Ever had to make a payment but couldn’t seem to find where to pay? Now just imagine you could click a few buttons and just like that payment is made. Sounds nice right? Well, that’s what a payment link does.
A payment link is a simple way through which businesses collect money; from social media and in-person to text and email communications. If you own a business or are hoping to start one, then you are probably wondering what kind of business uses payment links. If you are one of those asking this question, then read on to find the answers.
Payment Link: Definition
Also known as a checkout link, a payment link is a payment technique, usually a scannable code or clickable link that enables shoppers to make payments online. Typically, the link is represented in form of QR codes, electronic links or buy buttons and is used in stores, across social media platforms, in websites, messaging tools, or apps.
Upon clicking the link, the shopper is taken to a checkout web page to finalize payment. The payment link can be a one-time use; for instance, when creating a customer’s invoice. It can also be used for recurring transactions; for example, as a purchase button on social media platforms.
Why Businesses Need Payment Links
- Provides simple payment option: Payment links are easy to use as it does not require a separate account or app to use the platform. Users can easily access the link from any device.
- Provides a variety of payment options: Payment links allow customers to make payments through any means they prefer. Upon clicking the link and being transferred to the checkout page, customers can make payments through their credit or debit cards or through any electronic payment platform they prefer.
- Can be customized: Payment links are usually customizable and can be set up in mere minutes. Thus, it’s a good option where flexibility and speed are crucial.
- Provides fluidity: Payment links allow merchants to take payment anywhere. You can send customers a payment link via text messages or you can include it in your social media platform or website.
Businesses Suitable for Payment Links
Payment links can come in different forms; hence, you can choose the one that works best for your business. For in-person, social media or online selling, QR codes and buy buttons are the best options, while a direct link is more suitable for traditional selling. Generally, payment links are a great option in the following business scenarios:
1. The Business Does Not Make a Lot of Online Transactions
Start-up businesses without a website to support huge sales will benefit more from adopting a payment link solution. Also, if you have a small business where payment is taken in person, then a payment link is a good option for you. This is because it’s more cost-effective than payment gateways. They are also cheaper and easier than other payment options.
2. The Business Has Different Sales Channels
If you deploy various sales channels in your business, then adopting a payment link is an excellent way to avoid redirecting your customers to an unfamiliar external website. The payment link will enable you to channel your sales to specific platforms such as email, newsletters, or social media.
3. The Business Records Large Troughs and Peaks
If yours is a seasonal business or a non-profit organization with a minimal number of fundraisers throughout the year. Or perhaps you release a few editions of your products or services a few times annually, then it means your business experiences lots of fluctuations in the number of transactions. You are better off with a payment link rather than fixing a permanent payment gateway to your website.
4. You Charge Customers per Project
If you are a service provider who sends out lots of digital invoices, then a payment link is a better choice for you. This is because payment links are more intuitive and customizable, and you can generate payment links for each client depending on their specific needs.
The Working Mechanism of Payment Links
Here is how a payment link typically works:
1. Setup of the Payment Page
First, you will need to subscribe to a payment processing provider. The processing company will then provide a safe and secure webpage where shoppers will be directed when they scan the QR code, tap the payment button or click on the payment link.
2. Shopper Accedes to the Transaction
After setting up your payment page, it’s time to sell your product, receive donations or offer services depending on your business model. That said, the payment link only becomes effective when it’s time to make a payment. Once the customer agrees to the transaction, you can go ahead and share the link.
3. The payment Link is Sent
Typically, the provider will create an automatic payment process for sending the link via SMS or email. Hence, you will be able to copy and paste the links on other platforms. Fortunately, there are many ways to send payment links to your customers. For instance, if you sell on Twitter, you can copy and paste the link on your customer’s direct message.
4. Payment is Made
Upon receiving the payment link, customers can easily scan the QR code or click the link, after which they will be redirected to the payment page where they will have to enter their payment details.
One rule of thumb is to go with a payment provider that supports digital wallets, as this will ensure your customers don’t have to always reenter their card details each time, they make payments.
A Click Away
To guarantee successful sales, and keep your customers happy, businesses must offer an easy and seamless checkout process. With the rise in e-commerce businesses, one method that has become popular is payment links because it reduces friction and stress by providing a means for customers to make easy payments. If you have a small business and are looking for ways to keep your customers happy, then provide payment links and you will have them coming back.