by Ty Hardison

The consequences of developing the wrong payments platform

The business software market has become increasingly competitive in recent years, and providers that can't deliver product functionality requirements will ultimately fail to maintain market share.  If you are responsible for developing software solutions for businesses that sell to other businesses or the government, it is important to avoid the consequences of implementing the wrong payments platform.

Understanding the payment acceptance needs of the business verticals you are developing for is critical.  For example, as an ERP software developer or provider, there are a myriad of things to think about because an ERP system is going to hit virtually every area of an organization. Due to the type of commercial card transactions your users typically accept, they will need a solution designed to submit data requirements to meet cardholder demand and to save on processing fees.  The ability to qualify for the lowest possible Level 3 and Data Rate 3 Interchange rates is important for B2G or B2B merchants, and if your system cannot provide this ability, you will be disadvantaged in this market.  Ultimately, businesses invest in software, systems and solutions that provide the greatest ROI to their organization.  Winning new bids, lowering payment processing expenses and reducing security liability are all important components in their decision making process. 

Speaking of security, this is a hot topic for software developers, especially when talking about sensitive payment data.  Will your solution provide one click ordering and if so, how will you store your customer and payment profiles?  Will you store this data onsite or outsource this to your payment partner?   Does your payment partner provide a secure check out and tokenization solution?  Does your payment partner have a PCI DSS Level 1 payment processing data center?   These are all important questions to ask when evaluating payment partners. 

Since merchants are ultimately responsible for the protection of their customers' information, they give considerable weight to the strength of the data security systems when evaluating solutions.  If your system cannot adequately protect the data it processes, it will not be as attractive to potential customers.  One best practice is to implement payment tokenization into your system. This will allow your users to store customer information off-site, which protects it from targeted attacks. Installing functionality that promotes best practices for maintaining customer security will reduce the risk of your users' suffering from a breach and will increase the attractiveness of your system.  And by implementing the right security features into your systems, you can insulate yourself and reduce your own data breach responsibilities.

Remember, your system needs to not only work for your customers, but their customers as well. Using an API that allows you to develop Level 3 data and payment tokenization into a payment platform for procurement will increase your solution's value. 

For more information read the case study "Building a B2B Payments Module" or contact a Vantage B2B payments advisor for a complimentary consultation to discuss how we can help you enhance your system with these valuable features.

by Ty Hardison

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