If you’re thinking of opening an online store, the next thing you need to think about is choosing a payment solution specially if you’re planning to accept credit card payments.
When accepting credit card payments, you need to have a payment gateway and a merchant account to make this possible.
Payment gateways work to authenticate, authorize, and then settles credit card payments to be deposited to your bank account. Merchant accounts are where funds are being held before being deposited to your bank. You need these 2 to accept online payments. Some payment providers offer these two for an easier, hassle-free transaction.
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With so many online payment/merchant gateways these days, it’s tough to make a final decision on which one to go with. Here are some tips to help you decide which one is right for you.
1. If you have a website builder, you may want to check what plugins or extension they already have for payment options. Some website builders like the The SaleHoo Stores already supports PayPal, PayPal Direct (for US resident only), and 2Checkout transactions.
2. Make sure that your payment gateway protects you from fraudulent transactions. Features that include fraud detection, and chargeback protection are just some of the important things you need to take note of.
3. As mentioned earlier, some payment gateways already include a merchant account. Some examples include PayPal, Stripe, and Braintree.
4. Select a payment gateway that can settle your funds within 3-5 days as some can hold your funds up to 30 days.
5. If you’re new in the online selling industry, consider choosing a payment gateway that’s well known around. This helps boost your trust rating which can later lead to sales.
6. Make sure you are fully aware of your gateway's fee structure: set-up fees + transaction fees + admin fees. Also, you may want to clarify for other fees associated with it.
7. If you're selling internationally, make sure your payment/merchant gateways accept international transactions.
8. Check if they offer a 24/7 support specially if you need to settle transactions in the wee hours.
Hope this helps.