Onboarding merchants in less than a week, nearly a month quicker than what the CEO says is the industry standard, Indian payment facilitator Razorpay has used that impressive stat to sign up more than 8,000 Indian merchants, including mom-and-pops and global chains such as Papa John’s. Not bad for a company that wasn’t even a Mastercard payment facilitator until last year.
A member of Mastercard’s Start Path program since 2015, Razorpay is precisely how the card brand envisions signing 40 million merchants by 2020. The challenges are as plentiful as the opportunities.
According to an Ernst & Young report, in 2015 there were 997 million mobile phone subscribers and 239 million smartphone users in India; large e-commerce players in India today get almost 90% of traffic and 70% of their sales through mobile devices, yet only 5% of consumer spending happened through card payments. The same report said “the number of POS terminals installed in India stood at around 1.38 million, a very low proportion of retailers (the total number of retailers in India is estimated to be 13 million).”
“Being backed by a global powerhouse like Mastercard will give added credibility to our cutting edge technology, which is miles ahead of the competition,” says Harshil Mathur, co-founder and CEO of Razorpay. “Over the course of the past few months, we’ve been able to convert many of our competitors’ clients because Razorpay enables a better payment experience for the end customers.”
Mathur says the MasterCard Start Path program – a global effort to support startups developing the next generation of commerce and fintech technologies – led in part to Mastercard’s investment to help speed the adoption of online and mobile payments for individual purchases among small businesses in India.
Mathur started Razorpay started after discovering “the dismal state” of online payments in India. He worked at oilfield services company Schlumberger before quitting his job to start Razorpay. By early 2014, Razorpay began with a vision to simplify online payments.
Razorpay helps businesses accept online payments by credit card, debit card, net banking and wallets from their customers. Mathur claims other differentiators besides the speedy onboarding:
Mathur says Razorpay’s “Retry” button has increased the success ratio of online transactions by 10%. The feature retains cart information entered, so a customer doesn’t have to restart the process.
Razorpay’s “Checkout” feature allows customers to make payments on the merchant’s website, without having to endure repeated redirects from banking/wallet websites. Razorpay does not redirect the end-customers away from merchant website page and instead does the entire processing with the merchant website in the background.
“This prevents endless redirections normally associated with online payments and helps keep the context of the payment alive,” he says. “This enables higher transaction success rates and less dropouts.”
The quicker Indian merchants see the benefit to accepting credit card payments online and off, the faster payment facilitators like Razorpay will sign them up.