Oberpfalz Medien is the central communications service provider in the Upper Palatinate. The three daily newspapers, as well as the internet portals, provide hundreds of thousands of people in the Upper Palatinate with daily news and information from the region and from around the world.
"Our magazines and supplements report on education, sports, lifestyle and much more. People who are searching for a partner, their next job or real estate will find what they are looking for with the help of our online portals," says Thomas Webel, Senior Digital Editor. Oberpfalz Medien's cross-media offer also includes a special PR service for business customers.
Another important field of operation is the printing centre, where daily newspapers including inserts, magazines, flyers and brochures are produced. The various departments of Oberpfalz Medien work hand-in-hand here. "Our graphic designers take care of the visual design of inserts, advertisements and much more - for print as well as for digital", explains Thomas Webel.
Return debit notes and incorrect transfers were a daily struggle
Like any business, Oberpfalz Medien faced challenges in processing payments. Payments from private and business customers for newspaper subscriptions, advertisements and services by invoice often led to payment defaults. With the introduction of the OnetzPlus paywall in October 2020, the company therefore looked for new payment methods.
"Many of our customers prefer the classic direct debit as a payment method. GoCardless is one of the few payment service providers offering this," says Thomas Webel. In choosing their payment service provider, Oberpfalz Medien was particularly convinced by the fast, competent and uncomplicated cooperation with GoCardless. From the first contact to the first test payments took less than two weeks.
A convincing product
Integrating GoCardless into Oberpfalz Medien's existing PIANO software was as easy as can be. "A few configurations had to be made in the developer area of GoCardless, with which the necessary access keys were created. Those simply had to be entered in the corresponding area of PIANO to add GoCardless as a payment service provider. In addition, the corresponding payment templates had to be updated in PIANO," says Thomas Webel.
Already during the second telephone call with GoCardless, our technicians and the technicians from GoCardless were able to talk directly to each other without long detours. That made the entire installation very smooth and fast.
Since then, GoCardless has ensured fast and accurate payment processing with reliable billing in PIANO. In the process, Oberpfalz Medien were the first PIANO customers in Germany to offer GoCardless.
A boost in conversion
Oberpfalz Medien is confident that offering direct debit is essential for their subscription sales. Around 24% of their customers already use direct debit as a payment method. Customers also prefer to pay by direct debit even for small amounts, such as for daily or monthly subscriptions. By offering this convenient solution, Oberpfalz Medien was able to significantly increase conversion.
"By offering direct debit, we attract and retain our customers," says Thomas Webel. "As upgrading a subscription through direct debit is particularly easy, since no new card details have to be entered, this option is popular with our customers. It gives us the opportunity to promote our upgrades in a completely different way."
GoCardless is a solid product that can be easily integrated into existing systems. We have already recommended GoCardless to others.