Welcome to part five of Swipen’s ‘Payments Parlance’ blog series. Acronyms, techspeak, compliance, and seemingly random fees can leave us all confused and wondering, ‘what does it all mean?’. These blogs are designed to help explain the terminology, issues and charges that often surface within the payments industry.
Today we continue by explaining Virtual Terminals, MOTO and Pay-by-Link.
We often hear ‘Virtual Terminal’ and ‘MOTO’, but what exactly are they?
A virtual terminal (VT) allows you to accept payments over the phone or online, which both come under the banner of e-commerce. MOTO stands for Mail Order Telephone Order – so quite literally online and phone transactions.
A virtual terminal is a software application or web portal for merchants, which allows you to accept secure card payments without requiring the physical presence of the card or the customer. This is also known as a card-not-present (CNP) transaction. This software solution is called a ‘virtual’ terminal as opposed to the physical card terminals used to process in-person/in-store card payments.
Swipen’s Virtual Terminal is a web portal that can be used on a desktop, tablet or mobile device.
What are virtual terminals good for?
Virtual terminals are essential for any business that needs to take secure CNP payments – when the card and customer are not present.
This makes them ideal for call centres, travel agents, travelling salespeople, mobile tradespeople, restaurants for pre-bookings and parties, hotels for rooms and events, or any business that doesn’t have a website that customers can pay through.
There are many key benefits to a virtual terminal:
More secure than a card terminal – Completing the payment over the phone with full customer details reduces the risk of chargebacks or fraud.
Capture Customer Details – The Virtual Terminal allows you to capture all the customer details you will need for your CRM or booking system, reducing the need for double inputting.
Control Permissions – Restrict user access to only certain functionality so you can control what your staff can process and see through the terminal.
Take Payments anywhere – The Virtual Terminal is compatible with all devices and allows you to take safe and secure payments from anywhere – office, home, or on the move.
Recurring payments – You can even set up payment plans and regular automatic debits through the virtual terminal, perfect for allowing customers to spread the cost of a purchase, or if they’re struggling to settle a complete invoice.
What is pay-by-link?
Through the virtual terminal, you can set up and send customers a web payment link. Pay-by-link is an e-commerce solution that enables customers to make a payment simply by clicking on a secure link to a payment screen. It’s a simple and secure way to collect or make payments without the need to input card details.
Pay-by-link is perfect for if a customer is unable or does not wish to give their card details over the phone. It’s also great for when you’ve taken a deposit over the phone, for example, and wish to send a pay link to request the balance.
The pay-by-link process:
1. The merchant generates a URL or QR code using their virtual terminal and sends it to the customer, i.e. via email, SMS, etc.
2. The customer clicks on the link and is redirected to a secure payment page, where they can complete the transaction.
3. The customer can pay using a range of payment methods, such as debit/credit card, Apple Pay, Android Pay, PayPal, open banking, etc.
4. The merchant receives notification that the payment has been received.
There are many other key benefits to pay-by-link:
Better relationships – Pay-by-link provides a smooth customer experience with flexible payments and fast transactions, which can help improve customer satisfaction.
Marketing – You can share payment links on social media and via SMS/WhatsApp. As such, payment links can be used as part of a customised promotion.
Security – Pay-by-link transactions are processed through Swipen’s secure payment gateway, which complies with all relevant legislation dealing with customer data security, i.e. 3DS 2 protocol and PCI DSS compliance.
Pay-by-link is known by many names, including ‘Request to Pay’, ‘Payment Link’, ‘Payment Request’ or ‘Checkout Link’, but they all mean the same thing.
Although virtual terminals and pay-by-link are not completely new, especially within hospitality, they are now becoming more popular across other sectors. This growing popularity is due to the VT’s safe, secure and easy processing of CNP card payments over the phone or online.
Swipen’s Virtual Terminal is a simple and secure solution with an easy to use web portal.
We knew there was a better way and so we created Swipen.
If you’d like to know more about Swipen’s Virtual Terminal and Pay-by-Link features, contact us at 0131 202 4107 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.