Offsite Checkout on E-Commerce Stores

Compliance guidelines for enabling payments online are getting tougher each year. With e-commerce touching hundreds of billions of dollars, banks and payment gateways have made it tougher to get through payment processing guidelines. Preventing fraud is getting tougher all the time, as hackers are finding new ways to gain access to credit and debit card information. To counter that, banks are putting in place more complex algorithms and encryptions, backed up by real-time verification of card users, one time passwords, and multistep checkout processes. A small business site being able to fulfill all these restrictions is quite impossible. That is where SaaS comes in as a savior.

SaaS has revolutionized the way business is transacted online. It has enabled small business owners to compete with the largest stores out there. Large e-commerce stores have the advantage of being compliant with stringent restrictions imposed by banks and credit cards. It costs a lot of money to get security certificates and payment encryptions in place, but large sites with turnovers in millions of dollars absorb that amount as standard overhead. A small online store, however, has no way to do that. Absorbing that cost will kill their business even before it takes off! Hence they choose to transact via third party payment processors whose services integrate with their online stores and payment is processed off site.

When a customer comes onto a store, he sees the products on display, chooses the ones he wants to buy, adds them to his cart, and clicks on ‘Checkout’. The payment gateway gives websites two options here. If the site has its own SSL encryption and dedicated hosting, it can choose to embed the checkout page on its own site, rendered via a third party – like from a Javascript code. If the site doesn’t have SSL, it can choose to redirect the customer to the payment processor’s landing page, along with details of the amount that has to be collected. Once the credit / debit card details are filled and the amount is paid, a confirmation is passed back to the merchant site and the customer is redirected to an order confirmation page, completing the order.

Third party payment processors are growing in popularity, and most of the e-commerce stores we transact online with work via third parties. The largest example in this genre is PayPal. Millions of websites use PayPal as their payment processor as they can accept all kinds of payments – credit cards, debit cards, online banking, ACH, and e-Checks. To cut down on fees, sites which have volumes choose to work with sites like, which offer much lower processing costs, and a quicker turnaround. The usual deposit time frame is weekly, but if the volume is higher, the payment processor can deposit money quicker into the merchant’s account. There are merchants who do significant volumes online and they get money into their account on a daily basis. These off site payment processors either charge a flat fee or a percentage of sales, depending on the relationship they have with the website. Check out the site above for more information about offsite payment options.

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