STORES Magazine - April 2018 - 32
"A lot of customers would not want to put a $10,000
to $15,000 remodel purchase on their personal credit card
lines. We're offering them a line of credit that is
completely independent of that."
- Cory Iler, Build.com
To meet those goals, Build established a
partnership with Vyze Inc., a technology
vendor that offers a cloud-based financing
platform. With Vyze, Build rolled out its
own private-label credit card program
through the platform last November.
Iler says the Build.com card offers
convenience for its customers - namely
that they do not have to tap into alreadyestablished personal lines of credit.
"A lot of customers would not want
to put a $10,000 to $15,000 remodel
purchase on their personal credit
card lines," Iler says. "We're offering
them a line of credit that is completely
independent of that. They can still get
their remodel done and not tie up their
Build.com card customers can complete
a single credit application to make
purchases with deferred-interest financing
on purchases greater than $500; other
features include an initial-order discount
and free shipping. Customers can apply
for the credit card in advance through the
Build.com call center or at the point-ofsale.
"We give them more money with a
better rate than their current cards will,"
Iler says. "Instead of doing that one
bathroom, they can do both bathrooms,
or maybe both bathrooms and a kitchen."
Vyze's technology platform provides a
single integration system via the Build.
com website through pre-established
agreements with multiple lenders to
serve a variety of customer credit
profiles, including below prime. The
system matches consumers with the best
possible offer available: If a customer is
denied for a store's primary credit card,
their application is routed automatically
to other lenders with different credit
requirements as approved by the retailer.
Other retailers on the Vyze platform
include The Home Depot, technology
retailer Adorama and ICON Health &
STORES April 2018
Fitness, which markets NordicTrack
Iler says the average ticket size for a
customer with the card is triple that
of a customer who uses another
"We wanted to see customers buy more
and more often with the card," he says.
"Our hypothesis was that if someone
signs up and gets approved for a Build.
com card, that tells us that they want to
buy from us. They're not going to spend
that money anywhere else. So we expect
these customers to spend more money
and spend it more often with us, and
that's what we've seen so far."
Both lenders and retailers have come
to recognize that linking "strong credit
capabilities" at the point of sale presents
great value for both a retailer's customers
and its bottom-line sales, management
consulting firm McKinsey & Co.
noted in a report called "The Digital
Transformation of Merchant Credit."
Through digital technology, according
to McKinsey, merchants and credit
issuers can use consumer data on
which to base credit offers that propel
consumers to make purchasing decisions
by "maintaining continuous, tailored
engagement throughout the decision
process." For example, McKinsey says,
one tactic is to present consumers with
tailored offers that combine credit and
Like many companies competing in
the ongoing digital transformation,
Build.com uses data with a zeal to help
it understand the needs of its potential
and current customer base. To get
word out about the Build.com card,
the company sent targeted email blasts
to registered users along with running
social media campaigns on Facebook,
Instagram and Twitter.
Doug Filak, Vyze's chief marketing
officer, says the capability for Vyze's
retailer partners to have access to multiple
lenders serving their customers on a single
platform supports the vital category of
customer approval rates.
In traditional retail financing, much
of credit approval is geared toward
so-called "prime" customers with the
best credit profiles, effectively shutting
out other credit-worthy customers
and denying the retailer of sales
opportunities, Filak says. In such a
model, he estimates that only 25 to 50
percent of the customers get approved.
"What we're able to do, by bringing in
these multiple lenders, is bring in not only
what we call the near-prime customers
and non-prime customer, but also
actually provide financing options for
sub-prime customers as well," Filak says.
For sub-prime customers in the lower end
of the financing market, for instance, the
retailer might opt to include a program on
the Vyze platform that offers an option
for lease-to-own financing.
Filak says Vyze's platform serves as
an "insurance policy" in many respects
for retailers seeking to ensure viable
financing options for customers.
"Retailers get pretty frustrated with
that single lender model because they
are losing a lot of customers who can
get financing and buy more and become
much more loyal customers," Filak says.
He says The Home Depot has seen its
typical 50 percent credit approval rates
rise now to 70 to 80 percent, resulting
in a more desirable customer experience
Key for consumers using the Vyze
financing platform through retailers
like Build.com is they do not have to
continually apply for credit each time they
take on a project, Filak says.
"We know that consumers want
flexibility in credit products," he says.
"What we're able to do is provide a
solution that is dynamic enough to grow
with them, change with them and change
with the market trends."
M.V. Greene is an independent writer and
editor based in Owings Mills, Md., who covers
business, technology and retail.