How To Choose an E-Commerce Payment Option For Singapore SMEs

ecommerce platforms for singapore sme

If you’re a business owner venturing into the world of ecommerce, you must have at some point grappled with the big question — “how do I plan to receive payments from my customers?”

What makes the questions even more difficult is the availability of so many payment options in the marketplace, which sort of make the whole idea of settling for only a few options tiresome in itself.

This is particularly the case if you’re dealing with international customers. Will the payment option you choose display prices in local currencies? The question hardens when you consider the fact that every business out there will be striving to be customer-centric. You’re simply at your customers’ beck and call, and if a majority of them prefer price tags in local currencies, then nothing else is better for your business.

You may also want the payment method you choose to speed up how it processes payments. If it’s taking too long to process, then that’s enough reason for you to look into the next option. Lastly, what additional information does the payment gateway require? Will your customers be willing to give out such information without bailing out or losing much of their trust and patience in the process ?

The question of payment gateway is so important considering that’s what comes next after conversion.

Your customers like your brand. They’re also convinced enough to proceed to the checkout stage. What you need at that point is a payment Gateway that’s NOT only safe and quick, but comes with multiple options for them to choose from.

How to Choose a Payment Gateway

It’s already established that choosing a payment gateway is not an easy task. Several factors have to be considered.

Customers’ Preference

Other factors held constant, a better payment gateway is one which your customers prefer best. Speaking of which, electronic debit and credit card payments are ranked as the most common methods of payment. And that’s because a great majority of your customers are probably already using them both online and offline.

Service Fee

An enormous service fee could mean you’ll be incurring losses or overcharging your customers to offset the fee. It’s simple logic to always settle for a payment method with the lowest service fee.


Some payment methods are more private than others. If you’re using payment method that will require your customers to enter much of their private information, it’s important that you try to find out beforehand if most of them are comfortable enough sharing this kind of information.


How often does the payment gateway experience downtime? Does it rely on electricity or phone network? Choose wisely because you certainly don’t want your payment option to be unavailable during an outage.

Payment Options a Singapore-based Business Owner Can Consider  

Amazon Payments  

Amazon Pay isn’t exactly a new payment method, having been first introduced in 2007.

The options doesn’t even limit one to only shop with Amazon. For independent shoppers, you can still use the amazon credit card or the amazon information provided to shop anywhere else.

The biggest benefit of using this payment is that it relieves you off the hassle of setting up your own payment system. But keep in mind that Amazon still has a right to the information provided by your client and may choose to use it any way they deem fit without consulting you.

That shouldn’t bother you that much though, as Amazon is a bigger company and they are just as concerned as you about their online reputation.

Of course, there’s the issue of Amazon processing fee, particularly to merchants looking to strike a long term deal with the platform. But what makes the gateway an even better choice is that it allows for shoppers to easily shop with you without keying in their data so long as they’re registered with Amazon payment.

Setting it up on your website is also a no-brainer and should only take you a few minutes to get started.

Google Payments

Google now works with almost any imaginable browser, not just Google chrome as it used to be.

But instead of providing merchant with their billing information as stored in the Amazon database, this payment auto-fills that information in your browser. That way, merchant don’t exactly need to be keying in their information every time they’re online shopping, as with lots of other payment methods.

Perhaps more interesting about the gateway is that it allows you to set up digital gift cards, loyalty programs, and customized deals for your clients. It’s also designed to work with PayPal and credit card checkouts for an extended reach.

Snapchat’s Social Media payment

Snapchat isn’t a payment processing method per se, but it’s a very important social media payment tool to watch.

They might have pulled the plug on their Snapcash peer-to-peer payment service as of 30thAugust, 2018, but they’re still considered one of the most successful social networks to ever come up with a near-successful payment method.

PayPal Payments

PayPal is one of the world’s most domineering online payment solution, servicing 174 countries worldwide.

Their payment system have been broadly broken into two for merchants.

Standard Website Payments

Paypal provides an easy solution for merchants to accept credit card payments on their websites. All they need is a simple PayPal provided code and they’re good to go.

Nothing complicated about the process. Once set, merchants can immediately start accepting payments which is directly deposited to their PayPal accounts. The deposited cash can then be withdrawn via bank or used to make online purchases from other merchants who are also accepting PayPal.

What makes this payment option standout is the fact that shoppers have the option of paying using their debit cards, credit cards or direct money transfers. Their transaction fees are also on the extreme low, which makes them a common choice among merchants.

PayPal Payment Pro

PayPal Payment pro has an added advantage because it eliminates the need to direct your customers to a PayPal checkout page. Instead, everything is handled directly from your website.

That way, your users may never find out that PayPal was involved in the transfer.

This PayPal payment option also features a string of other features that allow you to customize your merchant account to exactly match your brand and other needs.

It’s a Wrap

At the end, it’s safe to say that the best payment tool or method is one that your customers find it a lot easier to transact with. You can go through the list and pick a favorite, and if you find it hard to integrate it to your website, then consider reaching for a digital services agency like MediaOne for help.

But more importantly, remember to also put the payment method you choose on the spot and track it for conversion and cart abandonment rate. And if results turn out to be unsatisfactory, then there’s no harm in trying out a different option.

About the Author

Tom Koh

Tom is the CEO and Principal Consultant of MediaOne, a leading digital marketing agency. He has consulted for MNCs like Canon, Maybank, Capitaland, SingTel, ST Engineering, WWF, Cambridge University, as well as Government organisations like Enterprise Singapore, Ministry of Law, National Galleries, NTUC, e2i, SingHealth. His articles are published and referenced in CNA, Straits Times, MoneyFM, Financial Times, Yahoo! Finance, Hubspot, Zendesk, CIO Advisor.


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