Interview

Popular payment methods for gamers - interview with Ubisoft

Thursday 3 October 2019 08:46 CET | Editor: Melisande Mual | Interview

Vincent Minier of Ubisoft outlines the preferred payment methods among gamers and five aspects to consider when choosing a PSP, related to pricing transparency, payment methods coverage, technology, payment expertise, and corporate customer support

 

What are the criteria to consider when evaluating which PSP you are going to work with?

As a gaming company that sells mostly digital content, our criteria when evaluating a PSP might be different from other companies. It is always recommended to evaluate your company’s needs first.

Selling across 100+ countries, we pay a lot of attention to five specific aspects:

Pricing transparency. Not knowing the breakdown of commission fees or the currency conversion rate used and associated fees applied by the PSP can create a lot of frustration. It is important to know precisely what we are paying for (fees taken by the schemes, technical fees, FX rate etc).

Payment methods coverage. As we are selling on a global scale, and for the comfort of all our players, we always want to make sure our future partner has many relevant local payment methods available. The process of selecting and implementing a new PSP is usually time-consuming. If one integration offers access to a wide range of payment methods, it makes the process worth even more and can help save time for the future.

TechnologyWe always want to make sure our partner has the most up-to-date technology (good uptime, dynamic 3DS, acquiring routing tools, fast and efficient back office etc). We also want to know beforehand what the technical limitations are (settlement currencies, payment flow etc). Asking the PSP for their roadmap can also give a good idea of their potential in that aspect.

Payment expertise. A PSP should be able to provide best practices, payment acceptance benchmarks, information on recent regulations, and expertise on PCI compliance. We always make sure the PSP has departments/people dedicated to these topics. We also pay attention to other merchants using this specific solution; for benchmark data, it can be useful if the PSP is working with merchants that are in the same vertical as us.

Corporate customer support. Making sure that we will have the necessary support from a PSP is key. It is important to have direct contacts, for each topic, on the PSP side. Usually, good support consists of: 1 sales manager contact; 1 dedicated account manager; 1 implementation manager; 1 operations support contact, 1 escalation contact.

When choosing a PSP, we always involve all the teams within Ubisoft that will be affected by this collaboration (Business teams, Development teams, Finance and accounting teams, Treasury department and Operations teams).

In terms of payment behaviour,what payment methods do your customers prefer? Is this something that differs from region to region?

If we take a global approach, the credit card is number one but closely followed by e-wallets. E-wallets are popular among the gaming industry and their users’ demographics fit in general with ours, explaining their popularity on our distribution channels.

We, of course, have to take a region-to-region – and sometimes even country-to-country – approach. Here are some examples:

  1. We decided to deploy online banking payment methods in Germany and the Netherlands, to increase the accessibility to our games;

  2. We also deployed local e-wallets solutions, which are popular in Asia (in China, for example, we implemented the two most popular e-wallet solutions that are used by 90% of our customers). We always want to adapt to local cultures and provide the best payment experience possible.

  3. In some countries, prepaid cards/vouchers are popular. It can be challenging to deploy such payment methods, as most of them are not refundable. Your infrastructure and customer care processes have to adapt.

Does PSD2 have an impact over your business, especially the SCA? If so, could you please elaborate on this?

At Ubisoft, we really want to make sure our customers feel safe, and we are therefore happy to see legislators helping to go towards that direction.

The impact on our business is of course huge. We have many different selling channels and we want to make sure that developments are included across all concerned roadmaps. It is also critical to align with your PSP when it comes to implementing exemptions mechanisms as well as 3DS 2.0.

Is there a particular region or country that poses more challenges in terms of payments and regulations?

On the payment side, having a global coverage can sometimes be challenging. In some countries, you need to have specific payment methods to allow the customers to pay or you will see low conversion rates.

Acceptance rate standards can be very different from one country to another and, without the right context, it can be challenging to understand if you are performing well or not. For example, some local issuing banks in Asia have strict spending limits and strong customer authentication, which can create a lot of friction in your payment funnel and therefore you might see significantly low payment acceptance rates in these countries.

You also have to consider local tax regulations. If you are selling in some specific countries, you might have to register for taxes and tailor your invoices to local requirements.

About Vincent Minier

Vincent is Payment Manager at Ubisoft. He joined the company in 2015 at the start of the Ubisoft Store. He is responsible for the payment strategy, payment costs optimisation, and all payment operations.

 

 

About Ubisoft

Ubisoft is a leading creator, publisher, and distributor of interactive entertainment and services, with a rich portfolio of world-renowned brands, including Assassin’s Creed, Just Dance, Tom Clancy’s video game series, Rayman, Far Cry, and Watch Dogs. The teams throughout Ubisoft’s worldwide network of studios and business offices are committed to delivering original and memorable gaming experiences across all popular platforms, including consoles, mobile phones, tablets, and PCs.

 


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