Let’s start with the assumption that you have had card payments implemented in your online store for some time. It has been explained to you that the card entry form and payment must be hosted on the website of a bank/provider. Do you believe that it is like that and that there is no better solution? Are you sure about that? Have you actually tried any different solution? What if we tell you that you are currently losing customers because of it?
Attracting customers to the site is not an easy task, especially today when the competition is growing. Don’t let your hard-earned customers now leave your e-commerce platform to pay for your goods/services. When they use solutions hosted outside of your online store, you give your customers the option to leave your site and never return. Are you sure you want this? We believe you don’t.
There are plenty of reasons to start an online store. The question that arises is how to build a website for online sales. If you are thinking of starting e-commerce yourself, there are several elements that you should keep in mind, and creating a website is just one of them. If you have researched this area, you have probably come across a multitude of articles that deal with how to present products and design an online store. What is certain regarding your e-commerce website is the importance of a visual solution. In addition, easy navigation and a clear display of products are of great importance as well. These are all key factors on which the success of your sales directly depends.
1. Customer Redirection
Wondering how this redirection of customers affects your sales? Look at it from the following perspective. The customer comes to your e-store, adds the product to the cart, chooses to pay by card, and… then the system redirects them to an external site of a different design, logo, and URL. How many customers do you think will stop at that moment?
Some customers will be confused. Others will think they are paying someone other than you. A good number of customers will be scared and will not even try to enter details from their card… Of course, there are those who have overcome the stated feelings of fear and who will successfully complete the payment process. But, what about others who will be discouraged and even frustrated by this process? In any case, this approach undermines trust and often results in giving up the purchase.
Think about the number of steps your customers have to go through to pay for your product. A solution that does not require redirection allows you to reduce the number of such steps and simplify the process. What if the payment was made on your (single) page, instead of being redirected somewhere else and then redirected back to your store?
What does the redirection payment process look like? The customer selects the “Payment” button -> (waiting for redirection to another site to pay) -> begins the payment process -> enters data into the form (sometimes it takes more clicks to get to the form) -> selects the confirmation button -> sometimes it has to go through additional steps to complete the payment -> it is redirected back to the merchant’s page.
The above process is valid in a successful payment transaction scenario. With rejected transactions, all this becomes even more complicated. It can be frustrating for the customer. We believe you agree. Checkout is the last step in the purchase process. Use this step to promote the identity of your organization, not the bank or provider.
2. Design a Payment Process
Keep in mind that a poorly designed payment process negatively affects the number of successful sales, even when you offer the highest quality products and services. When a customer finds himself on a page where he needs to enter data from his card, and that page looks completely different from the rest of your site, it further reduces the number of those who will complete the purchase. Some will give up due to confusion (mentioned earlier), and others due to the simple fear of being on the wrong page.
Some solutions and providers allow you to customize a certain number of elements on the payment page (it is usually possible to change the color or content of the header). However, in a situation where you have spent serious money and energy taking into account every smallest element of your e-commerce platform, switching to someone else’s page that has, let’s say, the same header color is certainly not enough to make your customer feel comfortable. Wouldn’t it be better if you could completely customize the look of the input form within your site?
Payment gateway solutions that include a customizable form displayed on your website give you absolute freedom in designing the payment process. You are the owner of your code and design, so you can decide what the layout but also the content of your payment form will look like.
3. Control Over the Payment Process
When researching card payment solutions on your site, consider elements such as system flexibility and speed of the integration process. Payment Gateway with a “hosted payment page” solution that involves redirection does not provide the ability to fully customize the appearance of the payment form, as well as control over the payment process.
You will never be able to be 100 % sure that the customer has completed the payment process. Redirection does not give the option to help the customer during the payment process or to show him “special offers” at the time of payment. All this affects the conversion and the number of customers. When you redirect a customer to someone else’s site, you do not know what is going on there, and your bank or provider has control over your customer instead of you.
Do you want to ‘recognize’ the brand of the card that was entered and with which you pay in order to give a discount to the customer after clicking on the “Pay” button? Do you want to give the customer who entered the data and chose “Pay” the option of ‘impulsive purchase’, adding a related product, and automatically increasing the value of the cart without the need to complicate the process? All this is impossible when the payment page is outside your store.
Redirection solutions often do not have the option of custom error messages. We are of the opinion that this issue is very important and that only you know how to explain to certain categories of your customers the reasons for rejecting the transaction or how to educate them so that the next attempt will be successful. Fortunately, these and many other similar features are very simple when the payment form is on your website.
Solutions that allow the payment form to be displayed on your site make it easier to communicate with customers. You can track payments in real-time and know immediately if the customer has a problem (e.g. to fill out a form to enter details from the card). We believe that you agree that it would be very useful for the “live chat” to be on the page where the customer enters the card data.
We also believe that you know that quality customer support can greatly affect your business. This is especially true for payments, where a quick response is extremely important. We are sure that you do not want to send a customer, who comes to your cash register with a full cart, to a nearby bank. No, you want to help them pay for the products from the cart as quickly and easily as possible.
5. Safety Standards
The advantages of a solution that allows you to embed the payment form on your site are clear. But, what about the security of this approach? Is this approach compliant with PCI standards?
Payment Gateway solutions based on redirection were invented almost two decades ago, at the very beginnings of e-commerce. In the meantime, there has been a dramatic development of technologies that have made it possible to improve security while making it easier for customers to make payments. One such technology is tokenization. With it, the need to exchange sensitive data between the merchant’s website and the payment gateway is drastically reduced.
Additionally, using a “hosted field” solution, sensitive data (card number and CVV) is entered into small iframes that are within what is seen as a field. The merchant still does not have access to sensitive card data. In this way, you retain complete control over the appearance of the page, while applying the highest PCI security standards. The largest providers in the world have already implemented hosted field solutions, such as the SecurePay system.
To sum up: the difference between “hosted payment page” solutions that involve redirection and advanced solutions that allow entering data from the card without leaving your site is extremely large. Don’t let yourself lose your customers and be sure to think twice when choosing a Payment Gateway solution for your online store.