Today, thousands of enterprises operate across multiple countries, with global payments revenue increasing 11% in 2021.
Managing the disbursement of global payments can be challenging without the right process and tools. More than four in five companies say they struggle with problems in the payment process, struggling to manage refunds and returns, surface quality data, and navigate obstacles often exacerbated by international payouts.
Therefore it’s critical to choose a global payments platform that can help you easily complete international mass payouts, forex, and more. The right system can help you manage payments at scale while providing customers new ways of unlocking and spending digital value.
But what are global payment platforms? And how can you find the perfect fit for your company?
This guide details all the considerations to keep in mind when selecting a global payments platform. Apart from exploring desirable features and future-focused considerations, we also highlight limiting factors to avoid while narrowing your shortlist.
Let’s get started.
What are global payments platforms?
Global payments platforms are a critical piece of digital infrastructure designed to help you manage payments at scale. Unlike ACH (Automated Clearing House) transfers or credit/debit card processing, payments platforms aggregate all your international payouts into a single effective dashboard.
However, it’s important to remember that not all platforms offer the tools modern businesses need to expand their global payments process. Some rely on legacy infrastructure or limited payout options. Others have tight restrictions on mass payouts or currency conversions.
It’s crucial to vet a selection of global payments platforms before making a final decision. Thankfully, that doesn’t have to be hard to do. The categories outlined below are designed to help you make an informed decision for you and your team.
Choosing a global payments platform: what to look for
The way you manage international payments and disbursement can make or break your business strategy. Therefore, selecting the right payments platform can unlock your organization’s ability to scale while imbuing customers, clients, and partners with confidence.
Here are eight critical features to look for in a global payments platform.
Not all global payout platforms are created equal. While some claim to offer scalability to multiple countries, they may only provide the infrastructure for two or three locations.
Make sure to check the true scalability of the payments platform in question. How many countries do they support? How many currencies can they convert? If this information isn’t explained upfront, be sure to ask for clarification.
Single API integration
Portal-based payments platforms have their place, but an increasing number of international businesses need more than just established architecture. Tapping into money transfer or payment APIs can help your organization scale effectively while moving digital value wherever it needs to go.
Verify that the global payment solutions on your shortlist offer a customizable API integration. You may want to make sure the onboarding time is short so you don’t have to sink resources into unnecessary tasks.
Finally, ask platform experts for access to succinct documentation that is easy to use and understand. This means the developers on your team can work faster, smarter, and feel better equipped during the integration process.
Multiple payout types
It’s becoming increasingly rare for businesses to not accept digital payments or disbursements. The best global payments platforms come with transformative architecture that can help you convert digital value into the output recipients want or expect. Unlike legacy solutions that allow you to store (but not redeem) digital value, modernized platforms can help customers and clients receive or redeem value in their own way.
You should carefully look for a platform that provides instant payouts in bulk and through payment types such as:
- Gift cards
- Prepaid cards
Again, all disbursements must accompany global scalability and allow for instant payouts when necessary.
Real-time access with instant dispersion
Your global payments solution should handle international payments as quickly as possible. Today, 38% of finance leaders already use real-time payments (RTP) in their companies, while 61% of them believe it provides a competitive advantage.
The global payments platform you choose should offer real-time access to your funds and other pertinent financial information. Plus, you should be able to automate the process as much as possible and create a performant pipeline that works 24/7.
The benefits of implementing real-time access into your payments process are clearly demonstrable for global brands. Not only do global real-time payments provide more control over your funds, but it ensures you and your business remain in the know with every new development.
Low cost and high value
Some platforms charge monthly fees or bill per-user costs depending on your business’s size. However, the best systems only charge for what you use, putting more money back into your pocket for other tasks.
Plus, a great global payments platform shouldn’t charge you just for signing up. There should be no hidden fees, no monthly commitment, and no minimum or maximum amounts for “upgrading” your plan. This allows you to thoroughly test your solution before paying any fees or converting your existing architecture.
How can you tell if a global payments platform falls within your budget? Book a call with one of their representatives and ask:
- What do monthly transaction fees look like?
- Is there a monthly commitment? What does that look like?
- Are there value-added services, such as customer support across time zones?
Knowing the answers to these questions should give you an idea of which global payments platforms are worth investing in.
Global companies can’t afford to simply estimate or guess what their next steps should be. Instead, they need access to real and meaningful data to make informed decisions for their resources, labor, and customers.
Data-rich reporting allows you to track the history of your global payouts and craft a more holistic understanding of your global disbursement ecosystem. For example, you can use data-rich reporting to:
- Keep tabs on information for international compliance. Estimates suggest there are more than 26,000 global payment rules affecting the ways you can pay suppliers in other countries. Keeping a close eye on funds and their allocations can help you stay aligned with the law wherever you operate.
- Track changing trends and capitalize on customer preferences. By understanding customer habits alongside their disbursement preferences, you can make payouts quicker, smarter, and more personalized.
- Determine the next steps for your company. Your global payouts data should be clearly presented and easy to understand, allowing you to present insights to stakeholders without creating time-consuming reports on your own.
The world of global payouts provides a host of opportunities to brands — and, unfortunately, a myriad of opportunities for bad actors and those with malicious intent. Brands can no longer afford to ignore the growing number of cyberattacks facing global payouts software every year, including:
- Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs) — Attackers establish an undetected presence in your network to quietly mine sensitive data over a long period of time. This may result in the theft of bank account numbers, personal names and information, and much more.
- Distributed Denial of Service Attacks (DDoS) — A user or group of users attempts to shut down your network by flooding a target with a slew of traffic. This prevents usual “traffic” from getting where it needs to go, disrupting normal services.
- Supply Chain Breaches — Attackers use a third-party vendor or supplier connected to your network to access sensitive data. A whopping 98% of organizations have been impacted by supply chain breaches at least once during their operation.
It’s critical to choose a global payments software with bank-level security you can trust. The platform should offer plenty of documentation regarding security protocols and inform you of any systems in place for fraud protection and regulatory compliance.
White label options
The vast majority of global payments platforms offer little to no customization or don’t easily lend themselves to personalization and adoption. This is problematic for growing businesses that want to customize a payments platform to their brand and user experience.
White label capabilities make all this possible and more. Global payments platforms should offer built-in customization options, providing new pathways for integrating your UX with UI. The ultimate goal should be to foster loyalty with your brand and create new opportunities to do business in the future.
There are several different use cases to keep in mind:
- Build customer loyalty apps — By connecting your global payouts platform to a client-facing loyalty app, you can instantly disburse payments to partners in your network or issue gift cards to your existing store.
- Employee reward programs — Say “thank you” to hardworking employees in your company with a customized dashboard where they can redeem points for digital value.
- Manage customer refunds — Build your very own app for disbursing refund payments while ensuring you have the customer’s best needs in mind. Your clients will appreciate the extra touch of personalization, while brand managers rejoice with customizable colors, fonts, and more.
Keep in mind that most global payments platforms cannot offer this level of customization. The only way to know if a platform offers these capabilities is to contact their sales reps and chat with an expert.
Alternatively, you could partner with the team at Runa to deliver rich customer experiences with these features and more.
Choosing a global payments platform that lasts with Runa
Growing companies need payment solutions that can match their growth and international reach. However, the vast majority of global payments platforms fail to provide flexibility for companies or their customers. Many are forced to change their plans to accommodate their platform of choice, preventing them from engaging with customers through flexible distribution options.
But Runa takes a different approach to managing global payments. Designed by a team of payments experts with a deep understanding of digital value infrastructure, our global payments platform is used by thousands of leading brands.
And unlike some of the most popular platforms for global enterprises, Runa offers all the above features — and many more.
Runa takes a contemporary approach to serve businesses, customers, and recipients with easily translatable digital value in simplified global disbursements. It’s easy to see the Runa difference:
- When you connect with the Runa API, you can transform digital value into gift cards, subscriptions, shares, donations, cryptocurrencies, and more.
- In addition to the Runa API, you can also tap into the Runa Portal for free and instantly access our full network of features.
- We connect with the tools you’re already using to instantly send payouts to anyone, anywhere. You can reach customers in more than 30 countries without needing thousands of bank account details.
- You can send unlimited payouts to as many recipients as you want. With our built-in forex capabilities, you can easily fund in one currency and disburse in another.
- You only pay for what you use with Runa. You don’t need to worry about setup or usage fees — everything is tailored to what you need for your company.
Runa is the global payments platform of choice for some of the world’s biggest brands and enterprises. If you’re interested in exploring the platform or using the API yourself, feel free to speak with an expert about your specific needs. We would be happy to schedule a one-on-one demo for you.