There are many solutions to adding a shopping cart to an online merchant site. You may want a very personalized shopping cart for your portal and so will have to hire the expert services of a software programmer.
There are many online merchant solution service providers out there and can have your shopping cart software and payment gateway set up and running in a matter of days, but it is bound to cost you.
Then there are free online merchant solutions available such as the many online payment services. PayPal is one such solution and a very trusted one.
With the free online merchant solutions available you do not have to make a payment up front. These services charge you a percentage of the payments you receive online.
They have ready made software that is easy to install on your site. You just have to fill in an online form that requires some details of your business and payment procedures.
They will then provide you with software code that is generated instantly. You have to just copy and paste this code in the html code of you site.
The online payment processor will guide you how to do this as well. When you are done, you will be able to accept payments from customers through credit cards and debit cards. The difference with the free payment processors and customized online merchant software is that the money will not be deposited into your bank directly.
The payment will go to the online free payment processors account and you will have to withdraw it from there to your bank account for which there will invariably be a charge.
These are good solutions for small online businesses as it beats paying huge software development costs.
The Benefits Of An Online Merchant Account
The internet has emerged as the largest marketplace and source for information. It is estimated that about a million people are being introduced to the internet every 100 days.
This included emails and search engine services. In fact, surveys have shown that 80% of all online sales begin as a search on some major search engine.
It is possible for a business establishment to advertise, sell and collect payments online without ever having to meet the customer personally.
Technology has advanced with such a rapid pace in the past ten years that electronic payments have become the norm of the day. More than 40% of payments are transacted electronically through credit and debit cards, apart from the usual wire transfers and online payment portals.
One of the emerging payment methods is through mobile phones. It is fast catching on and experts in the field feel that this is going to be the preferred payment method worldwide. Paying through your mobile handset will be as easy as sending an SMS.
With these advancements and most businesses adapting their payment procedures and policies to suit customer’s conveniences, it is only advisable in the interest of business that any business set up an online merchant account with a payment processor in order to cash in on the business that is being transacted on the Internet.
There are many online merchant solution providers out there and have established themselves in the field setting up and maintaining online merchant software and products that fraud, though exists, is very difficult to perpetuate.
So get yourself an online merchant account and get a piece of the action that your competitors will otherwise get.
What Are Transaction Processing Solutions?
Transaction processing, as the name suggests, is a process of carrying through a transaction from making a payment for a service or product to the actual delivery of the same.
Most businesses are carrying out these transactions online with the help of sophisticated software. This transaction processing software records every step of the transaction for future reference.
A good transaction processing solution will not only record all transactions but will be able to tabulate and reproduce any or all of them at any given time. This aids in rectifying any problem or error by recalling a particular transaction and tracing each step right down to the point where the mistake was made and rectifying the same.
Online transaction processing is a very crucial part of any online business. It is an electronic ledger of all the business transactions carried out by the online merchant account.
There are many online merchant transaction processing solutions available. A merchant may choose to get a ready-to-use transaction processing software or may choose to have a customized one made for his online merchant account. Of course, there are vast cost implications involved, however there is almost no difference in the security levels of the two.
It is imperative for an online merchant account to have a transaction processing solution in order to transact business online. From accepting an order, processing payments and getting the cash in the bank, transaction software is what will get the job done.
Internet Payment Gateways – Should You Make Your Own In-house
An internet payment gateway is crucial for any online merchant account to facilitate selling goods and accepting payment for the same. This is known as e-commerce.
This process is like any sale made in a physical store, where someone buys a product and passes his or her card to the check out clerk for payment. Only with an Internet payment gateway, the customer does not have to pass his card over but just enter the card data into a secure online form.
This data will include the card number, name of the holder and the CVV number on the rear of the card. The payment will be debited from the card and in a matter of days, will be credited to the merchant’s bank account.
From a security aspect, online payment gateways are quite secure, though the customer should be certain that he or she is using a reputed site. Look for the ‘s’ after the ‘http’ in the URL of the site.
This is a start but not a guarantee to prevent the site from using your card information for illicit purposes. So does it make a difference if you make your own Internet payment gateway in-house? Perhaps yes.
This will give the net savvy customer a feel that you have taken the trouble of developing your own secure software instead of just getting one off the net. It will also merge with your site design instead of displaying other third party ads and logos on your site.
It may cost you a little more, but you will be offering your online customers a sense of security and will have full control of the software. So you will not have to wait for the third party to wake up to rectify any fault in the online processing solution they have set up for you.
How To Open An Online Merchant Account
An online merchant account is an account that is known as a “Payment Gateway”. It is not a very difficult task to open an online merchant account.
A payment gateway is a software that your web developer or engineer will have to incorporate into your web site.
This is software that may or may not include a shopping cart, a system that allows visitors to your online merchant site to browse through your products and add them to a virtual cart, much like a shopping cart at a super mall.
The visitor will ultimately keep or remove items from the cart and pay for the remaining items through the payment gateway.
A payment gateway may or may not be linked to your merchant bank account. This depends on the type of online merchant solution you have chosen. You may have had the software created especially for your site; in this case the software will naturally accept all credit cards and will be linked to the major credit card processing companies such as VISA or MasterCard.
The software will also be linked to your merchant bank account. Customers can use this software to pay for services and products using credit cards, debit cards and bank transfers.
When someone uses a card or online banking to make a payment the user is connected to the bank that issues the card and the money is transferred to the bank within a matter of days. Nevertheless, you may go ahead and complete the transaction by delivering the product to the customer as the payment will definitely come through.
Online merchant solutions are a way of taking your business to your customers instead of waiting for them to come to you. The online payment systems are an added advantage as anyone will like to have convenience at their fingertips.