The most important part of any business is getting paid as efficiently as possible. This is especially true in the gaming industry where timely payment across high volumes is key to healthy revenue streams and ultimately profitability.
One of the first decisions an online gaming company needs to make is choosing its payment service provider. The decision is not always straightforward as there are numerous options on the market.
There is no ‘one size fits all’; this is why you need to take a decision based on your long-term business plan.
Here are some things to consider when deciding which payment service provider is right for your gaming business:
Payment Service Provider Reach
Will you be targeting a small geographical location or do you plan to expand into a number of international markets quickly? If your target is geographically contained, then you can probably opt for a local gateway. However, if you require the ability to grow into more markets rapidly and efficiently, you will need a gateway that offers global payments. If you intend to add locations where credit card penetration is still low or where alternative local payment methods are popular, your gateway needs to offer a variety of payment options to choose from, including debit cards, direct debits, bank transfers, eWallets, local card schemes, pre-pay, post-pay solutions, etc.
This can make a significant difference when acquiring new clients. Any friction during the payment processing will mean lower conversion rates and smaller return on investment for your marketing budgets. Local methods of payments are key to international growth and high conversion rates.
Payment Processing Cost
Payment processing cost is another important detail to note. Expanding into new territories easily is important but remember to check the price tag attached to the services offered by the payment service provider. Your gateway needs to come with costs that make sense for your business. It needs to have good collaborative partners in place so that the financials add up. Always check the detail.
Currencies Your Provider Offers
The number of currencies offered is also key to controlling costs and penetrating new markets. Currency conversion can take a bite out of your profits.
Payment Integrations With Third Parties
Third party integrations are also vital. It’s important that the payment service provider you choose can offer you strong partner integrations. The most common ones in the gaming industry are Skrill, Neteller and Paysafe.
You will also need to make sure that your payment service provider is compliant with required standards. The Payments Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is an information security standard for businesses that accept credit cards from the major card providers. The standard includes card-holder data controls to reduce fraud. Using a compliant payment service provider will keep you safe from incurring fines.
Your payment gateway also needs to be 3D Secure. Sometimes referred to as Payer Authentication, 3D Secure is a payment security protocol that prevents fraud within transactions using credit and debit cards online. This service is currently provided by Visa (Verified by Visa) and MasterCard (MasterCard Secure-Code).
Large Volume Payment Processing
Volume is key to profit in online gaming: you must have peace of mind that your gateway can handle sudden volume spikes without sacrificing uptime or speed. Make sure that your gateway already works with companies that process the volume you intend to reach. Base your choice on your targets, not your current situation.
Finally, make sure that your payment service provider offers you the best possible service in terms of human contact. You want to make sure that when payment issues arise, you are not redirected from one call centre agent to another to troubleshoot. Understand how their support works and ask for a reference from their existing client base so you can speak with someone who has experienced their customer service before. The last thing you want is to discover that the service is below par when you’re going through a crisis, so investigate before you sign on the dotted line.