Important payment processing features for an ecommerce website
Decisions are an integral part of day to day business, and a key one that will make the difference while operating a digital business is choosing the right payment processor. Customers today have high expectations of brands they do business or buy from. Giving them a payment processing system that contribute to a seamless experience on your website can contribute to your customer retention rate and sales.
Putting together your ecommerce store in order to start selling in the fastest possible time is an exciting prospect for entrepreneurs. However, it is vital to be careful at this stage because moat entrepreneurs lack proper experience about ecommerce payment processing and which will best suit their retail store. But they are aware of the need to have a payment integrator in order to accept payments for transactions.
Here, we will have a broad look at a series of Ecommerce payment methods, while eventually recommending one that covers eCommerce needs, an all-in-one solution which makes life easier for entrepreneurs.
Ecommerce payment processing simply describes the procedures involved in businesses receiving payments from customers when they shop of Ecommerce platforms. Unlike in-situ stores where customers can walk in, select their favorite products and pay in cash, buying and selling are done on the digital space, and the integrated payment processors help businesses receive payments and approve transactions.
This process is executed through a secure gateway which shields transactions and customer’s card details from hijacking, data theft or privacy breach. When customers input their credit card details, a connection is then made with involved merchant to complete the transactions. The following are details that entrepreneurs need to be conversant with as regards eCommerce payment processing:
- Your ecommerce store links to a chosen and secure payment processor
- When customers decide to buy a product, they are required to enter their card details within the secured payment gateway, that encrypts these details prior to sending it to the processor.
- A signal is then sent by the processor to the customer’s bank to verify if they have enough balance to complete the payment.
- If a positive response is received from the customer’s bank, then the transaction proceeds and is subsequently approved. Transaction amount is then deducted from the customer’s bank into the entrepreneur’s account. If a negative response is received by the processor from customer’s Bank, signaling insufficient balance, the transaction is denied.
All the procedures described here happens within a few seconds, we have all experienced this while buying stuff on ecommerce stores ourselves. Usually, the shipping costs and packaging are added to the total cost of the purchase.
Terminologies in Payment Processing
For those curious about the mode of operation and full details of the procedures involved in receiving an ecommerce payment, having an understanding of the important terminologies is the first step. The terminologies involved in eCommerce payment processing includes: payment processors, merchant accounts, and payment gateways. While you may have a vague idea about each of these terms, we have to elaborate to ensure better understanding.
What is an Ecommerce Payment Processor?
An ecommerce payment processor simply functions to facilitate payments from customers to the merchants. They do this by acquiring encrypted financial details from the secured payment gateway, after which the details are verified for their legitimacy.
The involved customer’s account is then assessed in order to know if there’s enough funds to complete the transaction. If there’s enough, the transaction is then deducted and moved into the merchant’s account.
This is an account linked to your ecommerce store, and is usually opened in a bank. Here, all the funds acquired through your ecommerce store is received after complete processing.
The payment gateway has a few functions important to the execution and completion of any transaction on your ecommerce store. It acts as the middle man or link between your ecommerce store and the payment processor, and relays information between both. Information relayed here is encrypted to guarantee security of the transaction.
While some merchants might still be new to this word, most of them would have come across this terms, especially ones who have an already running eCommerce store. It describes the ability of your ecommerce store to save a customer’s payment details for easy access when they want to make a subsequent payment either on the same day or some other time.
Saving customer’s payment information on your ecommerce store should be seen as a risk and should never be accommodated. The only way this should be allowed is through tokenization. In tokenization, rather than saving your customer’s credit card details, your ecommerce store saves a token acquired through the payment processor and the permission of the customer.
As a result, your ecommerce website only make use of this token rather than the exact credit card details when customers want to make repeat purchase. It is so that customer’s details are protected from theft and possible unauthorized transactions. Also, should your ecommerce store become attacked by hackers in the future, other parties will be unable to use the tokens because they are linked only to your merchant account.
Tokenization is also useful in cases where you require a monthly or annual fee for subscription to specific services on your website.
Securing Your Website – SSL and PCI Compliance
Any digital transaction to be executed on the internet needs to be secured. Ecommerce platforms can ensure security for customers in their stores by acquiring an SSL Certificate. Acquiring one should be top priority even in cases where your payment processor does not require on.
Websites who have acquired their SSL certificate have a way of keeping customer’s mind at rest and increases the credibility of your brand as a whole. It is possible to get an SSL certificate for your website for free, only for those on the cloud ways platform. Others can simply buy one and install on their website.
PCI Compliance is another security feature to earn for your website. It is all about the regulations which merchants are required to abide by in order to be eligible to receive payments online. Your level of compliance will determine the layers of security available on your platform.
Since most eCommerce websites have to link to another merchant site where payment will be processed, there’s no need to be concerned about PCI compliance. However, if you are an ecommerce website who receive payments directly on your website, then you need to have a discussion with an expert concerning PCI compliance and how to earn it.
Key Factors to Consider When Selecting a Payment Gateway
One of the biggest decisions you can make as a merchant is choosing and installing a payment system on your ecommerce website. To help ease your decision-making, there are a few factors you need to keep in mind when choosing a payment gateway.
1. International Customers
Ecommerce stores that only tend to the local or domestic market, meaning eCommerce stores that only cover customers within their location or region have no need to go for a payment gateway that offer international payments. However, if you have customers in other parts of the world as your target market, then it is vital to only integrate a payment processor that accepts international payments.
Leatherback is a payment processor that accepts both local and international payments, wherever your customers are. We offer support for a series of credit cards and banks and you could easily exchange customer payments into preferred currencies. Also, we provide support for a series of tax systems, ensuring customers can be charged for VAT and others.
2. Recurring Subscriptions
Numerous eCommerce Platforms have services where customers are charged a monthly fee to access. If you are one such platform, choosing a payment gateway that support this type of service is key. Keep in mind that the payment gateway you choose should allow for modifying subscription fee when the need arises, especially in cases where customers want to change to a better plan.
3. Different Types of Payments
It would be great for your business of you can choose a payment solution that ensures you can accept different forms of payment, from credit cards, debit cards, cryptocurrency, and so on. Ideally, your payment processor must be able to accept payments from renowned institutions such as:
- eCheck payments
Leatherback is that Payment processor that specifically fit this description. You can receive payments for your business through a series of payment methods. This ensures your customers have a plethora of payment options to choose from, something that contributes to a better experience for them.
Integrations in a payment processor is something to always lookout for, as it can ensure your business enjoy more value. Preferably, your choice of payment gateways should integrate services related to eCommerce, including accounting software that help you monitor your business account, record transactions, monitor cash flow, and so on.
This helps save you a whole lot of manual work, energy, and time which could be invested elsewhere in the business.
What is a transaction without security? Security is the most important features of a payment gateway to pay attention to. Your choice of payment gateway must be SSL certified, PCI compliant if you process payments on your website, and offer tokenization to keep your credit card details secured on your platform. Checking these security details cannot be overemphasized.
The Right Payment Solution for your ecommerce Business
Leatherback is a fully customizable payment solution which allows eCommerce merchants to modify features based on their business needs at certain points. Our API is adaptive and leaves you with a payment processor that fit your business requirements. You can accept different forms of payments from customers anywhere around the world.
Leatherback has proved to be a great choice for eCommerce merchants since inception and is proving to make the difference for businesses, both on the local and international front. We offer modern features which ensure security of transactions executed by customers on ecommerce websites, we are SSL certified, and PCI compliant.
Due diligence is an important characteristic that entrepreneurs and merchants need to exercise when deciding the ideal payment processing solution for their digital business. First, you need to identify the current and prospective needs of your business, in the case that you expand operations, maybe from a local to an international market. You can also reevaluate you choice m with time and adopt a solution that ensures a seamless operation of your business.
Leatherback is a one-size-fits-all solution that is quickly proving to be a pace setter in the payment processing for e-commerce websites across Africa and other parts of the world. We have got everything you need in a payment processor, and our consistent adaptations to different needs and times ensure we remain on top of every trend.
Let us serve you the best in payment processing for e-commerce websites today, and watch how we transform your payment process today. Sign me up now!