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In a Nutshell: Most consumers today have no problem paying for goods and services online. In fact, many find it surprising when a company doesn’t offer even a simplified digital shopping experience. But, for many merchants, accepting those payments isn’t always so simple. Enter Bambora — a company that has been providing easy-to-use payment processing services for merchants and software developers since the dawn of e-commerce. Bambora’s security-driven gateway accepts a host of payments and integrates seamlessly across software platforms and online plugins. Custom checkout features allow developers to add payment processing to their existing checkout screens without affecting PCI compliance or the site’s look and feel. What’s more, Bambora leverages cutting-edge machine learning to monitor transactions for fraud and other suspicious activities to keep merchants, and their customers, safe.
In the early days of the internet, it was hard to imagine the concept of shopping online for anything. But today, all we need is a credit card, and in a few clicks we can buy our groceries, clothes, entertainment, and even a new car.
Experts anticipate that online retail sales will more than quadruple as we approach 2021, and merchants will need to accept online payments — and provide a seamless shopping experience — if they want a piece of that pie.
Bambora within North America, which got its start in 2001 under the name Beanstream, understands the online payment processing sector because it’s been enabling businesses and software developers to accept payments since the dawn of e-commerce.
“The industry has changed over time,” said Tristan Kenning, Principal Product Manager for North America at Bambora.
“When we started out, there was more of a focus on direct merchants that were retailing — people who were setting up shops and selling online. We’ve seen changes over time as shopping carts came to the market with the ability to bundle payments.”
As more and more payment processing companies flooded the market, Bambora spotted an unmet need and shifted its focus to those who were creating innovative platforms that lacked payment acceptance features.
“We pivoted a little bit toward working with platforms — the people who were building software for managing memberships at clubs, online retail platforms, and other platforms for managing online donations,” Kenning said. “We found that we could focus our toolset more toward an Independent Software Vendor (ISV) audience by integrating with the platforms and enabling them for payments so they can generate a new revenue stream.”
Today, Bambora boasts the largest payment suite in the industry and offers ISVs and individual merchants access to advanced tools that include virtual terminal for phone or mail-in orders, recurring billing for subscription-based businesses, currency conversion, and batch processing.
Adding Value with Solutions for Plug-Ins and Platforms
Bambora makes integration easy with its RESTful APIs and SDKs that, on average, have the software fully enabled to accept payments within a few days. And with a dedicated business development manager, account manager, and integration specialist, you’ll have the right information to make informed payment decisions. Plus, with a multilingual support team, you and your customers will always have help whenever it’s needed.
Bambora helps platforms maximize their software’s earning potential by providing a buy rate for processing services and then allowing them to set their own sell rates.
“In the background, we’re basically managing the risk of onboarding new customers and supporting them with due diligence and adjudication,” Kenning said. “On their side, they don’t have to deal with a lot of the complexity that working with banks can bring and the legacy integration that banks offer.”
Checkout can be Customized to Match Merchant Branding
Consumers today are familiar enough with online shopping that a disjointed payment form can cause hesitation to complete a transaction. In fact, a leading cause of cart abandonment stems from security concerns, and customers may hesitate to transact when the checkout appears on a page that looks like it belongs to another website rather than the merchant’s.
That’s why Bambora’s Custom Checkout allows clients to completely integrate processing technology without altering the site’s PCI compliance.
“Custom checkout allows the developer to maintain their own checkout experience but not have to increase their PCI scope,” Kenning said. “They can stay SAQ Level A because they basically inject a few fields for collecting their credit card details and keep them out of PCI scope as much as possible.”
Flexible and Secure Payment Services Boost Business
Despite Bambora’s shift toward working with ISVs, the company still maintains an impressive list of individual merchant clients that continues to grow.
“We still sell online, directly to businesses and merchants,” Kenning said. “Our gateway is integrated within a whole bunch of carts. Businesses can take any one of the several hundred integrations that are out there and piece together their own solution.”
Kenning used the example of a merchant that uses 3Dcart with Bambora processing. In this case, integration automatically occurs within the cart when the business configures the solution.
Some processors focus solely on startup companies while others are more suited to serve large corporations. But Bambora sits comfortably between the two ends of the spectrum in a niche where businesses that show growth can maximize savings with Bambora’s time-tested and proven processing services.
“At this stage, our typical business client is less on the startup side and more toward companies that are starting to reach some higher revenue,” Kenning said. “They’re coming out of startup mode and may have between 50 and 100 people.”
Bambora merchant account pricing is 2.8% plus 30¢ per transaction and can begin to accept Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Interac, JCB, and Diners Club payments without signing a contract. Bambora also offers direct payments through EFT and ACH. Custom pricing is also available.
Using Machine Learning to Stay Ahead of Fraudsters
A payment processor is only as good as its security team — and Bambora works tirelessly to make sure it provides clients and their customers the safest online payment experience.
All transactions pass through important checkpoints. Bambora’s cutting-edge technology scans every transaction to remain one step ahead of fraudsters.
“We’re working with our partners to add more machine learning to monitor transactions in real time to catch more fraud,” Kenning said. “We’re using that internally now, but will look to productize that in the future as well.”
Aside from adding more payment types in the near-term, Kenning said the future of payment processing should help attract even more consumers online.
“Something that’s exciting in the space is real-time banking,” he said. “Bank transfers traditionally have settlement times of one to three days. But things are now moving toward same-day and instant settlement. That’s an area of exciting change that I think businesses and consumers will both take advantage of in the near future.”