There are many case studies of business organisations switching to subscription models in the past few years. Law firms and airline companies alike are switching to OTT (Over the top), IoT (Internet of Things) and other subscription-based business models, which has led to a boom in the industry.
Subscription businesses require payment gateways to process payments, both one-time and recurring. This is a critical part of the revenues delivered to a business. While choosing payment gateway services, it is important to consider factors that are a priority for your business and understand how the payment processing solution can meet your business needs. This is an important factor for your growth as the subscription business industry continues to grow.
Let’s take a look at different factors to consider while choosing a payment gateway for your business.
1. How Soon Do You Need to Start Accepting Payments?
Setting up merchant accounts and a payment gateway takes about three to four weeks on average. Most payment gateways will help you set up your merchant account, but it’s still a complex and long process.
2. What is Your Budget?
Everything you do for your business will cost money. This includes activating payment gateway services. Before you finalise a gateway, you need to ensure you know their fee structure. Often the operating cost is broken down into
- Transaction costs
- Admin costs
- Set-up costs
3. How Quickly Do You Require Sales Funds?
Your payment gateway approval can come through almost immediately. However, it might take a few days before the sales funds get settled and become available to you. Timings for payments vary from one provider to another.
4. Are International Payments Allowed?
If your business operates internationally or plans to do so in future, you need to check whether your payment gateway allows multi-currency and international payments, as well as a multilingual interface.
5. How Secure is Your Gateway?
Security is one of the major concern areas for payment gateways. You need to ensure you choose a provider with Level 1 compliance with the PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard), which offers tokenisation or other built-in security capabilities. Also, take a look at the screening tools and fraud protection offered.
6. What is the Level of Support Offered?
Every business has different needs. Your payment gateway should offer support in any way you need it and be accessible to you as well. Here are some questions you should ask yourself:
- Does the service provider offer email support alone or other forms of support too?
- How quickly does the support team respond?
- Where is their customer support team based and do their working hours match yours?
- Does customer support cost extra?
7. Do You Get Automatic Recurring Payments?
If your business domain requires recurring payments, you should choose a payment gateway system that can store a client’s bank card details and allow you to charge them automatically at a decided time. Most payment gateways offer this feature now, although you will need an online merchant account to activate this service.
8. Hosted vs Non-hosted Payments?
Let’s try to understand them both:
- Hosted payment gateways redirect customers to a securely hosted page for payments, away from your website checkout page. Upon completion of the transaction, they will return to your website automatically.
- Non-hosted payment gateways allow customers to enter payment details without leaving your website. You will require an SSL certification for your website and also need to comply with other PCI requirements to enable onsite payments.
9. Can you Use the Gateway with Your Existing Integrations?
You should consider whether your payment gateway services allow integration with your current accounting solutions and shopping cart. That would be the ideal way to go.
Choosing the right payment processing solution is a huge step for any business. Make sure you’re making an informed decision.