Things You Didn’t Know About Online Selling and Payment Gateways
I don’t think it necessary for us to state that online business is big business. I think you know that. I have found the most recent statistics on eCommerce (payment gateway) worldwide very interesting with Selz FounderU mentioning that “Online shopping and eCommerce is a multi-billion dollar industry and is expected to grow by 8 to 12% in the next few years”.
Boring statistics aside, we now know that men are becoming bigger spenders on online shopping than women, and spend as must as 5-6 hours shopping online per week.
Add to that the boost that social media can have on an eCommerce website and the fact that people tend to first read reviews of products and their providers on social media before they make a purchase.
The Importance of Choosing the Right Payment Gateway
Choosing the right payment method is essential for your business because:
Different service providers have different packages starting from the small corner shop to high street franchise. Choosing the option best suited to your needs can save you money, for example extra fees for special features can be avoided if you do not need them right away.
Easier Currency Conversion
Many different currencies are involved in international business and you don’t want to lose out on fluctuating exchange rates. The conversion process is in many ways seamless depending on the provider with support for worldwide currencies localized.
Multiple payment options
Offering various payment methods is also an important factor for consumers who shop online. Various types of credit and debit cards and even voucher schemes show customers that you take their business seriously. Nothing loses a deal like detailed instructions on using only one specific card transaction.
Customers are more likely to return to your website for future transactions if the experience was positive.
Ease of Use
The objective would be to make this experience as simple, reliable and profitable as possible for both your company and your clients. The simplicity of integrating the payment gateway into your business processes and website would also be an important consideration factor in implementation and longevity of your eCommerce solution.
The Main Contenders: Popular Payment Gateways
Let us examine each service provider with its pro’s and cons
Typically, PayPal is well known and loved across the globe.Trusted as flexible and reliable, they remain in international favorite for money transfers – not just eCommerce but sending and receiving money and paying bills online as well.
Average Cost: 2.9% + $0.30 transaction fee
Why we think PayPal is a top choice: Clients who do not want to use credit cards find Paypal really useful. The transactions are also anonymous, meaning you don’t need to fill in personal details.
We find the following drawback: Paypal redirects consumers away from your website which means less engagement. They also charge monthly fees.
Stripe has become a worthy contender for PayPal and has gained considerable ground as a top payment gateway you can trust. Stripe is easy to use and features are built in like card storage, subscriptions, and bank payouts.
Average Cost: 2.9% + $0.30 transaction fee. 3.9% fixed international fee.
Why we think Stripe is a top choice: It does not require a merchant account and there are unexpected fees or extra fees.
We find the following drawback: Technical know-how is required to integrate Stripe into your website.
Notorious for their smooth and seamless checkout process, Amazon Payments now offers that same experience to you and your customers.
Average Cost: 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction and a $20 chargeback fee
Why we think Amazon Payments is a top choice: Amazon protects their customers and vendors against fraud and facilitates a one-click information process. This simplifies the buying experience considerably and customers who shop with Amazon also trust their brand.
We find the following drawback: Transactions are limited to 20 items per single transaction.
Probably the longest established payment gateway (since 1996), Authorize.net is owned by Visa and therefore they are quite experienced and trusted. They offer some options that other payment gateways don’t such as subscription handling, fraud protection, and security settings.
Average Cost: $49 setup fee, $25 monthly fee, $25 chargeback fee. 2.9% + $0.30 transaction fee.
Why we think Authorize.net is a top choice: Very easy to integrate into many different platforms with excellent customer support.
We find the following drawback: Extra features, unfortunately, come at an extra cost.
The oldest and most established (since 1994) WorldPay is a large company with over 150 000 clients in the United States alone. You cannot go wrong with this global leader, but caution is advised as contracts are mandatory and services are premium.
Average Cost: Signature debit transactions at 0.99%. Standard credit transactions at 1.99%. Rewards credit transactions at 2.6%. Corporate, T&E, Keyed-In credit transactions at 3.30%. $0.20 per-transaction fee.
Why we think WorldPay is a top choice: Lower transaction fees coupled with reputation and trust.
We find the following drawback: WorldPay insists upon a 3-year contract and imposes early contract termination fees which may impair good business relationships.
The Final Word
Although eCommerce has become a wide and specialized field, I believe it is never too late to endeavor an online shop. Especially if you own a store, or even if you are selling products from your home. The wonders of the internet have made it easier for people to connect than ever before and the many payment gateways available to vendors simplify the process considerably. The exchange of money online has become the new currency so I believe the only question left to ask would be: As a business owner, can you afford not to be invested in eCommerce?