When we create an online store our final goal is to sell as much as possible, so when we choose the online payment methods we’re going to offer to our customers, we must also pursue this goal. However, to make this decision, we must analyze first what offers each method to our customers and which will they prefer in each case. So, we must know our target audience and take into account their preferences when deciding what online payment methods are better for our online store.
Cash on delivery
This is the most traditional payment method because, in fact, the payment isn’t actually made online. More and more online stores decide not to offer this modality that, little by little, is dying out. As is well known, cash on delivery payment consists of making the payment to the delivery person when receiving the order at home.
The only advantage of this payment method is to offer an alternative to those more distrustful or older users who still prefer to use cash and carry out the economic transaction with a person instead of doing it virtually. Although it’s usually considered a fairly safe way to pay, the truth is that the seller assumes a significant risk, because, in case of the order being rejected upon receipt, we’ll lose the sale and must also bear the shipping costs.
Payment by debit or credit card
It’s the most popular online payment method currently and the only one that offer many online stores nowadays. It offers many advantages, since for the customer who owns a debit or credit card, it’s much more convenient not to have to handle cash and be able to make the payment in a couple of minutes just by entering a few data.
As for security, if the appropriate measures are implemented this method is perfectly reliable as well as being the most convenient. First of all, if our payment gateway complies with the PCI-DSS standard, we can rely on it to securely store our customer’s data. On the other hand, including technologies such as 3D Secure double authentication or user’s sensitive data tokenization will guarantee secure purchases in our online store.
Payment by bank transfer
The online payment in advance by bank transfer is a method that, although it’s safe for both the seller and the online buyer, is falling into disuse due to its lack of practicality. It consists in providing the customer with a bank account number and that he or she makes a transfer for the amount to be paid. Later, when the payment is confirmed, the seller will proceed to send the order.
It’s easy to reach the conclusion that for the customer it’s very inconvenient to have to perform the tedious task of filling all the data required for a bank transfer and it’s also not particularly pleasant to have to wait longer than necessary to receive the order. This inevitably leads to a higher rate of purchase process abandonment and, consequently, the volume of sales decreases.
Although there are other online payment methods, many of them are different versions of the previous ones (such as payment with a virtual card or with an electronic wallet associated with a card) or belong to specific platforms in which not all customers have an account. Undoubtedly, the more options that are offered to the customer, the more likely we will be to get the sale, however the only method that’s essential today and that most users will prefer is the payment by debit or credit card through an online payment gateway.