Which payment methods to integrate

On the way to the checkout, the shop customer still has to choose the payment method. And this needs to be carefully chosen. Through experience, press and consumer protection
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Payment methods in the online shop

On the way to the checkout, the shop customer still has to choose the payment method. And this needs to be carefully chosen. Due to experience, press and consumer protection, shop customers are now very cautious when it comes to trusting online shops and rarely rely on advance payment, as this payment method can be disadvantageous from the customer’s point of view.

1. What payment methods does the customer love?

Of course, the chosen payment method should be free of costs and fees, but security (technical and contractual) and convenient usability are also very important.

Popular are:

  1. Payment on account
  2. PayPal
  3. Amazon Payment
  4. Instant bank transfer
  5. Credit card
  6. Debit
  7. Hire-purchase
  8. Collect on delivery

2. Which payment methods does the shop owner love?

For the shop operator, the conditions of the payment method, simplicity of integration and payment security play a role.

The most popular and widespread payment methods for online shops:

  1. Advance payment
  2. PayPal
  3. Payment on account
  4. Collect on delivery
  5. Credit card
  6. Instant bank transfer
  7. Debit

3. Factors in the choice of payment methods

In addition to the preferences of shop customers, the aspects of non-payment and processing costs are of course primarily important for shop operators.

If you don’t offer a suitable payment method for your customers, the abandonment rates during the purchase process increase rapidly. For example, it is not advisable to offer only payment methods where costs and non-payment are minimal (e.g. prepayment).

4. What are the options?

Shop operators can, for example, outsource their payment methods to third parties or use their services. A basic distinction can be made between acquirers (payment processors) and payment service providers (PSPs).

Acquirers provide the technical options for payment processing (e.g. for credit card payment), while PSPs take care of the entire process, offer the technical connection and usually combine several payment methods under one roof. Often, they also offer contract processing with the acquirers in order to simplify the bureaucratic process.

In addition to payment processing, there is also the problem of payment risk.

Especially in the case of payment on account, the shop operator assumes the complete risk of non-payment. PSPs also offer services ranging from receivables management (processing of the dunning process) to factoring (complete assignment of the receivables to the PSP – who then “collects” all outstanding invoices).

5. Selection of payment methods – criteria

  • Is there an interface to the existing shop system or can it be implemented quickly and affordably if desired?
  • Does the provider support the preferred payment methods of the target group?
  • Should the payment provider avoid appearing as much as possible and give the customer the impression that payment is being made “directly at the merchant”? Then shop operators should look for a white-label solution .
  • Can risk management be individually adapted, for example if the number of abandoned purchases increases after the introduction of risk management? After all, it doesn’t help if 30 percent of customers drop out because suddenly only prepayment and credit card are available as payment methods.
  • What about one-time implementation costs, monthly costs, and transaction fees? In the case of credit cards, the question of the discount, i.e. the service fee of the card issuer, is also crucial.
  • What about the cost-effectiveness in terms of shopping cart size? With a margin of 2.5 percent, a discount of 3.5 percent is virtually out of the question.

Source: T3N – Jochen G. Weber

6. Individual Payment Methods – Advantages and Disadvantages

Advance payment


  • Simple technical connection
  • No risk of non-payment
  • No transaction costs (except administrative expenses)


  • Very unpopular with the customer
  • Unstructured processing (manual receipt of payment)
  • Used less and less

Collect on delivery


  • Low risk of non-payment


  • Expensive for the customer
  • Risky for customers
  • Used less and less



  • Very popular with customers
  • Easy processing for customers
  • Low transaction costs (excluding WBS)


  • High risk of non-payment

Providers such as Klarna or PayPal can assume the payment risk here.



  • Popular with customers
  • Easy processing for customers
  • Low transaction costs (excluding WBS)


  • Technical connection can be complex (security)
  • Technical processing (banking, software, administration) can become complex (esp. SEPA)

Providers such as Saferpay or Ogone can take over the processing and risk here

Credit card


  • Very popular internationally
  • Easy processing for customers
  • Easy processing for shop operators (via PSP)
  • Becoming more and more popular


  • Technical connection can be complex (security)
  • Transaction costs are incurred

Providers such as Payone (PSP) can provide an easy connection here

Instant bank transfer


  • Easy processing for customers
  • Easy processing for shop operators (via connection or WBS)
  • No account required for customers (bank details are sufficient)


  • Transaction costs are incurred

Popular providers are Sofortüberweisung (now part of Klarna) and Giropay (Sparkassen)

New Payment Methods


  • Easy processing for customers
  • Easy processing for shop operators
  • Increasingly popular with customers


  • Transaction costs are incurred

PayPal, ClickandBuy, Amazon Payment, Google Wallet are examples of so-called digital wallets, i.e. accounts that the shop customer opens and then pays for using this account. The provider then usually guarantees the correct payment and offers a high level of security.

In the meantime, cash payments are also possible with the help of one provider: www.barzahlen.de.

From our point of view, it’s ideal: a good mix

It is recommended to offer a good mix. In addition to prepayment , it is always best to use PayPal, instant bank transfer and credit card, so you have the most common payment methods on board. If possible, payment on account should also be offered, but then the risk should be outsourced by means of a PSP such as PAYONE.

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