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HOW TO ACCEPT E-PAYMENTS

How to attract customers and increase sales? Not only the quality of your products and services will affect it but also appropriate promotional activity (read more) and adequate standards of customer service (here you will find more information on this subject).  Think also how to provide your customers with a convenient means of payment.  In your point of sale you can install terminal for payment by cards.  You can find out more in the article How to accept accept card payments.

With the development of e-commerce there are also developing online payment  systems.  Consumers increasingly expect to pay via the Internet, and the positive aspects of this form is the convenience and rapidity of transactions.  How to make e-payments available and what to pay attention to when signing contracts with the companies offering these systems?  Here are a few tips.

Types of e-payments

Before you decide to make online payments, for example,  to your online shop,  you should know that you can choose even several dozens of different payment channels.  The most popular ones are:

  • Card payments - a customer pays online using a credit card. 
  • Online payments made through banks.  These are transfers online or so-called SWIFT transfers (such as inter alia, mTransfer, Płacę z Inteligo, MultiTransfer, iPko, Przelew24 BZ WBK, Płacę z IKO, Płać z ING, Przelew z BPH, Pekao24 Przelew, Millennium Płatności Internetowe, Płacę z Alior Bankiem, Płacę z Citi Handlowy, r-Przelew Raiffeisen Bank, T-Mobile Usługi Bankowe, Eurobank Płatności Online, Płacę z Idea Bank, Pocztowy24, Płacę z PBS!). The advantage of rapid transfers is the speed with which the transactions are realised and its automation (client only login and confirms the transaction without having to complete forms).  You may also meet with division into e-transfers  and e-przelewy.  In the case of payments by e-transfer,  form of payment is completed automatically at a bank website, in  the case of e-przelew, data should be completed manually.  This distinction is important, because the fee of the intermediary tends to be higher.
  • E-portfele (E-wallets) — are a type of online accounts to make transfers and payments, receive money from other users in Poland and abroad.  Their characteristic is that payments are carried out using an email (account number is the email address), thus avoiding disclosure of data from credit card.  The wallet is fed by the account, credit card or by SMS.  The most popular systems include  PayPal, Skrill, YetiPay, Skycash.
  • Deferred payments, instalments - enable customers to pay for the goods in the longer term.  This includes the system Feerbuy.
  • Mobile payments  - it is possible to pay by a mobile phone by means of special applications (e.g.: BLIK, NFC, IKO, IKASA, PeoPay),
  • SMS Payments - so-called premium SMS text messages by which it is possible to make payments for e.g.  games or access to content on the Internet.
  • Payments by means of virtual currency so-called bitcoin.  To  handle this type of payment one can use e.g. applications for smartphones.  Charges are smaller than in the case of other forms of payment, it should be borne in mind that the rate of bitcoins may undergo sudden changes (foreign exchange risk)

Knowledge of available payment channels will allow you, inter alia, to objectively evaluate companies' offers of systems for online payments.  Remember that your customers may use different means of payment, have accounts in different banks, that is why it is important to make available to them the broad scope of possibilities for making payments  (though for you this may entail additional costs).  For example, making the possibility of paying by sms - useful for users not using electronic banking.

Where to arrange e-payments? 

The conclusion of contracts for the operation of e-payments by your company with each bank seperately could be difficult and time-consuming. The most convenient way to  start online  payments is an intermediary company (intergrator) between your company and your customer's bank, credit card issuer or telecommunications operator (remember, however, that in the case of certain sytems e.g. PayPal, a separate registration will be required).

In Poland, there are many firms that provide payment services.  The most popular are, inter alia:

 

The largest companies operate at least several dozens of different channels of e-payments, assuming responsibility for signing contracts with banks, card institutions, telecommunications network operators, etc. Thus, by signing a single contract you can accept "in one place" online card payments, online transfers, or rapid transfers.  In addition, you have the possibility to manage all payments and receive an access to the statement of operations from all channels.

How much does it cost? 

As with the installation of terminals for card services, costs of online payments will depend on several factors, such as turnover, the number of channels which you will want to offer to customers, or additional services.  Depending on the supplier, activation fees and verification fees may vary (possibly between dozens and hundreds of PLN).  The primary cost to you is the fee charged for each transaction.  This can be as much as over 2 % of transaction (rapid e-transfer), you can also meet the minimum fee, for example 30 groszy paid regardless of the amount of the transaction.  Remember that there is always room for individual negotiation of charges.

Before you sign the contract insist on obtaining information on all costs linked to the operation of the payment system.  Additional fees could include for example order for payment into your bank account, or refund in case of resigning from purchase).

Costs can also relate to handling complaints of so-called chargeback (only for card payments).  The client may request their bank to cancel the transaction if e.g. you will not deliver product, it is damaged, or  its description differs from the actual situation.  As a seller, you can be ordered to pay reimbursement.  Before launching the chargeback procedure, banks require the customer to try to make a complaint to the seller.  Be sure to indicate on the website through which you make payments your contact details, which will help to avoid a situation in which a customer wishing to make use of chargeback invokes the impossibility of contact with your company.

How does it work?

Processing of online transactions by your company is possible after the integration of the payments system with your website.  From a supplier you should get detailed instructions on how to install a payment module (suppliers often have prepared modules in formats for e.g. online shopping sites).  In this case, it is better to use the help of IT specialist.  In case of problems, ask for support the company which provides and operates a payment system.  Together with the system you should also be given access to an administrative panel, where you can follow transactions, or make direct payment of the bank ( money from the customer's bank are first transferred to the account of the system operator).  Every month you will receive from the company operating payments the settlement of charges

What to pay attention to? 

In selecting the operator of e-payments for your company pay attention to:

  • Company's experience,  users' opinions.
  • The number of available payment channels, banks cooperating with a given company, types of payment cards in the system.
  • The time at which the firm will tranfer money to your account.
  • Security systems, encryption (see e.g. the website of the company) – security is one of the key factors to encourage a customer (or not) for e-payments.
  • The cost of additional services  - will you pay for access to data, the disbursement of funds to your account (watch out for  limits), initial and verification fees,  the fee for refunding the money to the account of a purchaser.
  • Service  - technical assistance for you, and support for consumers making payments.
  • Some companies offer the activation of the system on a trial basis — it is an excellent way of checking whether the system works well on your side and attracts clients.
  • Rulebook - read it carefully and be aware that by signing a contract with the company, which will provide system for online payment, you will have to agree on certain conditions, such as:  type of product sold through e-payments (submission of a list of goods for approval).  You may also be required for certain forms of promotion of the intermediary company. You may be also obliged to some forms of promotion of intermediary company.
  • Is the offer temporary, i.e. whether for example after the promotional period you will not have to incur greater costs for operating the system.

A reliable way to choose the best offer is to make some enquiries to several companies that provide online payments and compare their proposals.

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