The world has seen a dizzying amount of companies go online recently in the wake of the pandemic as well as the natural development of tech. It appears that the trend is growing strong, too. Indeed, the prospect of giving up costly brick-and-mortar commitments for the sake of flexibility and efficiency has tremendous appeal across industries. By reducing the number of links in the chain, you can simplify your procedures and save money.

The transition is rarely viewed as being free of risks, though. Many business owners are daunted by the perceived need to convert their organizations into all-web portals. One of the key factors behind their hesitation is safety. Or is it a lack of safety? This article explores whether and how high-risk merchant services UK can secure online payments to an adequate degree.

The Many Risks

The most essential preliminary step to take before you proceed to develop and implement actual measures is obviously research. It’s never a bad idea to study the landscape you are to survive and compete in. Don’t miss an opportunity to learn from others' failures just like you do from success stories. Go to a place on the web where business owners in your area share their pains and make sure you make notes — after all, you need to know what is likely to hit you to protect yourself.

What are the most common problems with online problems in your industry? Is it that fraud has grown virtually ubiquitous? Or maybe people keep asking for a refund after they’ve bought something and forgotten about the purchase? Do banks seem to offer suboptimal support for businesses in your area of activity? You need to identify the most important risks.

Tip 1: Know Your Customer

This piece of advice is a timeless classic. No matter what you are doing, taking the time to study your target audience and embrace its inclinations and patterns of behaviour is part and parcel of success. Demographics largely shape the risk profile of your business in terms of online payments.

For instance, if an overwhelming share of your buyers belongs to populations rife with friendly fraudsters, effective anti-chargeback solutions should be your number one priority. Learn what types of mishaps are associated with each social group and proceed accordingly.

Tip 2: Choose Partners You Can Trust

It’s hard to run a business entirely on your own without resorting to third-party services for transaction processing and similar tasks. Partnering with organizations that haven’t duly earned your trust could ruin your reputation and bring about heavy losses. This applies to banks and credit unions as well as gateway service providers.

Depending on the situation, you might want to suspend cooperation with certain institutions and even countries using dynamic restrictions. To do so, you need to develop a flexible policy for online payments. The most efficient way of implementing one is by combining automation with manual fine-tuning using smart gateway solutions.

Tip 3: Make It Double (Or Triple) Sure

Layering protection is another time-tried tactic that’s unlikely to ever become irrelevant. In situations where every breach can have disastrous consequences, stacking protective mechanisms can be viable even where it comes at the cost of time-effectiveness. Luckily, modern gateways offer intuitive interfaces that relieve the burden on your customers while enhancing security. Here are some possible areas for improvement to begin with:

  • introducing multi-tier user identification
  • inspecting not just the user but the purchase to estimate the level of risk associated with it and ask for additional verification as needed, and
  • practicing post-check-out verification upon delivery/collection/refunding, etc.

The list goes on.

Tip 4: Beware of Chargebacks

Chargeback, or the act of returning a charge to the payer’s account following a dispute, is a phenomenon much feared by business owners, especially those running online stores. Initially, it was introduced as a way of protecting the buyer. It still proves useful in this respect at times, but fraudsters have come to use it to their advantage by falsely claiming late delivery or otherwise inadequate service. Sometimes people fail to recognize their purchases and ask for a chargeback, too.

When frequent, chargeback can drain your funds and damage your reputation. It’s not uncommon for banks to limit the number of payments that can be refunded using a merchant account. If the limit trespasses, expect less favourable terms and conditions from your financial institution. It is therefore advisable to make use of dispute prevention features in intelligent gateways as a way of minimizing potential losses.

Tip 5: Store Wisely

There’s little doubt that storing your customers’ data adds a lot to convenience. Checkout pages that offer automatic fill-in for returning users may look much more welcoming and tempting than the ones where you need to manually enter a lot of data. On the downside, however, stored data is exposed to an increased risk of being stolen.

As you don’t want to be responsible for losses to your customers, it would be wise to limit information storage to a bare minimum. At least provide for guest checkout as an option. And when you do choose to store data, consider applying encryption techniques that will render it useless or at least not so easily usable if stolen.

Bonus: Combine Efforts

Securing online payments to protect your business as well as customers from fraud may sound like a lot of work. It probably is, too, unless you have a ready-made all-around model to fine-tune according to your situation. Today’s gateway services can combine an impressive number of safety features, including proprietary technology such as Maxpay’s Covery, to build a flexible yet truly strong shield for your transactions. One of the greatest benefits offered by such solutions is that they are easy to integrate with your existing practices and do not require much time investment. A single product can cover all of your needs as a business that wants to guarantee reliable transactions to its customers.