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The Ultimate Guide to Switching Payment Gateways

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We at ChargeOver want to educate people on the process of switching payment gateways. Some people might want to make a change to a more reliable platform if they have had outages in the past with their current provider. Many times as businesses grow they can get better rates through other providers once they reach larger processing volumes. ChargeOver is open and Payment Gateway agnostic. We believe that our customers should use the payment gateway that is the best for their business. They also should not be a victim of Vendor Lock-in!

Your payment gateway is the foundation of your cash flow process, but is it time to make a change? There are several reasons to change gateways, such as business growth, better rates, consumer preference and poor performance of your current provider. In most circumstances, switching payment gateways is fairly easy and involves a few simple steps, so there is no reason to wait.

Making the Switch

Switching gateways involves two parts: contracting and technical integration. While this sounds complicated, it’s actually straightforward, and both can occur simultaneously.


This process begins by supplying specific documentation to the new gateway provider, which includes:

  • Three months of processing statements to document that your business is in good standing.
  • Proof of business beneficiary, which simply means knowing who owns the business and who ultimately receives the profits. For example, if your company is owned in whole or in part by another person or business, they are the beneficiaries. The gateway provider needs this information because it is required by law to ensure that the money it processes is not used for illegal activities.

Once these materials have been reviewed, a contract will be drafted and signed, and will go through an underwriting process. Similar to underwriting a mortgage, the payment gateway vets your business to determine whether or not to give you a merchant account. Since you are switching gateways, this process should be easy, but be sure to select a provider that has in-house underwriting to save time.

Technical Integration

While the contracting process is underway, you will begin the technical integration. This includes:

  • The Sandbox. You will be given access to a demonstration model of the system so you can gain hands-on experience and test its capabilities, including new checkout processes for your customers.
  • Production. If you need changes to the gateway to fully integrate with your needs, that happens next. If a provider can’t supply this service, you may want to keep looking.
  • Data Integration. This is the seamless porting of your data from the previous provider to your new one and should also include any customer data you have stored yourself.
  • Options. At this time you will often have opportunities to select additional functions such as tokenized billing, which eliminates the need for you to store customer data so they won’t be required to re-enter payment information each time they checkout. Account updater service and instant payment notifications (IPN) may also be offered.
  • Testing and Launch. Your new provider should have support to help you during the first few weeks of launch to make sure that everything goes smoothly.

Switching to a new gateway is straightforward and can be fairly quick from start to finish. Since many of the above activities take place simultaneously or are quick to complete, you should take only days, not months, to complete the process.

Avoiding Vendor Lock-in

Image courtesy of https://www.outsystems.com/

Some payment gateways want to lock customers into contracts that punish or prohibit them from switching providers. Concern about vendor lock-in is a key reason why some businesses stick with a gateway that doesn’t fully meet their needs. However, cloud-based systems have greatly reduced vendor lock-in situations, giving businesses freedom of choice.

ChargeOver is a cloud-based company that believes in an open gateway system. We work to assure that our customers have access to the payment gateway(s) that best meets their business needs and can be scaled for growth. Whether your market base is your area code or the global market, you have the right to select the best provider to serve your customer base. Let us help you achieve this freedom.

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