10 Downsides Of Having Multiple Payment Gateways

Written by: Manny Pansa

How many payment gateways are you using for your eCommerce business? If your answer is anything other than one (or if you’re considering adding to the one you already have), then I’m glad you stopped by. I’d like to make your life a whole lot easier.

I can say that with confidence because we talk to merchants daily who are ready to ditch the tricky business of managing multiple payment gateways—two, three, four, sometimes even five or six. How did they get there? Specifics vary by merchant, but the gist is this: The gateway they’d started with couldn’t do the heavy lifting required for real business growth, so they did what they thought was best and added another to fill in the gaps.

If you’re not quite convinced that your life could be simpler with one payment solution like BlueSnap, let’s run down the list of challenges that other merchants have encountered when it comes to using multiple payment gateways. I think you’ll agree that one solution is the best solution.

1. You have to manage multiple vendors, contracts, and relationships. In case Michael Keaton hasn’t already proven this point, multiples of anything are bound to cause headaches.  You’ll of course have to negotiate individual contracts with each vendor; beyond that it’s the inefficiencies created simply by having to juggle the small demands associated with each. Committing to a single, more capable vendor not only removes management responsibilities from your daily workload, it also lets you develop a partnership with a payment gateway you can trust.

2. You miss out on volume pricing discounts. As you know, gateway pricing is usually based on sales volume. Splitting your business among multiple payment gateways means you’re spreading out sales—which makes it that much more difficult to achieve the necessary volume for reduced pricing. Sticking with just one payment processor puts the odds back in your favor.

3. You need a system to direct gateway traffic. Managing multiple payment gateways poses a unique problem: How do you decide what traffic goes to what gateway, and how do you accomplish that task? First you’ll need the business acumen to make “rules” for directing traffic, then you’ll need a developer who can expertly carry it all out. One payment gateway keeps it simple.


Switching payment gateways isn’t as hard as you think. Download this free guide to find out more about the switching process.


4. You need more complex transaction failover logic. If a transaction assigned to Gateway A fails, what happens next—does it go to Gateway B or C? Failover is critical to your conversion rate, so it’s important to decide where and how to route failed transactions so they all have the best chance of success. Here’s a better way: Choose one payment solution that supports automatic transaction failover and works hard to maximize conversions every time.

5. You have to reconcile multiple accounts. Picture this: You have three gateways making deposits into your bank account. When it’s time to reconcile, you start with Gateway A to determine which transactions they handled, then go to Gateway B to do the same, and so on. Plus, with multiple gateways you may wind up with multiple merchant accounts on one website, which means still more reconciliation. To point out the obvious, that means lots of lost time, added frustration, and a greater chance of mistakes. One payment gateway equals one account to reconcile. Period.

6. You have multiple reports to analyze. We know business owners love reports, but do you really want to spend all your time gathering data and trying to consolidate different gateway reporting formats? You could develop your own reporting system to manage it all, or go with a single payment gateway and look at one set of reports, all at once.

7. You have multiple user accounts to administer. Your employees likely come and go, so you’ll need to stay on top of deleting and adding user accounts for each of your payment gateways individually. (You think you’re on it, but are you really?) If something slips through the cracks, you could be leaving a “door” to your business accounts open for former employees. With only one gateway, account administration is easy (and easier to remember, too).

8. You have numerous operational challenges. What happens when someone calls customer service to get a refund? With more than one gateway in operation, it’s no simple task to figure out where the original transaction was processed. You’ll need to either spend more time on the phone with customers processing refunds or design a homegrown solution that can intelligently point your service reps in the right direction quickly. Refunds are a cinch with one payment gateway because there’s only place to look.

9. You have to handle multiple payment gateway integrations. Three different gateways won’t work the same way—they won’t have the same APIs, and they won’t all give the same error messages. To make them all work smoothly you’ll have to code to each gateway specifically. You and your developers simply don’t have the time to do this. With one payment gateway, you do it once, and do it right.

10. You have to devote development resources to your gateways on a continuous basis. Beyond just the setup, you’ll need to devote continuous development time to all your gateways to handle things like upgrades or adding new payment methods. Sticking with one payment provider keeps development costs at a minimum.

There’s an easier way to do payment processing.

As a business owner you have better things to do with your time than struggle with multiple payment solutions. By switching to BlueSnap, you’ll get a single, powerful payment solution that does the work of multiple payment gateways.

So if you’re ready to see how we can help your business—and how easy it is to switch payment providers—get in touch! (Then start thinking about all the things you can do with your newfound extra time.)

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