Spending habits of consumers in Australia soared in unprecedented ways in the past few years. But what made online shopping so popular? Beyond being a convenient form of retail therapy, the accessibility brought about by the e-commerce industry proved valuable during the 2021 lockdown.
As traditional brick and mortar stores saw a steep decline in sales, purchases in Sydney and Melbourne increased by 310% over normal levels. As businesses rushed to scale up every aspect of their e-commerce system to meet customer demands – from improving delivery services to expanding product catalogues – developments in payment methods were also seen as a practical next step. And one of the payment services that has been leveraged by the majority of online retailers, is a payment gateway.
A payment gateway is an online payment tool integrated into your e-commerce website. Popular amongst merchants, this technology facilitates electronic funds transfer, efficiently speeding up the e-commerce payment process. Functioning like the physical point-of-sale (POS) terminal in brick-and-mortar stores, it is a consumer-facing interface that validates customers’ credit card details. Securely forwarding this information to the merchant and supporting banks, it ensures smooth online transactions so that you get paid promptly.
A payment gateway carries out three key processes – collection, transfer, and authorisation. During the collection process, customers will navigate to the payment page that is either provided by the payment gateway or it will simply forward the credit or debit card details entered to the payment gateway. During the transfer phase, the payment gateway will encrypt all the details for a secure transfer to a payment processor, also known as the acquiring bank. Lastly, the customer’s issuing bank and card network will authorise the transaction before it is sent back to the payment gateway to inform the merchant and customer of a successful or unsuccessful online payment attempt.
In Australia, there is an extensive list of payment gateway providers, amongst local and international ones, to process the payments of your business. Although there are several payment gateways such as Braintree and PaymentExpress, these options require the additional step of applying for a merchant account to accept card payments. Therefore, choosing payment service providers that offer payment gateway integration and a merchant account is a quicker and easier way to get started. Some of these include:
Easy to set up and use, with several customisation options, it comes as no surprise that PayPal is one of the most commonly used online payment platforms globally. Offering payment processing services for e-commerce vendors, it accepts a wide range of credit and debit cards, sharpening the user experience, indirectly helping the growth of your e-commerce orders.
The standard rate for Australia based PayPal users starts from 2.6% of the total transaction value, with an additional AU$0.30 fixed fee. International transactions cost higher, with a 3.6% fee in addition to the currency conversion fee. However, with several checkout options like PayPal Pay in 4, which is included in PayPal Checkout, that gives customers more ways to buy and pay, PayPal is a good option to get your business up and running quickly. With PayPal Express Checkout, PayPal Payflow Pro and PayPal powered by Braintree listed as some of the many payment providers on Shopify, WooCommerce, and BigCommerce, regardless of the size of a business, PayPal will provide a diverse range of tools to enable the growth of your business.
With eWay promising merchants a seamless and secure online payment solution to grow their business, this payment gateway is trusted by established businesses like LG. Boasting over 250 software add-ons, this popular payment gateway in Australia requires no set-up fee and comes with built-in fraud detection tools. eWay is also one of the payment gateways supported by online platforms like BigCommerce, WooCommerce, Shopify, and more.
Accepting credit and debit cards like Visa and Mastercard, as well as digital wallet integration, eWay enhances your customer’s purchasing experience with its multiple payment options. Although eWay only provides payment processing services to businesses in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong and Macau, it is undoubtedly one of the more scalable payment solutions to leverage.
Offering a fully integrated suite of payment products, the Stripe payment gateway is one of the most powerful online payment platforms designed for e-commerce businesses. Compatible with commonly used e-commerce platforms like BigCommerce and as an add-on listed as ‘WooCommerce Stripe Payment Gateway’, Stripe provides businesses with a range of tools that can be used to customise their own payment process. Supporting over 100 currencies and featuring mobile payments, one-click checkouts, 24/7 support, data security and encryption, and more, business owners have to look no further for a complete payments platform.
Not requiring a merchant account, Pin Payments allows merchants to get started for free. With one account, there are multiple ways to take payments – online store, invoice, in-person, custom apps, and more. Merchants can also integrate payments with major e-commerce providers such as Shopify, WooCommerce, and Magento, simplifying the process of launching the best online store.
Running with the motto “you only pay when you are paid”, merchants can rest assured that there are no hidden fees, monthly costs, or lock-in contracts. Competitively priced at 1.75% of each transaction value with an additional AU$0.30 for domestic cards, alongside other multi-currency payment solutions, Pin Payments guarantees maximum convenience.
Deciding on the right payment gateway requires much consideration. From payable fees to currencies, there are many factors to consider while navigating the complex world of e-commerce businesses. But handling your e-commerce orders and maintaining customer satisfaction does not end there. To simplify your logistics and shipping processes, DHL Express has several digital partners and integrations. Be it DHL for WooCommerce or DHL for Shopify, open an account with us for more information on how we can help you scale your online business.