Payment Gateways in Brazil

Gateway providers in Brazil offer a wide range of extra services to online merchants, and can in many cases be the best option for these stores to handle payment. In this article we will look at the business model and services offered by gateways in the Brazilian market.

The Gateway Model

In recent years the e-commerce sector has grown rapidly in Brazil. According to market analyst E-bit, an average of 8 million customers have made their first online purchase each year since 2010. Recently-established online stores that intend to take advantage of these market conditions have a variety of payment solutions to pick from based on their needs and characteristics, each offering a distinct model to handle online transactions.

Contracting a sub-acquirer, also known as a payment intermediator, might offer the most convenient and easy to implement solution to merchants, as these services will manage fraud, data security, integration with acquirers and other matters. However, this option might not be the best fitting for every store, particularly if a business already boasts market experience and has conversion rates in mind.

The external environment in which the transactions handled by sub-acquirers take place, which might be an external browser window or a segregated section on a store’s checkout page, has the widely reported result of reducing conversion rates. This is due to the aversion of consumers to leave the environment of stores to make transactions. In most cases, customers will also be required to make a new registration with sub-acquirers in order to make payments. Additionally, sub-acquirers generally charge a premium for their service’s convenience and are the ones who handle the payment sum, which limits the control merchants have on transactions.

E-commerces that have gained expertise in online transactions and intend to have a closer integration with payment processors have the option to contract a gateway, which refers to a solution that directly links the store’s environment to a payment processor and provides a more appealing payment flow for customers. Moreover, the costs of gateway services tend to be significantly lower than the ones charged by sub-acquirers and the adoption of these solutions grants an increased control on transactions since payments are handed directly by the merchants.

The most apparent drawbacks of contracting a gateway solution are related to the extra responsibilities delegated to store managers. Fraud prevention, data security and banking conciliation are some of the issues that merchants have to contend with when opting for gateway solutions, and it is highly common for these clients to contract additional service providers to deal with each of these matters separately.

Value Added Services and Additional Features

It is common practice for gateway providers in Brazil to offer payment solutions with implemented features designed to cater to the characteristics of Brazilian consumers, such as allowing for a single transaction to be split onto multiple credit cards.

Fraud Detection Services

Most of the largest gateway providers in Brazil offer fraud detection services, which are designed to grant an additional layer of security to online transactions and reduce the risks of merchants having to deal with chargebacks.


Another important service offered by gateway providers in Brazil is reconciliation, which is especially relevant in the country due to common purchasing habits of consumers, like paying in multiple installments.

When opting for a gateway solution, all the responsibility to keep track of payment reception is directed to merchants and in Brazil this issue might quickly turn into a complex procedure, with many new transactions and their respective installments accumulating every month. The reconciliation services act as managers of the payment flow, displaying in-depth details about each purchase transaction and how these sums are delivered to merchants.

Payment Methods

Gateway providers in Brazil are compatible with a wide range of payment methods, some of which are especially relevant to the country’s consumers and can provide a competitive advantage over other online stores. These include the options to split payments across multiple credit cards, in order to cater to consumers that deal with monthly transaction limits, and to split payments onto multiple payment methods, such as Boleto Bancário and credit cards.

Cross Border Payment

In general, the operational policies of Brazilian payment gateway providers require foreign e-commerces to establish a legal entity in the country prior to contracting their services. However, it is also possible to contract gateways that enable cross-border payment without the need for forming a local entity, through the offering of a service known as cross-border payment processing.

Through this model, all the taxes related to international transactions are deducted during the payment processing, so merchants are able to receive payment sums directly to their accounts in a manner fully compliant to Brazilian regulations. Gateway provider Digital River enables online stores to serve the Brazilian market without the need for establishing a local presence, which makes them the ideal partner for global e-commerces who plan to expand their operations to Brazil.

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