Today, shopping experiences no longer need to revolve around malls or department stores. In the pre-internet age, customers who wanted to shop had no other alternative but to visit brick-and-mortar stores and pay for their purchase to the store cashier.
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Thanks to internet technologies, it’s now possible to shop online using only digital devices like smartphones, laptops or personal computers, and tablets. Businesses with mobile apps can bring their products and services in front of consumers wherever they are. In turn, buyers can order and pay for anything online—from food to clothing and books to food—you name it.
Modern shopping is not just limited to physical goods, though, as e-commerce applies to businesses across industries. Hence, consumers can pay utility bills, transfer money, book flights, and so many more using mobile payment platforms or facilities.
Here’s a list of modern payment methods that are making it easy for customers to shop and complete their purchases online, while also allowing merchants to offer convenient shopping for online buyers:
- Credit or debit card
Credit and debit cards were one of the first revolutionary payment methods that changed the way people shopped—it uses a credit line instead of cash. As technologies advanced, issuing companies made sure to integrate features into their credit cards that would allow people to make online purchases with them. This is in contrast to when credit card holders still had to present their card to the store where they were trying to purchase.
Credit or debit cards are also safer to use these days since they come with a security chip that protects the cardholder’s data. Consumers have an additional layer of protection courtesy of secure payment systems offered by websites that are engaged in online shopping.
E-wallets work like an online prepaid account, which allows owners to use funds from their e-wallet to buy goods from their favorite e-commerce sites. E-commerce stores can develop and launch their own wallet system within the site itself.
Meanwhile, e-commerce sites that don’t have the required infrastructure can partner with companies to use their e-wallet technology. For example, Gcash owners can use their account to pay for their online purchases since hundreds of online vendors accept the Gcash e-wallet as an alternative mode of payment in the absence of a credit or debit card.
Topping up e-wallets is also easy as long as an e-wallet account is linked to a bank account.
- Payment gateways
Payment gateways are a type of software that facilitates the processing and authorization of payments from customers to merchants. The role of payment gateways is to collect money from customers and send it to the merchant’s bank account.
Customers can use either their credit card or online banking account to transmit their payment via these gateways digitally. Alternatively, customers can pay using cash in physical outlets, and then the gateway’s virtual terminal will forward the payment to the merchant.
We’re living at a time when online technologies are taking the shopping experience to the next level. Businesses should take advantage of these modernizations, starting with providing alternative payment options for customers. The goal is to assist e-commerce customers, with particular attention to enhancing their online shopping experience as this can lead to repeat sales.