What Are Payment Gateways

Payment gateways are an ideal way for online business to accept credit cards. In its simplest terms, it's a credit card processing terminal. Payment gateways do many different things for business and let's look at a few of those.


Payment gateways almost always increase your sales and are the most secure ecommerce platform. People feel more secure using a credit card these days and when you marry that with payment gateways, it is the fastest and quickest way to accomplish buying and selling of merchandise. Often times if you do not accept payments through payment gateways, many customers will simply go to another website to purchase the product. These are times of customers want it now/buy it now and if you are set up to accept payments through payment gateways, you make it the better off you and the customer will be. Customers like the ease of operation and that is one thing that payment gateways give them. Secondly, costs can be cut way down by using payment gateways. You will need fewer employees on staff, thus your overhead will be smaller. Payment gateways come in two different forms. One is the secure order form and the second form comes by way of a merchant side application. The secure type take you to a third party site that does the processing and this is the most popular one out there. The merchant side is an application program interface that is integrated into the server that is holding the merchant's ecommerce website.



Options to Consider

When you decide on a payment gateway to go with, some of the things to consider include the ease of operation for your customers, available features, cost and reliability. Customers tend to get impatient, so the payment gateway you choose should be very user friendly and the purchasing process should be quick. The longer customers have to wait, or deal with problems in the checkout portion of the transaction means a lost customer to that web site.


When looking to review the various types of payment gateways, you must ensure that the gateway is fully compliant with the security initiatives which are put forward by the major credit card providers: Visa Cardholder Information Security Program (CISP), MasterCard Site Data Protection (SDP) and the Discover Information Security and Compliance (DISC). If you find that any other version of payment gateways do not discuss or guarantee these security initiatives, you may just end up paying higher fees, possibly having your account closed, or, worst case scenario possibly having your organization added to “The Match File”, which is known as the credit card processing blacklist.


Features What Works For Your Business

There are many different payment gateways that are really great and also some that aren't so great. The payment gateway you choose will depend on the type of business you run and how important credit cards are to its success. PayPal is one of the more popular online payment gateways which have been around a very long time and people use it every day with great success. For most businesses, this works well.


There are many features of payment gateways which many merchants are unaware of which can make your business flourish even more. Some of the more common features include: virtual terminal, fraud prevention, recurring billing, eCheck processing and integration.


If you want a merchant account credit card processing gateway, then there are those out there which may cost you a little more but if you’re in business for the long haul than maybe that's the way you need to go. It all comes down to the cost factor when you talk about payment gateways. Some cost a little more, but you will have to decide which is best for your business situation..

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David World