A globe with pins all over it, representing local payment methods used in different countries

A Voyage Through the World of Payment Methods: How Your Customers Pay

In e-commerce and online services, local payment methods grow in importance in many nations around the globe. On an international scale, the global credit card schemes have dominated online payments for a long time. But currently, they are in decline: Estimations state that in 2026, only around 16% of online payments will be conducted via credit cards.  At the same time, payment solutions by BigTech companies like Apple, Tencent and Amazon grow in favor. They are popular and well-known all over the globe. In addition, digital financing like Buy Now, Pay Later find widespread adoption on platforms. Customers flock to such payment options as they guarantee them greater financial flexibility in the face of high inflation and times of economic downturn. 

In any case, local payment methods are gaining steam: Some purely digital, some including offline interactions. Many such local payment methods have limited reach, only seeing adoption in specific regions or nations. However, sometimes a local payment method is able to expand beyond the confines of its region and become an international player. Today’s BigTech payment titans belong to this category.

Alternative payment methods encompass a variety of options, including: 

  • Bank Transfers 
  • Cash-on-Delivery
  • Direct Debit
  • Electronic Wallets
  • Voucher Payments 
  • And more…

The Payment Options Line-Up Reflects Local Payment Preferences  

Irrespective of their form, these alternative methods shape a country’s payment culture, which can vary greatly even between neighboring nations. Therefore, businesses looking to expand into new markets must consider local payment preferences. It’s estimated that up to 77% of transactions are made via alternative payment methods in some counties. 

This article is intended to assist companies in understanding the payment cultures of regional markets. It provides an overview and aims to offer businesses a starting point for their own in-depth research. The article will cover the following regions: 

  • Europe
  • Africa and the Middle-East
  • Asia and the Pacific
  • North America
  • South America

What payment methods do people in these parts of the world prefer? Let’s spin the globe a bit and have a look. 

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A clarinette laying on a sheet of music, representing payment orchestration

What Is Payment Orchestration (And Why Is It a Game Changer)?

Payment Orchestration describes the mechanism of integrating and handling different payment service providers, acquirers and banks on a single, unified software layer. The Payment Orchestration software executes and manages the complete end-to-end payment process. That includes payment authentication, multi-PSP transaction routing, settlement, and much more. Also, Payment Orchestration encompasses processes such as risk management, secure customer data storing, Know-Your-Customer and Anti-Money-Laundering procedures, and the like. 

A Payment Orchestration Platform (POP), or Payment Orchestration Layer (POL) is the technological framework that manages user and merchant accounts, acquirers, payment providers, fraud detection services, etc., initiating, validating, routing and processing transactions involving those parties. In addition, a Payment Orchestration Layer handles payment processes such as reconciliation, billing and settlement, payouts and reporting. 

A Payment Orchestration Layer (POL) is the entry point to and the heart of a payment system, streamlining payment automation. With POL, e-commerce platforms and online service providers don’t need to integrate every PSP and every acquirer separately. Instead, they can consume the unified API of the payment orchestration layer, benefiting from a reduced integration complexity. Moreover, a POL simplifies system maintenance and development for platform owners and merchants and streamlines interaction with third-party service providers.

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A high-fashion purse and a smart watch, standing for buy now, pay later in the fashion industry

The Pros and Cons of Buy Now, Pay Later in Online Fashion Retail  

Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) allows customers to buy something online, but pay for it after delivery. A BNPL payment can be made in installments over a period of time or as a full payment at a fixed date. Thus, the payment method is a novel variant of purchase on account, for short-term financing of goods. 

No traditional banking institutions have to be involved when paying in BNPL installments. What’s more, some BNPL companies even refrain from charging interest rates – a practice that banks still adhere to.

With the economic downturn threatening the margins of online fashion retailers, Buy Now, Pay Later can be a tool to keep customers happy in spending. 

In this article, we will have a look at the how and why. We will cover… 

  • Why the fashion industry is under pressure and how BNPL can help
  • What the core advantages of Buy Now, Pay Later are
  • What options you have when trying to get a Buy Now, Pay Later solution for your platform
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A street sign with two arrows pointing in opposite directions, symbolizing refund processes in e-commerce.

How to Build Powerful Refund Processing for E-Commerce 

Returns and refunds are a major concern for retailers. One important factor is cost. In 2021 alone, the combined value of all returns in the U.S. was $761 billion. What’s more, The fees that merchants have to pay to payment providers for refunds to the original source of payment add to this amount. Building their own e-wallet-based payment system can reduce these costs while improving the customer experience. But how to build an efficient refund processing for e-commerce platforms – that’s what we want to answer in this article. 

In the following paragraphs, we will take a look at: 

  • The difference between returns and refunds
  • The typical flow of a refund in online retail
  • The challenges of refunding payments
  • The advantages of an e-wallet system for refunding
  • The process of building one yourself

And: action! 

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A picture displaying a clock and money, symbolizing buy now pay later payments

How to Build Your Own BNPL Solution

Buy Now, Pay Later (also: BNPL) is shaking up the payment market. In 2020, it already made up 5% of annual e-commerce transactions, according to Bain & Company. And the trend is upward, as many online retailers plan to introduce BNPL payment options, as well. The key question for those companies is: 

What is the best way to set up a payment system that includes BNPL options? 

This boils down to the simple choice between turnkey payment systems by 3rd parties or a custom system built and run in-house.    

The first option is quicker and doesn’t require as much domain knowledge and development resources as the second one. However, it comes with disadvantages in the long run such as: 

  • Continuous fees that cut into revenue
  • Dependency on a third party regarding updates and features
  • Risk of so-called vendor lock-in, when the BNPL provider cannot deliver the service or changes the price structure, while no alternative provider is available
  • Possibility that the BNPL solution in question no longer fits the retailers’ business strategy as it evolves 

When building a custom payment system with Buy Now, Pay Later options, these problems can be avoided or mitigated. Companies are even better positioned with an e-wallet system, as BNPL processes can also be built on top of it. 

In this article, we provide an overview of how companies can build their own BNPL solution – and why this is even easier with a powerful e-wallet framework.

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Banknotes from different nations, symbolizing local / alternative payment methods

Why Shooting For Alternative Payment Methods Is Half the Game

Around 200 different payment methods exist around the globe – every single one has its fans. That’s not surprising: Our local payment culture influences which payment methods (or payment service providers) we prefer. Factors such as perceived payment trends, word-to-mouth, and genuine economic and regulatory conditions all shape our preference for one way of payment or the other.

For every company aiming for a new market, it’s crucial to understand the local payment customs inside out. And that’s just the preliminary: Integrating local payment methods and providers can be complex and costly on the technical side. This article will help companies without a payment software background navigate the playing field. How to set up a custom payment system that simplifies payment method integration?

The article details: 

  • The benefits and challenges of local payment methods 
  • Why a custom payment system makes alternative payment method integration easier
  • How to set up a global payment system with CoreWallet, featuring an orchestration layer for local payment methods 

Let’s begin… 

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A software developer working on coding a payment gateway

How to Develop a Payment Gateway – in 4 Stages

Online marketplaces are complex systems. This complexity is reflected in the Payment Gateway needed for such platforms.

As a marketplace owner, you always have the option to integrate payment systems, offered by external Payment Service Providers. Depending on your business strategy, that might suffice. But using an off-the-shelf PSP will also limit your opportunities. You can’t evolve your marketplace to your preferences if the PSP doesn’t move along with you:

  • You want to offer payment methods, according to customer demand? The PSP must support them.
  • You want to scale up your business and move to new markets? The PSP must be set up to handle higher transaction numbers and adapt quickly to local financial regulations.
  • You want to enable customers to pay via a prepaid e-money balance and securely store their payment instruments? The PSP must offer an electronic wallet.
  • And so on…

Thus, ambitious marketplace owners might decide to build a custom Payment Gateway and remain in control over payments. As the company behind CoreWallet, the flexible software foundation for payment and e-wallet applications, we are familiar with creating Payment Gateways. It’s important to approach the development process with a clear plan. To help you master the technical challenges, we have compiled the common stages of such a Payment Gateway project for you.

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Two people with VR goggles, representing interactions with the metaverse and its payment systems

How FinTechs and BigTechs Bring Payment to the Metaverse

Photo of Natallia Martchouk, co-founder of trimplement
trimplement co-founder Natallia Martchouk takes us on a trip through the thrilling prospects of payments in the metaverse.

The Metaverse has been one of the hottest topics in business and tech in the last few months. Is this only a buzzword and a hype or does it have a real longer-term potential to become the “next big thing”? You can find supporters for both opinions. However, a lot of big consultancy companies believe that there is no way to fail for the Metaverse.

For example, according to CB Insights “the metaverse could represent a $1T market by the end of the decade”. Deloitte has published a white paper about the potential of the Metaverse and they believe in even higher numbers: “The metaverse may become a paradigm shift for consumer and enterprise behavior, analogous to the introduction of smartphones. It could create a potentially massive new market, with recent estimates of the commercial opportunity as high as $13 trillion and five billion regular users by 2030.” Accenture has launched the Accenture Metaverse Continuum business group to help their clients to understand and make use of the Metaverse opportunities. Its head Paul Daugherty stated that “The next generation of the internet is unfolding and will drive a new wave of digital transformation far greater than what we’ve seen to date, transforming the way we all live and work”.

I’m also rather on the optimistic side of supporters believing that Metaverse is not the hype but a next step in the technological, social and economical development of mankind. 

However, before we analyze the current development status and prospects of the Metaverse, paying special attention to the payment topics, let’s review what “Metaverse” actually means and how it is different from “Web 3.0”.

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A credit card used for payment on an online platform

How Online Card-Based Payments Function

On today’s online platforms, we face an extensive choice of (digital) payment methods, some of them fairly non-traditional (like blockchain-based payments), some having been around for a while (like credit card, direct debit, vouchers and gift codes). In some countries, payment methods that bridge the online and offline spheres of web shopping remain popular, too, such as cash-on-delivery. In others, BNPL and e-wallet-based payment flows are popular. This article will take a deep look into one specific form of online payment, though:

Card-Based Online Payments

These include all manners of payment cards such as Credit Cards, Debit Cards and Prepaid Cards. They may exist in purely digital form or have a physical equivalent. In any case, local banks issue the cards and they operate on the rails of international or domestic Payment Card Schemes.

In the following paragraphs, we will focus on credit card-based payment systems, presenting their basic flows and involved parties (like issuer, acquirer and so on). This article will examine in detail:

And go! 

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A picture of a Moritz Königsbüscher, providing insights into the topic of Payment Analytics

Finquiry #4: Moritz Königsbüscher on Payment Analytics 

Over the last decades, online commerce has become increasingly data-driven. Companies monitor search engine metrics, measure user behavior on their pages or ask customers for their feedback in digital forms. 

One branch of data evaluation for e-commerce and service platforms, that promises valuable insights, is Payment Analytics. But it’s also a challenge to set up a functioning environment and make sense of one’s findings. 

In our fintech interview series “Finquiry”, payment expert Moritz Königsbüscher addresses the topic and shares best practices. 

Our Guest: Moritz Königsbüscher, Freelance Payment Consultant

Moritz Königsbüscher has examined payments from almost all angles. He worked in payments and product management roles in companies both on the payment service provider side and the merchant side (e.g. Arvato, Xing, SoundCloud, RiskIdent). Working as a freelance payments consultant for banks, startups and corporations of varied industries, Moritz recently launched the PreAuth Academy, a service specializing in online payments training. 

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