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UAE Set to Become a Cashless Society with Increasing Mobile Payments

Category: SaaS

UAE Set to Become a Cashless Society with Increasing Mobile Payments

UAE Set to Become a Cashless Society with Increasing Mobile Payments

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The growth of mobile payments in the UAE and the rest of the Middle East has become quite noticeable in recent times. And such modes of payment are no longer popular only among the tech savvy or financially literate. They have become an important part of the general society as we know it. Digital payments have also helped SMEs (small-and-medium-enterprises) and business owners in the Middle East to expand their markets in ways never thought of before!

With online shopping on a steep rise, especially in the wake of the pandemic, eCommerce and the mobile payment industry are set to experience major growth in the coming years. Read on to know more and understand how UAE will soon evolve into a cashless society, backed by the power of mobile payments.

COVID and mobile payments

As lockdowns and movement restrictions encouraged consumers to switch to cashless payment alternatives, COVID-19 accelerated the adoption of digital payments in the Middle East.

A study conducted by Checkout.com, a London-based payments system, says the Middle East region used to be dominated by cash earlier but online shoppers have now shifted to using digital payments. This change has presented a huge growth opportunity for multi-currency online payment gateway providers like PayTabs. The report included a survey conducted on more than 5,000 consumers in Saudi Arabia, UAE, Jordan, Kuwait, Pakistan, Egypt and Qatar.

  • The number of consumers who anticipate shopping online more often over the next year in those countries is 47%. 38% expect their online shopping frequency to remain the same, while only 15% expect it to decline.
  • As a result of the pandemic, 40% of online shoppers say they are shopping and paying online, according to the regional manager at Checkout.com, Mo Ali Yusuf.
  • “Digital payments have been on the rise for the past six years, but the pandemic fastracked the growth trajectory and condensed five years of growth into just a few months,” Yusuf said.
  • The impact of COVID-19 has caused e-commerce and digital payments to surge this year, but the changes we are witnessing today go beyond a temporary shift.”
  • While digital payments have become more popular in the Middle East in the last few years, cash on delivery still occupies a large portion of consumers’ wallets.
  • Over the next decade, there is a great deal of potential for growth in this market, he stated.

As consumers shop online more frequently, they prefer digital payments over cash on delivery or bank transfers. 62% people who purchased something online once a month used a card or digital wallet in UAE and other countries. This is compared to the 44% who were shopping online less frequently.

UAE takes the lead in digital payments in the Middle East

UAE’s mobile payments growth has been especially noteworthy in the Middle East region. A regulatory framework and a supportive government have paved the way for the establishment of a Cashless Dubai Working Group. All digital payments in Dubai will be shifted to secure and easy-to-use cashless platforms through this group.

The Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, announced recently that the UAE Cabinet had adopted an agreement linking the payment systems of the GCC, ensuring greater integration of the region and facilitating a more significant expansion of its multilateral trade.

Compared with Europe’s annual growth of 4 to 5 per cent, consumer digital payments transactions in the UAE grew at a rate of over 9 per cent between 2014 and 2019. During 2022, digital payment volumes from SMEs grew by 44 percent, according to a report by McKinsey and Co.

There is no doubt that this adoption is having a positive impact already. As a means of promoting financial inclusion and promoting efficiency in the public and private sectors, digital payments have and continue to increase efficiency.

Business opportunities due to digital payments

The rapid growth of the mobile payments industry has presented exciting business opportunities to capitalise on. Younger generations are looking to make payments directly from their mobile phones or even smartwatches. This kind of technology has combined the convenience of online payments and the security of an app.

Smartphones account for more than 80% of all mobile devices, promoting the possibility of new inventions. The utilisation of e wallets in UAE and other Middle Eastern countries is also on the rise since they allow the user to go cashless without having to use a traditional bank account.

Sending and receiving money through apps on mobile phones has become increasingly popular. The process removes any ‘middleman’ and makes online transactions cheap or even free. Just one click and the money gets transferred. Apart from the ease of use and speed, it also prevents the need for users to carry their cards or remember an endless number of PINs.

Numerous multi-currency online payment gateways have also emerged in the UAE and they are gaining popularity in the domain with their extensive lists of digital payment solutions. But some challenges still stand in the way.

Digital future

There is still some resistance to mobile payments growth though, especially among older people who are, in general, less technologically able – but the popularity of cash transactions is likely to dip overall. Due to their convenience, ease of use, and the increasing number of businesses that digitalise and can accept such payments, digital and especially mobile-based transactions will become increasingly popular over the next few years.

There is no denying that the changes triggered by the pandemic are here to stay, and businesses will soon be expected to offer cashless options; and companies that do not do so will start falling behind their competitors.

Along with traditional debit and credit cards, QR codes and other solutions, mobile payments will play an important role in the UAE’s move towards a cashless society.

PayTabs’ role

By providing seamless B2B ecommerce solutions to SMEs, PayTabs has emerged as an early pioneer in the fintech sector. A full stack of game-changing mobile applications, hospitality, government, education, airline, travel, transportation, and biller solutions has been developed and exported by PayTabs with private Saudi investment, linking the multibillion-dollar MENA enterprise market chains together. With the launch of PayTabs SwitchOn, the real-time, integrated, turnkey platform, PayTabs has consolidated its position as a top multi-currency online payment gateway provider and global leader in end-to-end payments solutions.

In addition to its stellar fraud prevention system, PayTabs has been processing payments since 2014. Businesses have been able to process payments securely, thanks to its innovative and agile solutions. Visa and Mastercard have recognised PayTabs’ security, making it one of the most popular payment gateway providers in the UAE.

Features

  • Stellar merchant dashboards
  • Omnichannel payment solutions
  • Simple documentation and onboarding process
  • 360 payment processing

The pricing system at PayTabs is straightforward. The company offers three types of plans: start-up, growth, and enterprise. Early-stage companies will benefit from the start-up plan, which has a fixed monthly fee. Growth plans help drive sales and offer great value. Enterprise plans are for businesses looking to expand.

To conclude

Global financial systems are currently based on the growth of mobile payments. By increasing access, a wide range of benefits are unlocked. To finance their working capital requirements and grow their businesses, merchants have access to new forms of funding today. Real-time data is another advantage businesses gain when they adopt digital payments. As a result, merchants can use data-driven insights to make strategic decisions and identify emerging patterns and trends. Creating more accurate economic forecasts is also possible using the wealth of data generated by digital payments.

On the other hand, consumers benefit too, from fast, secure, convenient payment systems that offer them multiple options. They can also access innovative platforms that allow them to spread payments for goods and services out over time, such as buy-now-pay-later platforms.

So, it is a win-win for both businesses and customers in UAE and the rest of the world. Hence, transitioning to a cashless society is no longer a pipe dream.

The Latest Disruptor in Digital Payment: What Are Invisible Payments?

If you’re in ecommerce, you’ve seen that it’s an exciting time for digital payments. Digital wallets are coming to Android, and “buy now pay later” is coming to Apple Pay. Those are just two of the big changes in digital payments.

If you want to move your business into this new era, all while transforming your customer service, you should think about moving to an invisible payments system.

The Latest Disruptor in Digital Payment: What Are Invisible Payments?

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What are invisible payments?

“Invisible payments” refers to any payment made to the customer automatically, without them having to lift a finger. As ecommerce businesses try to find easier ways for customers to make transactions on any channel, invisible payments will become more common after the leadership of companies like Amazon, Alipay in China, and Uber.

As brands strive to serve busy customers, it’s obvious when considering time management techniques that if customers have a choice between two mobile food delivery apps, they’ll go for the one that doesn’t require them to search for their credit card.

When companies have a customer’s payment info on file, and that customer’s phone has a biometric sensor, it’s easy to validate the payment with a quick scan of their face or their fingerprint.

Benefits of invisible payments

Invisible payments are particularly useful for food delivery apps, where the time-pressed customer can just click to confirm their order. From there, payment can be taken automatically while they’re moved onto a progress report on their order. When customers are treating themselves, the delivery of this kind of step-by-step, workflow builder style of UI is what customers are interested in, not the details of their receipt.

Other significant business advantages of invisible payments include:

  • Reduced human error. The Amazon Go grocery store uses invisible payments so that customers can just walk out. By removing the cashier, the whole transaction is streamlined and the chance of error is reduced.
  • Speedier processes. By removing the friction of the payment step, you can provide faster experiences for customers and staff. Uber, for example, uses invisible payments so customers can just get out of the car and the driver can move on to the next ride.

The power of invisible benefits

Invisible payments free you up to do whatever it is you do best. Whether it’s prepping food or helping customers pick the perfect gift, you no longer need to stop to collect payments that technology can take for you.

Matthew CooperMatthew Cooper – Marketing Automation & Operations Manager, Global App Testing
Matthew Cooper is the Marketing Automation & Operations Manager at Global App Testing, a best-in-class software testing company that has helped top apps such as Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and Craigslist deliver high-quality software at speed all over the world. Matthew has over 14 years of experience on what is automation testing , I.T Networking, Software & Services Industries. He is highly skilled in Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Content Marketing, Digital Advertising, Social Media Management, WordPress, Email Marketing, Marketing Automation, CRM, and People Management. Matthew Cooper has also written for domains such as BigCommerce and Custify. You can find him on LinkedIn.

Explaining Frictionless Payment And Its Impact on Digital Business

In the digital age, customers expect a smooth and stress-free payment experience. 

Unfortunately, too many businesses get it wrong regarding the checkout process, often leading to cart abandonment.

Explaining Frictionless Payment And Its Impact on Digital Business

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Recent research suggests that average cart abandonment across all industries is 69.82%. However, adopting a frictionless payment strategy could be the key to decreasing cart abandonment and boosting conversions. 

This short guide will explain frictionless payment and its impact on digital business. 

What exactly is frictionless payment? 

Frictionless payments simplify the buying process so that minimal effort is required during transactions. In other words, there’s less potential friction involved. 

A frictionless payment process should fulfill these criteria: 

  • Reduce checkout waiting times. 
  • Optimized checkout process with minimal steps required for completion. 
  • Intuitive experience that’s easy for the customer and seller to use. 
  • Reduces frustrating aspects such as remembering pin codes. 

Frictionless payments are on the rise; common uses include mobile payments (mobile can also be used for mobile invoicing), digital wallet payments, contactless payments, one-click payments, and auto-renew subscription payments. 

What is the impact of frictionless payment on digital business?

The digital transformation has improved many business processes by making them efficient and stress-free. From ad hoc testing in software development to API legacy systems in insurance industry, there’s a tech solution for most processes. 

Frictionless payments are the same. Keeping customers satisfied with an optimized payment process could lead to increased conversions and lower cart abandonment. It’s a win-win for everyone involved– the buyer and the seller. 

Here are some ways frictionless payments help businesses. 

Decrease cart abandonment

In 2021, 81.08% of website users abandoned their carts in retail, fashion, travel, and utilities. A time-consuming and complicated checkout process is often the reason customers get frustrated and leave. 

Luckily, frictionless payments keep the whole process smooth and hiccup-free to prevent cart abandonment. 

Increase customer satisfaction

Frictionless payments help keep customers satisfied throughout the checkout process by reducing the input required. 

No one wants to be asked repeatedly to input their details for a repeat order. Have customers who need to renew their subscription? These things shouldn’t slow the customer down. Frictionless payment methods like auto-renew and auto-fill make it light work for both parties.  

Greater Security

Protecting yourself online is important, and digital payments can help. 

Not only do online sellers no longer need access to your bank card, digital frictionless payments come with a unique digital signature making them more secure. 

This goes one further for iOS and Android users who have the option to use a fingerprint for added security. 

PayTabs frictionless payment service

PayTabs’ SwitchOn® platform offers unrivaled capabilities, value, and flexibility to established financial institutions, Fintech’s and merchants in the MENA region.

Find out how PayTabs can help you here

Emily RollwitzEmily Rollwitz – Content Marketing Executive, Global App Testing
Emily Rollwitz is a Content Marketing Executive at Global App Testing, a remote and on-demand app testing company helping top app teams deliver high-quality software and get good app store ratings anywhere in the world. She has 5 years of experience as a marketer, spearheading lead generation campaigns and events that propel top-notch brand performance. Handling marketing of various brands, Emily has also developed a great pulse in creating fresh and engaging content. She’s written for great websites like Airdroid and SME News. You can find her on LinkedIn.

QR Codes are the Future of Mobile Payment System – Find Out Why

QR Codes are the Future of Mobile Payment System – Find Out Why
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QR codes are not new really. In fact, the first QR code was generated in 1994 in Japan and was used to track parts and vehicles during the manufacturing process. While it did find other uses, QR codes were mostly considered a passing fad or something that enterprises needed internally to keep track of their products. But things changed in 2011, when QR codes were first used for mobile payments. The mobile wallet app for Bitcoin, a cryptocurrency, got a feature where users could send or receive bitcoins with the help of QR codes. In the same year, Alipay introduced a mobile payment system where offline stores could scan the QR codes of a customer in their Alipay wallet.

Also Read: How Shoppers Browse and Buy Products Online & Offline

Since then, QR codes have gone from strength to strength and emerged as the primary method of payment for countless people and businesses around the world. It’s easy, it’s secure, doesn’t take too much time, and payments can be done through smartphones as well. There is no need for a QR code scanner or any other device.

How Does QR Code Payment Work?

To understand how payments happen through QR codes, you need to first understand these codes.

So, what is a QR code? Short for Quick Response, QR codes store digital data in a physical representation, much like barcodes. One of the biggest differences between barcodes and QR codes though is their structure. While barcodes are made up of vertical black and white bars of different widths, QR codes contain a unique pattern of light and dark spots within a limited amount of space.

These spots can contain a larger volume of data than barcodes. They can store anything from payment information to store URLs, location of the store, offers, and more. In QR code payments, whether you are a business owner, merchant, or freelancer, you can generate a unique code, which the customer can scan with their camera or a payment app. The code will contain information about the payment or the business and allow the user to pay any amount freely.

Usually, these QR codes are integrated by a payment gateway which transfers any money generated through these QR transactions directly to your bank account. A robust payment gateway solution will take care of everything from setting up the codes to receiving payment from customers.

Different Types of QR Payments

Static

As the name suggests, static QR codes stay the same and don’t change frequently. They store specific data and can be reused again and again. Static QR codes are ideal if you are a retail store owner, street vendor, or shopkeeper. Once you display the codes on the counter, any customer can scan it, enter the required amount that needs to be paid, and go ahead with the transfer.

Dynamic

Dynamic QR codes change continuously and can store different information each time. In a dynamic QR code, payment details can be encoded for every unique payment, making it impossible to print out the code and place it on the store counter. If you run a petrol pump, food court, restaurant, or other such places, you can use dynamic QR codes for mobile payments. You need to input the billing amount for every customer, and a new code will be generated every time, which the customer can scan to pay.

Also Read: How to Simplify Invoicing and Billing

Customer-Generated

In the customer-generated method, it’s the payer who generates the code for payment. You, the seller, will need to scan this code, enter the required amount that the customer needs to pay, and then the payment request will be generated. The customer can accept this request, after checking the amount of course, and the selected amount will be deducted from their account automatically. In this method, the payment is dependent on whether the customer accepts the payment request sent by you.

Merchant Generated

This is a combination of dynamic and static QR codes. You, the merchant, can generate dynamic codes for each transaction or can have static codes for a specific product or counter. This way, you can speed up the billing by segregating customers as per their products.

Where are QR Payments Being Used?

QR codes as a mode of payment aren’t that old but have taken the world by storm in just a few years since their inception. They provide a lot of ease and convenience to both customers and sellers. Furthermore, the recent COVID-19 pandemic and the need to limit physical contact has boosted the adoption of QR codes in the mainstream.

Research by Statista revealed that nearly 28% of customers in the US and UK markets agree that QR code payments have seen a rise since 2020. Another research has stated that payments through mobile will reach USD 1.3 trillion by 2022 and QR payments have a big role to play in that. QR codes are no longer a complicated technology that only large enterprises can implement. While global companies like MasterCard and Visa are supporting merchants like you worldwide to start accepting payments through QR codes, local companies are providing support in their respective countries as well.

Now, whether you are a roadside food vendor or a multi-floor shopping centre, you can enable QR codes and mobile payment systems so that customers can pay without any difficulty. In developing countries like India and China, mobile payments have become the preferred way to pay, with nearly half the population scanning at least one QR code a week in China for payment purposes. Just from QR code payments, China made more than $1,900 billion in 2020.

Benefits of QR Code Payment

  • Easy to Implement

All you need is a smartphone to generate a unique QR code and start using it to receive payments. It doesn’t require any extra devices or deep technical knowledge, and a user can easily generate codes for commercial or personal use.

  • More Payment Methods

In 2022, cash is not the only way a person can pay for something. Mobile payments have become normal now, and a QR code gives you the ability to start accepting payments in methods other than cash as well. It also means that there will be an increase in customer flow inside the shop.

  • Reach Out to a Wider Audience

QR codes also help you reach a wider audience. They can be embedded in different locations across the store so that the customer can pay for something quickly and head out. They can be sent digitally to the customer or presented on the website as well so that they can pay for something while sitting at home. QR codes can be embedded in any mobile device as well so that you or your colleagues can accept payment from anyone, anywhere.

  • Faster Transactions

If the internet connectivity is fine and the account is completely set up, it takes just a couple of seconds for a customer to scan the code, input the amount, pay, and show you the confirmation.

  • Secure

As a merchant, rest assured that the code can store only the data that you decide. Hence, these codes protect you against fraudulent activities, false payment confirmation from customers, and phishing attacks as well.

Where customers are concerned, QR code payments are highly secure and transactions happen over an encrypted network so that no one can store or steal their personal information. The only activity they need to do is scan the code and there’ll be no attempt of theft or unauthorized access to their account.

  • Enhanced Engagement

While cash discounts might be rare, promotional campaigns, eCommerce companies, nationwide festivals, partnerships between companies, and other such offers can be commonly found if a customer chooses to pay digitally. Not only does this bring more customers and revenue to a company, but it also enhances customer engagement. Everyone loves to score some discounts and often tends to spend more in the hopes of getting a bigger discount.

Also Read: Finding the Best Payment Gateway for Your eCommerce Business Made Easy

The Future of Mobile Payments

If recent trends are to be believed, mobile payments based on QR codes are only going to increase. Digital banking has evolved a lot, with almost every person owning a smartphone these days, and integrating QR codes in stores has become a lot easier. The icing on the cake has been the acceptance of governments and business giants in moving towards a more digital economy. So, if you are a merchant and looking to implement a mobile payment system, PayTabs can help you with generating and setting up your own QR codes. You can then accept payments from a customer in a matter of seconds, even if they aren’t in your store physically.

An Overview of Different Types of Contactless Payment Solutions

An Overview of Different Types of Contactless Payment Solutions
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There was a time when cash, cheques, or cards were the most preferred way of doing transactions. Even with the introduction of innovative payment gateways, businesses weren’t willing to part ways with traditional methods of payments. However, things have changed in the recent years, more so because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, both people and businesses are choosing to use contactless payment solutions. The convenience offered by such payment solutions and the fact that they don’t require any contact between the parties has made them highly popular. To know more about contactless payment meaning and the different options you can choose from as a business, read on.

What is the Meaning of Contactless Payment?

Contactless payment methods do not require any contact between the payer and payee. The two technologies that make contactless payment possible are known as radio frequency identification (RFID) and near-field communication (NFC). A person just needs to be close to a point-of-sale (POS) terminal with the contactless payment feature to make the payment.

Types of Contactless Payment Solutions

There are several different types of contactless digital payment solutions that you can use as a business owner. Some of the most popular ones are:

Contactless Cards

Contactless cards are one of the most popular types of contactless payment methods being used these days. Contactless cards look almost like regular credit and debit cards. The only difference is that they contain an antenna that facilitates contactless payment. These cards use RFID and NFC technology to make the transaction possible.

Also Read: 4 Ways to Prevent Credit Card Fraud at Your Business

Also known as tap-to-pay cards, contactless cards sure revolutionised payment methods. They are a secure, easy, and fast way of making payments. You can either hover the card over the card terminal or tap it once to use it. Often, the cards also include a magnetic strip that allows for payment by swiping. This can be done in case you don’t have a contactless POS available.

For your business to use contactless cards for payments, all you need is a contactless-enabled terminal. The terminal will read the information and complete the payment once the card is near.

Mobile Apps and Wallets

While contactless cards are an easy and speedy way of making payments, there is still the hassle of carrying them everywhere. Mobile apps and wallets have solved this problem. All your customers need to make contactless payments is carry their mobile phones everywhere, which they do anyway. Making payments through mobile phones has become incredibly popular in recent years. It’s easy, secure, hassle-free, and doesn’t anyone to touch anything.

To use this method, the customer needs to download any application they feel is best for making online payments and link it to their bank, debit cards, or credit cards. Most of the payments today are done by scanning the unique QR code through the app. Once scanned, the customer just needs to enter their secure pin, and voila, the payment will be done.

As a business owner, you only require a unique QR code and a contactless POS terminal to provide this method of payment to your customers.

Digital Payments

Also known as electronic payments, digital payment is an umbrella term for all payments that use a device to make payments. Whether your customers are making a payment on your website using their card or physically using their card to make a payment in your store, all constitute digital payments. But most digital payment methods have now become contactless. Using contactless cards and mobile wallets is an example of contactless digital payments. Another example is when your customers use it to make a payment on your website.

Also Read: How Digital Payments Can Ensure Online Business Success

With online shopping becoming a rage worldwide, digital payments have also become a necessity. Many websites offer several different options for digital payments, including credit cards, debit cards, UPI, or mobile wallets. To enable digital payments on your website too, you need to embrace a reliable and versatile payment gateway.

Benefits of Using Contactless Payment Solutions

Apart from requiring zero contact between payer and payee, contactless payments have several other benefits.

Fast Transactions

Contactless payments are much faster than other forms of payments with transactions taking mere seconds to finish. In this fast-paced world, where everyone wants to save time, contactless payments are exactly what we need.

Convenience

With options such as mobile apps and wallets, people do not even need to carry their cards with them. Contactless payments are not only hassle-free, but also make spur-of-the-moment shopping easy. All your customers need is their mobile phone and money in their bank account and they can go on a shopping spree in your offline or online store.

Also Read: Indian Marketplaces: Shift from Offline to Online

Security

Contactless payment methods take security seriously. With contactless cards, the antenna begins the payment only when in proximity to the POS. With other forms, it usually requires a unique code before the payment goes through. This makes the method highly secure and safe.

Also Read: 7 Tips for Safe Online Transactions

Factors to Consider While Choosing a Gateway for Contactless Payments

A payment gateway is crucial for your business. To ensure you choose only the best, consider the following factors-

Price

The price for a payment gateway depends on several factors, such as the number of monthly/annual payments, types of payments, etc. It is crucial to determine your requirements before choosing a contactless payment gateway. Some payment gateways charge a setup fee for new businesses. This fee is often fixed, but many options do not charge any fee.

Security and Safety

One of the most essential things for your business is to ensure your customers’ safety and security. Even if you are a small business, customers expect a highly secure payment gateway. Thus, while choosing a payment gateway, explore their safety and security protocols. Many payment gateways offer the option of customising the payment page, which might not even let the customer know they have been redirected to a third-party page. This makes the experience more secure and seamless.

Compatibility with Devices

Depending on your business model and the services you offer, the kind of visitors you will get will differ. So will the devices they use. Many contactless payment gateways have now upgraded themselves enough to work well with all devices, but it is essential to check for the same. Ideally, a payment gateway compatible with the maximum number of devices is the best. Be sure to check the platform yourself before selection.

Smooth Integration

Many customers usually abandon the shopping cart if they face problems while making payments. This is not something you want for your business. A payment gateway can only function well if it is integrated smoothly into your platform. The goal is to make the user experience as seamless as possible.

Customer Support

Excellent customer support is the key to excellent business operation. Choose a payment gateway that offers customer support 24*7 to avoid any unexpected problems. Consider it this way, if your payment gateway stops working or starts glitching during peak hours, you will lose significant time and money. Therefore, a payment gateway with round-the-clock support and several ways to reach them is essential.

In short, a contactless payment gateway has the potential to make or break your business. So, choose one that will cater to all your needs.

Why Use PayTabs?

Launched in 2015, PayTabs was started as an affordable payment gateway for small and medium-sized businesses. Today, it has grown into an award-winning payment processor. It offers multi-currency support and quick fund settlements. PayTabs is compatible with different payment options like MasterCard, Visa, OmanNet, etc. It also offers open APIs that allow you to integrate PayTabs into your website. PayTabs is PCI DSS certified too and has strong anti-fraud management to maintain secure services. It’s a win-win for you in every way.