Written by on 23 September 2015

Improving the credit card payment flow

We’re always looking for ways to increase our conversion. Although we’ve made quite some improvements over the years, one thing always stood out like a sore thumb. Take a look at our checkout process when using a credit card…

You can see that the flow is suboptimal due to the extra payment step, which isn’t that pretty to start with. To improve usability (and conversion) we wanted to integrate the form within our checkout pages. However, doing this comes with security risks and constraints. We always aim for the right balance between usability and security. This wasn’t possible with our current payment service provider (PSP), so we needed to look elsewhere.

We found a new PSP which suited our needs, but implementing a new PSP is harder than you’d think. There are a few things that you need to keep in mind when changing your PSP:

  • Which departments and business processes are going to be influenced by this and how will you involve them
  • Is the security still up to standards
  • What are the risks during the implementation, map these and make a backup plan
  • How are we going to add value to the company and the customer as fast as possible.

I’ll elaborate on the latter. Our goal was to have customers pay with the new PSP as fast as possible. So we could test the whole process from start to finish and see if any problems arose. Just a basic, secure form that was available for 1% of the customers would be enough.

This didn’t give any real problems in the first week. It also gave an indication that the conversion was steady. We could easily scale up to 10% and a few weeks later to 100%.  With of course a few new features. This is the stage we’re at now, the form is looking better than ever and the conversion is still stable.

But we’re still devoted to improve the flow of paying with credit cards. We want to offer our customers the possibility of saving their credit card (and paying with that saved credit card of course). And we want to move the form to the payment method selection step, which will probably look something like this:

So when implementing a new PSP, keep in mind who you are going to impact with the change. And how you are going to involve them. Also try to test the complete process as fast as possible, so that you can find the bugs and quirks. And gradually improve on this first release.

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