As online businesses are seeing meteoric and consistent growth, the need for payment gateways is increasing too. A payment gateway works to provide an essential secure link between an eCommerce website and the banking system. It is impossible to begin an online business without an efficient payment gateway.
The recent commitment of the government to veer the model of the economy towards a more cashless structure is a major step in boosting payment gateways for online businesses. Positive and comprehensive steps are being taken in order to pave the way towards a cashless economy. However, the decision of choosing the correct payment gateway for your online business is always a tricky one. Here are a few attributes that need to be kept in mind by every eCommerce business person before narrowing down to an appropriate payment gateway for their online business.
1. Ease of On Boarding: Making business go live fastest is one of the aims of every entrepreneur. However, many payment gateways take a lot time in seeking permissions and approvals from partner banks for use of their services. Thus, the time taken by the payment gateway should be in accord with the launch timeline of the online business. It is also important to ensure that the payment gateway curtails opportunity loss and facilitates ease of integration. The valuable time of an entrepreneur working on an online business should be utilized in focusing on the product or services. Thus, the documentation should be available online and the shopping cart plugin of your need must be supported. For instance, at EBS we can make your business collect payment within 24 hours with some of the payment options, this reduces the unduly turnaround time for going live.
2. Flexible Pricing Option: The charges of the services provided by a payment gateway are vital to the eCommerce business. It is always best to opt for a provider that offers flexible pricing options and slab based pricing rather than a lump sum charge. There should be complete transparency in the pricing and no hidden charges such as withdrawal fees, chargeback fees, reversal fees etc. The approach should be of getting maximum returns on investment. Exceptionally low charges or free PGs are symbols of unsatisfactory service, low success rates and poor performance. Do not fall for the tempting low rates or free PG services as it may deviate from what was agreed before.
3. Payment options coverage: The provider should also cover most of the payment options to enable commerce online. Different online businesses need numerous payment options and transactions modes. The payment gateway should support all of these because an online business may require using one or more of these payment options in the future. These includes credit & debit cards, netbanking, cash cards, digital wallets and even PayPal.
4. Merchant Centric Features: Merchant centric features are crucial to ensure the effectiveness of the payment gateway. Features such as Auto Retry and Smart Routing, that boost payment success rate, form the core of the merchant business. The payment page should be customizable as per the need of the business. The payment page should be multilingual and optimized to enable usage across mobiles or other devices. All international cards should be accepted and multi-currency transactions must be hassle-free. Facilities such as email/SMS invoicing and advanced analytics provision should also be taken care of by the payment gateway to add more insights into business decisions. Taking care of appropriate steps for refund management is essential for a good payment provider too.
5. End-Consumer Centric Features: Payments and products are the two focal points that build or break the relationship of an online business provider with the end-consumer. Hence, it is essential to ensure that the consumers of an online business are satisfied with the online payment gateway. There is higher possibility of returning customers once they are assured of safe payment.
A provider can take care of end-consumer needs in various ways. Express or Turbo checkouts can save the time of consumers and ensure that they remain in a good mood. An option to enable auto pay means that payment gateway is authorized to make payments on behalf of the customer without the need of their approval every time. Features such as the use of IVRS or the facility to pay by EMIs coupled with the assurance of their safety heightens the rate of returning customers.
6. Customer Support: Customer support is a noteworthy dimension of a payment gateway that has far-reaching impacts on both the merchant and the end-consumer. Customer support in case of a payment gateway works through a three or four-tier hierarchy. Banks, merchants and end-consumers are all part of this hierarchy. Hence, the provider should be one that provides active and satisfactory customer support by integrating all these levels.
Monetary transactions are quite sensitive and hence, the customer support should enable not only just acknowledge problems but also resolve them. A full-fledged customer support from the payment gateway is essential so that the eCommerce venture can provide such support to their end-level-consumers too.
7. Fraud and Risk: Safety is paramount when it comes to monetary transactions. The payment gateway should take active steps to curtail fraudulent transactions. Provision of fraud detection tools other than AVS and CVV2, Database security, Transaction security etc. are some essential steps to minimise risks. Real-time checks ought to be enabled and Buyer Protect vis-à-vis Consumer Protect needs to be ensured by the payment gateway. A payment gateway should be compliant with various Industry standard that will keep consumer privacy intact.
8. Omni Channel: Omni Channel is an essential feature of a payment gateway that affects both merchants and customers directly. A payment gateway needs to ensure that all channels from which purchase can made are integrated seamlessly. Payment can be made across all devices and sales channels including desktops, mobile devices, phone calls or POS. When the entire experience of buying becomes convenient for a customer, consequent sales are ensured too. In addition to boosting consistency, an Omni channel gateway also saves time and improves revenue.
Successful eCommerce ventures have given mixed reviews about same payment gateways. A particular gateway has worked very well for one online business while having gotten negative reviews from another. This shows that there isn’t one perfect payment gateway works for everyone. It is best to keep the above pointers in mind and zero down to the one that best suits a particular online business.
E-Billing Solutions (EBS) established in the year 2005 is headquartered in Mumbai. EBS offers a secure payment system while supporting multiple payment options including international payments. It is a fully owned subsidiary of Ingenico Group. With its acquisition by Ingenico, a global leader in seamless payment, EBS has now access to world class product and solutions to augment its existing services.
Disclaimer: This column is sponsored by E-Billing Solutions (EBS)