If your business uses Google Wallet to accept online payments, you may have to say goodbye.
Google announced that Google Wallet will soon stop accepting and processing payments for some digital goods. The company will officially be pulling the plug on March 2, 2015, giving online merchants only a few months to make the switch to an alternative payment processor.
There's some confusion about the announcement, however, so here's what you need to know about the changes to Google Wallet and what you need to do keep your business running smoothly. [27 Ways to Accept Mobile Payments]
The news may be alarming, but keep in mind that Google is changing only one aspect of Google Wallet. The company is not discontinuing payment processing for all digital goods and certainly not the entire Google Wallet service.
The change only applies to businesses that use Google Wallet to accept payments for digital goods on their own websites.
This means you are only affected if you have been using Google Wallet for digital goods API to process payments for nonphysical items — such as eBooks, subscriptions, games, music, multimedia, service credits and more — that are sold and downloaded from your own self-hosted, self-run website or online store.
So if you have no idea what that API is, the change probably doesn't affect you. And if you don't sell digital goods on your own website, you have nothing to worry about.
What won't change
If you aren't currently using Google Wallet for digital goods API, nothing changes for you. Whether you accept Google Wallet for physical goods online and in the store, or for digital goods at Google Marketplaces or via in-app purchases, the service stays exactly the same:
- E-commerce. Your website, online store, e-commerce solution provider or third-party e-commerce marketplace can still accept Google Wallet payments for physical goods and services.
- Mobile payments. There are no changes to the Google Wallet app, and users can still enjoy features like Tap & Pay, Wallet Card and Wallet Objects.
- Google Marketplace payments. Google Wallet works the same way at the Google Play Store, YouTube and Chrome Web Store.
- In-App purchases. From credits to additional features, users of your mobile app or Chrome app can still use Google Wallet for in-app payments.
What you need to do
If your business is affected, there are a couple steps you need to take before the March 2 deadline.
First, find a different payment processor for your business, such as PayPal. You'll have to make the switch completely, as Google will not be replacing Google Wallet for digital goods API with an alternative product.
[For a side-by-side comparison of the best online payment processors visit our sister site Top Ten Reviews.]
Next, you'll have to remove Google Wallet from your website. For help, Google has published this guide on how to remove Google Wallet for digital goods API. But if you didn't integrate Google Wallet yourself or don't know the first thing about Web programming, contact your Web designer or website solutions provider, who probably already has a system in place to make the change.
If you're a Chrome merchant with your own digital inventories, you have two choices: switch to the Managed In-App Payments API or migrate to a third-party payments solution provider.