The right credit card processing options can make or break a website, as customers need to have a variety of ways to pay. The more options that customers have–and the more quickly that those options can be successfully presented to each potential buyer–the higher the chances of a successful sale, which is why a merchant account is such a valuable service for a business with an Internet presence. Paypal has gained favor with thousands of online businesses because it seems to offer simple credit card processing, handled through a third party. The service allows customers to input a credit card, debit card or checking account, which is used for purchases after a quick redirect through Paypal’s website.
However, it’s important to note that there are several problems with a direct merchant account from Paypal or any similar website that directs customers through a separate web portal. For one, some customers are unfamiliar with Paypal and its security features, and despite the service’s positive reputation, they will refuse to use it. There’s something inconvenient about creating a Paypal account to make a purchase, and even when a website uses a direct payment portal from their Paypal merchant account, customers may still see it as an insecure option. For businesses, it’s virtually impossible to quickly and easily explain the security of Paypal to web visitors. In most cases, buyers are only on a website for a very short period of time, and if they aren’t able to find a payment option that they like, they’ll simply move on.
The other big problem with using Paypal exclusively for credit card processing is the fees of the service. Due to Paypal’s popularity, it can be one of the most expensive options for many types of businesses. A well-implemented merchant account from a credit card processing company provides much lower fees per sale than Paypal and can offer better shopping cart options, a faster, more intuitive user experience and a more professional look overall.
The best tactic for a growing online business is to develop a portfolio of payment options for customers. When Paypal is an option along with straight entry of VISA, Mastercard and other major credit/debit bankcards, customers feel more at ease in making a purchase. A fast shopping cart application combined with a variety of payment choices improve the chances of sales and customer retention and can make a big difference in capturing business from any type of market. Paypal offers a quick way to take credit and debit card payments, but an expanded set of credit card processing tools provides an unquestionably better user experience and more sales for any business.