For most of the world’s history, people paid for things in person by physically handing over actual goods or some type of money. Merchants never asked, “How do I take payments on my WordPress site?” since there really weren’t any other than a physical exchange.
That changed dramatically when credit cards became common, and even more dramatically when the Internet took hold and people started buying things online. In online transactions, the buyer and the seller are not in the same room, and often not even in the same country. How do you overcome that obstacle?
There are three basic things you need so that customers can use credit cards/debit cards to pay you for goods and services easily and securely.
Many things need to be done to enable customers to make credit card/debit card payments online, and it can be confusing. A lot of it depends on the type of website you are using. Finding a good payment processor can go a long way toward getting it all figured out, but, today, we’ll take a brief look at the question “How do I take payments on my WordPress site?”, specifically in the case of high-risk businesses.
Even if you offer excellent products and services, you won’t be in business for very long if you don’t have a way for customers to make payments. For credit card purchases, this means using a payment gateway, which is simply a system for customers to provide payment information that is sent to the merchant’s bank. A good payment gateway is especially important for a high-risk business.
When you’re at a store, the payment gateway is the device where you swipe or insert your card. On a website, the payment gateway is usually a page that displays a form for customers to enter their payment information, which is then sent to a third party for processing, such as Authorize.net and NMI.
Setting up a payment gateway on a WordPress site is relatively simple, but there are a few things that you will need, including the following.
A vital part of setting up a website page for payments is to include a shopping cart utility. An online shopping cart functions much like a shopping cart at a supermarket (but without that one squeaky wheel). Customers put products they want in the shopping cart, then start the payment process from the shopping cart when they’re ready to make the purchase.
You can, of course, develop the app yourself or pay an app developer to do it for you, but there are a variety of shopping cart apps available, such as WooCommerce and Magento. You just must figure out which one best meets your needs, is reliable, and is compatible with the other technology you are using. WooCommerce and other plugins build a secure payment checkout page for you, which significantly shortens the time it takes to get your payment gateway up and running.
Whether at a physical store or online, the payment information provided by the customer is sent to a third party and processed so that money is transferred from the customer’s account to the merchant’s account. If your business has a merchant account at a traditional bank, etc., the bank is the payment processor.
In other cases, the payment is processed by a company that specializes in payment processing. This is especially true in the case of high-risk businesses that have a hard time opening a merchant account at traditional banks, etc.
As with shopping cart utilities, you need to find a payment processor that you can rely on and that is a good fit for your business. A payment processor is focused on ensuring that the process functions smoothly and correctly.
Be sure to find a payment processor that has a wide range of technological tools, a solid commitment to thorough compliance with laws, regulations, and industry standards, and a secure payment system and gateway. The payment processor should also have a variety of other resources and business partners to give it greater flexibility to address your needs. Zen Payments, for example, works with 20 processing banks.
It will make it easier and more comfortable for customers to make payments, while at the same time bringing a higher degree of stability and confidence within your business as well.