Businesses that don’t set up their payment processing systems properly risk failure. There are many laws to follow and a lot of room for mistakes. There is little room for error; after all, this is, presumably, how you’re going to making the money to keep your business afloat!
You’ve got to set this up in a way that works perfectly for both you and the customer. This means in terms of functionality and legal protection. It’s not quite as simple a process as some people assume it will be. We’re going to take a quick look at how you can avoid making some of the errors that end up getting businesses into trouble.
The wrong merchant account
You need a merchant account if you’re going to be accepting payment from customers that will be sent to a bank. It’s the best way to keep payments kept under an official business umbrella, and also helps keep those funds protected. You could also work with an independent sales organization, as working directly with the bank to work a merchant account often comes with high fees. ISOs are usually quicker and cheaper, though make sure they’re a verified and trusted organization nonetheless.
Payment gateway errors
A payment gateway is the facility that actually allows payments to be processed. The most famous example is PayPal (which actually works as both a legitimate merchant account and a payment gateway for many businesses). While something like PayPal may seem very simply, these payment gateways come with a lot of terms and conditions to which you need to pay very close attention. Some payment gateways will charge near-extortionate amounts for their use. Some can only be used for certain types of transactions or business websites. Some can only facilitate payments between certain countries. Research them closely – and consider getting one that accepts cryptocurrency!
Not protecting the customer
There are more ways to accept payments than ever these days – and you need to make sure the customer is protected whichever method you use. This has become more crucial now that people are carrying around mobile phones everywhere they go. If someone can access that mobile, they may be able to make several purchases due to the information retained on the phone. Even here, there are ways you can help protect the customer. If you have an app through which customers can make purchases, then consider adding real-time ID scanning and ID authentication.
Lack of compliance
However you go about payments, you need to make sure it’s something the law would be happy with. You have to remember that you’re dealing with highly sensitive information, and the customers you work with need to have some form of protection against fraud or other problems. That’s why the government enforce standards that companies who deal with payments must follower. Your business must at least be in compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards. Which is a bit of a mouthful, so most people simply refer to it as PCI DSS. Whatever you call it, you need to make sure that every payment method you use follows these rules.