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What are multicurrency payment gateways?

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Last editedMar 20232 min read

If you want to sell to an international clientele, you’ll need a global payment gateway to process transactions in multiple currencies. One thing to note is that standard payment gateways charge extra for foreign currency exchange, and with some the cost can be quite high. These fees add up over time, taking a good portion of your overseas earnings. Multicurrency payment gateways work a little bit differently – but what are they and are they right for you? Here’s a closer look at the best multicurrency payment gateways out there today.

What are multicurrency payment gateways?

A multicurrency payment gateway operates in a similar fashion to standard payment gateways. However, they come with added payment flexibility when it comes to supporting foreign currencies. Funds can be settled in multiple currencies to better serve international customers. For example, your customer could pay you in GBP and you’d be able to withdraw the money directly into your Australia-based account without paying extra to convert the funds into AUD. By contrast, traditional gateways would convert the funds into AUD first and take any associated fees during this exchange.

There’s also added flexibility for users of multicurrency payment gateways. Shoppers can choose to make payments in common global currencies like EUR or USD, or opt to use their home currency. When integrated into your website, the payment gateway automatically shows prices in different currencies selected by the shopper.

How do multicurrency payment gateways work?

Here’s a closer look at how international payment gateways work.

  1. The business defines the pricing in their original currency.

  2. The shopper chooses their language and currency preferences when accessing the site.

  3. The pre-defined price is automatically adjusted and converted into the shopper’s preferred currency, all without any conversion fees.

  4. The payment provider settles the transaction in the billing currency.

This means that merchants can offer a smooth, seamless shopping experience in multiple global currencies without the added cost of conversion fees. Behind the scenes, the multicurrency payment gateway securely sends customer details to a payment processor for authorisation. The payment’s routed to the customer’s bank or credit card provider, as with any payment gateway. However, the main difference is that at this settlement stage the money goes straight to your merchant bank account in the desired currency.

What are the benefits of international payment gateways?

There are many clear benefits of using this type of payment gateway.

  • It saves money by reducing the cost of conversion fees, so you can offer competitive prices to your international customers.

  • It provides a more customer-friendly shopping experience. Customers can select their home currency, which makes them more comfortable at checkout.

  • It provides a secure way to settle funds internationally, while providing consistent pricing despite global currency fluctuations.

How to choose the best multicurrency payment gateways

Some payment gateways falsely state that they provide multicurrency services, merely because they can convert funds. When looking for the best multicurrency payment gateways, you’ll want to make sure that you’re not charged extra fees. You should also ensure that the gateway supports your desired currencies, both at home and in your intended markets.

In addition to offering multiple currencies, you can also look for the following features:

  • A variety of payment methods including card payments, invoicing, and recurring billing

  • Secure payment technology including fraud protection and 3D authentication

  • Integration with your existing platforms including accounting software and ecommerce systems

GoCardless offers a global payment solution ideal for taking international payments. We enable businesses to receive one-off and recurring bank payments from over 30 countries, all at the real exchange rate using local bank debit. Customers can pay in their chosen currency, and funds are settled in your own currency without any need to open a costly foreign bank account. Save time and money while giving your customers the best possible rates.

We can help

GoCardless is a global payments solution that helps you automate payment collection, cutting down on the amount of financial admin your team needs to deal with. Find out how GoCardless can help you with one-off or recurring payments.

Over 70,000 businesses use GoCardless to get paid on time. Learn more about how you can improve payment processing at your business today.

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