SEAMLESS PAYMENT EXPERIENCE WITH ELECTRONIC PAYMENT MACHINES
Payment solutions are constantly evolving. Nowadays, there is an ongoing revolution in electronic payment. Electronic payment, or simply e-payment, is a method of completing transactions intended for goods or services electronically. Since it is electronic, there's no need to use cash or check. Instead, it usually uses electronic payment methods such as electronic wallets or e-wallet.
Two things drive such growth: 1) the ever-accessible Internet services and 2) the exponential increase in mobile devices. Electronic payments have grown in the last decade because of the widespread adoption of Internet-based shopping and banking. In fact, electronic payment is one of the drivers of e-commerce. Consider these facts and stats:
About 23.3 million Filipinos shop online
Filipinos still believe that “cash is king”
Filipino online shoppers prefer the COD (cash on delivery) mode of payment
Only 1 in 50 Filipinos is a credit card owner
Only 4 in 10 Internet users utilize digital wallet services
E-wallet was first launched in Japan in 2004
As the world continues to advance technologically, the rise in electronic payment systems, including e-wallet payments and payment processing terminals like e-wallet machines, is unprecedented. This is true for the Filipinos. eTAP is front and center in this modern revolution through its e-wallet pay solutions.
What are electronic payment methods?
Cash, credit, and debit cards are the most common payment methods. Nevertheless, several electronic payment methods are increasingly becoming popular. These are regarded as alternative payment options, although they are either under cash or credit payment.
Cash payment methods
Direct debit - Linked bank account from which to deduct the payment
E-checks - Checking account wherein the amount is deducted from
E-cash - Device-linked payment system that is solely intended for e-payments (Apple Pay, Google Pay, etc.)
Stored-value cards - Pre-loaded cards that can be used as payment for specified merchants
Credit payment methods
Credit card - A bank-issued card with credit limits and from which the payment is deducted from
Smart cards - Card equipped with a microprocessor, usually linked to a bank account from which to deduct payment
WHAT IS A DIGITAL OR E-WALLET
“e-wallet is considered a next-generation payment processing technology”
Also called a digital wallet or mobile wallet, an e-wallet is a virtual wallet that functions as a real wallet. It allows users to store payment information on their mobile devices. The stored amount can be to pay for purchases in any establishment that accepts certain digital modes of payment or the merchants.
Instead of paying for the goods and services using physical payment methods, the virtual money stored on an e-wallet is used. Essentially, e-wallets have reduced our dependence on cash.
An e-wallet is an application that can be easily installed on a smart device or a device that enables Internet accessibility. It can be a smartphone or tablet.
How does an e-wallet work?
Online transactions refer to processes where payment is completed over the network. The amount (virtual or e-money) gets transferred from a financial body to another minus the middleman. Sometimes, it does not matter if the payment and seller are affiliated to the same financial body. For as long as these merchants would transact with one another, payment usually pushes through.
Such amount is typically stored in the e-wallet (if not the online bank account). These are the reasons why online transactions tend to be faster and more convenient.
Are e-wallets the same as an online bank account?
No, e-wallets and online bank accounts are different. We cannot use these terms interchangeably.
An online bank is usually tied with a bank, which may or may not have its own application. The bank’s website or mobile application is where users access their bank accounts, allowing them to perform activities that they would typically do during over-the-counter transactions such as deposits, withdrawals, balance checks, and wire transfers. You may think of the app as the owner’s point of entry to the bank itself.
A bank does not necessarily own e-wallets, but a financial institution is undoubtedly behind its operation.
E-wallets and online bank accounts can process online transactions. You may also transfer amounts from the online bank to your e-wallet account and vice versa. However, the money on your bank account may accumulate an interest; e-wallets do not have this feature, though it has rebates for each use depending on the amount involved in a transaction. The more you use it and the higher the amount per transaction, the bigger the cashback.
Again, you may use your online bank account to complete purchases digitally. Those who do not have a bank account can still perform online transactions through e-wallets.
What are the benefits of using an e-wallet?
Using e-wallets has several benefits. First, carrying cash with you whenever you need to go out to purchase goods or services is no longer the only option. All you need is your smartphone to pay for the things that you need.
Second, keeping track of the purchases is more accessible, albeit prioritizing paperless transactions. Again, no need to bring a wallet or purse that gets bulky fast as you put in cash and receipts. E-wallets keep a record of all transactions that you can easily access by navigating the dashboard.
The majority of businesses in the Philippines today accepts e-wallet payment, and their numbers are growing exponentially. So it is wise to create an e-wallet account now. eTAP is on standby for your first and subsequent top-ups.
Is an e-wallet a cash or credit payment method?
E-wallets are flexible; they can take the form of both payment methods. Digital wallets are usually loadable. Some e-wallets take the form of an actual card, whereas others as a registered account on a mobile application.
As a cash method, users can directly cash in through e-wallets by linking a bank account or through an electronic payment machine. This is where the role of eTAP becomes valuable because our machines accept e-wallet top-ups as one of their core features.
As a credit method, e-wallets can be extended with a credit mechanism such as shop now, pay later features. The amount loaded to the e-wallet is as good as cash that individuals can use in purchase transactions.
However, the said amount must be returned to the merchant on a specified date with an interest of usually 5 to 10%. Otherwise, it will incur other charges like penalty fees.
Pros and cons of using electronic payment machines
Living in the 21st century and reaping the benefits of technological innovations is already a reward in itself. Such reward extends to the utility of e-wallet pay facilities. These benefits are realized when completing online transactions.
There is nothing more convenient than paying for your online transactions than using an e-wallet. Users can pay for their purchases at any time of the day and anywhere they want for as long as they have their mobile phones with them, for instance.
Tapping on the underbanked and unbanked segments in the Philippines widens the reach of the electronic payment system. All these users need is an e-wallet that can be loaded with cash through the e-wallet machine. This simplicity speaks volumes about helping clients make use of their time wisely.
Transactions are completed in seconds. When we say transactions, we mean the e-wallet top-up and online payment. When you top-up, the amount is reflected in real-time, so you may use the e-wallet right away for whatever purpose you have.
For the users, online payments can be learned quickly that some transactions have become second nature. The e-wallet must be kept intact and well-protected. Payment providers ensure that all transactions within its ecosystem are secured. When topping up, you can expect that your hard-earned money is ready to serve whenever you need it.
Using technology can be costly, but with e-wallets, transactions are usually lower. Reduced prices and discounts mean additional savings for you. Not to mention, users can always check their e-wallet balances and the transaction history. This is one way to safeguard that only legit transactions are included.
While using e-wallet payment is becoming more widely accepted, this does not mean there are no disadvantages. Instead of focusing on the detrimental effects of these disadvantages, eTAP handles these issues as proficiently and efficiently as it can.
Security breach grows by 30% every year
We take our security protocols seriously. Our electronic payment machines collect PII*, and we understand the risks that storing sensitive data entails. eTAP’s machines operate in a highly secured environment. Information collected is highly encrypted, which effectively minimizes security breaches.
Online transactions lack anonymity
We recognize that this can be an issue, but it should be the least of the concerns of the users. Indeed, the machine collects PII—data that is stored in the database. eTAP implements another layer of security protection at the database level.
Online transactions require Internet access
Indeed, this can be a concern, but not necessarily a problem. For now, offline transactions are not in our arsenal. We strongly suggest using e-wallet payments in areas where the connection is not an issue.
*PII - personally identifiable information
As a frontrunner in fintech, our focus is on making electronic payment solutions seamless for the customers.
Aside from encryption, our team is presently learning more about cloud-based PoS (point of sale) systems and secure element systems and how we can make them more secure.
If you want to learn more about how eTAP contributes to the electronic payment revolution that’s happening N-O-W, give us a call.
We’re ready to answer any questions!