As you and many other businesses look to simplify their processing, all-in-one payment solutions are becoming more readily available. They provide flexible and comprehensive coverage for any merchant. Every day, merchants are switching to all-in-one payment providers to streamline workflows, save money, and have a partner in the industry they trust. In this blog, we will detail exactly what an “All-in-One” payments provider is, and why having one will set your business up for years of success.
What does a merchant services provider do?
Before diving in, it is important that you have a good foundation of payment processing basics. In previous blogs, we explained the “Who’s Who” of payment processing, as well as key terminology to know. The company maintaining your merchant account for processing may be called many names: Independent Sales Organization (ISO) is a loose term for any third-party sales representatives who represent the issuing banks for Visa. A Merchant Services Provider (MSP) is the term used for Mastercard transactions. We use the term Payment Solutions Provider and for simplicity will use that term for the duration of this blog. Merchant account providers give businesses the ability to accept debit and credit cards in payment for goods and services. This can be face-to-face, on the telephone, or over the internet.
Payment processing basics
From the card reader at a point of sale, your payments provider will collect cardholder data, connect to the acquiring bank of your account, and provide a verification, or authorization, for the purchase. All of this process takes place within the merchant environment. Understanding everything involved in a merchant environment, from the gateway to tokenization, will help you protect customer data and reduce fees for your business. To learn more about the role of credit card processors and financial institutions, read more in our “Who’s Who” blog.
What is an All-in-One payment solutions provider?
Merchant services providers offer a range of solutions for large and small businesses, depending on the provider. Some services offered can include the ability to accept online payments, multiple payment methods, or the ability to accept credit card payments with easy management and reporting from a desktop computer, mobile smartphone, or within a preferred ERP.
An all-in-one payment solution provider will be your “one stop shop” for everything related to payments. This simplifies your billing, eliminates duplicative fees, and ensures that your payments provider is truly an expert in all aspects of the payments industry and process.
- Gateway: The gateway is a merchant service that securely sends credit card information from a website or brick-and-mortar store to the payment networks for processing and then returns transaction details and responses from the payment network back to the merchant. Just like the physical point of sale terminal at a brick-and-mortar store, the payment gateway acts as the liaison to link transactions taking place on a website and the payment processor. Gateways are required to provide a secure connection to transmit information and maintain safety compliance and standards.
- Integrations developer: Software developers are necessary to build the integrations between the payment gateway and the accounting software, eCommerce, and/or point-of-sale (POS) software. Seamlessly integrated solutions are, in fact, essential for consumer data to be easily transferred between the different platforms and programs that companies use to organize data and facilitate workflows. Some payment processing solutions will only be partially-integrated. Seamlessly integrated solutions connect each integration together (shopping cart, ERP, POS, etc.), allowing for back and forth communication between platforms with a shared token for easy reconciliation. By using shared tokens, this creates a seamless experience for customer and business users.
An All-in-One payments provider will have an integrations team on their staff to ensure that all integrations are seamless, and to maintain high standards of quality in various payment processing features and functionality desired by the business owner.
- eCommerce shopping cart integrations or online payment portals: Secure, online payment portals are essential for business – now more than ever before. It is important that your payment solution can integrate into multiple shopping carts and that you consider online payment portal functionality when evaluating which payment solution to process with. Your business may need a way to enable customers to pay invoices online quickly, securely, and easily.
- Encryption, tokenization, and data security The only payment solutions you should consider are those that prioritize data security. Protecting cardholders data isn’t just good PR. Failing to maintain PCI Compliance can have steep costs for your business. Tokenization, encryption, and the latest advancements in data security should be major features of your payment gateway and your payment solution as a whole.
- Features and Automations Not all payment providers provide equal service or features. Automated level 3 discounts can result in major savings on Business-to-business (B2B) and Business-to-government (B2G) transactions, potentially saving your business thousands of dollars a year, but not all payment providers or solutions will automate these savings for you. Some other key questions to consider are:
- Does the provider offer multi-currency options?
- Is the solution offered truly omni-channel, allowing customers to seamlessly flow through multiple payment options such as: online eCommerce shopping carts, recurring/subscription billing, invoicing through online payment portals, ACH and bank-to-bank transfers, and more?
- What is the customer service like with this provider, and do I have access to 24/7 live support?
As the payments industry grows and changes, APS Payments is here to help! APS Payments is an all-in-one payment processor that offers omni-channel payment solutions that are integrated into the business systems you use every day! APS Payments also provide features that are easy to use, such as APS ClickToPay, to help you get paid faster! Online payment portals like APS ClickToPay are available with many of our integrations, and help ensure payments can be made remotely.
If a prebuilt integration is not available for the business solutions you use, an API is available to develop a custom integration and our in-house development team is on standby to help. The future of business software is trending towards more friendly interfaces and easier to use programs, and APS Payments will be leading the way!
APS Payments, a REPAY company, has a team of payments experts standing by to educate you on integrated payment processing. APS Payments offers omni-channel B2C and B2B integrated payment solutions and is a gateway and processor that is trusted by thousands of merchants daily to process payments. With payment integrations to many leading ERP and eCommerce platforms like Acumatica, AccountMate, Adagio, Sage, SAP Business One, Magento, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, Miva, and more, APS Payments is leading the way in the payments industry by providing omni-channel integrated payment solutions and 24/7 live customer support.
There is a lot to know when researching the best payments solution for your business. This free credit card processing buyer’s guide can help you stay informed on the basics, features, and trends to secure the best possible payments solutions for your business.