On Cyber Monday last year, consumers spent an almost unbelievable $2.29 billion, smashing the single-day record for online sales that was set just three days before, on Black Friday. It also marked a 20% increase from the amount spent in 2012 on the Monday after Thanksgiving that has evolved into another consumer holiday. While not every day is a holiday, these startling numbers emphasize the fact that more and more consumers are consistently turning to the internet to make purchases, rather than heading to actual retail stores. As a result, businesses who want to stay competitive and earn long-term success will need to make accepting credit card payments online a priority. But there are some challenges associated with allowing debit and credit cards online to watch out for.
- Regional Sales Taxes
- Specialty Card Fees
- Fraud and Security
- Time Requirements
- Foreign Transaction Fees
- Multiple Currency Contracts
No two companies will have to deal with the same issues when accepting credit card payments online, but each can lead to serious problems. That could be particularly true for owners and managers who have little experience or knowledge about they online payment process. If that is the case, then partnering with merchant service providers is a smart choice.
Essentially, merchant services help to make the relationship between businesses and the credit card companies a much less cumbersome one. Not only do they understand the ins and outs of any problems that could occur, enabling them to both prevent and solve them, but they also take the burden off of inexperienced owners and managers. That will save them time and make sure that transactions are completely efficiently and accurately.
The best merchants will also understand that accepting credit card payments online is not the only thing that businesses need to do to thrive. While online shopping certainly plays a role, and merely accepting cash will limit a business’ chances for success, there are other payment programs that might also be used. For instance, by 2020, according to Pew Research, smartphone payments could actually be more popular than credit cards. Businesses should keep an eye on that trend to be ready for changes in the future.
It is rare to find businesses — other than perhaps local bars and restaurants — that have no program for accepting credit card payments online. With the digital marketplace already massive and consistently growing, as evidenced by the huge numbers from last year’s Cyber Monday, not doing so would prove to be a huge mistake. Fortunately, there are professionals able to help.