Payment gateways are the driving engine facilitating online transactions for e-commerce businesses. The right payment gateway provider and integration optimization can directly impact sales conversion rates. And while there are well-known best practices for setting up payment systems, some less obvious optimizations can give your business an extra strategic edge.
Offer Multiple Payment Options
Providing customers with multiple payment options increases the likelihood of them completing a purchase. Options like credit cards, debit cards, and PayPal are now standard in most online checkout flows. However, many other payment choices are lately available for website owners.
1. Digital Wallets
Digital wallets like Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, Venmo, and Cash App are becoming increasingly popular payment methods, especially for mobile users. According to a recent study, over 47% of US consumers use digital wallet apps for in-store and online purchases.
Digital wallets in your payment gateway allow you to tap into a significant user base who prefer transacting through their mobile devices. Apple Pay and Google Pay inclusions incentivize mobile shoppers to breeze through checkout in seconds using fingerprint or facial recognition instead of typing card details.
Shopify research found that mobile orders using digital wallets had 94% higher average order values than other payment methods.
2. Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) Services
Buy now, pay later payment options like Affirm, Afterpay, Klarna, and Zip allow customers to pay for purchases through short-term installment plans. It enables budget-conscious buyers the flexibility to make smaller payments over time instead of one large lump sum during checkout.
According to an Affirm survey, nearly 3 in 5 shoppers have used BNPL services before, with millennial and Gen Z audiences more likely to leverage these options. BNPL provides your customers the ability to split payments evenly across biweekly or monthly plans. Your customers will see higher-priced items appear more affordable, and the conversion rate will improve.
3. Bank Transfers
Allowing direct bank transfers or ACH payments provides an alternative option for users unable or unwilling to use credit cards or other payment methods.
Bank transfers take longer to process, usually 1-3 business days, so this is suited for businesses with less urgency on order fulfillment timelines. However, it broadens payment options for your customer base, some of whom may prefer bank transfers for control, privacy, or budgeting reasons.
Accepting payments via cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, Ethereum, USDC, or Dai allows you to tap into the niche yet passionate user segment who prefer transacting through blockchain-based assets.
According to Chainalysis, global crypto payments grew by over 567% in the past year, indicating growing mainstream traction. Supporting crypto payments requires some additional technical integration and volatility management.
5. Cash on Delivery
For local businesses with offline delivery and logistics operations, allowing customers to pay by cash on delivery (COD) can greatly expand your reach. Cash on delivery bridges the gap for customers who are more comfortable transacting in cash, do not have banking access, or otherwise cannot use online payment methods.
This requires having delivery teams equipped to accept and handle cash securely. However, offering COD will enable you to cater to offline customer segments and integrate payment collection into your on-the-ground operations.
The more diverse payment options you can provide, the higher the likelihood of customers finding a convenient method suiting their needs and preferences. Diversity lowers purchase friction when you seamlessly integrate payment into the website and broadens your addressable consumer base.
Tips for Offering Multiple Payment Options:
- Consider your target customer demographics and identify which new payment methods would appeal most to them. For example, digital wallets work well for younger mobile-first shoppers.
- Assess additional costs associated with supporting new payment methods, such as transaction fees and integration costs. Weigh them against the expected incremental sales revenue.
- Determine the development effort required to integrate the additional payment options within your e-commerce platforms and apps.
- Evaluate risks such as volatility (for crypto) and cash handling logistics (for COD) to ensure you can manage them.
- Display all available payment method icons clearly throughout your site to advertise the expanded options to your customers.
- Monitor performance after launch and double down on expanding the most popular new payment options further.
Optimize for Mobile Checkout
With over 60% of online traffic now coming from mobile devices, having a seamless, mobile-optimized payment gateway integration is crucial. Ensure your payment provider has a mobile SDK or API that allows fast in-app integrations. The checkout process should be designed to limit steps and typing requirements, even on smaller screens, or especially on them.
Here are some tips to optimize mobile payment:
1. Store Customer Details
Allow customers to store their personal, shipping, and payment details in their user account profile for faster autofill during repeat purchases. Stored information is more convenient than typing on mobile keyboards.
2. Digital Wallets
As mentioned earlier in the article, enable mobile digital wallets like Apple Pay and Google Pay to capitalize on their skyrocketing adoption rates.
3. Biometric Authentication
Leverage fingerprint or facial recognition in digital wallets to verify identity instead of typing passwords. Over 62% of mobile banking apps already support biometric logins, indicating rising consumer comfort with biometrics.
4. Guest Checkouts
Remove friction in the checkout process by allowing guest payments without requiring user accounts. A mandatory account creation before purchasing deters many mobile buyers.
5. 1-Click Reordering
For logged-in repeat customers, enable easy reordering of a previous purchase via a single click to boost convenience and conversion rates.
6. Remember Cart
Save abandoned shopping cart contents to the user’s account so the items remain if they leave and return later to complete the purchase. Sync cart data across devices.
7. presidency min SDKs
Use lightweight, optimized SDKs for accepting in-app payments via methods like Apple Pay and Google Pay. Native integrations provide superior mobile experiences compared to web views.
With phone-friendly payment optimization, you will notice tangible gains in mobile conversion rates and fewer abandoned carts. The key is reducing the steps involved while leveraging mobile-centric technologies like biometrics and digital wallets.
Tips for Optimizing Mobile Payments:
- Prioritize native SDK integrations over the mobile web for in-app checkout flows.
- Streamline design with minimal fields, touch targets, and typing requirements.
- Allow guest checkouts to eliminate mandatory user account creation.
- Autofill customer data from user profiles or through digital wallet integration.
- Support biometric logins like fingerprint and face unlock where possible.
- Enable easy reordering for returning customers via 1-click payments.
- Provide a persistent cart that syncs across devices to avoid losing items.
- Test payment flows on iOS and Android devices to identify pain points.
- Monitor mobile conversion metrics pre and post-optimization to quantify impact.
Add Payment Method Icons
Visually displaying the payment options accepted on your website serves multiple purposes:
- Builds Trust – Users recognize logos of reputable payment providers, building credibility for your business.
- Provides Reassurance – Displaying major payment brands like Visa, Mastercard, etc., reassures users that checkout is secure.
- Reduces Friction – Icons quickly communicate available payment methods without requiring custom explanations.
- Influences Decisions – Seeing a preferred payment option logo can nudge users to complete checkout.
That’s why e-commerce sites prominently display payment method icons in the header, product page, shopping cart, and checkout flow. For example, adding Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover, PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and other supported brand logos where customers will see them conveys your payment options visually.
You want to advertise the specific digital wallets, bank transfer providers, and BNPL services you accept as well.
Tips for Adding Payment Method Icons:
- Obtain official icon images and usage guidelines from each payment provider rather than custom-designing icons.
- Make icons visually consistent in size, style, and placement throughout all pages.
- Place icon strips at the top of pages, product pages, cart, and checkout for maximum visibility.
- Ensure all displayed logos match the payment methods enabled to avoid misleading users.
- Update icon graphics if you add or remove a payment method to accurately represent supported options.
- Consider showing icons in the main navigation menu for persistent visibility.
- Prioritize icons for payment methods you most want to promote or grow usage for.
- A/B-test different icon placements to identify areas getting maximum user attention.
Adding recognizable payment method icons strategically boosts trust and reduces purchase anxiety.
Allow Partial Payments
For higher-priced products or services, offering customers the flexibility to make partial payments can help convince users to complete purchases.
This increases affordability for customers and allows you to secure orders with larger total values that users may not be able to pay in one go.
Here are some types of partial payment options to consider:
1. Pay in 3 or Pay in 4
Solutions like Affirm and Afterpay allow splitting a purchase amount into 3 or 4 installments due every 2 weeks. A $400 order can be paid as $135 today, $135 in 2 weeks, $130 after 4 weeks.
2. Monthly Installments
PayPal Credit, Affirm, and Klarna allow splitting payments across 6-12 months through fixed monthly installment plans. The order amount gets evenly divided over each month with predictable repeating charges.
3. Slice Payments
Services like Slice allow splitting a payment over 4-12 months. However, instead of fixed monthly payments, the installments dynamically adapt based on the user’s purchase activity and payments made.
4. Down Payment with Balance
An upfront down payment followed by a second charge later for the remaining balance is simpler to implement. Upfront payments provide two-part flexibility, leading to a collection of more valuable orders.
Enabling partial payment options requires clear communication about the installment amounts, payment dates, and terms to avoid customer confusion. A partial payment with a balance can enable high-value purchase conversion while improving customer loyalty through flexible experiences.
5. Tips for Partial Payments:
- Assess risks with managing collections for future installment payments spanning months.
- Absorb the added cost of payment processing fees spread over multiple transactions.
- Display installment payment plan details before the customer commits payment to set expectations.
- Offer the most accessible partial payment options first, gradually expanding available installment plan flexibility.
- Promote high-priced products, collections, or bundles with partial payment messaging to prompt usage.
- Track purchases by customers using installments to understand adoption and repeat behavior.
- Update payment timelines, amounts, and workflow if you switch payment service providers.
Savvy leveraging partial payment options increases large order conversion while providing a customer-centric experience that builds loyalty, further incentivizing bigger purchases they may not have made using single payments.
Leverage Loyalty Programs
Loyalty and rewards programs integrated with your payment gateway allow you to build lasting customer relationships. This type of incentive provides ways to engage users beyond one-time transactions to encourage revisits and repeat purchases.
Loyalty features you can connect to payment transactions include:
Offer customers increasing discount % as they reach higher lifetime purchase milestones. For example, 5% off with $500-lifetime spend, 10% off at $2000, and 15% off at $4000.
Provide cashback that can be redeemed on future transactions when users pay through preferred payment methods like stored cards or digital wallets.
Award points for purchases completed that accumulate and can be redeemed for discounts, gift cards, free products, fast shipping, or early access.
4. Free Shipping
Offer free standard or expedited shipping once customer spending hits set targets like $150 over 3 months.
5. VIP Access
Provide exclusive early product launches, sales, or content to top-tier loyalty members only.
6. Birthday Offers
Offer a discount or, why not, even free products or services during customers’ birthday month to recognize them and promote a purchase.
Show appreciation beyond the individual transactions to increase satisfaction and retention. Loyalty programs act as a strategic sales prompt, encouraging members to spend more to maximize rewards.
Tips for Payment-Linked Loyalty Programs:
- Make sign-up and membership free to enroll users rather than charging a fee.
- Gamify progress dashboards so users can see how rewards accumulate and how close they are to the next level.
- Promote loyalty tiers with exciting names like Gold, Platinum, and Diamond rather than generic Member Levels.
- Share special member-exclusive perks and sneak peeks to make them feel valued.
- Reward members for positive behaviors like reviews, referrals, feedback surveys, etc.
- Enable easy loyalty program integration when choosing payment solutions.
- Surprise and delight with random bonuses, unexpected upgrades, or gifts.
Loyalty and payment tools work side-by-side to enable advanced segmentation, personalized engagement, and strategic incentives, driving revisits and repurchases from your satisfied customer base.
Payment gateway integrations go beyond basic setup and security.
Creative enhancements provide unique advantages that directly impact sales conversions:
- Offer Multiple Payment Options – More choice equals more customers able to checkout conveniently.
- Optimize for Mobile Checkout – Frictionless mobile experiences equal higher mobile revenue.
- Display Payment Method Icons – Visual trust symbols influence customer payment decisions.
- Allow Partial Payments – Installments for large purchases remove affordability barriers.
- Leverage Loyalty Programs – Strategic incentives and rewards drive revisits and repeats.
Start by identifying areas of friction in your current payment workflows. Then, explore appropriate solutions from the toolbox of optimization techniques outlined above—track sales metrics before and after deploying enhancements to quantify the revenue growth impact. Double down on optimizations, delivering the highest ROI.
Small tweaks and unconventional thinking can yield big wins. Payment innovation helps not just facilitate transactions but maximizes them. Customer-centric convenience, flexibility, and experiences will differentiate you from the competition.
The world of payments keeps advancing with new technologies and capabilities. Work creatively within your business model to deploy innovations simplifying payment integration into your e-commerce infrastructure.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are some benefits of offering multiple payment options?
Some benefits include:
- Appeals to broader customer demographics and preferences.
- Provides more convenience to improve conversion rates.
- Taps into the growth of emerging payment methods.
- Future-proofs your offerings as the payment landscape evolves.
- Caters to underserved segments through niche options.
- Boosts average order values and revenue.
How can I optimize mobile checkout?
Tips for optimizing mobile checkout include:
- Streamline form fields and typing requirements;
- Support digital wallets like Apple Pay or Google Pay;
- Allow easy guest checkout without account creation;
- Autofill customer data via user account profiles;
- Use biometrics like fingerprint login where possible;
- Enable persistent carts across devices;
- Store payment details for one-click reordering;
- Test across a range of mobile devices to catch issues.
Should I offer buy now pay later installment plans?
Buy now, pay later can benefit certain businesses by:
- appealing to budget-conscious millennial/Gen Z shoppers;
- increasing average order values by improving affordability;
- converting abandoned carts from users worried about large lump payments;
- building customer loyalty through flexible payment experiences;
- potentially offsetting added risk with higher order values.
Do your research to confirm that BNPL aligns with your business, customers, and risk appetite. Start conservatively by offering installments on high-priced items first.
What payment method icons should I display?
Important icons to display include:
- Major credit/debit card brands like Visa, Mastercard, and American Express.
- Top digital wallets accepted like Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Venmo.
- PayPal or PayPal Credit if supported.
- Any BNPL services like Affirm, Afterpay, Klarna.
- Bank transfer providers like Plaid.
- Cryptocurrencies accepted, if any, like Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Show all payment options you accept. Logo assets for each payment provider will ensure customers understand what they are dealing with, especially if your partners are well-known names.
How do I set up a customer loyalty program?
Steps for implementing a customer loyalty program:
- Define objectives like increasing repeats, growing referrals, and boosting LTV.
- Identify your rewards – points, discounts, cashback, gifts.
- Categorize loyalty tiers with perks – Gold, Platinum, Diamond.
- Integrate with payment systems to track transactions.
- Build member dashboards to showcase progress.
- Promote membership benefits and rewards.
- Continually test and optimize the program features.
Focus on providing exclusive emotional value beyond discounts to drive genuine customer engagement.