E-commerce today is truly a global enterprise. Merchants need to accommodate a growing number of payment methods, in a wide variety of currencies, and an expanding range of countries. Payment orchestration puts merchants in complete control of this increasingly complex payment ecosystem – providing them with a powerful way of managing all their payment solutions through a single platform.
What is payment orchestration?
There can be some confusion around the term payment orchestration, so it’s worth clarifying the current meaning. First of all, it is not the same as a payment gateway, which is a ‘static’ piece of technology used to interface with different payment systems. Rather, as the name implies, it positions the merchant in the role of a conductor – coordinating and harmonising every aspect of the payments ecosystem to ensure a seamless and efficient payment process.
In essence, payment orchestration serves as a central hub that optimises transaction routing and minimises friction – thereby reducing costs – while maximising payment success rates.
At Worldline, we offer payment orchestration as a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform that enables merchants to centrally manage and optimise payment flows across various payment providers. Through intelligent routing and automated reporting, it enables merchants to orchestrate a scalable payment strategy with unprecedented levels of visibility and control.
Merchants can manage all their payment providers from a single interface, greatly simplifying the management of:
- Payment products
- Transaction routing
- Scheme tokens
- Fraud prevention
- Reporting and analysis.
- Multiple check-out options with greater flexibility
Evolving with the times
Traditionally, merchants managed payments through a single payment gateway. However, this approach often resulted in limitations in terms of geographic reach, currency support, and the ability to offer diverse payment methods to customers.
Payment orchestration addresses these challenges by allowing businesses to connect with multiple payment providers, acquirers, and alternative payment methods through a unified interface.
While the concept of payment orchestration is a decade old, its recent development has been transformative in meeting the evolving demands of the payments landscape and the needs of global customers:
- Rise of digital commerce: The surge in online shopping and the proliferation of e-commerce platforms has created demand for a more diverse range of payment methods. Payment orchestration addresses this need by enabling businesses to effortlessly integrate a variety of payment gateways and methods.
- Mobile and contactless payments: The advent of smartphones and mobile wallets introduced a new dimension to payments. Payment orchestration systems have adapted to support mobile payment options, including NFC-based contactless payments, QR code payments, and in-app purchases.
- Personalisation and user experience: Modern payment orchestration solutions leverage AI and machine learning to optimise the payment experience for users. This includes offering preferred payment methods, displaying relevant currencies, and even adjusting the payment flow based on user identity or behaviour.
- Cross-border trade: As merchants have explored opportunities beyond their domestic markets, payment orchestration has played a pivotal role in facilitating cross-border transactions by offering localised payment options, multi-currency support, and compliance with international regulations.
- Focus on security and compliance: As cyber threats have grown, payment orchestration platforms have integrated advanced security features to protect sensitive payment data – and offering full PCI-DSS Level 1 compliance.
Key benefits for merchants
In the ever-evolving landscape of global e-commerce, merchants face a multitude of challenges when dealing with diverse payment methods, currencies, and expanding markets. Payment orchestration offers merchants a transformative solution, providing them with unparalleled control over their payment ecosystem.
- Enhanced global reach and customer experience: Payment orchestration enables merchants to expand their global footprint by offering localised payment options. This not only caters to the preferences of diverse customer bases but also provides a smoother and more familiar payment experience. Customers are more likely to complete transactions when they can use their preferred payment methods and currencies.
- Optimised payment routing: With payment orchestration, transactions are routed through the most suitable payment gateway using merchant-configured rules based on factors such as currency, payment type, location and card issuer. This dynamic routing ensures higher success rates and reduces the risk of payment decline or failure.
- Flexibility and agility: As the payment landscape evolves, new payment methods and gateways emerge. Payment orchestration presents merchants with the unique advantage of agility, allowing them to bypass the often-cumbersome integration process. Instead, they can swiftly and seamlessly integrate and offer these new options by simply enabling them on the orchestration platform. This approach obviates the need for extensive overhauls of their existing payment infrastructure. This flexibility enables businesses to reduce time to market and stay ahead of the curve and offer the latest payment innovations to their customers.
- Data-driven insights: Modern payment orchestration platforms offer sophisticated analytics and reporting tools. These tools provide valuable insights into transaction performance, helping merchants make informed decisions around optimising their payment strategies, reducing fraud, enhancing user experience, and streamlining and optimising their financial operations teams.
- Reduced downtime and maintenance needs: By distributing transactions across multiple gateways, payment orchestration reduces the risk of downtime. If one gateway has technical issues, the system can automatically reroute transactions through another gateway, ensuring uninterrupted payment processing.
Payment orchestration has come a long way in a relatively short time. From its origins as a solution to streamline online payments, it has evolved into a sophisticated solution that empowers merchants to expand globally, optimise payment processes, and enhance customer experience.