Credit Card Payment Integration-2023 Guide

Credit Card Processing API Integration

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Credit Card Payment Integration | Credit Card Processing API Integration

Integrating a Credit Card Payment Processing solution offers your application users the ability to pay for goods or services via debit and credit cards. If your product or SAAS offers any kind of recurring payment functionality then a Credit Card Transaction Integration needs to be part of your offering. 

We have been meeting the payment gateways needs of apps and stand-alone software for over 15 years. Credit Card Payment Integration has been a core offering and we are experts. Our specialty is partnering with software or SAAS providers and creating payment solutions that make collecting customer payments simple and efficient. At the same time, your platform can generate a new revenue stream without added support burdens. Our specialty and deep experience lie in recurring payment solutions with both collection  (disbursement as well) and reconciliation needs.

Credit card integrations typically start with one of two primary types of software platforms:

  • A software platform that is used solely by the integrating organization. An example might be a SaaS platform offering a web-based solution that helps non-profits improve donations. They might serve 500 non-profits and need an automated solution to collect and reconcile subscription payments.
  • A software platform owned by a SaaS development organization where there are multiple businesses or organizations that use the software platform to run their operations. An example would be a SaaS that helps fitness industry clients run their business. An integral part of running that business is member payment collection and reconciliation.

In either case the using organizations are providing a service or delivering products to end-users or customers. Since transactions via a software application are generally performed in a MOTO (card not present) environment, accepting cash simply doesn’t work. Therein lies the need to accept credit cards, and with technological advances over the past 10 or so years, payments providers have developed robust payment integration API’s that are capable of enabling integrating organization’s with complete functionality in order to originate, manage, reconcile and deliver notifications from within the organization’s software application. 

The integrating organization’s software becomes a payments platform in itself




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So what should you look for in a Credit Card Integration API?

  • API availability: Does the partner offer RESTful, SOAP  ACH transaction integration in addition to credit cards?
  • What other payment utilities are available?
  • If your market base includes Canada, does the partner provide a single API for both US and Canada?
  • Does the platform provide a solution for credit card decline? Recurring transaction decline rates now average 15%
  • Is sensitive data tokenized and can a call be made to immediately tokenize the bank account data prior to an origination?
  • Are there opportunities to leverage the Credit Card Processing Integration for your apps’s revenue stream?
  • Are there ancillary utilities available from the Credit Card API to make calls for anti-fraud and risk mitigation?
  • Does the partner provide assistance in  AutoPay customer adoption for you and your user clients? Simply offering a payment method is not enough to get end user adoption.
  • Are there risk acceptance models available that could lower processing costs?
  • Are there white label possibilities that might allow for a branded processing option, keeping the processor behind the scene?
  • Is there an API that would allow your customers to apply from your site or app?
  • Will your potential partner take the time to understand your business requirements and provide options that custom fit the payments needs to your needs and your clients?
  • How long has your potential integration partner been serving the needs of app providers and what is their track record?

You may also consider an ACH Integration. Here is why:

  • Credit card decline rates continue to rise. Average recurring credit card billing return rates are around 15%. ACH payment processing return rates are typically sub 2%. Think about 15% of your expected revenue NOT coming in. And you know have to contact those customers to update billing info.
  • ACH Processing fees are typically 80-90% less expensive than credit card fees. To many businesses reducing margins by 2.5-3% is significant but by only processing credit cards this is a reality.


Some notes on the sensitive data surrounding credit cards:

Most all credit card processing integration providers replace the actual card data with reference tokens these days in order to mitigate the risk of data theft. If there are some that don’t, run away from those providers. What needs to be examined here prior to the credit card API integration is how can the actual card data be acquired by the merchant of record in the case that they decide to migrate to a different merchant service provider? What you don’t want to find yourself in is a place where the credit card service provider is holding that card data hostage. Data hostaging can come in two forms:

  1. Requiring the merchant of record to pay an exorbitant fee in order to obtain an encrypted data file. Depending on the number of records, a hundred or even a few hundred dollars is not a ridiculous request. Generating the file takes man hours, so some kind of fee is warranted. The exorbitant types of fees that I’m speaking of are in the thousands of dollars. In one particular case involving an incoming client to Agile Payments, the client was delivered an invoice that amounted to over $10,000 in order to receive a data file to be moved over to us. In pure and simple terms, that kind of dollar amount request amounts to piracy. Obviously the processor that was being terminated was using the data file transfer fee in a hostage situation. It’s better to know up-front what the fees will be for transfering data than to wait and get hit with a ridiculous dollar amount later on.
  2. Some processing organizations simply won’t provide a data file unless the number of records exceed a certain threshold. That number can vary from processor to processor, but what it amounts to is that there will have to be man hours devoted to re-obtaining card data directly from customers should you migrate to a new credit card integration provider. Organizations typically affected by this scenario are startup’s, where the initial credit card integration came near the end of their development roll-out and there was no consideration or, more likely, the application stakeholders simply weren’t aware of credit card data hostaging.

Decline management:

In the card not present SaaS credit card transaction space, credit card declines are a huge problem. Declines average 15%. These declines can cause all sorts of problems, from having customer service reps chasing down new card data to lost revenue. Any organization using a software application being in a subscription based model or having recurring transactions need to have a systematic approach in dealing with credit card declines, and the best way to manage that is through the integrating API itself.

A good credit card integration API will have connectivity to the card network’s updater programs. Card networks are always busy re-issuing credit cards, whether it be from compromised cards, expirations or simply being lost. The card networks keep track of these re-issues and make update files available on a monthly basis. These updates are an additional expense on top of the normal processing fees, but the amounts are miniscule when compared to manually chasing down new card data. Moreover, you’re only charged if there is an update.

In addition to credit card updater files, an organization can programmatically employ credit card retry logic. We at Agile Payments are here to assist your organization in that respect.

Revenue for vertical SaaS organizations:

It’s no secret any longer that software platform who have multiple businesses or organizations using their software are receiving revenue from their credit card API integration. Agile Payments has been at the forefront of revenue share agreements for over 15 years. Why? Because an integrated platform becomes a defacto sales agent for the processing provider. They should be rewarded with revenue for their integration and the vertical reach they have to their user base. It starts with a conversation about the application and who it will serve. From there we will present options and arrive at a model that works best for everyone involved. Have you considered the best revenue share situation for your credit card API integration?

That’s just a start at some of the common questions you might ask. With Agile Payments, we take the time to learn your business requirements and needs first. We have ACH app clients in sectors that span a wide spectrum. In every case we have become a valuable and trusted partner to these providers–to the point where we help in other business areas [eg client acquisition strategies].

Creating an Credit Card payment integration solution leads to more satisfied clients. It can provide a more economical method for streamlining cash flow, and if there are recurring payments requirements as part of your app or market you serve, we are the experts. Predictable, less expensive payment vehicle and API functionality that will empower your software and add value for your user base.

Combined with our revenue share model for integrated partners you can drive significant bottom line growth to your business.


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