Types of Alternative Payment Methods

If you already accept credit and debit card payments online, it may be time to consider offering some alternative payment methods. By giving customers more ways to pay, you can boost your conversion rate and reduce the number of abandoned shopping carts. Let’s look at some specific examples of alternative payment methods.

E-Wallets as an Alternative Payment Method

Digital wallets, or e-wallets, are services that allow consumers to pay for goods online without the use of a traditional debit or credit card. The customer will typically set up an account and link it to their bank account or credit card. They can store money in their e-wallet account to make payments online, or in some cases, they can transfer money directly from their bank account when making an online purchase.

PayPal is one of the best-known examples of a service that works this way. When you go to pay for an item online, you’ll often see the PayPal logo on the checkout page. Some consumers like using this option because it saves them from having to manually enter their credit card number, expiration date, and security code. Other popular e-wallets around the world include Apple Pay, Venmo, Alipay, and WeChat.

QPay Europe also offers a convenient e-wallet service. Transactions are secure, quick, and easy, usually taking less than 24 hours. All payments are transmitted via our encrypted, PCI-compliant payment gateway.

Bank Transfers as Credit Card Alternative

A bank transfer occurs when funds are transmitted directly from one bank account to another. Transfers must typically be approved by the sender via online banking. Many traditional payment processors don’t support this service due to the added vulnerability of requiring full bank account numbers, but bank transfers are nevertheless becoming more common in the world of online sales.

In many cases, bank transfers are used for the purpose of recurring payments. The customer provides their bank account number and approves the recurring transaction, and each payment is deducted from the account directly.

Wire transfers are a type of bank transfer, but they shouldn’t be confused with the types of transfers facilitated through online banking. A wire transfer is a specific type of transaction that’s sent via a wire network. Because these types of transactions can be anonymous and difficult to trace, it’s recommended that you only approve wire transactions from people you know personally.

Cryptocurrencies (Latest Alternative Payment Method)

Cryptocurrency has become one of the most popular alternative payment methods in the world in the last few years. It is a digital currency that’s encrypted using cryptography. Proponents love this type of payment option because it’s almost impossible to counterfeit or duplicate.

This form of alternative payment method has become increasingly popular around the world, and many merchants aren’t sure how to handle them. Savvy merchants who do accept these currencies can obtain a competitive edge among consumers who prefer these virtual payment options.

Though Bitcoin is perhaps the best-known cryptocurrency, there are more than 5,000 such currencies currently in circulation. Other popular options include Ethereum, Ripple XRP, and Litecoin. If you want to accept these types of currencies, you’ll need to work with a payment processor that supports them.

Buy Now, Pay Later

The “buy now, pay later” (BNPL) model is also becoming more popular. The customer purchases an item on your website but doesn’t pay for it right away. Instead, they pay for it in monthly or biweekly installments, usually divided among four or more payments.

Companies like Sezzle and Klarna have become leaders in this payment model. They partner with ecommerce businesses and serve as the mediator between the customer and the merchant. As a business, you would typically be paid up front by the BNPL provider, and they would then recoup the cost from the customer.

Mobile Payments

Mobile payments shouldn’t be confused with e-wallets. While digital wallet payments are often made on mobile devices, a mobile payment is a different type of payment method that’s gaining traction throughout Asia and Europe.

The customer makes a payment using their mobile phone. But rather than having the funds deducted from a bank account or digital wallet, the cost is added to their phone bill. Mobile payments can be made online or in person.

Electronic Checks

An e-check, as the name suggests, is like a paper check in digital form. It’s sometimes called an internet check or online check. These transactions are similar to bank transfers, but they’re generally simpler and more secure.

Instead of using the payment gateways shared by credit card transactions, payments are sent via a secure electronic funds-transfer system like an automated clearing house. As a result, e-checks tend to have lower processing fees. Each transaction is facilitated with the help of the merchant’s payment processor.

Why You Need to Accept Alternative Payment Methods

In 2017, the average cart abandonment rate was 78.65%. The number has been creeping up in recent years due to heightened ecommerce competition and increased economic uncertainty. If you want to keep your customers happy, you need to offer more than just a quality product. You need a checkout process that’s fast, user-friendly, and convenient for consumers.

The more payment methods you offer, the more customers you’ll have access to—and the more customers will be happy to purchase from you. Offering more payment options is one of the best competitive edges you can give yourself, so don’t overlook its importance.

QPay Europe is the UK’s premier merchant services provider for businesses seeking the most payment options. Not only do we accept most major currencies, but we also work with a wide range of alternative payment methods. If you’d like to learn more, sign up today for your free quote. There’s no obligation, but if you do choose our services, we can get you up and running in as little as 12 hours.

Gain access to more traditional and alternative ways to accept payments, and discover how it can benefit your bottom line.

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