Choosing A Payment Gateway For E-Commerce

By Kris LaGreca

Choosing A Payment Gateway For E-CommerceNew Possibilities Group

Choosing A Payment Gateway For E-Commerce

Establishing trustworthy and user-friendly payment options for your customers is essential to running a successful e-commerce business. Visitors want a choice of payment methods and to feel confident that their financial information is protected and will stay private.

Choosing the right credit card payment gateway for your e-commerce website can have a significant impact on your revenue and ability to grow. Here are just a few e-commerce development tips that will help you choose the perfect gateway and ensure success:

Hosted Vs. Non-Hosted Options

One of the first decisions you will have to make is whether to go with a hosted or non-hosted gateway. Hosted gateways mean that your customers will be directed off of your site to a payment service such as PayPal. This option tends to be easier for businesses and offers a secure payment method. Working with a hosted gateway will allow you to focus on the other aspects of your business.

A non-hosted option means that customers stay on your site and make a more direct payment. Some people feel more confident about making online payments if they aren't directed to a third party site to make a payment. However, this option means more work and the responsibility of protecting customer information.

Depending on your business, you may want to consider offering both options. It never hurts to provide several different payment methods so that customers can choose the one that works best for them.

Pay Attention To Fees

At the top of any e-commerce development tips should be this golden rule: shop around for the best price. Every credit card gateway is going to come with certain fees. Almost every option will include both sign-up and transaction fees. If you are just starting out and aren't doing a large volume of business yet, it might make more sense pay higher transaction fees.

However, larger businesses should look to reduce the impact of transaction fees as much as possible. While more transactions will always be a good thing, you don't want to go with a service that will cut into your profits too much. Take the time to research different options and think about which payment plan will best suit your business and your long-term goals.

Security & Fraud Protection

Nothing will stunt your business growth faster than a security breach. Customers are relying on you to protect their information and make sure that they can safely make purchases. Any credit card gateway should offer superior data protection. Make sure that any service you are considering has a strong track record and a clear description of exactly how they work to ensure safe transactions.

Customer Service

A credit card gateway is there to make your life easier and allow you to run your business more efficiently. However, that doesn't mean that problems won't arise. Quality customer service will be an essential tool in helping you to recover quickly from any glitches that may make it hard for customers to complete transactions.

While most companies will advertise great customer service, the real measure of their services can be found in customer reviews. Take the time to see what current and former users have to say about how easy it is to get a hold of an actual person to resolve pressing issues. A quick turnaround time that doesn't require you to submit multiple tickets and inquiries will mean that you can get back to business a lot sooner.

Contract Length

Companies are going to want to lock you into as long of a contract as they can. While they might offer discounts if you commit to being a long-term client, you also have to take into consideration the changing needs of your business. As you continue to grow, you may need to go with a gateway that offers lower transaction fees or additional payment options. If you don't foresee a credit card gateway being able to adapt to your evolving business, then beware of getting stuck in a lengthy contract. Before you finalize any agreements, review e-commerce development tips, read the fine print, and know exactly what you are getting in to.

Starting and maintaining your own website can require managing a lot of little parts that all need to work well together. From design and content to credit card gateways and marketing strategies, there are a lot of details to take into consideration. However, if you follow the above mentioned e-commerce development tips, you will be well on your way to creating a solid customer experience for those looking to purchase your goods or services. Doing a little research and comparing major aspects of different credit card gateways can go a long way in reducing your workload and providing a customer experience that keeps them coming back.

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