7 Expensive Mistakes Startups Make When Selecting Their Payment Processing Software

Startups face various challenges when it comes to selecting and implementing the right software solutions for their business. One area that can significantly impact a startup’s success is its choice of payment processing software. While popular off-the-shelf options like Stripe or Square offer convenience and ease of use, they may not always support the unique requirements of every business.

In this article, we will explore the seven expensive mistakes that startups often make with their software choices and highlight how businesses can benefit from custom payment processing solutions versus shelf payment software options that often fall short. By understanding these common pitfalls and making informed decisions, startups can optimize their payment processing systems, enhance efficiency, ensure compliance and security, and position themselves for long-term growth and success.

First, a quick explanation of the difference between custom software and off-the-shelf software, just in case you need a refresher.

Custom Software Development vs. Off-the-Shelf Software

In short, widely-used off-the-shelf software is available to those who want it, with varying options for customization and support.

Popular off-the-shelf software often lacks the flexibility to address unique business challenges. This doesn’t mean it’s a poor choice, but if a business has unique needs, using prepackaged software that doesn’t meet them could lead to inefficiencies and higher costs in the long run.

On the other hand, custom software is software created in partnership with a dedicated custom software development team. They work together to create a custom solution based on the client’s or business’ needs that is precise, flexible, and scalable. Plus, custom software is owned by the business rather than the software company, allowing for frequent and swift updates as required.

If you want to learn more about the process of custom software development, read Custom Software Development: Meeting Unique Challenges with Innovative Solutions next.

Now that we have defined custom software and off-the-shelf software, let’s explore the seven costly mistakes startups can make when selecting their payment processing software and discover how they can benefit from custom solutions that address their unique needs.

7 Common Startup Software Mistakes

1. Ignoring Specific Business Needs

The first mistake many startups make is disregarding their specific business needs when selecting payment processing software. Off-the-shelf solutions are designed to cater to a broad range of businesses, but they may lack the flexibility to accommodate unique requirements. Failing to recognize and account for these unique needs can lead to inefficiencies, limitations, and missed opportunities for the startup.

Each startup has its own business model and payment workflows, and opting for custom software development ensures that these specific needs are met accurately.

2. Inefficient Workflow Integration

Startups often face the challenge of seamlessly integrating payment processing software into their current workflows. Poor compatibility and integration are common issues faced by startups when using mass-produced software that cannot adapt to its pre-existing systems. Problems caused by inefficient integration include, but are not limited to, limited subscription management, manual data transfer, and reporting challenges.

Custom payment processing software is developed with a focus on integration, ensuring smooth workflow compatibility and minimizing disruptions to your business processes.

How Custom Payment Processing Software Helps With Integration

  • Analysis: The development team conducts a thorough audit of the startup’s existing workflows, systems, and infrastructure. To identify specific integration points where the payment processing software needs to interact with other systems.
  • API Integration: Custom payment processing software uses APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) that allow communication and data exchange between different systems. APIs enable the software to connect with other software applications, databases, or third-party services essential to the business.
  • Compatibility Testing: The custom software is tested for compatibility to ensure that it integrates smoothly with the startup’s existing systems and workflows. This testing involves verifying data exchange, validating system responses, and addressing any conflicts and issues that arise during the integration process.
  • Data Synchronization: Custom payment processing software is designed to synchronize data accurately and efficiently across different systems. This ensures that payment information, customer data, and transaction details are shared between the payment processing software and other business systems, maintaining data integrity and consistency.
  • Streamlined Workflows: The development team works closely with the startup to understand their workflow requirements and incorporates features and functions that align with those workflows. Customization guarantees that the payment processing software fits seamlessly, minimizing disruptions and optimizing efficiency.
  • User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX): A user-friendly interface is crucial for smooth workflow compatibility. Custom payment processing software can be designed with a user-centric approach, considering the startup’s target audience. The UI/UX design is optimized for intuitive navigation, easy access to relevant information, and seamless interactions, so users can navigate through the software and perform tasks without issues.
  • Support and Maintenance: Payment processing software requires ongoing support and maintenance after the initial development and integration. All software will need regularly occurring updates to ensure continuous compatibility with changing systems and technologies. Bug fixes, security patches, and compatibility enhancements are also commonly required.

Businesses can update their custom software anytime, as required by new challenges or changes to other systems, allowing them to adapt quickly. With off-the-shelf software, updates are made periodically according to the goals of the software company. You might find yourself going without crucial features or waiting a long time for an update that addresses your specific needs.

3. Scalability Limitations

As startups grow and expand, their software must keep up with the increasing demands. Off-the-shelf payment processing software may have scalability limitations that impact business growth. Often off-the-shelf payment processing solutions struggle to handle increases to transaction volume efficiently, leading to system slowdowns. Occasional system slowdowns, especially during peak hours, can cause frustration among users and potentially lead to customers seeking other purchasing options.

Custom solutions allow startups to scale their payment processing systems effectively, ensuring they can handle higher transaction volumes and accommodate future growth without setbacks.

4. Compliance and Security Risks

When it comes to processing payments, startups must prioritize compliance and security. Off-the-shelf solutions often fall short of industry compliance standards set forth by the payment card industry data security standard (PCI DSS). Without these sufficient security measures, startups are vulnerable to potential breaches, regulatory issues, and fines.

Security best practices are an absolute necessity for online payment processing. Sufficient security builds trust, and without it, even a single breach can significantly damage a startup’s reputation before it has the chance to gain momentum.

In addition to reputation risks, failing to adhere to industry standards can result in substantial PCI non-compliance fines. These fines can range from $5,000 to $100,000 per month, depending on the size of the company and the duration and scope of non-compliance.

Therefore, it is essential for startups to use payment processing software that not only allows the desired functionality but also incorporates strong security features. By doing so, businesses can ensure the safety of their data and customers’ sensitive information. This will establish trust, and avoid potential financial and reputational risk.

5. Lack of Flexibility and Customization

One size does not fit all when it comes to payment processing software. Startups require the flexibility to customize their software to align with their branding, user experience, and unique features.

A custom software development approach allows startups to have full control over the implementation and rules engines of their payment processing systems (within regulated limits, of course), providing a personalized experience for both the business and its customers. It is scalable to grow with the needs of a business, making it an attractive long-term solution.

6. Long-term High Costs

Off-the-shelf payment processing software often comes with recurring subscription fees that can change at a moment’s notice or costly updates that can strain a startup’s budget. As well as maintaining compatibility with other software, updating and implementing necessary changes can lead to additional expenses.

The development of custom software eliminates unnecessary features and allows startups to focus their resources on developing and maintaining payment processing software that precisely fits their requirements, ultimately reducing long-term costs.

Overall, it’s best to select a reputable custom software development company with the proven expertise to guarantee a timely delivery of the final product within your budget.

7. Missed Growth Opportunities

Ultimately, by relying on generic payment processing software, startups might miss out on growth opportunities due to outdated payment solutions.

Custom solutions allow startups to innovate and differentiate themselves in the market. By implementing software that aligns with their unique business model, startups can offer distinct payment solutions that attract customers and provide a competitive advantage.

A custom approach allows adaptability to the ever-evolving market demands by introducing new features to cater to specific customer needs as they come up. With custom payment solutions, startups can position themselves as leaders in the industry, attract a wide base of customers, and capitalize on growth opportunities that they might otherwise miss.

Payment Processing Software Matters

When it comes to payment processing software, startups need solutions that cater specifically to their business model and customers. By recognizing specific business needs, ensuring smooth workflow integration, considering scalability, prioritizing compliance and security, embracing customization, managing maintenance costs, and seizing growth opportunities, startups can optimize their payment processing systems for long-term success.

We at Clear Function understand the challenges of generic software and offer custom payment processing solutions that support your unique business. Our years of practical experience enable us to assess your situation, provide practical recommendations, and implement the right payment solution for your needs.

By avoiding the costly mistakes mentioned above and partnering with Clear Function, startups can optimize their payment processing systems, improve efficiency, ensure compliance and security, and unlock their full growth potential.

Don’t let your business suffer from the limitations of generic software; let Clear Function continue to pave the way for success in the world of payments.

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