Enabling users to make or accept payments through your platform requires a process called payment enrollment. When implemented correctly, payment enrollment paves the way for smooth transactions and ensures that you and your customers are able to pay—or get paid—efficiently.
In this post, we’ll explore payment enrollment in more detail and discuss how it relates specifically to SaaS companies.Learn More
What is Payment Enrollment?
Payment enrollment refers to the process of onboarding users onto a platform that facilitates payments.
The process itself varies depending on the business. For example, a company that needs to pay its vendors may ask its suppliers to fill out a payment enrollment form so they can be entered into the company’s system and get paid. Or, a service provider that offers payment plans may ask their clients to enroll into their payment system so the provider can charge their cards automatically.
In the realm of SaaS businesses, payment enrollment takes place when the software company wants to enable its users to accept or facilitate payments using its solution.
For instance, if you’re a project management software company and want to give your users the ability to accept payments through your platform, you would need an enrollment process to properly onboard them to your payments solution.
How SaaS Companies Can Implement Payment Enrollment
The specific steps involved in your payment enrollment process will depend on several factors, including your technology capabilities, the type of software you’re offering, and the user experience you want to create.
When it comes to payment enrollment, the first thing that almost all SaaS companies must do is to find the right payments partner.
While there are numerous companies that can facilitate payments through your software, not all of them can serve as a reliable partner that can help you establish and run smooth payment processes (including enrollment).
As such, it’s critical that you do research and select the right payments provider.
At Stax Connect, for example, we ensure that our SaaS clients are set up for success by providing different enrollment options and guiding them through the process.
3 Payment Enrollment Methods for SaaS Platforms
There are three common ways to enroll users into a SaaS payments platform. Below, we’ll discuss the ones provided by Stax Connect. (Note: Not all payment providers can offer or support these methods, so be sure to have thorough conversations with vendors before selecting a payments partner.)
1. Full API enrollment
With this method, your payment enrollment process happens right inside your app, so users won’t have to leave your software. They’ll fill out a form within your app and go through the approval process on your platform.
The main benefit of a full API enrollment is it enables you to create a payment process that’s 100% on brand. Since everything happens within the four walls of your software (so to speak), the user has a consistent branding experience every step of the way.
However, the full API enrollment method requires substantial developer resources and API knowledge. You’ll need a developer team who can build that process into your app using the Stax API.
While large companies have the resources to accomplish this, small to medium SaaS businesses may not have the developer resources to do so. In this case, the following two options may be a better fit.
2. Hybrid API enrollment
With the hybrid API method, you can start the payment enrollment process within your app, then redirect merchants to a co-branded landing page where they can complete their application. This method leverages the Stax Signup Application using Single Sign On (SSO) capabilities to smoothly and securely direct users from your software to the web-based application form.
The hybrid enrollment method still enables you to offer a branded experience without a massive requirement for developer resources. Since you’re not embedding the entire enrollment procedure into your software, there’s no need for a large or dedicated team.
Think of it as getting the best of both worlds: you can offer a certain level of customization without doing all of the technical heavy lifting.
3. White-glove enrollment
The white-glove enrollment process involves more hand-holding on your part. Instead of letting your users enroll through a self-service platform, you’ll be the one filling out the form for them. This is easily implemented and doesn’t require any technical or developer work. All you have to do is fill out the enrollment form within the Stax Connect platform.
While you won’t have to dedicate developer resources for white-glove enrollment, you will need a good customer-facing team who can facilitate the process for your merchants.
See Documentation: Enrollment: Stax API
How to Decide Which Payment Enrollment Method is Right for You
There’s no one-size-fits-all payment enrollment process, as each company is different. If you’re trying to decide which method is best for your platform, you’ll need to consider the following:
Level of customization. Questions about branding and control will naturally come up when deciding on an enrollment method. Do you want the payment enrollment process to be 100% on brand? Would you prefer to have more say over your user’s in-app journey?
Developer resources. Some methods require more coding than others, so take an honest look at your technical resources and factor that into your decision.
The preferences of your users. At the end of the day, it’s all about providing a great user experience, so figure out the preferences of your merchants. Are they ok with a self-service enrollment method or would it be better to do it for them?
Weighing in these factors will help you decide on the best route forward. For instance, if you want to provide a branded experience but don’t have a lot of dev resources, you may want to consider using a hybrid approach. Do your customers need more hand-holding when it comes to payments? Then a white-glove method may be a good option.
It All Starts with Your Payments Partner
Once again, the “right” payment enrollment process will depend on your needs, capabilities, and users. The good news is with the right payments partner, you’ll be able to figure out the best method and launch it with ease.
If you’re a SaaS company that needs to facilitate payments for your customers, get in touch with Stax. Not only will we help you figure out the payment enrollment process that fits your requirements, but we’ll also give you the support you need to get everything up and running.