Based in Amsterdam, Adyen is a merchant bank (aka “global payment company”) that lets companies accept point-of-sale (POS) payments, mobile payments, and eCommerce payments. Adyen is listed in the Euronext Stock Exchange and has a stellar lineup of well-known clients who use its services, including Uber, Netflix, eBay, and Airbnb, just to name a few.
Clients of Adyen payment solutions can accept money via just about any POS platform but are probably best known for being well-known. The company has made tremendous marketing efforts to build relationships with merchants all over the world, works very hard at delivering excellent service, and “gets the job done” when it comes to Adyen recurring payment documentation.
The company’s key selling point is the ability to connect any customer with any seller, no matter where either the seller or buyer is located on the planet. So far, they’ve do an admirable job of accomplishing their mission.
The numbers are impressive. When Adyen began in 2006, they set out to raise millions in funding via venture capital sources. They did it in short order and within nine years the company was valued well in excess of $2 billion. In 2015 alone Adyen processed more than $50 billion worth of business between millions of customers and nearly 5,000 merchant sellers.
Now securely in place as one of the world’s up-and-coming merchant bank giants, Adyen payment processing solutions are available to everyone. One of the central concepts that drive Adyen’s success is the idea of friction-less monetary transactions.
The corporate team looks to remove even more barriers between buyers and sellers by creating a cutting-edge system that allows for almost instant exchange of money between parties.
But is Adyen the right choice for ordinary consumers who just want an easy, reliable way to purchase goods and services online and in person? Let’s see.
What is Adyen: Table of Contents
Adyen's Features, Services & Products
A full-stack payment processor, Adyen is a payment service provider (PSP), which allows it to both process and act as the gateway for any transaction you do. What are the main Adyen features, products and services?
Global/Local: The deliver a localized version of global merchant processing: If you are an Adyen customer, you can use any currency, credit card, bank card, or online payment method there is, with very few limitations.
Omni-Channel: Adyen has so-called “omni-channel” capability, which means they integrate in-store, online and app-based transactions to make the customer experience seamless and hassle-free.
Developer Tools: For those who wish, there are plug-ins for various kinds of billing software, eCommerce and other types of transactions, like POS. There’s developer documentation as well.
The “Gateway”: This is Adyen’s prize jewel because it allows for fast payment verification and solid security for transactions. Real-time, super-fast payment authorization is what Adyen is most proud of.
POS Equipment: Users can buy or rent the necessary equipment to facilitate Adyen recurring payments or Adyen payment processing.
Hosted Checkouts: This means easy setup for sellers and a problem-free checkout experience for buyers.
Phone Swipe Devices: The devices include EMV capability that allows for rapid chip-based transactions of all kinds.
Debit/Credit Card Processing: The ability to accept nearly every known credit and debit card issued worldwide, with few exceptions.
“Revenue Protect”: This feature has to do with risk management and entails all the methods that Adyen has to prevent card fraud that leads to charge-backs. The company employs methods like advanced algorithms, machine learning, specialized device finger-printing and behavioral analytics. Every account includes Revenue Protect. There are additional tiers of protection for merchants who wish to pay a fee for the service.
Dynamic Reporting: At the website’s customer section, merchants can see a listing of reasons that card purchases are sometimes declined. There are also reasons for card approval on the list. It’s mainly an educational service provided by the company so that merchants can get a handle on why some payments go through and some don’t.
POS Software: If you don’t purchase a swipe machine yourself, you can use the Adyen app as the standard payment device/platform. It works to connect your own card readers and terminals in real time for every transaction.
Revenue Accelerate: This is a clever suite of tools that use data-heavy analysis to accept transactions that might otherwise be incorrectly declined as a result of outmoded processing methods. Testing has shown that Adyen’s “Revenue Accelerate” works well and allows merchants to recoup many transactions that might have never gone through.
The base rate of 3.95 percent plus $0.12 per transaction with an AMEX card, applies for the first $500,000 in volume or 1,000 transactions per month. Many other cards have lower or higher rates based on their country of origin, the card level, the merchant segment, transaction type and other factors.
There are no annual fees, early termination fees, setup fees, PCI compliance charges or gateway fees. There is a one-time charge for swipe machines (for sellers) as well as a monthly fee to use them.
One thing many customers like about the company’s pricing arrangements is the transparency. Discussions with customer service personnel are free of the typical hostility and dishonesty that is, unfortunately, a part of many financial institutions.
Adyen charges no early termination fees and the agreement can be ended by you or Adyen with just 2 months notice. If you have card swipe machinery, you’ll be able to keep it and simply stop paying the monthly fee. For the most part, there are no reasons to end contracts immediately, but two situations are mentioned on the Adyen website:
If a merchant engages in unauthorized selling (of products they didn’t get permission to sell) then Adyen can end the agreement immediately. Likewise, when Adyen’s services are unavailable for more than 90 percent of a given month, the member can end the agreement immediately.
Adyen, as a company, frowns on charge-backs and risky clients. In cases when the company suspects or sees too much risky activity, they can suspend a particular payment method to mitigate the risk. The Merchant Service Agreement on the Adyen website outlines the situations in which fines can be assessed on a merchant that incurs more than .5 percent of total monthly trade volume in charge-backs.
Technical & Customer Support
Adyen is proud of its tech and customer support record. There are tech staff members in four cities across the globe, but any merchant or buyer can reach support via telephone or email 24/7. The company’s website lists a full menu of email addresses, phone contact numbers, and office addresses in the contact section. Anyone who wishes can fill out a web support ticket right on the site and get an answer within 8 hours.
The entire support team is trained to be both competent and friendly. The website’s knowledge base is packed with helpful data, tips, resources and links. There’s an especially clever search function that has the ability to direct you to your area of inquiry quickly and seamlessly.
The FAQ section is also relevant and easy to understand. If you need terminal repair, you need to submit a ticket at the site. The Adyen social media and blog interactions are another place to ask questions and sometimes get instant responses.
Developer documents are available online at the site, as are case studies, detailed product descriptions, and downloadable guides on specific topics.
Overall, the Adyen support is top-notch for merchants, even smaller ones who are just entering the marketplace.
Pros and Cons
There are clearly more pros than cons for Adyen customers. The advantages and disadvantages of using Adyen payment processing or Adyen recurring payments include the following:
-Easy to understand month-to-month agreements
-An excellent website and honest advertising
-Zero application fees or setup fees
-Easy system to do international business in any volume
-A wealth of marketplace tools for users
-No per-month fees
-Top-notch customer service and technical support
-A stellar reputation and a financially healthy company
-Access to reasonable rates and workable interfaces for merchants
-Ideal for entrepreneurs in developing countries
-Few customer complaints
-Not suitable for merchants who are considered “high-risk”
-Might be pricey for merchants who do a low volume of monthly business
Ease of Use
The entire corporate philosophy of Adyen is about friction-less transactions, so one would assume that there is a very high “ease of use” factor with the platform.
Even though Adyen might not be a necessity in Canada or the U.S., the company’s service areas are wide and deep, making them an ideal choice for non-North American users. And because Adyen works with all forms of retail, mobile, online and international commerce, even North American merchants can get valuable use from the global payment company.
It is, however, ideally suited for merchants outside North America who seek a reliable merchant bank and payment processor that can handle any volume of business. Especially for those merchants in developing nations, Adyen has the ingredients for a seamless and honest payment processor.
The fraud management tools are effective and easy to use after a short tutorial online. For ease of payment acceptance, Adyen makes the grade because it is able to take every kind of verifiable payment method with very few exceptions. Major credit cards are processes simply, quickly and accurately.
The POS systems from Adyen can take mobile payments without a hitch. Another simple feature of the POS platform is its ability to handle mid-market merchants as well as enterprise-level sellers. Conveniently, the systems were designed to be used in both North America and Europe, so all the steps of a typical transaction are conducted smoothly.
Adyen works hard to prevent fraud at all levels of financial commerce, beginning with a seller’s credentials and ending with a card that a consumer swipes though a merchant’s device at the point of sale.
The company’s website notes briefly that there are strong corporate tools in place to minimize fraud of all kinds. Merchants who show routinely high levels of charge-backs, for example, are considered too high-risk and can be have their contracts terminated. Adyen takes charge-backs seriously and says as much on its website, where the term is almost synonymous with a serious physical illness.
Adyen routinely scans merchants for charge-backs, tries its best to root out credit card fraud with high-tech tools of all kinds, and (according to its website) performs these anti-fraud activities on a regular basis. For merchants, there are several tools constantly working in the background to both prevent and monitor fraudulent activity. This allows merchants to go about their business of selling, and frees them from having to worry about taking on the day-to-day fraud prevention measures that Adyen does for them.
Adyen does a commendable job of processing payments for a large global clientele and performing all the services one might expect from a large merchant bank.
The company is innovative, sure-footed, and honest. Its team delivers an impressive array of services and top-of-the-line products to a huge international base of customers. They don’t resort to deceptive sales tactics and offer reasonable prices in comparison with other merchants and payment processors that operate internationally.
One of the standout aspects of Adyen’s business model is its ability to include POS and in-person-retail processing in addition to the in-app and eCommerce versions. This whole-house approach to payment processing sets Adyen apart from most of its competitors. What’s more, the company’s management team is driven to add more features to the mix and to constantly stay ahead of the technological curve.
Adyen easily ranks a favorable rating from us for its all-around performance, reputation for honesty and efficiency. That said, Adyen is not the ideal choice for every merchant. Management has never hidden its desire to win huge corporate clients, which is not a negative thing in itself but can leave the “small fish” wondering if they are part of Adyen’s future.
Adyen could improve by offering a more apt card reader for small companies and stop requiring clients to purchase devices when there are so many companies that give them away for no charge.
But the big picture is this: Adyen is competent, trustworthy, efficient, and offers a seamless payment processing experience to all its clients, large and small. Five stars for Adyen.