Payment integration can work a number of ways with your small business to make sure you can provide as many payment options as possible while delivering a great customer experience, high security, and full compliance.
Whether you have an e-commerce website or a mobile app where you want to sell something, you need a way to integrate payments in order to complete transactions in an easy way rather than making your customers uneasy by having to migrate from their order to an external site that accepts the payment on your behalf.
Many small businesses have lost sales with abandoned shopping carts due to the lack of confidence their customers have in navigating elsewhere to pay and then hope they get back to complete their order. Instead, you can take advantage of various types of payment integrations to accept credit cards and other payment forms.
Payment Gateway APIs
A payment processing gateway is the most common way to integrate payments on your website or mobile app using an API. Be sure to pick one that is known as a direct gateway to get this integration; otherwise, your customers will have to leave your site with an external gateway and not necessarily be very happy.
Numerous payment gateways have APIs that are essentially developer tools that use lines of code to embed the payment gateway within your website or mobile app so the actual transaction takes place within your system.
This means your customers see a payment page that looks just like your website, but behind the scenes there is a payment integration tool that is linking that transaction to a payment gateway that is handling the credit or debit card processing or bank withdrawal on your behalf.
You will need to make sure that the payment integration solution can integrate with any existing shopping cart software or e-commerce platform that you use on your website or mobile app. Since the transaction happens between loading the cart and offering payment information, it’s critical that integration is seamless to maintain customer confidence.
Other options include using an API for custom payment integration. This is the solution you will need if you are building your online or mobile business from scratch, rather than relying on the various e-commerce platforms and shopping cart software.
This is ideal for having the exact features you may want to offer your customers rather than finding existing software that does not have everything you want in one solution.
Remaining PCI Compliant
With this type of integration, it’s important to remember that you are then responsible for the security of the customer’s payment and personal data that is used to complete the transaction. When you are looking for mobile payment integration, also know that not every payment gateway supports what is known as an authenticated tokenization process, which is required if you are accepting payments from a mobile app.
If your gateway API does not provide this extra security for the transaction, you will have to handle it yourself or select a gateway or payment system partner that has robust native libraries for the various mobile operating systems that send the data as a token and alleviate this concern.
What to Look for in a Payments Integration Partner
As a small business with little to no developer knowledge, you want to work with a payment integration company that can offer an API that you can add with just a few lines of code or something that only requires minimal assistance from a freelance developer.
It also helps to work with a company that provides numerous features that help your business and customers, including accepting payments in multiple currencies, enabling subscription-based payment systems, and offering the ability for customers to store their information so they don’t have to type it all in again on the next visit.
You’ll need to decide just how many other tasks you will want to integrate with your payment processing. For example, there are payment integration solutions that allow you to build in integration with accounting and analytics tools to create a more efficient overall system for your small business. This integration reduces many time-consuming tasks that use up time better served on customer-facing activities.
Lastly, pay attention to the fees involved with payment integration providers. This is because some charge you a set-up fee, monthly fees, and a small transaction fee for every transaction that is processed. That can get expensive quick, so it’s important to read the small print and look for a payment integration processing partner that goes easy on the fees.