Over the years, our shopping habits have evolved. While ecommerce has brought us many benefits, it also brings new possibilities for cyber-criminals and fraudsters who are always looking for ways to steal important personal information. As a business, you have to do whatever it takes to not only prevent fraud, but also assure your customers that the transactions on your website are secure.
Since most users don’t understand the processes that go on when they make a payment online, they are reluctant about putting their credit card details online. Some might not even be comfortable using the internet in the first place, and others will require some convincing and assurances of security on the website. As such, it’s crucial to have several safeguards on your ecommerce site to make your potential clients feel more confident when buying from you.
Keep in mind that you only have a few seconds to win over a visitor on your site. Within a very short time, your visitors can decide if they like the products or services you’re offering, and whether you site is trustworthy. So, what are the ways to assure your clients that it’s okay to pay online?
- Be Legitimately Secure, and Look Like It
This entails updating your website to the latest security standards, and having it look professional. It should ideally load quickly, be easy to navigate, clearly explain what you’re offering, and have a fully developed contact page.
The first step is ensuring your address starts with “https”, the “s” stands for “secure”. This way, your visitors can be sure that your website uses a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL), which ideally encrypts their information when entering it to make a purchase. Some browsers actually show colored fonts and other visual cues to inform visitors when a part of website is not secured.
Be sure to personalize your site, include a page describing who you are, as well as photos of you and your team. Don’t forget that people trust people, not the website or the webpage. It’s also important to stay active on social media, and don’t hesitate from sharing reviews and testimonials. These are some of the most powerful pointers to the security of your site.
- Display Site Seals and Security Logos on your Site
This is perhaps the most obvious way of earning the trust of your customers. Placing logos and seals such as your SSL certificate on the checkout page and at the footer of your homepage goes a long way in assuring the visitor that their information is encrypted and therefore safe. Other trust marks include VeriSign, Chamber of Commerce, Better Business Bureau, GeoTrust, Thawte or a reputable antivirus software like Norton or McAfee.
- Authentication Layers
Your customers will also want to know that their information is safely kept, even if they forget it. Give them this peace of mind by putting up and requiring a few layers of verification before their login information is restored. For example, when one of your clients forgets their password, your website should have them answer security questions or confirm their phone number before sending them an email to restore their password.
When they click the link contained in the email, the address should then be verified, and more information can be shared. Requiring several verification steps will aside from improving the security of their data, make your customers more comfortable and willing to buy. Further, you will never be at a risk of providing private information to third parties.
- PCI Compliance
If you are offering online payments on your site, PCI DSS compliance is an absolute must. The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) outlines guidelines that merchants should follow and stipulates what they need to do to secure sensitive data in their payment processing systems.
PCI compliance assures your clients that you’re committed to keeping their credit card information safe. Regardless of the size of your ecommerce site, you must pass PCI compliance testing before you are allowed to accept credit and debit cards.
- Hide Sensitive Data
When a client is logged into their account looking at their payment details, they should ideally not be able to see full information. For instance, much of the bank account number, the first 12 digits of the card number, and other sensitive information should remain hidden. This will make sure that in case they forget to log out of their account on a public computer, or when someone maliciously tries to enter their account without permission, there will be no way to see all the details.
- Mitigate Client’s Risks
It helps to address any of the possible concerns upfront. Start by describing your products and services clearly, so that your clients and customers are positive that they’re going to enjoy what you’re offering. Put up information regarding the cost of shipping and the return policy explicitly and clearly. Include details about your payment security measures on an informational or FAQ section of your site.
Whenever possible, prevent pop-ups or redirects to different pages whenever you can. These will only raise unnecessary red flags to the clients and might even make you seem untrustworthy especially when it’s time to commit their money. These days, even if you’re using a third-party card-processing site, such as https://thesoutherninstitute.com/medical-cannabis-payment-solutions/ for business that sell cbd products, it’s possible to avoid this.
- Provide Multiple Payment Options
Don’t forget that not all your clients will want to pay using a debit or credit card, considering the various security breaches with some of the biggest ecommerce sites such as Zappos and eHarmony. You can make life easier for them by accepting multiple payment options with digital wallets and services such as PayPal.
These ideally make it possible for the concerned buyers to make purchases without sharing their card information every time. Their information will already be stored on a secure wallet, and they don’t need to keep entering their card details every time they make a purchase. Visa also has a similar secure shopping option with their Verified by Visa service, which works like PayPal. The information of the customer will only be stored by Visa, and they won’t have to enter their card details when making payments.