16 Sep Most Common German Online Payment Methods
The German e-commerce market is booming. According to the A.T. Kearney’s Global Retail E-Commerce Index 2015 , Germany takes the second position of the largest online markets in Europe and is in top five on the global scale.
Installing a payment on your website is connected to costs and efficiency (or the lack of it). The number of options out there is quite high and the payment services vary. Before making any decision, you as a seller are responsible for weighing out the options and choosing the best for your customers.
Here are 7 Most Popular Methods of Online Payments in Germany:
This method of online payment is still one of the favorites among German consumers. In particular, people who don’t make many online purchases decide to pay with this option. Once the customer has purchased an item and received it, the company issues an invoice to be paid (normally within 10-15 days).
For many online merchants this type of payment is quite risky. It is often timely since customers often forget to pay within the time frame or even not at all. However, with the recent development in e-commerce, consumers are expected to prefer other online payments rather than invoicing.
Payment provider option: since a great number of customers prefer to use this method of paying, it’s important to find providers that take the risk for payments. Therefore, Klarna is a good choice.
Credit Card Payment
This is one easy and commonly accepted payment method in Germany. While paying with credit card in Germany is by far not as popular as in other European countries, Germans like using this type of payment when buying online. Visa and MasterCard are the two most common types of credit card that Germans use; the percentage of users is almost evenly divided here, with MasterCard being a slightly bit more common.
Launched in 2015, this online payment platform immediately gained attention as it allows its users to pay for their online purchases directly through their bank and from their bank account. This method of paying is a great alternative to already existing ones. It is easy to use, secure and can be integrated into the existing payment system of your online shop.
One of the most popular online payment methods in Germany, Giropay allows consumers to pay directly with their online banking. By installing this method on your shop website, Giropay enables your customers to use the safe online banking environment when checking out. This system has the advantage of attracting those customers that feel uncomfortable using their card to pay online or don’t posses any other kind of payment.
Since its launch in 1999, PayPal, undoubtedly, is the pioneer of online payment, leaving the common paths of bank payments. Today, PayPal is one of the leading online payment providers worldwide. As in other countries, German online buyers like to use this method since they don’t need to enter any bank and account details. Online merchants can choose different options of integrating PayPal into their payment system, either using PayPal API or PayPal Payment Service Provider.
PayPal offers a variety of services, including the option of gateway provider. Especially for online shop owners who have customers that pay online through their PayPal account, iit’s an option to consider. Other payment methods include paying with credit card and invoicing.
SOFORT is part of the Klarna Group, one of the leading European payment providers. It is a direct and secure online payment method that allows customers to pay using their bank details. According to the company’s website, over 35.000 shops are using this method in Germany, which gains in popularity as every second digital buyer uses this method
Payment Gateway Providers
Klarna offers customers the option of immediate purchase and later payment as well as paying in rates (for this service the company charges its users with additional costs). It can be easily integrated with your payment system and only requires your buyer’s email address and ZIP code. This information is being saved, so your customers don’t need to re-enter it after the first purchase.
Each of these companies offers different services to online retailers, so it is crucial to analyze which company best fits your needs. Important things to consider are:
- types of customers
- ease of use
- payment provider’s reputation
Advantages and Disadvantages of Payment Providers
- high data protection
- good customer service since the company is based in Germany
- limited coverage
- fast and easy method of payment for your customers (directly from his/her bank account)
- fast payment processing for sellers – limited number of participating banks
- not as convenient due to PIN/TAN requirement
- convenient method of payment
- one of the most globally accepted methods – integrated system (PayPal account)
- vulnerable to phishing emails
- Seal of approval Trusted Shops and TÜV
- high security standards
- simple usage
- guaranteed money processing for sellers – fee for buyers and sellers (for invoicing as well as rate payment (+ interest) and monthly payments)