Choose the Right Payment System for Your Ecommerce Store

Your business has many moving parts. Marketing, advertising, product development, logistics, and administration are just a few of the components that must be handled with care in order to build a successful online store. You likely have a grasp on many of these topics. However, there is one aspect of ecommerce that is grossly overlooked: the payment system.

Why is having the right payment system so important?

When customers make a purchase, they experience a number of fears. From deciding whether the site is trustworthy to battling buyer’s remorse, your role in this experience is to allay their concerns. One way to accomplish this is with an easy and trustworthy payment system.

However, there are multiple great payment methods available. So, which one should you choose? That depends on a number of factors. The most obvious: cost and ease of implementation. Just keep in mind that it’s more important to provide a great shopping experience for your customers.

What about merchant accounts?

For many businesses, this is the only option. Native transaction pages backed by the trustworthiness inherent in being an official vendor is the industry standard for payment in online retail. Coupled with the guidance provided by the experts at one of the largest financial figureheads in the world, it’s easy to see why so many opt for merchant accounts.

The downsides, however, is that merchant accounts can provide real challenges for small businesses. Unlike the options that follow, setting up a merchant account is not an easy process. It requires a great deal of verification and shopping around for an “acquirer” with reasonable transaction rates. Furthermore, paying on your site will require entering card information. This can be a sale-ending hassle on mobile phones with small keyboards.

4 great payment options

We compiled a number of payment options we think could be great for your online store. However, it’s good to do your own research before you commit to anything.

PayPal

PayPal is an obvious choice when the conversation of payment systems arises. Its reputation over years of service inspires the needed confidence in buyers that drives conversion. Not to mention, its function as an all-encompassing business account and payment system can help small businesses keep their personal finances separate.

The downside, however, is cost. A standard account (free) allows customers to make purchases through the system, but transactions are completed on a PayPal page. This departure from your established trusted site can leave some buyers feeling uneasy. In addition, transaction fees of 2.7% + $0.30 can add up quickly if you’re making a lot of sales.

However, PayPal adds fraud protection security without an additional charge for both free and paid accounts. Which will give you and your customers additional assurance.

Stripe

Stripe is one of the top payment methods on the market today. Why? Because it’s very versatile. Even though huge brands like Booking.com, ASOS, and Deliveroo use Stripe, it’s designed for businesses of all sizes. Stripe also gives you the option of a hosted payments page (designed using code) or the website integration Stripe Payments (added to ecommerce websites with the click of a button). It accepts all major credit cards and debit cards from all countries, but you can also integrate some alternative payment options into your Stripe payment gateway.

Stripe is also capable of handling companies with a large volume of transactions.

As for costs, Stripe has transaction fees of 2.9% + $0.30 for every card charge. And there is an additional 1% charge for international cards.

Square

Square is a great choice if you have a physical retail location and plan to start selling online. And if you don’t have a store yet, Square also offers a great ecommerce website builder. They offer multiple drag-and-drop themes that look great and allow you to create the ecommerce store of your dreams. The best part? You don’t need any coding knowledge.

Plus, it’s very easy to integrate Square to your ecommerce platform. They are partnered with a lot of big names, such as WordPress, WooCommerce, and Wix.

Another bonus: Square doesn’t have a monthly fee. They charge 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction, just like Stripe and PayPal.

Google Wallet

Google’s name carries particular weight, and for good reason. Their track record of innovation and enabling online activity (to the benefit of their own services of course) have been driving forces behind the creation of Google Wallet. Customers who purchase through Google Wallet will have the comfort of knowing their payment is being handled by a trustworthy source. Often, this level of comfort leads to higher conversion rates.

The features of Google Wallet are manifold. Customers are likely to have a Google account and, as long as their card is set up in the system, transactions are a breeze. Wallet’s 2-click mobile transaction system is a particular boon in a device context that’s frequently lamented for its difficult payment process. Additionally, you can upgrade to Google Offers to distribute savings across Google’s ubiquitous channels.

The downside is the requirement of a Google account with a connected card. The requirement of setting up an account can be viewed as an unwelcome additional investment in the transaction process. For repeat, established customers, this may not be an issue. But for the new and wary, it can be a deal-breaker.

Do your research

As you can see, choosing the right payment system depends on a number of factors. You must weigh convenience against the implicit trust customers have in certain systems and companies. Make sure you evaluate your company’s needs before you make a choice. And take into account your circumstances, sales conversion, and customer confidence. In other words: if you do your research, you will be sure to reap the benefits.

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