4 of the Biggest Issues with Payment Methods (And How to Fix Them)


Marketing Insights for ProfessionalsThe latest thought leadership for Marketing pros

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Payment gateways are a necessary part of ecommerce, but that doesn’t mean they’re perfect. Here are four of the most common problems you’ll encounter.

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4 of the Biggest Issues with Payment Methods (And How to Fix Them)

Few ecommerce businesses can operate effectively without relying on some form of payment gateway. There are plenty of different options out there, from the “buy now, pay later” model of Sezzle to the straightforward and flexible Stripe. However, none are perfect, and you might find yourself running into problems.

This isn’t the end of the world. Many of these issues are surprisingly common, and are usually fixed either by enabling a feature of your payment gateway or by changing to a new one. Here are four of the main problems you’re likely to face, and what you’ll need to do in order to prevent them from costing you business.

1. Mobile unfriendly

Since the beginning of 2017, roughly half of all internet traffic has come from mobile devices. This means around 50% of your customers - potentially more, depending on the area of the globe you deal with - will be using their smartphones to use your site. If you notice sales dropping off from this side of things, it might be a payment gateway problem.

One common issue is that mobile users don’t want to type fiddly passwords, which can be a barrier to them completing a sale. To solve this, try to enable biometric logins. A large number of phones now come with built-in fingerprint sensors, which can be used to log into accounts and confirm payments. This also has the benefit of preventing fraud.

2. International customers

Your business is no longer as local as you might expect. South Korea is the largest purchaser of online fashion, Japan is the biggest market for books, and China is the largest ecommerce market in the world. As such, you need to be able to process payments in different currencies across borders.

Some payment gateways have this ability, while others don’t. One potential way to get around it is to allow ewallets, so users can buy a currency substitute. This can help to get around problems with exchange rates and confusing prices without requiring you to actually change your payment gateway provider.

3. High fees

Payment gateways aren’t free. However, you might find you end up paying a lot more than you need to. For context, the average cost of a payment gateway in the US is 2.9% of each transaction plus 30c. If you’re paying more than that, you might want to look at why that is and consider switching.

If you don’t want to change provider, you can always negotiate for a better rate and ask what you’re getting for your money. However, bear in mind that you might be paying for necessary features, and moving to another platform could bring with it more problems than it solves.

4. Security compliance

This is an issue that, unfortunately, doesn’t have an easy solution. However, it’s arguably the most important one on this list, and you should definitely be willing to change payment gateway provider if they don’t meet international standards. Failing to do so could lead to your customers having their details stolen.

As a merchant accepting any kind of online or credit/debit card payment, you’re required to abide by Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS). While you might have made sure every aspect of your business abides by these rules, you need to check your payment gateway does as well. If not, you could be liable for any fraud that occurs.

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