When we talk of online payment methods, it only takes seconds for someone to decide whether or not they like a website. And this highly influences their next steps of making a purchase from a website. In that case, the mode of payment gateways your website has will matter quite a lot.
Furthermore, it doesn’t matter what awesome content or irresistible items your online store is hiding. So to say, if everything a website should have isn’t visible or is nonexistent on your home page, you’re going to lose potential buyers.
There are a few main features that every eCommerce website must have to do business. And perhaps, the most essential of them all is a way to get paid.
If you can’t take online payments, then the main goal of your business—making money—is impossible. A matter of seconds can make or break your e-commerce site. So, grabbing your target audience’s attention the moment they set eyes on your site is essential to success.
But, how can you be certain your site is complete with all the latest marketing techniques? As well as the key site features customers will expect to see the second they open your website?
What are Online Payment Methods?
Online Payment Methods (gateways) are the eCommerce services that process payment information for websites. And while many of the companies on the list have been available to online merchants for years, many are also now getting into new areas of online payments. Such as social commerce and in-store online card reader systems.
In the competitive online marketplace, having one way to accept payments is required. But also, having multiple payment gateways could put you at an advantage. And for sure, an eCommerce business has a number of online payment methods to consider. With each promising to provide an intuitive and secure checkout experience.
Make sure you’re providing the best payment methods to your visitors (and capturing as many sales as possible). Below you’ll find the main information you need to know about online payment methods and the top options available.
Lucky for you, I’ve compiled the list of most prominent online payment methods to make sure your business site has everything it needs;
Paypal is one of the biggest and most familiar of all the online payment options. The site has over 254 million users. That’s a lot of people who would have an easier time making a purchase on your website if you let them check out with Paypal.
The service boasts that it’s currently used by over 17 million businesses and that customers who use PayPal to check out convert at 82% higher rates than with other payment options. That’s a pretty compelling reason to use PayPal.
Luckily, adding a PayPal button to your checkout process is pretty simple (although you may need to work with a developer if you don’t use an eCommerce solution).
Expect to pay 30 cents plus 2.9% for each purchase processed through PayPal.
2. Amazon Pay
Although Paypal may be popular, Amazon is undisputedly one of the most popular sites across the whole web. And one that almost all your customers will have accounts with already.
Adding Amazon Pay to your store can make it easier for Amazon customers to shop with you without having to key in their payment data in your checkout. This helps you reduce the barriers to purchase for hundreds of millions of customers.
While also offering a payment option that the company promises to have proven fraud protection. It works well on mobile devices, offering a seamless experience where it matters most.
Setting up an Amazon Pay button your website with their Express Integration option can take a matter of minutes. Or you can use their API, which takes a little longer. But allows you to customize the experience to better fit in with your website.
As with PayPal, the cost of using Amazon Pay is 30 cents plus 2.9% for each purchase.
3. Google Pay
If anyone can compete with PayPal and Amazon for market share, it’s Google. The company now offers its own online payment method, Google Pay.
Google says hundreds of millions of their users already have card information saved to their Google accounts. Meaning that providing a Google Pay option offers added convenience for a significant number of people.
As with the other options, they promise an intuitive process—on desktop and mobile—and top-notch security through encryption. It also lets retailers set up loyalty programs, digital gift cards, and deals for customers. So that everyone can skip the paper and plastic cards.
Notably, Google Pay works with PayPal and Visa Checkout for added reach. And they don’t charge you anything for using the service. It’s free for both you and your customers.
4. American Express
American Express might not have the market share that our first three online payment gateways do, but it has something just as valuable: consumer trust.
While American Express is not as ubiquitous as some of its credit card competitors, it has one of the highest satisfaction rates in the industry. And it even tends to target a higher-income consumer than other credit card companies.
As such, the people who would find an American Express checkout option attractive are likely to be some of the top visitors you’d want to attract.
They promise fraud protection, 24/7 customer support, and the flexibility to work with a number of payment processors and consider different add-on features. And they can accept over 120 currencies, so if you’re interested in attracting international customers, that’s a big benefit.
5. Apple Pay
For people who use Apple devices—and that’s more than 34% of people in Kenya —Apple Pay works as a mobile wallet when they’re out and about. And a one-click payment option on websites that accept it.
For mobile users, customers can even check out with Apple Pay by using their touch identification—it doesn’t get much easier than that. It uses tokenization to keep credit card information secure.
Meaning that once a user provides their credit card information to the service, the device communicates with the issuing bank to create a randomly generated number (or token) to represent that card. That obscures the information from hackers, keeping consumers’ financial data safe while working quickly.
Above all, you can set your website up to accept Apple Pay by using its API. As long as you already use one of the compatible platforms or payment providers. Like Google, Apple’s payment gateway is completely free for both merchants and customers.
By the same token, Stripe provides a feature-rich payment processing platform. Making it easy to accept payments from a range of sources. Such as credit cards, digital wallets, ACH transfers, and different currencies.
Some of the options we’ve looked at so far are primarily useful as an add-on checkout option. In that case, allowing Stripe to provide a good basis for other online payment methods to be added onto.
As with some of the other options, Stripe costs 30 cents plus 2.9% for domestic credit card processing, and .8% for ACH payments.
Even though Square is mostly associated with in-person point-of-sale (POS) payment processing, the company also offers eCommerce options.
They have an online payment API that accepts many of the payment methods I’ve included here. Like Google Pay, Apple Pay, Masterclass, as well as credit card payments.
In addition to payment processing, they offer an easy checkout solution. Allowing customers to set up profiles at the same time that they provide their payment information. And like many of the other solutions, Square charges 2.9% plus $.30 per payment.
8. Visa Checkout
Just like the payment gateway from American Express, Visa Checkout makes it extra easy for all Visa cardholders. Especially to check out on your website without having to fill in all their payment information.
Always remember, there are over 2 million people enrolled in Visa Checkout. So, you’d be making the checkout process easier for a significant portion of your audience. That convenience clearly makes a difference. And since Visa’s data shows that offering Visa Checkout can increase conversions by 42%.
The payment option includes advanced security features and easy setup options.
Mastercard’s Masterpass payment option is similar to those offered by American Express and Visa. Making it easy for any Mastercard holders to quickly and easily check out from your website.
In addition, it provides the kind of advanced security in the payment process you’d expect from a credit card company. Including user verification, tokenization, issuer authentication, and fraud monitoring.
Keeping in mind, Mastercard doesn’t charge any fees to either you or the customer. And the company has developers available to help you get set up.
2Checkout is a global payment processing solution that accepts payments from across the world in a number of different currencies.
They provide a customizable checkout that you can design and add to your website. As well as, extensive fraud protection, and a responsive design that ensures customers can easily check out across devices.
Additionally, they offer an API that makes adding the processing solution to your website fairly simple. While also providing the flexibility to customize it as needed.
The company charges 2.9% plus 30 cents per transaction, with extra fees for foreign customers.
Why are Online Payment Methods important?
It’s possible to get by with one safe and easy online payment method. But, many customers are starting to have the expectation of using their favorite payment methods on sites across the web.
With the growing popularity of services like PayPal, Square, and Apple Pay, customers are increasingly able to checkout on a variety of websites. Without having to spend time adding all their payment and address information for each purchase.
Instead, they only have to log into an account they use regularly, and in many cases may not even have to do that if their device remembers it. That creates a more seamless and convenient experience for them. Especially on mobile, where a growing number of online purchases are taking place.
The more your visitors come to expect this kind of convenience, the less likely they are to bother with a website that makes them do more work. Having said that, online payment gateways offer two main benefits to eCommerce businesses:
1. They make the checkout process fast and easy
Have you ever started a purchase online only to realize that the process of buying the item took too long? And at times, requiring more work than you were willing to do?
The average rate of shopping cart abandonment—people who expressed a clear intent to buy and then didn’t—is around 70%. More so, if your checkout process puts barriers in the way of making a purchase. Making the likelihood that you’ll lose sales because of it high.
A good online payment gateway makes the process simple and intuitive. And so, you capture most of those sales rather than losing them.
2. They provide encryption to keep your customer’s information secure
The threat of identity theft means that every online transaction a customer makes requires trust.
You have to make sure that the sensitive information they provide you is protected. Particularly from hackers around the web that seek to steal credit card information from vulnerable sites.
Online payment gateways specialize in processing financial information. Therefore, they have the proper encryption and safety features to keep your customers’ information safe.
As you can see, when it comes to getting paid, you have a variety of options to choose from. But, it’s less a matter of finding the right one. And more a matter of determining just how many different gateways you want to make available to your customers.
Adding more options to your checkout process makes buying products from you faster and more convenient. Moreover, you’re likely to see an increase in sales as a result. So, the question may really be, can you afford not to add more payment options?
Please let us know how you think about the online payment methods discussed above in the comments section. And if you’ll need support or help while implementing any of the above-mentioned methods, please Contact Us.
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