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New ways to pay

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Different payment options unveiled this week look set to open up wider choice in the way consumers can pay.

Sage Pay is now offering its retailers the ability to offer one-click payments through its Token System, while eWise’s eWise payo allows customers to pay direct through their own bank’s website.

Sage Pay‘s Token System, which bolts on to its payment gateway, means that customers can convert credit card numbers into a token or ‘alias’ credit card number, that can be stored by merchants to use to process transactions. This makes it easier for merchants to comply with PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards) while also giving customers the option of paying in a faster way.

Sage says the new service brings convenient one-click payments, previously the domain of larger companies, within reach of businesses of all sizes. Its head of research and development Mat Peck, said: “For years now, PCI DSS has presented a real challenge for online merchants and retailers, as they attempt to balance the complexities of providing an easy to use and inherently positive user experience, with the limitations imposed by strict regulation. Now we can help them do both, and at a relatively low cost to their business.”

Gian Luzio, managing director of online DVD and game retailer Bee.com, said: “The token system provides us with a highly secure and efficient way to store customer details, providing peace-of-mind to our customers. It is crucial that we encourage customers to return to our online store and by speeding up the payment process for them, Sage Pay has helped us facilitate this. By getting rid of the need for customers to have to enter delivery and card details again and again, we’ve seen a very high repeat purchase rate.”

Meanwhile, the eWise payo system, to be unveiled on February 1 at Finovate Europe 2011, gives consumers the ability to pay without giving retailers any of their personal or financial information. It directs customers to their own bank’s website where they log on using existing account credentials. The Faster Payments system is used, making direct payment almost immediate.

eWise payo, says eWise, brings a type of direct payment to the UK that has been common in the US and Europe for many years. It also says it’s an opportunity for banks to build upon and capture market share. The company, a founding member of the International Council of Payment Network Operators, is currently in “advanced discussions” with high street banks, merchant acquirers, payment processors and merchants

John France, managing director of eWise payo, said: “eWise payo is the answer to the industry’s demand for improved security; the bank demand for innovation; the consumer demand for control and the merchant demand for lower costs.”

Andrew McClelland, director of operations at IMRG, said: “Over half the population of the UK are now shopping online and the e-retail industry continues to grow impressively every year, but fears about cyber crime and fraud can prevent some people from taking advantage of the value and availability that online offers. Removing the need to provide account details to each retailer purchased from will greatly improve consumer convenience and trust, particularly in smaller online businesses.”

* Sage Pay is currently offering customers a month’s free use of the token system to anyone going live with it in February 2011.

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