The software industry has grown at a torrid pace, but providers may need to upgrade their payment infrastructure to stay competitive.
From 2017 to 2020, the Software & SaaS sector collectively grew its total revenue by 73%, a figure that outpaced all other technology sectors. What’s more impressive, the SaaS market is expected to continue its ascent, ballooning from $130.7 billion in 2021 to $716.5 billion by 2028.
But that won’t be true for every software provider.
While they say a rising tide lifts all boats, software providers will still be pressed to differentiate themselves from an ever-growing list of competitors. Fortunately, there’s an oft-overlooked feature that business software platforms and ISVs can exploit to position themselves at the forefront of this meteoric expansion: integrated payments.
What are integrated payments?
True to its name, integrated payments add payment processing capabilities to business software. Instead of relying on third-party sites, companies can use integrated payments to optimize the back-end of operations, streamlining transactions.
For example, let’s say an automotive dealership has payments integrated into its software. After consumers receive a service, whether it’s new tires or a tune-up, integrated payments enable them to pay via text or online easily and with zero friction. Not only does this improve the consumer’s perception of the business, but having the entire experience remain on a single platform can lessen back-end, operational headaches for the dealership.
As you can imagine, this simple tweak to a software provider’s product can have major implications.
The benefits of integrated payments for software providers
From a software provider’s perspective, the benefits of integrating payment functionality into your existing software are clear:
- More business value for your customers, which can open the door to more revenue, higher margins and improved consumer satisfaction.
- Increased new customer acquisition with a comprehensive product that serves a variety of industries and leads to higher retention rates. In other words, satisfied customers are more likely to re-up their subscriptions or further solicit your services.
- Increased flexibility, security and a smoother experience for all parties, as third-party payment sites such as PayPal are removed from the equation.
In short, integrated payments not only round out your product but also distinguish it from the crowd of other software platforms. That’s particularly true if you integrate diverse payment methods (which we’ll explore more below).
But what are the benefits of integrated payments from your customers’ perspective? Let’s identify a few of them.
Cost savings on multiple fronts
The process of manually recording, monitoring and reconciling transactions is a lethal combination of tedious and expensive. For starters, it’s an ineffective use of human capital. Moreover, manual interaction also poses the risk of human error — which begets more manual intervention and, again, even higher costs.
Integrated payment software enables businesses to automate their payment transaction activities, lowering costs and reducing the risk of errors.
Point-of-sale enhancements for increased retention
Integrated payment solutions not only streamline the purchase process but can also assuage concerns around sharing personal information. Consumers are more likely to reconsider making a purchase if they’re directed to an unrecognized site and asked to submit personal information.
Consolidated data leads to informed decisions
When relying on multiple platforms to run operations, businesses may quickly succumb to siloed data. As such, leaders can either proceed without data insights or undergo the laborious task of consolidating data from various sources. Alternatively, integrated payments simplify payment data consolidation at the onset, granting businesses a holistic perspective of their transaction history. With a coherent point of view, management can uncover trends and glean insights for strategic decisions.
The risk of plastic: why you shouldn’t limit integrated payments to only cards
By now, it should be clear that integrated payments help your software products stand out. Businesses get a soup-to-nuts solution that enables them to operate seamlessly. But adding credit card payment functionality isn’t enough. If you want a truly comprehensive solution that will maximize customer satisfaction and, therefore, retention — you need to incorporate payment flexibility too. Here’s why:
- Credit card fees are high. Interchange fees may not seem like much for a single transaction, but they add up over time — and eat into profits.
- Credit card fraud has been and will remain costly. Card-related fraud continues to plague the world of payment. One report estimated global losses from card fraud were $32.2 billion in 2021 and are projected to surpass $49.3 billion by 2030.
- Involuntary churn remains a weakness. Credit cards can be incredibly convenient for both consumers and your customers. But they’re also a catalyst for involuntary churn. Unintentional customer attrition, such as expired cards, accounts for 40% of total churn.
- People want alternatives to credit. Consumers are often hesitant to add another line item to their credit card bill. Alternative payment options can appease all parties. According to a recent analysis of the top 100 fashion and retail sites in the US, sites that offer Buy Now, Pay Later as a payment method have higher conversion rates (6%) than sites that don’t (4%).
That’s where ACH payment integration comes into play.
The Certegy difference: seamless ACH integration with white label functionality
To maximize the benefits of integrated payments, it’s important for business software platforms and ISVs to consider incorporating ACH solutions into the mix too, for several reasons:
- ACH fees can be as little as pennies, saving businesses money that can be reinvested back into the business
- Chargebacks don’t occur with ACH payments.
- Certegy’s Warranty Program absorbs 100% of losses in the event an approved transaction is ultimately returned.
- ACH gives customers more flexibility and empowers them to avoid debt.
Backed by 60 years of payment experience, Certegy is the leading provider of ACH payment solutions, such as BankPay and Buy Now, Pay Later. Software providers can leverage our SDK and APIs to provide a streamlined, branded payment experience for their customers.
To learn more about our solutions, contact us or call 1-877-CERTEGY.