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Online layaway service

Posted by Michael Bloch in ecommerce (Sunday November 2, 2008 )

It works well in the world of bricks and mortar, so why not online? Here’s a brief look at a layaway (or layby as we call it in Australia) service for online merchants.

With credit harder to come by and consumers (hopefully) being more responsible with the credit they do have; an old concept seems to be making a splash in the online world – the layaway.

This is where a customer pays in installments, but doesn’t get the item until it is fully paid off. It could be viewed as a bit of a step backwards in this “I want it now” society; but with finances as they are, some folks are happy to wait to secure the item of their desire, particularly if they can lock it in now at a good price.

Offered through eLayaway, consumers sign up at the eLayaway site and then shop their merchant network – there’s about a thousand merchants offering eLayaway now. After purchasing, instalments are automatically deducted from the person’s bank account and the item is shipped shortly after the last payment.

The cost to the consumer is needs a flat fee of 1.9% of the purchase price. For merchants processing over 20 million dollars worth of sales a year, there are no fees. Under that, the merchant can choose to either pay transaction fees of up to 2.49% of the item’s value or a flat monthly fee of $49.95.

If you’d like to try out eLayaway, the company offers three initial transactions at no charge.


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