How to Start Accepting Credit Card Payments Online
Setting up an online payment system in your e-commerce website may seem difficult. Yet, here are seven simple steps which will lead you to the fastest way to get off the ground and start accepting card payments online easily.
1) Choose a Payment Gateway Provider
A payment gateway is secure software for online shops that transfers card and transaction details from a merchant to a payment processor and card associations (Visa and MasterCard). Then it receives the response that the transaction has been approved and authorized and sends this response to the merchant. A payment gateway functions like a “virtual POS terminal” connecting an online shop with its merchant account.
Securely handling customer credit or debit card details online is a technical challenge and is also subject to strict regulations. By choosing Cardinity as your payment gateway and merchant account provider, you delegate the responsibility for managing card payments and ensuring their protection. This way you can fully focus the attention on your e-shop.
2) Set up a Merchant Account
A merchant account is a special bank account where your funds are kept after a customer has paid on your website until they are transferred to your company’s bank account. Once you have set up a merchant account, you can receive card payments from all around the world.
It is beneficial to choose a provider that can supply both a Payment Gateway and an Online Merchant Account since it can generally result in lower service fees.
Here are simple steps to set up the Cardinity Payment Gateway and Merchant Account:
- In order to register a website, you should fill in the application form.
- Within 48 hours you will receive a response from Cardinity.
- Then you will have to provide some necessary documents and the website address you would like to accept payments on. The risk analysts team will also conduct the Due Diligence review of your business and website.
- The registration process usually takes up from one day to a couple of business days.
- Shortly after, you will be ready to start selling.
3) Set up a Shopping Cart in Your Online Store
Shopping cart software is what powers an e-commerce website and allows you, as a seller, to easily manage and present your product catalogue. There are many tried and tested solutions to choose from, both free and commercial, such as PrestaShop, WooCommerce or Magento. All of them can be integrated with various Payment Gateway Providers, including Cardinity.
Cardinity provides smooth integration with your e-commerce system. The requirements of every business are unique, and the Cardinity payment system allows you to tailor the card payment processing tool to your specific needs. We provide easy-to-install modules for the most popular e-commerce systems (Prestashop, Magento, Opencart, etc.) on our website. For other shopping platforms (e.g., osCommerce) or custom e-commerce solutions Cardinity also provides PHP, Symfony, and Java programming libraries. In addition, we provide a well-documented API integration guide, using which any e-commerce system can be connected with Cardinity. However, this method requires more time and effort than using modules, as some additional programming is required.
Important: Each module has its own installation procedure.
4) Protect Your E-Commerce Store from Fraud
An SSL certificate is an essential component of any reputable website nowadays. It ensures that all the sensitive information (such as credit card details) sent from the customer’s computer to your website is encrypted and cannot be viewed by a third party. You can acquire the certificate from both commercial and free providers such as Let’s encrypt or GeoTrust.
Technologies such as 3D Secure also help to prevent unauthorized transactions. As soon as you start using Cardinity, the 3D Secure cardholder authentication tool will be implemented automatically. Cardinity complies with Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards, a set of specific security requirements meant to protect card information during and after a financial transaction. Every business that handles card data is required to be PCI DSS compliant.
5) Choose a Pricing Model
There are a few most widely applied pricing models offered by payment service providers. These are usually per-transaction fees or monthly usage charges or even both.
In case of Cardinity, there are no monthly or set-up fees. You can accept all major credit and debit cards at a minimal cost. Cardinity offers the friendliest price on the market that can decrease even further depending on your turnover.
6) Ready to Accept Worldwide Card Payments?
Try to sell some key products in a few markets, so that the test would prove if you are ready to expand and invest more heavily. If the result is affirmative, there are three critical areas of planning which you have to keep in mind before diving into the international market.
- Firstly, you have to determine your buyer-persona: where they live, how old they are, what they buy, and how they shop. In order to identify the latter, use your internal data.
- Secondly, think how you will accept international card payments: by direct debit or by online bank transfer. If you have chosen Cardinity as your payment provider, your client will be able to pay with any currency.
- Finally, plan how you will enter the market: will you optimize your current website, or will you set up a local web presence in particular countries? If you want to optimize the website, put an emphasis on the opportunity to accept international payments. If you choose to set up a local web, keep in mind that such aspects as currency conversion, translation, and delivery cost calculation will be of great importance.
7) Be Prepared for a Payment Dispute
Most transactions happen smoothly, but sometimes a customer may file a dispute asking to reverse the transaction. Why does it happen? There are a few reasons which usually occur:
- The buyer did not receive the item he ordered. In order to prevent this, provide realistic delivery dates, use online tracking of goods, and order shipping insurance. Always inform your customers if something is out of stock.
- The received item is significantly not as described. To prevent such misapprehension, always provide detailed descriptions and good-quality pictures as well as kindly answer item-related questions.
- A buyer claims that a purchase was made without his / her knowledge or consent and asks for a chargeback. Sometimes this may be a simple mistake, but it also may indicate fraud. If so, try to do as much as possible in order to keep both your customer’s and your store’s data safe. Cardinity helps you to protect card information and be in compliance with security standards.
In any case, think of a dispute as an opportunity for you to provide great customer service which would help to turn a buyer into a returning customer.