Integrating Payment Technology with Accounting Software

Can you integrate with ABC Accounting Platform or XYZ Backoffice System? More than likely, yes you can! Hosted #payment solutions offer tremendous value to merchants and independent software vendors (#ISV) by saving development bandwidth, improving ease of reconciliation, and reducing PCI scope. From the customer perspective, the ability to view current details about their account balance, payment history, or invoice details enhances the payment experience while reducing the need for support through readily available self-service options. Though standalone payment tools can meet numerous use cases, a more data-driven approach typically optimizes the process from all sides.

So how do you do it? Easy! All integrations in the #paymentsrevolution can be forged with two strategies: API Integration or Data File Transfer. The strategy selected will depend on the technology available in the merchant or ISV system and the defined business requirements for speed of delivery.

Leveraging #API endpoints, if available, can produce real-time customer information to the payment vendor solution while affording the benefit of real-time payment posting for reconciliation. Usually, this is the preferred route, especially for industries that rely on up to the minute account standing. For example, consider a utility company accepting payments for a particular service. The customer can be presented with many useful details about their account such as amount due, due date, usage stats, last payment details, etc. However, in the case of late payment, a customer could be at risk for disconnection notice and service interruption by a utility defined deadline if payment is not received and applied to the appropriate account on time. Real-time payment posting is imperative to prevent illegitimate service interrupts for payments made, but still being handled through a slower or more manual operation.

Implementing Data File Transfer is the other common way to deploy an integration strategy. Delimited data files can be pushed or pulled via Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP). Though this can technically be performed manually, the best way to proceed is to enable a scheduled process to handle the transmission and parsing of the information automatically on a defined schedule. Once per day usually satisfies the use cases for most data file transfer configurations, but more frequency is certainly an option. Relevant customer account details are provided to the payment vendor solutions by pushing or pulling the delimited account data file which can then be consumed to update what the customer sees (or hears) depending on the technology used. In return, the payment vendor solution can provide a delimited payment confirmation data file which includes all the payments processed for the defined interval allowing customer accounts to be updated automatically.

Why handle it any other way? The days of manual payment posting, spreadsheet shuffling, and customer confusion are over!


Originally Posted on LinkedIn as an Article by Jason Estes, CEO

Integrating Payment Technology with Accounting Software

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By ICG Digital
October 1, 2021
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