Choosing an Online Payment Processor

You need to select the right payment processor if you operate a business that accepts credit and debit cards online. An online payment processor is what handles the transactional heavy lifting from capturing an order to delivering you a statement of billing and working with your bank to make sure you get paid.

When a consumer purchases products on your website or in person at your brick-and mortar store their credit or debit card details goes through a payment gateway or PoS terminal. The gateway secures the information to secure it, and then sends it on to the payment processor, which transmits it to the customer’s card network. The card network then checks with the bank of the customer to determine if they have enough money to pay for the item. If the bank approves of the purchase, then the card issuer transfers funds from the account to the merchant’s bank. The payment processor will transmit this response to the merchant site or PoS terminal. This will inform the client of the successful payment.

When choosing a processor be sure to consider aspects like security, ease of use, and compatibility with the current systems. Make sure you choose a processor which offers APIs or plugins that seamlessly integrate with your ecommerce system or POS. You should also look at the checkout experience for your customers and the reporting and management experience for your staff. Make sure you are familiar with the contract terms and how easy it is to switch providers in the future.

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