What’s the best online payment solution for your small business?
Businesses have more options than ever to get paid online. That’s good news. If you own or manage a small business and your customers want faster and easier ways to pay you, that's great news.
So let’s sort out the landscape of online payment solutions that make the most sense for the unique needs of your company. Here are four common online payment options available for small businesses today.
Virtual terminal: A fast, easy online solution
For businesses that don’t fit neatly into a box such as “online retailer” or “brick-and-mortar storefront,” a virtual terminal can be a perfect solution.
Virtual terminals are payment applications that perform all the same functions as a traditional point of sale system, all via common web browsers. Instead of swiping or dipping a physical card, a virtual terminal uses a web-based form to process payments.
Virtual terminals can be accessed anywhere with an internet connection. Virtual terminals are perfect for accepting mail and telephone orders, processing monthly payments or setting up subscriptions, and for processing payments on-the-go using a tablet or smartphone.
Virtual terminals are perfect for flexible businesses that operate at farmer’s markets and trade shows. Easy recurring and installment payments make virtual terminals great for nonprofits and other member-based organizations. Virtual terminals are fast to setup, easy to operate without an IT department, and work with equipment you already have.
Online retail first steps: hosted payment pages
If your business has a website but is new to accepting payments, you’re not alone.
Long before online commerce went mainstream, millions of businesses started with “brochure” websites to communicate with their customers. Easy to use tools have made simple website management easy for almost everyone.
Making the jump from brochure website to accepting online payments introduces complexity. Online payments are often the dividing line where “do it yourself” no longer makes sense. The shopping cart and checkout is where it all happens—and it has to be perfect.
Hosted payment pages are perfect for millions of new businesses or those just expanding into online payments.
There is a vibrant marketplace of eCommerce vendors and payment processors that provide shopping cart and checkout functionality. Hosted payment pages offer semi-integrated solutions where you can outsource the challenging technical parts to experts. This offers small businesses the advantage of keeping sensitive payment information off of their own systems, which reduces exposure to online payment compliance regulations as well the threat from online data breach.
eCommerce overdrive: fully integrated online solutions
A wave of payments innovation continues to transform online commerce. Integrating payments capabilities directly into custom eCommerce websites and apps is revolutionizing how consumers pay and how businesses receive payment.
Fully-integrated solutions aren’t for everyone—they require skilled developers, budgets to support custom programming, and brilliant ideas to compete with the best. Yet every business starts with a dream. Realizing the enormous potential of fully integrated payment solutions is the reality for a growing number of small—and formerly small—businesses.
Integrated eCommerce solutions are built into your software, routing payments transactions through a payment gateway or direct to a payment processor. Integrated solutions ease pain points such as payments reconciliation, slow transaction times, and handling manual errors.
Fully integrated payment solutions allow for maximum customization and control with programming interfaces that put you in the driver’s seat. Payment toolkits allow businesses free range of motion to develop brilliant user experiences and compete at the highest level.
Setting the pace with omnicommerce
Your business may once have been small. But it’s growing stronger by the day. We all operate within limits, but you see challenges to overcome rather than obstacles in your way. You know that consumers don’t think in terms of channels—they think in terms of value. What do your customers want? They want it all, they want it always, they want it everywhere.
What was fiction a generation ago is reality today. Your customer visits your website to place an order and pay for it online… and a few days later, they want to return it to one of your physical stores. Are you ready? Do you offer loyalty programs, and do those follow your customers seamlessly, regardless of channel? Are payment details stored safely and securely, yet accessible to your customers when and where they need them?
Total payment integration allows eCommerce and POS solutions to work together, introducing previously unimagined efficiencies. Omnichannel solutions open doors to better customer relationship management, inventory control, and account reconciliation, among a host of other benefits.
Fully integrated omnicommerce solutions fuse the advantages and create synergies between the latest in in-store POS systems and best practices from eCommerce. Omnicommerce solutions aren’t for every small business. Yet businesses of every size need to satisfy the modern consumer.
Whether you are starting your own online selling journey or are already well on your way, we can help. Vantiv, now Worldpay, has payment experts that can guide you through the process of choosing the right online payments solution for your business. Start a conversation with one of our experts. We’ll help you find the right fit for where you are today, and where you want to be tomorrow.