Over the past couple of years, we’ve witnessed many entrepreneurs coming up with innovative products. These products have been successful in solving a variety of problems which Sri Lankans are facing. With eCommerce emerging as an industry in Sri Lanka it’s about time that we have a proper online payment system. PayHere could be the solution that most of Sri Lanka’s e-commerce industry has been waiting for. Its founder, Dhanika Perera calls it a “comprehensive solution for online payment barriers in Sri Lanka, offering Online Payment Accepting facilities to Sri Lankan Online Merchants in a convenient & affordable way, with a mission to Empower Sri Lankan eCommerce Industry.”
You may remember Dhanika from Bhasha which was aimed at localizing software for Sri Lankans. Now he has set foot in yet another venture with the aims of helping out the booming eCommerce industry in Sri Lanka. Okay all that is great but you may be asking why do we need this? We have other payment gateways which are already functioning in Sri Lanka. However, they all lack some basic features, which makes using them a massive pain in the neck. That being said, here’s what makes PayHere attractive and how it works.
PayHere is free
A key factor that sets PayHere apart from the competition is because it’s free. As you may or may not know, local banks charge a considerable amount of money for a website to have their Payment Gateway integrated. PayHere will not charge you for setting up nor do they have annual fees. You can immediately create a free Merchant Account and start accepting online payments.
There is, however, a transaction fee which will be charged when accepting a payment. This is a pay-as-you-go revenue model. To clarify further, this fee would be a minor percentage of an additional fixed amount. The exact fee structure will be revealed upon the launch but it definitely will be lower than what PayPal charges in India.
It’s easy to setup and has a lot of options
Once you’ve signed up for a merchant account, integrating PayHere into your website is relatively easy. At launch, they are offering three online payment solutions for merchants. All of them support a variety of online payment options. This means that customers have the freedom to choose any payment method they would like to choose to pay for goods and services they purchase. These payment options include Credit/Debit Cards, eZcash/mCash, Internet Banking Payments and more.
So what are the options PayHere is offering? At launch, the online payment solutions offers are:
This is aimed at merchants using Facebook to sell products or services. Such merchants can accept payments by placing PayHere Links under each of item posts on their Facebook pages.
This is aimed at small-scale businesses that use an e-commerce platform. For these businesses, PayHere has plug-ins that can be integrated into the e-commerce platform used and configured to accept payments. PayHere already has plug-ins for major e-commerce platforms such as Magento, OpenCart, Woo Commerce, ZenCart, and Ubercart.
This is aimed at medium and large scale businesses. PayHere Checkout buttons offer a customized solution that can be integrated on your website to accept payments. The payment status is sent back to your website to process orders. This will available in the form of an API with detailed documentation.
How does it work for merchants?
For merchants, it works in three easy steps. Firstly, the merchant makes the sale and PayHere will securely accept the payment from the customer on behalf of the merchant. This payment from the customer is then transferred to the merchant’s PayHere account. The merchant then has the freedom to withdraw his payouts at any time to his/her bank account.
How does it work for customers?
Up until now we discussed on how PayHere is a great solution for merchants looking to grow their revenue by joining in on the eCommerce game. But another crucial factor is customers. Without them, there is no one to purchase goods and services from these merchants. So how does it work if you’re a customer?
Once again, the process consists of three simple steps. Firstly you have to enter your details as a customer. You can then select a payment option. Finally, you will have to enter any necessary details (such as credit card number) for the payment option selected in the previous step. And with that, you as a customer have now completed your transaction.
If you’re wondering about security then you have nothing to fear. The service was built while following the strict Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) guidelines. These strict guidelines are also followed by Visa, MasterCard, and American Express. This means all Debit/Credit card information will be accepted in PCI certified environments. They are also working on additional security methods and will continually work on improving their security.
When will it launch?
PayHere is currently accepting pre-registrations for merchants on their website. You can find all the necessary details by clicking here. According to Dhanika, they are planning to launch in a few months. Initially, it will be available for merchants to accept online payments and then they will also be launching the service for customers to easily make online payments. Once PayHere launches, it will most likely give the local e-commerce industry a much-needed boost by offering a better alternative to existing payment gateways.