Learn About Your Payment Gateway Options
If you own an e-commerce site, you could be doing yourself a disservice by not accepting credit cards. Setting up a payment gateway is easier and less expensive than you might think. It can be in your best interest to learn more about what a payment gateway does, how it works and how it can benefit you before signing up. Here is some important information about payment gateways:
What a Payment Gateway Does
In simple terms, a payment gateway is a web application that will be part of your e-commerce site. This application allows you to accept credit cards from customers. In other words, a payment gateway is an electronic equivalent of a credit card swipe machine that you might see in a retail store. When your customer enters their payment information into the application, which is simply a page on your site, the payment gateway will approve or deny the transaction in a matter of seconds.
How a Payment Gateway Works
When a customer enters their credit card information into your site, they will eventually hit the "Submit Order" button. Once this happens, the payment gateway springs to action. The information is immediately encrypted and is sent to the bank that holds the card. At that point, the bank will determine if the customer has the money in their account to cover the transaction and if so, will approve the sale. That information is sent back to the page, the customer will see an approval and the transaction is complete. The money will be deposited into your merchant account, a type of bank account, and you can take that money out whenever you want.
How a Payment Gateway Can Benefit You
There are a number of benefits that a payment gateway can bring to those who have e-commerce sites. First of all, you get your money almost immediately. You won't have to wait 10 to 12 days for a check to clear. Secondly, your customers will be more willing to buy from you. No one wants to have to write out a check to send a retailer, and many will leave your site if there is not an easy way to pay. Finally, customers will see your site as legitimate which means they are more willing to spend money there. All of these things lead to more profits for you.
Know Your Payment Gateway Options
There are a number of options available when it comes to payment gateways. Because of this, it is recommended that you take some time and research these options. Some of the most popular options include:
Authorize.net - One of the most popular payment gateways. Over 300,000 businesses online use this option.
PayPal.com - Many people are familiar with PayPal and though not a payment gateway in the traditional sense, many merchants find that PayPal works best for their needs.
Google Checkout - Similar to PayPal, Google Checkout can be more convenient for customers as many times, their Google accounts are already logged in and connected when they are shopping online.
Brain Tree - Brain Tree is convenient for merchants as there is no set-up or monthly fees. However, transaction fees are slightly higher than other services.
These are only a few payment gateways that are out there. Setting one up for your site is very easy and can literally be done in a matter of minutes. Don't miss out on great profits for your e-commerce site, start accepting credit cards today with a payment gateway.