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Updated Nov 03, 2023

Make More Sales With More E-commerce Payment Options

Today’s shoppers want flexibility in how they pay.

Danielle Fallon O'Leary
Danielle Fallon-O’Leary, Senior Writer & Expert on Business Operations
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Many of today’s shoppers, especially those of younger generations, are doing most of their shopping online. Businesses should offer multiple payment options at checkout to accommodate a growing audience and create a seamless customer experience – a move that can boost a company’s bottom line.

Discover how e-commerce payment options can help you make more sales, as well as some common payment options to consider.

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How e-commerce payment options help businesses make more sales

Providing more payment options for consumers offers your business the following benefits:

  • Higher conversion rates: Customers are likely to complete their purchases when they are able to use a payment method convenient to them. Offering a variety of payment options means more shoppers will be able to complete purchases with your business. 
  • Reduced cart abandonment: If customers hit a speed bump at checkout – for example, they don’t have their credit card handy and your site doesn’t accept PayPal – they may abandon their purchase entirely. You could lose a ready-and-willing customer by limiting your e-commerce payment options. 
  • Improved customer experience: Having a quick, easy and secure checkout is one of the biggest ways to give customers a pleasant experience on your website and help ensure they return for future purchases.
  • Increased website visibility and traffic: Offering multiple payment options lends credibility to your site and can boost it in search results, bringing more eyes and conversions to your business.
  • Stronger customer loyalty: After having a positive experience shopping on your site and using their preferred payment method, customers are more likely to return to your business or recommend it to others.
TipBottom line
You can use a third-party payment facilitator like PayPal or Square to meet Payment Card Industry (PCI) requirements and give your customers peace of mind.

How to identify customers’ preferred e-commerce payment methods

Not all payment methods are created equally, so you should tailor your options to both your business needs and your customer base. Consider the following factors when selecting payment methods:

  • Demographics: Age and income can play a major role in what payment methods people prefer. If you have an older, more financially established customer base, you should include credit card options like American Express. For younger customers, consider methods like PayPal and payment plans.
  • Location: Figure out the most popular payment methods in the countries where your customers live. The options preferred in the U.S. aren’t necessarily the most popular ones overseas. 
  • Security and fraud prevention: Offer third-party payment options like PayPal or digital wallets so that customers don’t need to enter their information directly into your site. For additional security, some payment options offer data encryption. 
  • Compatibility with your e-commerce platform: The setup process for some payment options will take more work than others. Find out what payment methods are possible with your e-commerce platform, and consider payment providers to make the process easier for your business. [Read related article: Open for Business: 5 Options for Setting Up an Online Store]
Did You Know?Did you know
The best credit card processors aren’t just for in-person exchanges. You can find low-fee processors that work with your platform and minimize your back-end work on e-commerce options.

The top payment options for e-commerce businesses

Debit and credit cards

Consumers view debit and credit card payment options as a necessity in the online shopping space due to their ubiquity and convenience. Cards like Visa and Mastercard are the most popular, but it is also worth considering American Express and Discover. 

Digital wallets

Third-party digital wallets, such as Google Pay and Apple Pay, continue to gain traction. Digital wallets provide an extra step of security, since users don’t need to directly share their financial information on the internet.

Electronic funds transfers (EFTs)

Bank transfers and direct debits allow customers to send their funds directly from their account to your business’s bank account. A common EFT solution is the Intuit Payment Network, which can be set up as an e-commerce button on your website. Since this type of payment is most popular in Europe and Asia, this option can be particularly beneficial for businesses with an international customer base.

Payment links/QR codes

This payment option allows you to branch out to different platforms, including social media. Customers can shop and pay by simply scanning the code or clicking the link, without having to directly visit or navigate your website.

FYIDid you know
If you do business in person, your credit card machine will need to be compatible with your credit card processor, which also needs to be compatible with your e-commerce platform. You can get your credit card machine directly from your credit card processor to simplify the process.

Alternative payment methods

  • Cryptocurrency: Although there is still uncertainty about the long-term price stability of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency, it is one of the cheapest and fastest ways to transfer payments around the globe. Implementing Bitcoin on your e-commerce website could attract younger, tech-savvy customers.
  • E-commerce financing: Online stores can use this “buy now and pay later” method for promotions and sales events, and may be able to sell more inventory thanks to easy financing terms.

Alexandra Tachalova contributed to this article.

Danielle Fallon O'Leary
Danielle Fallon-O’Leary, Senior Writer & Expert on Business Operations
Danielle Fallon-O'Leary is a longtime marketer with a passion for helping clients strengthen their online brands. She has managed clients' social media accounts, developed marketing campaigns and compiled key data for analytics reports. Other projects have included newsletter curation, workflow management and search engine optimization. Along with her marketing responsibilities, Fallon-O'Leary has had an up-close look at other aspects of small business operations, including invoicing and accounting, employee recruitment and training.
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