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Accepting Credit Card Payments Through Your Web Site

Aug 17, 2007
If you're selling a product on the Internet, accepting credit card payments and enabling your customers to purchase your products through your web site is a must. However, if you're just starting out, you may not be sure where to start.

Sure, you'll need a web site and product, but how will you accept credit card payments through your web site? Will you need a merchant account? How much will it cost? Are there monthly fees? If you have a digital product, how will you deliver your product to your customer? The process can be very intimidating. However, after reading this article, you will see just how simple it really is.

When the Internet first began, there weren't many choices when it came to accepting payment through your web site. You either had a merchant account, which was usually quite costly, or you had to provide a mailing address for your customers to 'snail' mail you checks and money orders. Eventually, online business owners were able to accept checks online, which made things a little easier.

Today, however, there are many options when it comes to accepting credit card payments through your web site. Online payment processors will enable you to begin accepting payments - in a matter of days - without a merchant account or monthly fees. You are usually only charged a fee when and if you make a sale.

The two most popular payment processors for online businesses are ClickBank and PayPal:

ClickBank http://www.clickbank.com

ClickBank is a payment processing service that will enable you to sell digital products. They will enable you to accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, Eurocard, Visa-Debit, MasterCard-Debit, Novus credit cards, electronic checks and PayPal. Services are available for US and non-US merchants.

They charge a small one-time activation fee and a small fee per sale. However, they do not charge a monthly fee. If you don't make any sales, there are no additional fees.

ClickBank also enables you to have your own affiliate program, which will enable you to increase the sales of your product. They provide a market place where you can advertise your products and affiliate marketers can learn how they can sell your products for a commission of the sales.

One of the best benefits of using ClickBank is that they handle everything for you. Not only do they take care of all the money and pay your affiliates, but they also send you a check twice a month for the sales that have been made.

PayPal http://www.paypal.com

PayPal will enable any business or consumer with an email address to securely send and receive payments online. You can also accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover credit cards and electronic checks. You can sell with PayPal through an online auction, on your own web site, or as part of an online marketplace. They also offer recurring billing. There are no setup fees. However, they charge a small fee per transaction. Services are available for US and non-US merchants.

Like ClickBank, PayPal has a market place where you can list your product; however, there is a fee. Unlike ClickBank, affiliates cannot sign up to sell your product through PayPal. Instead, if you want an affiliate program, you must set up your own affiliate system.

One of the best benefits of opening a PayPal account is that it is basically an online paperless bank account. You can deposit and withdraw money, use a PayPal debit card at any store that accepts Mastercard, and even get a PayPal charge card if you'd like.

Integrating Your Payment Processor with Your Web Site

When you sign up with either ClickBank or PayPal, you will be provided with a snippet of HTML code to place within your web page. Simply paste the code into the HTML portion of your web page where you would like your button to appear. Once the button appears, your visitors can click on it to purchase your product. It's that simple.

Delivering Your Digital Product to Your Customer

When using either ClickBank or PayPal to process your payments, they will ask you to provide them with the web address of your 'Thank you' page, also known as a 'Download' page. This is the web page your customers will be sent to once they complete their purchase. This page should be used to thank your customer for purchasing your product and tell them how much their credit card has been charged and by whom. In addition, you will need to provide instructions on this page to assist your customer in downloading your product.

To create a download link on your 'Thank you' page, most servers will allow you to simply link to the file on your web server. When your customer clicks on your download link, a download window will load and enable them to save your product to their computer. If this method of linking doesn't work for you, contact your server administrator for assistance.

Online payment processing services will enable you to quickly and easily accept credit card payments through your web site. They provide a quality service for Internet marketers at a reasonable price. Visit these great sites and start accepting payment through your web site in just a matter of days. You'll be glad you did.
About the Author
Shelley Lowery is the author of Web Design Mastery www.WebDesignMastery.com and eBook Starter www.eBookStarter.com. Visit Web-Source.net, to sign up for a complimentary subscription to eTips and receive a copy of Shelley's popular ebook, 'Killer Internet Marketing Strategies.' www.Web-Source.net
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