A payment gateway is a technology used by merchants to accept debit or credit card purchases from customers. The term includes not only the physical card-reading devices found in brick-and-mortar retail stores but also the payment processing portals found in online stores. However, brick-and-mortar payment gateways in recent years have begun accepting phone-based payments using Near Field Communication (NFC) technology.
- Payment gateways are the consumer-facing interfaces used to collect payments.
- In physical stores, payment gateways consist of the point of sale (POS) terminals used to accept payments by card or by phone.
- In online stores, payment gateways are the “checkout” portals used to enter credit card information or credentials for services such as PayPal.