Merchants doing business on the Internet need specialized eCommerce solutions to provide their products to customers. Many merchants are quick to think an online shopping cart is the best route for accepting online payments, but that is not always the case.
Because online shopping carts closely mirror shopping in physical retail spaces, it is easy to see why merchants assume they will need a shopping cart for their website. However, unless the website is functioning like a retail location, there are other methods of eCommerce facilitation that might be a better fit for your merchant.
When reviewing how payment and fulfillment need to take place, take a look at the most secure and suitable online payments processing for the merchant’s needs.
Here are 4 phrases to listen for when you are selling online merchant services.
I Need a Shopping Cart.
Shopping cart software is designed to simulate the real-world shopping experience. If a merchant is selling a physical product, a shopping cart is a necessity.
The consumer experience of putting products in a shopping cart online follows the same idea of shopping in a physical location and allows customers to pile products into their cart as they shop. The order is totaled up with the appropriate taxes and shipping fees at checkout. This software then works with a payment gateway to process the payment.
You may wish to work with your merchant to make sure they are getting the best value from their shopping cart software. Many online shopping carts can also track inventory or plug into an inventory management system to help merchants keep an eye on what they need to re-order.
I Need to Accept Donations.
If you hear a merchant request the ability to accept donations online, a hosted payments page might be the best solution. A hosted payment solution captures credit card information on a website hosted by a secure payment gateway. This reduces the merchant’s PCI scope since the merchant no longer has to store or transmit credit card information.1
Using a hosted payment page is a great way to reduce the scope of credit card security from the merchant while seamlessly processing the transaction on your merchant’s website. Furthermore, the hosted payment page also collects valuable contact and email information allowing the merchant to reach out a later date to thank the donor, make them aware of future benefits, or opt them in for a monthly or quarterly newsletter.
Integrity can work with merchants to support a hosted payment page through our gateway. Since a donation is simply a monetary transaction, a shopping cart is not required.
I Need to Allow Customers to Book an Appointment Online.
For service businesses, booking appointments is the very first step of each transaction. There are excellent booking software solutions that integrate with a payment module. Ideally, customer appointments, transactions, and records can all be reconciled in one customer record. This allows merchants to track customer preferences and loyalty.
Some service businesses might also need an online shopping cart if they are also selling products. For example, a salon or spa may wish to sell styling product through their website. If your service-oriented merchant is also offering a retail shop online, you may need to help them set up both bookings and the ability to function as an online store.
I Need to Collect Credit Card Information that I Will Bill Later.
If your merchant needs to securely collect and store credit card information that they will use at a later date, they might not need a shopping cart, but they will need additional security to remain PCI compliant. Secure card on file data should be the only kind of card on file data.
Consider tokenization as a method of keeping customer data secure. Tokenization can create a customer record for future purchases and refunds that is stored away from the merchant’s website.2 This adds security and reduces risk for the merchant.
Merchants can also offer customers a streamlined, quick checkout process when payment information is stored. Again, convenience must be weighed against security. This customer-friendly option is possible, but only with tokenization and encryption along the way to keep customer data as safe as possible.
If your merchant asks customers to enter credit card data that will be used at a later date, Integrity can support the additional security required through our payments Gateway. This might apply to any business that is an on-demand service like Uber or any business that needs recurring billing for software or online access to a website. This model might also apply to a merchant offering a 30-day free trial for a service. Our payments gateway would collect the credit card number securely and automatically enroll the cardholder to be billed 30 days out. Again, no shopping cart is required, but there are special security considerations whenever card data needs to be stored for online payments processing.
- MasterCard Payment Gateway Services. How Does Hosted Payment Solution Work? http://www.mastercard.com/gateway/payment-processing/Hosted-Payment-Solution.html
- Chase Paymentech, Not All Tokenization Solutions Are Created Equal. https://www.chasepaymentech.com/documents/tokenization_perspective.pdf