If you're interested in increasing the number of e-commerce merchants in your portfolio, watch out for PayPal. It has improved its tool box, making it easier to make payments via PayPal on the Web.
PayPal Labs launched several applications that run the gamut of raising funds, requesting loans, or allowing merchants to integrate PayPal's payment services.
All of the applications can be tested at www.x.com, "a showcase site for PayPal Labs, which we created to tap the creativity, innovation and passion among our engineers, product managers and other employees," said Hugo Olliphant, head of PayPal Labs.
To launch this site, PayPal Labs focused on even the tiniest details. "Our URL, www.x.com, is unique as one of the few single letter URLs in existence," he said.
"It reflects the startup nature of PayPal Labs, paying tribute to PayPal's startup days when PayPal merged with another innovative online payment pioneer called x.com."
A PayPal Lab invention of most concern to ISOs and merchant level salespeople is the Merchant Integration Wizard, a step-by-step guide for combining PayPal's payment services.
A series of screens instruct merchants on how to incorporate the application into existing Web sites.
At the end of the process, a code appears that can be copied and pasted into a merchant Web site. The Integration Wizard even informs merchants where to place the code.
The Integration Wizard allows merchants to give customers the option of purchasing items using their PayPal accounts on a secure site.
Once implemented, the application will still be a five-step checkout process but PayPal checkout is incorporated in the middle steps for customers.
Instead of entering a shipping address and billing information at checkout, this application gives consumers a chance to log in to their PayPal accounts and confirm the shipping and billing details already embedded in their security-guaranteed accounts.
PayPal Labs urges merchants to take its new applications for a spin. Perhaps it's time to see just what the competition is up to at www.x.com.
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