to take the merchants’ needs in consideration. We want to offer services, where the link between merchant and consumer is secured even after the purchase. Our systems support this way of operating very well and future services will also be built on this principle. This way we can guarantee a comprehensive solution and that the merchant comes first. A transparent process is important to us, when you are in a long-term co-operation with merchants. The preconditions to taking Maksuturva’s versatile service model through the Nordics to Europe are good – in a satisfaction survey just a week ago 98,3 % of Maksuturva’s customers would recommend Maksuturva to other merchants”, says Joona.
"The preconditions to taking Maksuturva’s versatile service model through the Nordics to Europe are good – in a satisfaction survey just a week ago 98,3 % of Maksuturva’s customers would recommend Maksuturva to other merchants.”
Joona says that during his sports and work career he has learned that in working life, your own example is everything – nobody can expect others to act in a certain way if you are not living up to those expectations yourself. Daily exercise is important for Joona. ”Exercise gets my energy levels up. This energy helps in supporting yourself and others to get the most out of the day. The importance of exercise and the effect it has in surviving a busy work life was also discussed in a book by Alexander Stubb that I read recently”, thinks Joona.
Maksuturva welcomes you to our team, whether you are a merchant, a partner or even a future employee!
Director, Financial Products
Mobile: +358 50 377 7729