Visitor experience on your site is important at every stage, including the payment process. If your system is difficult to navigate, clunky, and unprofessional-looking, you are likely to see an uptick in abandoned shopping carts stats.
You want to ensure a smooth process from the moment visitors hit your site until they have that order confirmation in their inbox. Choosing the right payment gateway is essential for the customer journey as well as an efficient process behind the scenes.
Until very recently, those running a WooCommerce site needed to use a third party payment gateway to take payments on their site. Now, WooCommerce has released it’s payment gateway on its platform. We look at WooCommerce Payments, the integrated solution from WooCommerce.
Earlier this year, WooCommerce released the much anticipated WooCommerce Payments feature. With this update, WooCommerce users were able to accept and process credit/debit card payments on their site as well as manager refunds and disputes.
All financial transactions can now all be done from directly within WooCommerce, rather than having to rely on an external gateway.
WooCommerce Payments allows store owners to access payments from within WooCommerce itself, on a single, unified dashboard. No need to sign up to external gateways and jump between accounts. Less complicated, less time consuming, and less risk of fraud due to multiple accounts.
Store owners can also manage deposits and send money straight into their business bank account without having to leave the system.
By being able to access everything from one dashboard gives a full overview of financials in one place. Store owners will be able to view:
- Abandoned shopping cart statistics
- Failed transactions
- Potential fraud issues
- Deposit status
No more jumping between payment gateways to consolidate and analyze data.
At present, WooCommerce Payments is only available to US sites trading in US dollars. It is expected to roll out to other countries soon.
To use WooCommerce Payments, you need to have specific requirements in place:
- PHP 5.6+
- WordPress 5.3+
- WooCommerce 4.1+
- JetPack 5.3+
- Active SSL certificate
If you aren’t sure you meet these requirements, check with your hosting provider, who will be able to tell you what versions you are running.
WooCommerce Payment transaction fees are in line with other similar payment gateways. The standard pricing model is 2.9% of the transaction + 0.30c. Depending on your monthly sales numbers, this could take a big chunk out of your profits.
Sellers with consistently high sales may be able to negotiate better rates directly with WooCommerce. Even a small decrease would represent a significant uplift in revenue.
If you are currently using a payment gateway with lower standard or negotiated rates, you’ll need to weigh up the benefits of having everything all in one interface against the savings made by using another payment system.
Security and reliability
WooCommerce Payments is a rebadged version of the Stripe payment system. Stripe is one of the most secure and well-designed systems in the world, so you should have some peace of mind that WooCommerce is a leading-edge system that has been thoroughly tested in real-world conditions.
The benefits of having an integrated payment system allow for direct reporting from the dashboard. You’ll no longer need to collate data from several different sources to analyze sales and trends.
With the system still in its infancy, some system limitations may deter some store owners from adopting it as their primary method of payment. These include:
- Only being able to trade if you’re in the US and US dollars. Though this is likely to change soon as more territories and currencies become available.
- Functionality – one of the main features missing from WooCommerce Payments right now is the ability to use automatic recurring payments. If you run a site based on a recurring revenue or subscription model, then you may want to wait for this functionality to be introduced.
- Compatibility – some apps are not currently compatible with WooCommerce Payments, Baremetrics being one of the most notable. If you are running third party accounting software that does not integrate, then you will have to input everything manually. For those with fewer transactions, that isn’t much of a problem, but some people will want to wait until this functionality is introduced.
- You cannot import historical sales data into the system. If you want to analyze and output reports based on past and present data, then you will not be able to. Historical data is vital for exploring and identifying sales trends, which informs future products. Not having this capability will be troublesome for established stores with multiple product lines and high sales.
An integrated payment gateway for WooCommerce is long overdue, with almost four million websites using the WooCommerce platform (Source: BuiltWith), the demand for it has been growing. But now that it is here, we’re pretty impressed with it. The robustness of the system, coupled with the intuitive user interface, makes for a simple, streamlined process. Running an eCommerce site has just gotten a whole lot easier.
While there are some features we’d like to see included soon (multi-currency, historical data, and recurring payments), WoCommerce has assured users that these will be included in future iterations of the system. However, there is no definitive timetable of the product roadmap yet.
Overall, WooCommerce Payments is a fantastic addition to the WooCommerce setup and will benefit a lot of store owners who are looking for an all-in-one, reliable solution or their e-commerce store.