How to create an online payment page
For any merchant looking to do business online, a payment page is essential. Most customers expect to be able to pay for goods electronically, and without providing this option, you’re putting your business at a disadvantage.
Thankfully, setting up a payment page isn't as complicated as you might think. Let's take a look at what you should be aware of when setting up your own payment page.
What is an online payment page?
With a payment page, you can quickly and easily take payment for any product you sell online. The flexibility of payment pages makes it easy to take payment across a range of devices, so customers can do so however they please.
As well as facilitating online business, payment forms enable you to capture customer information, making repeat sales easier. With some forms, you can even keep credit card information on file.
Payment page definitions
Hosted payment page
A hosted payment page is a web page where customers can enter their payment information to make a purchase. This type of page is hosted by the merchant or by a third-party provider, and typically includes the merchant's branding. A hosted payment page offers a convenient way for customers to pay for goods or services online.
Payment checkout page
A payment checkout page enables your customers to complete a purchase on your website by entering their payment information. In essence, payment checkout pages are used to 'check out' or finalize an online transaction. After the customer enters their payment information on the page, they are typically redirected to a confirmation page letting them know that their purchase was successful. A payment checkout page can also be called an online payment page.
Online payment summary page
Your online payment summary page is a page where you can see a summary of the payment that has just been made. This type of page is typically used for payments that are made online, such as by credit card or PayPal. The summary page will generally include the amount of the payment, the date and time of the payment, as well as any other relevant information.
Advantages of Third-Party online payment software
Using a third-party software provider for your payment forms can offer a stress-free, turnkey solution. In fact, third-party software can offer the following benefits:
- Simplicity: Add forms instantly without having to design or code
- Security: You can rely on software providers to meet security needs
- Guidance: Receive help to connect your merchant account to your payment form
- Easy integration: Integration is often simple, making it easy to send traffic from your website or emails
- Low costs: Outsourced solutions are fairly cheap, as there aren't development or hosting costs
- Simplifies regulation: Third-party providers specialise in compliance, removing legwork
- Continuous optimisation: Payment providers work hard to improve their service
How to build your payment form
To keep customers coming back, your forms have to be easy to understand. Following best practices will help you to create a form that is simple and intuitive.
Before you create your form, you'll need to look into software and payment options. You'll also need to get a merchant account set up. After you've ticked these boxes, you can start building your form and put everything together:
1. Make your form simple to understand
The text you use on your form should be easy to read. Make sure there are no spelling mistakes, that fonts are simple and that colours are easy on the eye. Choosing clear options can also make it easier for customers to complete your form.
Having banners around your site that show alternative ways to pay (i.e. from Klarna) can push customers towards the checkout - a subtle addition that may increase the likelihood of sales.
2. Create a natural flow
Forms that have fields aligned to the top can be finished quickly. Use these types of forms when there are only a few fields to fill out. For forms that require more data, using a two-column, left-aligned form is a better option.
3. Provide a clear destination
Having a submit button that is clear and visible (i.e. by using bold colours) will make it easy for users to complete forms. You can also put it above the visible part of the screen - this is called the 'fold' - doing so will encourage more people to fill out your form.
4. Keep it simple
Don't overcomplicate your form. By breaking it into chunks, you can make your forms easier to read. Try using headers at the beginning of sections, or even have the form spread across multiple pages. A progress indicator can help users know how far along they are.
5. Fill out as many details as you can
Allowing your customers to create an account can make repeat purchases simple. By having them fill out as much information as possible the first time round, their data can be auto-filled the next time they return.
6. Use a logo or seal for security
Using your company logo, or a verified security seal can instill trust in your customers when they shop, letting them know they are buying within a secure environment.
7. Use in-screen help tools
By using tooltips, you can guide customers toward completion without them having to leave the page they're on. These are things such as a question mark next to fields that explains how to fill something out, for example.
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