Payment gateway selection is what most of my small business clients get confused about. While there are lot of choices these days there are some key factors that the merchant should look for when integrating payment gateways to their website. Here are some of the features I advise my clients.

Cards Supported

While most of the payment gateways support Master and Visa cards it is better to look at other cards and special charges for these cards. Amex, Diner etc may not be treated the same way as Master and Visa by the payment gateway. If you are looking to expand your market to developing countries like China and India then look for support for local card networks like Rupay in India.

Net Banking

One other key feature to look for is net banking feature. In countries like India and Singapore net banking is considered as a secure way of payment rather than credit/debit cards because the banks send temporary password to the user’s mobile phone to complete the transaction.

Multi-currency Support

If your business roadmap contains expanding your market to other countries then multi-currency support is one to look for. In areas like Europe where local currencies are still in use multi-currency support is a must. In ASEAN and other economic union areas too multi-currency is becoming a must. One of the key things to look for is how currency conversion affects the margin of your products. Some payment gateways charge up to 10 percent for currency conversion. This will adversely affect the product pricing and margin.

Technology Neutral Integration

The payment gateway providers must provide technology neutral integration. This is very important because not just the website even background applications might need to interact with the payment gateway for verification and status update and these background apps may be native to a platform like Windows or Linux instead of portable web frameworks like PHP, Ruby.

Refunds and Partial Refunds

Payment gateway must provide full refund and partial refunds. It is import to not the refund fees. If you want to refund money say $10 for example you will be paying a fee of $0.25 so you do lose money from your pocket when you refund. Make sure that the payment gateway supports partial refunds. Check the charges for partial refunds.


Payment gateways must verify the card holders identity by doing address verification and other security tasks. Check the different levels of security offered by the payment gateway. In order to avoid any hacking of payment details it is better to let the payment provider store the customer’s credit cards details. This will minimize the legal liabilities for your website. If you are small start-up then it is better the let your customers enter their credit card details on the payment processor website by redirecting to the payment gateway website and just get processing result from the payment gateway.

Recurring payments or Easy pay options

It is nice if the payment gateway can allow users to pay using stored credit cards. Recurring payment is one feature to look for if you are offering any service on your website for which you want to charge users monthly or periodically.

Hope this helps your search for payment gateways. I have added few links in reference section for you to go thru.