It seems that accepting payment should be one of the most simple aspects of running a business. You’ve successfully reached your customer, sold them on your product, now all you have to do is collect payment. So why is this a challenge?
First, accepting payments, especially from international customers, requires a level of trust and security. Before shipping goods internationally, particularly luxury goods sold to customers in developing markets, identity verification is an important step to preventing fraud. In addition, government regulations can add a host of additional hurdles in accepting payments.
Second, the technical integration of payment systems can be a difficult process. Linking bank accounts to payment providers and networks has to occur even if businesses choose to accept only a single form of payment. But the reality for most businesses is managing several different protocols. Additionally, when expanding to online retail platforms such as Mercado Libre, retailers need a solution to access these disconnected payment gateways.
Lastly, there are numerous bodies regulating payments. The government, banks, and other payment platforms all have specific regulations for accepting payments. Retailers must comply with card networks, such as Visa and MasterCard’s policies. PCI compliance certifications must be renewed every year. Government regulations also complicates the payment process. The Patriot Act created a host of new requirements for financial services providers. While a proposed online sales tax could add new headaches for internet merchants.
Fortunately, the challenging payment landscape does have some bright islands. Platforms like WorldView offer solutions to prevent fraud through identity and address verification. eCommerce solutions offer support for small merchants and technologies like Square are eliminating the need for point of sale systems.