Are you currently setting up your website for your new online store and would like to make it safe, legible for your customers and compliant to the rules of financial institutions involved, such as credit card companies? There are some best practice rules ready for you…
Here are the rules you MUST follow:
- Identification – make sure that your company is recognizable by your customers (cardholders) at any time. If your company XYZ sells a project X and its name is the most visible on site, put X as a descriptor on cardholders’ bank statements (point 10) but also place your company name in the footer of every page of your website.
- Location of the company – The registered address of your company (street, zip code, country, no post box) must be present on the website and should be displayed directly before the purchase.
- Contact address for customers – you must specify a contact address for your customers. This may be a phone number or an email address, under which the cardholder would be able to obtain information on effected transactions.
A customer should be able to contact a merchant for a period of up to 90 days after the date of the transaction concerned.
- Clear description of the goods and services offered – the goods and services on offer must be completely described in order not to confuse a customer about their features and prices, so not only the size and color but also the technical requirements (for instance voltage for electrical goods) should be displayed.
- Range of goods – The range of sold goods must correspond to the type of business declared earlier by a merchant. If a merchant is going to change any type of products and services offered on his website (e.g. he sells ebooks and now plans to sell hotel reservations) he should contact PayLane first to clarify whether he can sell a new product or service using the same merchant account.
- Transaction currencies – Each customer shall be informed of the underlying transaction currency before conclusion of the purchase. The corresponding country name must also be specified unless the currency is compatible to ISO standard (e. g. “USD” or “US$” rather than just “$”).
It helps to avoid problems resulting from symbol misunderstanding (Australian, American and Canadian dollar have the same symbol).
- Confidentiality warranty – you must ensure confidential handling of all customer data received.
- Proceeding in the case of returns of goods, refunds and cancellations – you shall inform the customers clearly of their rights and duties in the case of returns of goods, refunds and cancellations. This information must be made clear to the customer before the purchase, in order to avoid misconceptions, contradictions, and conflicts as far as possible.
- Statement on/implementation of transaction security – the merchant should clearly point out the exerted measures for transaction security (e. g. SSL encryption) to the customer.
- Relation Clearing Descriptor – The customer must be able to establish a relationship between the clearing descriptor (on a cardholder’s bank statement) and the contracting company, e.g. by using the company name or the URL as clearing descriptor or by an explicit indication on the website.
Here are the rules you should follow as well:
- Integration of the VISA and EUROCARD/MasterCard logos – The logos of the credit card companies should be integrated in an appropriate form. At the same time their appearance should not be put at disadvantage with the appearance of the other means of payment. Moreover the logos should be displayed in such a way that the credit card companies are not accidentally classified as suppliers of the product or service.
- Price display – The customer must be able to identify the final price of a product unmistakably.
- Debiting time of the cardholder – It is recommended to debit the cardholder after the goods have been delivered or the service has been rendered completely.
- Issuing of invoices – the merchant should announce the time of the issuing of the invoice as well as the subsequent fulfillment (e. g. in case the ordered goods can only be supplied in partial deliveries).
- Promise of immediate execution of orders – it would be ideal if you could send an email to the customer one day after receipt of the order at the latest, confirming the order. If the goods are not available at the moment, the customer should immediately be informed of the altered delivery times.
- Promise of reaction times for all customer queries – the merchant should react to all customer queries (e. g. via email or phone) within two workdays.
- Shipping policy/delivery facilities – All details on the merchant company‘s shipping policy or other conditions must be clearly specified on the website.
- Exportation restrictions – If you are aware of any exportation restrictions, these must be specified explicitly on your website.
- Note referring to copy of the transaction data – please remind the cardholder to retain a copy of the transaction at an easily accessible place
- Transaction receipt – In order to find a solution for cardholder and the merchant in the case of a conflict, an unequivocal identification number must be assigned to every transaction. The ID must be clearly specified on the transaction receipt.
- Online address of the contracting company – you must always specify the URL of their web presence on the transaction receipt.
This post was written by Hania Sajnaj-Kaczmarek