OpenCart is a free open-source eCommerce platform. Marketed as an out-of-the-box shopping cart solution, it is known to be highly versatile and user-friendly. Founded by Daniel Kerr, OpenCart is meant to offer a robust platform using simple PHP code, making it easy for users to customise and enhance their online shops.
- What is OpenCart?
- How to pick an OpenCart payment gateway
- Comparing the best OpenCart payment gateways
- Next Steps: How To Save Money
What is OpenCart?
The OpenCart payment gateway is a feature-rich eCommerce solution for online stores that offers order management and product display tools, along with a built-in template system that allows you to switch templates easily. You can also customise templates to suit the look and feel of your website. OpenCart is also search engine friendly, which will make it easier for your site to show up in online searches.
OpenCart comes with eight pre-installed shipping options and over 20 payment gateways as well. It also allows you to manage different shops using just one administrative interface.
How to pick an Opencart payment gateway
Setting up an online business has never been easier, but with so many payment processing choices available how can you be sure that you’re picking the right one for your needs?
Below you’ll find some handy tips for picking the best OpenCart payment gateway.
’Payment Gateway’ vs ‘Merchant Acquiring Account’
Let’s clear up this classic misunderstanding quickly – a ‘payment gateway’ is the system that approves or declines card transactions and online payment methods, e.g. PayPal. Whereas a ‘merchant account’ is where funds are held securely before they are deposited into your business bank account.
Ideally you’ll want a partner who can offer you both. Not sure who to choose? Compare suppliers for free now and find your merchant match.
Payment Gateways: Hosted or Non-hosted?
A hosted gateway is one that is both secure and located off your website. Customers will be re-directed to the hosted gateway, complete their payment and then be returned to your site. Better suited to Small and Medium sized businesses due to being slightly cheaper options, hosted gateways also remove sensitive card data from your hands, which helps you meet card security compliancy.
A non-hosted gateway lets customers enter card and payment information directly onto your website. This option is used most often by larger companies who have been trading for a longer period of time. As payment info is entered on your own site, it is very important to ensure your site is as secure as possible to protect your customers.
Look for easy cart integration
Besides a payment gateway, you’ll also need a shopping cart for your ecommerce site, such as >OpenCart. Shopping carts let users browse and select items, collecting them in one handy location from which the customer can check out. Shopping cart software is important in calculating the total cost of the order as well as shipping, handling and applicable taxes.
If you’ve already identified a preferred payment gateway, it’s worth checking to see how well it integrates with your shopping cart! If it does, great. Otherwise you’ll need to find someone to create additional code to make them work together.
Look for flexible fees
Before deciding on a payment gateway, double check the fees. Now check the magain.
It’s important to understand the costs associated with each transaction as different providers charge different fees. Some apply fees for each transaction, while others charge for a set number of transactions each month. Be aware of what will work for your business so that you don’t end up paying for something you don’t need.
Look for a proven track record
With so many payment gateways to choose from, how do you know you’re picking one you can trust?
It’s not only worth checking out reviews on sites such as Best Merchant Accounts or TrustPilot, it’s also worth checking whether your gateway provider can meet your demands. Do they offer dynamic pricing and multi-currency processing? Can they facilitate transactions 24/7 from different countries and different time zones. Your market may not be that big now, but it may well be a year or two down the line. So be aware of what you need now and what you will need in the future.
Look for security!
Obviously security is paramount when choosing a payment gateway provider. You should ensure that any payment gateway you choose is level 1 compliant with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). This is the highest level of on-site security for card processing gateways and keeps your customers as safe as possible when making transactions.
You should also ask your provider about fraud prevention tools, tokenisation options for sensitive data and in-house solutions to protect payments.
Look at the type of customer support on offer
People make online purchases 24/7, which means something could go wrong at any point. This is why it is essential that payment gateway provider offers 24/7 customer service – which more often than not means having a telephone support line available around the clock.
You also need to check whether customer service is dependent on the type/number of transactions being made, as well as where the support centre is based – is it the same country as you or somewhere overseas? You should ask the questions that will ensure the same level of safety on your site that you would expect to find elsewhere.
Look for mobile friendly options
More and more customers are making online purchases through their mobile phones, which means it is more important than ever that your payment gateway will work seamlessly across different devices. If it doesn’t you’ll not only lose out on potential revenue, but you’ll lose customers too.
Comparing The Best OpenCart Payment Gateways
Processing over 12 million transactions daily, WorldPay is Europe’s largest payment service provider. Its payment gateway comes bundled with the OpenCart software for free, and offers reasonable transaction rates.
WorldPay’s payment gateway provides PCI level 1 security (the highest level) with 3D authentication, keeping your customers’ details completely safe. You will have free support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week from the WorldPay help desk. You will also benefit from discounts on shipping costs and Chip and PIN readers.
Read more about WorldPay.
PayPoint is a part of the UK company Paypoint Plc, which handles over 700 million transactions every year. It is used by thousands of ecommerce sites in Europe and the USA, and caters to SMEs and corporations alike.
The PayPoint gateway comes free with OpenCart, and processes all major credit and debit cards as well as online cash payments. It is a highly reliable and stable system with 99.9% uptime. Its security level meets the highest standards and it has effective fraud prevention abilities.
PayPoint is works with many acquiring banks in Europe, which means you are likely to find a merchant account that works well with it. You will also get UK-based customer support to help you with any payment processing-related difficulties.
PayPal is pretty much a household name, being the world’s leading digital payment processor, used by over 140 million users in over 193 countries.
You can use the standard Paypal package with your OpenCart account, or the more versatile PayPal Website Payments Pro. The latter gives you the option to customise your checkout page to make your brand more memorable for your customers.
Read more about PayPal.
Founded in 1998, eWAY has processed billions of transactions since it started. This payment gateway accepts online payments from around the world while providing PCI-DSS level one security for your customers.
Marketing itself as an alternative to PayPal, eWAY takes pride in the fact that it allows your customers to complete the payment process in your site, instead of redirecting them to a hosted payment page.
The company also claims to charge lower transaction fees compared to PayPal and other providers. There are no hidden costs and you won’t be tied down to a contract. Moreover, it offers transaction management tools, 24/7 customer support and gives you the ability to do instant refunds and take subscription payments.
The Realex payment gateway comes straight out of the OpenCart shopping cart bundle, with no setup fees. The gateway comes with a suite of fraud prevention tools and offers the highest level of security, along with 3D authentication to keep your customers’ details completely safe.
The gateway itself can handle payments using major card types and is optimised for mobile users. It gives you full control over your transactions and helps you manage your orders, allowing you to make refunds, settle and void orders directly.
Realex also offers a month of free service to new OpenCart users.
Read more about Realex Payments.
Next Steps: How To Save Money
Compare OpenCart payment gateways and other merchant account providers with BMA’s free quote service. Just enter some simple details in the form at the top of the page and we’ll be in touch to talk through the best options and partners for your business.
It takes a minute to fill in and could help you save up to 30% on the cost!