Most of us are marketing online for one reason…. the moola. A popular method of collecting that cold hard cash from your clients is via a Payment Gateway and that is today’s topic for #whatiswednesday.
A payment gateway is the electronic version of a credit card processor. It processes the payments that are placed on a website and either accepts or declines them. When a payment is accepted it is placed into a merchant account. The merchant account will hold onto your cash for a few days and then deposit it into your bank account.
There are many different payment gateways, but the most popular one is called Authorize.net. The first step to taking payments online is to give your bank a ring and tell them you need a merchant account and ask them what there preferred payment gateway is. Give this information to your web developer and they can integrate this method into your online shopping cart or a payment page on your website. Using a payment gateway will allow website users to make payments without ever leaving your website.
Finally, let me clear up one thing. PayPal has the popular PayPal buttons that you can put on your site to collect payments. When your website visitors click on a PayPal button they will be redirected to the PayPal site. This version of PayPal is not a payment gateway. However, PayPal does have a payment gateway version that prevents the need to redirect your customers to a different site.
Doesn’t matter which gateway you choose, just get something on your site to start collecting. Cha Ching!