Online payments

How to add an online payment feature to your website?

Online shopping and payments statistics are booming. How to add this functionality to your website to benefit from technology?

In the last decade, we got used to being able to pay online for everything from basic shopping to utilities to food delivery, etc. In the last three years, since the beginning of the global pandemic, being able to do everything online has become even more critical for businesses to stay afloat.

Here are a few online shopping statistics:

  • On average, an online shopper spends around $2.39 per visit [Source]
  • The share of mobile online retail traffic is 73% [Source]
  • The share of mobile/digital wallets in total e-commerce transactions is 49% [Source]
Retail e-commerce sales worldwide from 2014 to 2025
Retail e-commerce sales worldwide from 2014 to 2025 [Source: Statista]

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on the way people shop online. Here are some of the ways online shopping has changed since the pandemic began:

  1. Increased adoption of online shopping: The pandemic has accelerated the adoption of online shopping, as people have been forced to stay at home and avoid in-person shopping. This has led to a significant increase in the number of people shopping online.
  2. Shift towards essential items: Initially, there was a surge in demand for essential items such as groceries, household goods, and health supplies. Online grocery shopping and delivery services have seen a significant increase in demand.
  3. Changes in delivery services: The pandemic has also affected delivery services, leading to delays and changes in delivery policies. Many retailers have also introduced contactless delivery options to reduce the risk of transmission.
  4. Rise of e-commerce platforms: The pandemic has also led to a rise in the popularity of e-commerce platforms like Amazon, as well as smaller, niche online retailers. As a result, the number of online payment integrations has risen as well.
  5. Focus on online experiences: With the shift to online shopping, retailers have had to focus on improving the online shopping experience for their customers, including making their websites more user-friendly, offering virtual shopping options, and improving customer service.

There are many e-commerce platforms that can be used out of the box to create an online shopping experience. However, there are also times when the standard tools don’t do exactly what you need because you might have different payment models or bonuses, or other factors. This is where you get the need for a customized online payment checkout process.

In this article, we’ll talk about the steps for building a payment checkout. As a result, you’ll be able to do this on your own or hire developers to do it for you (but you’ll know what you need to provide so it’s no longer a blind process.)

How to build a payment checkout

Step 1: Choose the gateway

There are numerous payment gateways available on the market. Examples include such well-known services as PayPal, Stripe, and Square. Technically, you can develop your own, but that’s a lot of hassle and quite expensive. Also, these products have been on the market for a long time therefore many of the issues are taken care of.

Step 2: Integrate with the gateway

Integrate the chosen payment gateway into your website or application. This will typically involve creating an account with the gateway and using their API to process transactions.

Most of the payment gateways have exhaustive manuals on how to do the integration. For example, here are PayPal’s instructions [LINK].

Step 3: Create the checkout form

Create the checkout form or page where customers will enter their payment information. This should include fields for the customer’s name, credit card number, expiration date, and CVV code.

Step 4: Ensure security

Since you’re processing the sensitive financial data of your customers, you need to implement security measures to protect customer data, such as SSL encryption and PCI compliance.

It is important to note that there are legal and regulatory requirements for handling and processing payments, so make sure to comply with the laws of your country. It would be good to add GDPR compliance, for example, since the probability of someone coming over to your website from one of the countries covered by this regulation is quite high. (Better be safe than sorry, right?)

Step 5: Test the checkout

Before you launch your online store or service, test the checkout process to ensure that it is working correctly and that all transactions are being processed properly.

Step 6: Analyze the performance

Finally, you can use analytics to monitor your checkout page performance and customer behavior and track any errors or issues. We’ll stop a bit more on this topic below.

How to track conversion on online payments in google analytics or other tools?

There are various instruments that are available for tracking payment conversions on your website or mobile app. Some e-commerce platforms offer their own tools and many offer integration with Google Analytics since that’s one of the most widespread options.

To track conversions on online payments in Google Analytics (Universal Analytics), you can set up a conversion goal. Here’s an example of how to set up a goal to track successful payments:

  1. In your Google Analytics account, navigate to the “Admin” section and select the appropriate “View” from the dropdown menu.
  2. Under the “Goals” section, click on the “+ NEW GOAL” button.
  3. Select “Custom” as the goal type, and give your goal a name, such as “Payment Success”
  4. Select “Destination” as the goal type, and enter the URL of the “Thank You” page that customers are directed to after a successful payment.
  5. Select “Value” and enter the value of the purchase made.
  6. Click on “Save” to create the goal.
  7. Once you’ve set up the goal, you can view the conversion rate and other metrics related to it in the “Goals” report in Google Analytics.

Universal Analytics (GA3) is retiring in 2023, but if you’ve already set up these goals in UA, you can migrate them to measure e-commerce in GA4. It can be done in three ways according to the Google manual:

  • Use your UA e-commerce implementation to populate GA4 e-commerce events;
  • Replace your UA e-commerce implementation with GA4 e-commerce events;
  • Send e-commerce data to Analytics through UA and GA4 implementations.

Additionally, you can track conversion using other tools like:

  • Meta Pixel: add a code snippet to the “Thank you” page after the successful transaction.
  • Google Tag Manager: set up tags and triggers to track conversion events on your website.
  • Mixpanel: track events on your website and analyze the data to identify conversion funnels and track conversion rates.
  • Heap: set up automatic capture of all user interactions on your website and track conversion by creating custom events and metrics.
  • Hotjar: track conversion rates by creating heatmaps and recording user sessions to analyze user behavior and identify areas of improvement.

What are the most frequent errors with online payments in e-commerce?

There are several common errors that can occur with online payments in e-commerce:

Payment declined

Oh, snap! The credit card information was declined. Please check the information provided and contact your bank if necessary.

Payment Declined

This can happen due to a variety of reasons, such as incorrect payment information, insufficient funds, or a fraud alert from the customer’s bank.

Payment failed

Paypal is not able to process this order. Please contact the retailer for more information.

Gateway Error

This can occur if there is an issue with the payment gateway, such as a problem with the API or server downtime.

Invalid payment method

Your payment method was declined. Please enter valid payment method information.

Invalid Payment Method

This can occur if the customer attempts to use a payment method that is not accepted by the merchant, such as an expired credit card.

Your request couldn’t be processed at this time.

If you encounter this message more than once, please contact us and we’ll do our best to help.

Error code: 70005

Cart Error

This can occur if there is a problem with the customer’s shopping cart, such as items being out of stock or the wrong price being displayed.

Address information required

The shipping address provided is either incorrect or incomplete. Please update the information to receive information on shipping dates and costs.

Incorrect Address

This can occur if the customer enters the wrong billing or shipping address, which can cause issues with fraud detection and order fulfillment.

The secured browser could not be started

You may proceed at your own risk, but we could not launch the secured browser to ensure additional protection for your credit card numbers, banking transactions, and other sensitive data.

Associated error code: 0x84769d7

Security Error

This can occur if there is an issue with the website’s security, such as a lack of SSL encryption or PCI compliance, which can cause customers to be hesitant to enter their payment information.

A technical issue occurred.

There is a technical issue at your bank. Please try again after some time. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Technical issues

This can occur if there is an issue with the website’s code, a problem with the hosting provider, or other technical problems that can cause the payments to fail.

Your cart has been modified

Your cart has been modified since the last time you accessed it. Therefore, the shipping rate you previously selected no longer applies. Please review your cart.

Abandoned Cart

This can occur if a customer adds items to their cart but does not complete the checkout process, which can be due to a variety of reasons such as shipping costs, taxes, or any other unexpected cost.

By identifying and addressing these errors, you can improve the customer experience and increase the chances of successful transactions.

What are the challenges of integrating online payments on your website?

Integrating online payments on a website can come with a number of challenges, such as:

  • Security: Ensuring that customer payment information is kept secure and in compliance with industry standards, such as PCI-DSS, is crucial and may require additional resources and expertise.
  • Compliance: Complying with various laws and regulations related to online payments, such as the GDPR, can be complex and time-consuming and may require legal expertise.
  • Integration: Integrating a payment gateway with your website can require technical expertise and may involve dealing with different APIs and integration methods.
  • Scalability: As the number of transactions increases, the payment infrastructure must be able to handle the increased volume and traffic without any interruption.
  • User Experience: Creating a seamless and user-friendly checkout process that maximizes conversion rates can be challenging and require testing and optimization.
  • Fraud detection: With the increasing number of frauds, it is important to implement fraud detection systems to prevent unauthorized or fraudulent transactions, which requires a lot of effort and resources.
  • Reliability: Ensuring that your payment system is always available and reliable, especially during peak shopping, can be challenging.
  • Costs: Implementing and maintaining an online payment system can be costly, including costs for payment gateway fees, PCI compliance, fraud detection, and chargebacks.

By understanding and addressing these challenges, businesses can ensure that their online payment system is secure, compliant, and user-friendly, which can increase customer trust and ultimately drive more sales.

Custom or standard platform for online payments?

Is it better to create your own e-commerce platform or use a standard tool for online payments?

Whether to create your own e-commerce platform or use a standard tool depends on the specific needs of your business and the resources available to you.

Building your own e-commerce platform can give you complete control over the design and functionality of your website, as well as the ability to tailor the platform to the unique needs of your business. However, this can also be a significant investment in terms of time and money, as it will require a team of developers, designers, and project managers, and a significant budget to develop, test and maintain.

Using a standard tool, such as a pre-built e-commerce platform, can save time and money as it typically involves less development work and often comes with built-in features and functionalities. These platforms are also often more cost-effective, and with less maintenance cost. They also often come with pre-built integrations with popular payment gateways and shipping providers, as well as built-in analytics and reporting tools.

However, using a standard tool may also come with some limitations in terms of customization, and may not offer the same level of control and flexibility as building your own platform. It’s important to evaluate your business needs, budget, and resources before making a decision.

  • If you need to launch your e-commerce platform quickly, and you don’t have the resources to build your own platform, then using a standard tool would be a better option.
  • If you have the resources and you want a fully customized e-commerce platform that is tailored to your business, then building your own platform might be the better option.

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