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Challenges and Opportunities for Ecommerce Businesses during the Economic Crisis

Tag: online payment gateway

challenges-and-opportunities-for-ecommerce-businesses-

The current pandemic has dramatically changed the way businesses are functioning, struggling, and surviving. And while the e-commerce segment has been witnessing more demand than ever, owing to lockdowns and social distancing, they are not immune to certain challenges. However, COVID-19 also offers a few opportunities to e-commerce entities. Hence, running an online business during recession will require you to balance customer demand and supply smartly and watch your venture’s bottom-line as well. And all of that needs to be done in an empathetic manner.

So, what are the challenges?

  • During this pandemic, many e-commerce businesses are not being able to deliver with their original efficiency or speed. The reason is that not enough employees are available for this operation. Some online businesses have had to restrict delivery of non-essential products and only focus on essentials.
  • Stocking items that are not very common can become difficult during this crisis. Naturally, e-commerce stores might have to let go of some customers in the process, temporarily.
  • Shipping products can also take time due to lockdowns and local restrictions. Similarly, it might take time for customers to return the products that they don’t want.
  • Since now is the time when many first-timers will flock to online stores, enough customer support needs to be in place to help such shoppers navigate through your website.
Also Read:Startups living in uncertain times?

And here are the solutions and opportunities

As an e-commerce business, you need to remember that your customers are as anxious about the future as you. So, making your digital communications as clear and empathetic as possible is a good move. Your website must also state what you are doing to help the community and adhere to safety regulations. Some other solutions you can offer and opportunities you can make use of are:

  • Contactless delivery should be explored during this crisis, to assure customers that you are doing everything to contain the spread of the virus.
  • Offering essential products like everyday groceries, medical aids and hygiene items at discounted prices is also a good move. You can highlight such products on your webpage as well.
  • Online businesses will need to re-look at their website, layout, navigation system, and checkout process to see if everything is simple and easy to understand, even by those who are new to online shopping.
  • When it comes to examining the recession impact on e-commerce, you must note that many existing and potential customers might be out of jobs, struggling with loans or suffering salary cuts. So, extending payment dates for invoices might be a good idea during this phase. It can help boost their loyalty and establish long-term relationships.
  • If your business is going through a bad patch, if your inventory is low, or if you expect shipping delays, make sure these are clearly mentioned on your website, e-store and social media pages.

Further solutions and opportunities

  • COVID-19 is likely to enhance the prospects of businesses that deal in healthcare products, medicines, digital learning and entertainment products, and edibles and personal care items. Books, hobby kits and household cleaning products will also be in high demand for quite some time to come. Hence, promoting such items is a good idea. However, avoid hard-selling.
  • Offering a smooth and safe payment experience is crucial for an online business, especially during this economic crisis, as people will be more careful about frauds and losing money.Your customers may be reluctant to reveal their card information online due to the fear of scams. However, you can help allay such fears by collaborating with reputed online payment service providers.A reliable and efficient e-commerce payment gateway can offer multiple payment options, support many currencies, ensure a quick checkout and keep sensitive information safe.

All in all, the ongoing pandemic has brought several future opportunities in e-businesses to the forefront. All you have to do is make the most of them by tweaking your business strategy, powering up your online presence, understanding the changing needs of customers, and being empathetic.

Also Read:Transform your eCommerce today with PayTabs!

PayTabs

What Does a Payment Gateway Do with Your Data?

A payment gateway is an essential element of online payment ecosystem. It allows businesses and consumers to carry out online payment transactions. While online merchants are not expected to have expert knowledge of payment gateway systems, it is still helpful to know about their mechanism so as to provide the best possible services to your clients. One of the most important aspects about a payment gateway is that it collects vital information about a business and its clients. It is important that the safety and security of such data is ensured. Following are some of the critical pointers about data handling by payment gateways.

PCI DSS Compliance: A payment gateway does not store the data in its original form. In order to provide the most secure form, the payment gateway should be PCI DSS compliant, which is the current gold standard when it comes to the security of data. The PCI Security Standards Council is a global organization which carries out the task of setting compliance rules with regard to the treatment of user data obtained during the online payment process. The current rules require the data to be encrypted for eliminating the risk of data interception. This implies that payment gateway never stores critical information such as CVV, password or pin. The information related to name, card details and address is only used for completing the transaction and is not stored.

Tokenization: Payment gateways also carry out tokenization of critical information. This implies that when you key in your card number, it is automatically converted into a single token. This token consists of a unique set of characters which replace the original card number. Using such tokenization, the payment may be processed without revealing sensitive details. As these token numbers are generated and assigned randomly, it is highly improbable that the original numbers may be retrieved by carrying out reverse engineering. There are different types of tokenization processes around, the main ones being format preserving and non-format preserving. Generally, non-format preserving tokenization is considered to be the safer option.

SSL Certification: As important as the PCI DSS compliance is, it is equally important to ensure that the websites are also securely configured. The payment gateways generally use SSL certification which secures the data using TLS encryption. Such certification may be verified by looking at the URL in the browser. If the website bears https:// protocol then it means that it is secure. This is especially important for ecommerce companies and websites so as to make sure that the integrity of consumer data is maintained.

Fraud Screening Tools: Most of the payment gateways offer you fraud screening tools which may help you in reducing the risk of payment frauds. Some of the most prominent tools used for this purpose are Address Verification Service, Card Verification Value and Card Code Value. With the use of these tools, the risk of online payment frauds may be curtailed to a large extent. A payment gateway endeavors to provide a secure channel between a business and its customers for enabling online transactions. It is important that proper measures are taken by such payment gateways to ensure the safety of critical data of all the parties involved.

Additional Measures: Websites may also use additional tools such as the use of the hash function for making the transactions more secure. Under this function, a signed request from the merchant is required for validating the transaction. Such signed request is a code and is known to only the payment gateway and the merchant. For further security of the transaction and the data, the IP of the requesting server is also authenticated, so as to filter out any malicious activity. Some payment gateways also use Virtual Payer Authentication (VPA), which is a 3D secure protocol. This step adds an extra layer of security, enabling online clients to authenticate each other, and thus adds to security measures.

Overall, several new tools and methods have evolved to increase the security factor of online transactions. While selecting a payment gateway, a business should take proper cognizance of the security measures taken for maintaining the secrecy of critical information pertaining to the business and its clients.

What Does the PayTabs Payment Platform Mean for Your Business?

What Does the PayTabs Payment Platform Mean for Your Business?

Online payment gateways are vital for the smooth functioning of e-commerce companies. Without this service, e-businesses would not be able to able to accept and process payments from their clients, thus jeopardizing the growth of their operations. It is highly crucial that internet businesses pick their payment gateway providers with utmost care as any snag in such services may cause massive losses to not only the business itself but also to its clients. With PayTabs, you can ensure that you get the best services at just the right price. Following are some of the ways in which PayTabs can help you in boosting your business efficiency.

Integrated Services: PayTabs offers a one-stop solution for your payment processing requirements. Its system is highly adaptive so as to ensure that you are able to customize the operations to meet your requirements. The service can be easily integrated with your website and provides seamless offerings. The system allows you to accept payments in 168 different currencies, making it highly recommended for businesses with cross-border operations. It also comes with a smart dashboard so you can manage different parts of your online business from one centralized place. This dashboard will help you in achieving efficiency as now you can take a quick glance at your different business operations in one place.

Safe and Fast: While deciding on an online payment system, it is important to ensure that it provides encrypted and secured payment processing. This is because online payments involve the exchange of highly sensitive information including bank details, credit card numbers and private identification details. PayTabs is PCI DSS certified, which means that the system provides secure processing services. The system also has anti-fraud measures in place so that you can carry on your business without worrying about falling for scams etc. Owing to its transparent operations, PayTabs has emerged as one of the most reliable online payment processing systems around.

Scalable: Businesses do not remain static, and rather evolve over a period of time. The mark of a good online payment system is one that can grow with your business, with minimal disruption in the operations. The PayTabs system is mainly designed for small and medium enterprises and so is ideally suitable for startups and budding businesses. However, it is also flexible enough to accommodate your requirements when your enterprise has grown to the next level. PayTabs offers straightforward payment systems which makes the transaction process simple and convenient for your clients.

Economical: Online payment processing systems are currently in the growth stage and are being equipped with new features every day. While it is important that your payment processor provides state of the art and modern services, it is also vital to keep the cost factor in mind. Different payment gateways offer different kind of fee plans. PayTabs aims to provide the best possible services at the optimal costs to its clients and therefore offers customizable payment plans. The fees paid to PayTabs covers a wide range of expenses such as set up fees, recurring fees and support fees. The pricing of PayTabs is entirely transparent so that you know beforehand how much you need to pay. With PayTabs, you can avoid facing hidden and surprise charges.

Value Added Services: While the main task of an online payment gateway is to process payments, but these providers may also offer a host of allied services. PayTabs strives to provide a holistic experience to its clients and thus offers different promotional schemes frequently. The payment system collaborates with a wide range of merchants and businesses so as to offer a wide array of value added services to its clients. Such value added services vary from discounted pricing to specialized outreach programs. Your business can benefit immensely from these professionally designed targeted services. With PayTabs, you not only provide the best services to your clients but also grow your business using unparalleled offers provided by the payment gateway.

PayTabs has grown exponentially in a short period of time. With its wide reach and customer centric business model, PayTabs has carved a niche for itself in a highly competitive market. You can also make your business grow with the help of PayTabs and its specialized bouquet of services.

Top Tips to Burst Payment Myths

Top Tips to Burst Payment Myths

Online payments are the mainstay of e-commerce. Without an efficient online payment system, the growth of any e-commerce business would be greatly compromised. While designing an online payment system for a business, it is important to not only offer a wide range of platforms, but also to ensure that such platforms are robust and secure. Since most of the e-commerce businesses operate across borders, it is also important that such transactions are legally allowed as per the rules and regulations of the concerned countries. Following are the top tips which let you design an optimal payment system for your e-business.

  • Low Upfront Costs: While online payment platforms are essential for any online business, these are also expensive to operate. While deciding upon the platforms and methods to be used, proper attention should be paid to the associated costs.

Generally, these costs are upfront costs and running costs. Apart from the one-time setup fee, these platforms charge a certain percentage of transaction amount as their operating fee. Therefore, it is important that both these costs are taken into cognizance while deciding upon the platforms to be used. Don’t fall into the trap where some online payment service providers offer low upfront costs. It is highly likely that the associated operating costs will be on the higher side.

  • Supporting Features: Another myth associated with online payment systems is that they are only required to have the ability to accept payments. However, in an ecommerce business, the online payment system is expected to perform many more activities such as accounting for refunds and cashbacks. Such transactions are commonplace in an online business and therefore, the payment platform should be equipped to undertake such operations. While deciding about a service provider, it should be thoroughly checked that they are ready to provide such supporting functions.

 

  • Scalability: While most of the service providers offer the ability to scale up the payment system as and when your business grows, it is imperative that you fully check the extent of the scalability provided. Generally, such offers are saddled with fine prints and hidden clauses which come with additional contracts, higher fees, and other costs. You need to ensure that such elevated costs come with corresponding benefits in terms of scalability. Further, it should also be verified that the scaled operations will provide the same level of efficiency and robustness as the original plan.

 

  • Security: Online payment systems are still considered to be unsafe, which negatively affects their acceptance by the customers. In order to ensure that your customers feel safe while carrying out transactions, it is vital that you fully understand the safety features provided by your online payment platform. Apart from vetting the existing safety measures, you should also look at the service provider’s ability to offer safeguards against potential threats. Online businesses face new security threats on a daily business, making it imperative that the online payments service providers are ready to face not only existing threats but also the future ones. Installing a robust payment system will help in alleviating customers’ concerns about the safety of their money and personal information.

 

  • Flexibility: Another myth related to online payment systems is their rigidity. In order to keep the systems secure, it is generally believed that such systems are difficult to change and customize. However, this is not true as most of the top online payment service providers offer customizations to meet different requirements. Some of the top customizations are related to the acceptance of different currencies and diverse credit cards and debit cards. It is also a good idea to see whether your service provider is future ready to deal with upcoming technologies such as cryptocurrencies, which have the potential to become a major part of payment systems.

While deciding on an online payment system for your e-business, it is important that you take time to separate facts from fiction. There are several myths related to online payment systems and these misconceptions can negatively impact your decision-making process. In order to ensure that you set up the most optimal payment system for your business, you should keep the above-mentioned points in mind.

5 Common Mistakes in Online Payment Systems That Can Kill Your Conversion

5 Common Mistakes in Online Payment Systems That Can Kill Your Conversion

Many online merchants lose significant revenues because of online payment mistakes. It is high time that these e-commerce mistakes are rectified, or else e-stores will keep facing repeated incidents of abandoned carts and incomplete purchases by customers. Some of the oft-ignored e-commerce mistakes committed by online merchants are:

  1. Redirection can be counterproductive: Some merchants get it completely wrong when it comes to the gateway for online payment. They redirect the customers to an external payment website with payment gateway charges and a different company logo. This is a big put off for many customers, who might abandon the transactions as they have security concerns about the new portal or might not be willing to pay additional charges. It is always best to have a single website where a customer can smoothly navigate through till the end of the transaction and the checkout process. This would result in higher chances of the purchase transaction being completed and reduce the loss of customers to competition.
  2. Mandating account creation: This might work counterproductively, especially in the case of first-time customers or customers who intend to purchase a small quantity of products. Creating an account involves time and prolongs the entire purchase process. This could result in customer frustration and even possible withdrawal by the customer before completion of the transaction. It is advisable to provide the option of buying as a guest user. Post the purchase, one can subtly encourage the customers to create an account through offers of promotional discounts or price benefits by email or SMS. Customers prefer shopping on e-commerce sites where they can exercise their choice.
  3. Expecting excess information: The transition to the payment gateway should be smooth for the customer to make the online payment and be able to close the transaction with minimum lag time. Asking for additional information with extra fields would delay the buying process. It may also increase chances of error while filling out the form, causing unnecessary frustration and might result in abandonment of the transaction. A good user experience on the e-commerce website can result in higher sales conversions and higher probability of return customers. It is prudent to have auto-fill options for forms that only ask for information relevant to successful payment, namely card number, name of the cardholder, expiry date and CVV. In the case of a website with a multi-step checkout process, it is recommended to have a progress indicator so that the customer is aware of the remaining steps before the transaction is completed.
  4. Assurance on security: This is critical in every digital transaction. With growing incidents of data breach and leak of confidential information, every customer would like to be reassured on the safety aspect of the online purchase. Thus, it is imperative to have secure online payment systems wherein the customers’ card data remains secure. It would be useful to indicate that the website follows the regulatory framework prescribed for data security and encryption standards. This includes security badges, the merchant logo prominently displayed on every webpage, SSL certification and PCI compliant payment gateway.
  5. Absence of customer support: Many times, the customer is unable to proceed with the payment or faces a problem completing the online payment. In such instances, it can be extremely frustrating for the customer if he can obtain no assistance or response on the toll-free number. Immediate support with 24*7 availability should readily address the customer issues and resolve the problem. Provision of timely help to the customer works as a strong customer retention strategy.

Don’t shoot yourself in the foot and kill conversion with these e-commerce mistakes. Following the above mentioned measures to correct them would result in better user experience for the online customer and higher sales conversion for the e-commerce merchant, truly a win-win situation for both.