Everything You Need to Know About CAWS Online Payment Processing (ePayments)

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Why Choose us?

Our company is owned and operated by a team of professionals in the Cayman Islands. The Cayman Islands are known as one of the world’s top countries for financial services and banking. When you opt to use our easy epayment services you will receive 24/7 technical and user support, safe reliable online transaction processing and have all your business’ epayment needs catered to by a dedicated Client Representative.

What's involved in an online payment transaction?

There are three parties involved when processing online payments: the merchant, the customer, and the technology.

  • The merchant (you) accepts credit card payments. You need to partner with a merchant bank (also referred to as an acquirer) that accepts payments and deposits them into a merchant account (this is usually known as the payment processor).
  • The customer that initiates transactions online usually opts to settle their accounts using credit or debit cards. Specifically, according to Statista, 42% of online shoppers prefer to pay via credit card, 39% prefer to pay via electronic methods (Paypal included), and 28% prefer to pay using  debit cards.
  • The technology includes the payment processor and the payment gateway.
Banking processing

Frequently asked question

payment processor is an intermediary who is responsible for processing transactions in bulk. The payment processor is responsible for 4 things:

  1. Handling relationships and managing risk between the credit card companies and your business.
  2. Handling personal and financial data from customers.
  3. Debiting a customer and crediting the business account (processing the transaction).
  4. Transferring funds to your business bank account.

payment gateway is a third-party tool that evaluates and processes customer payments. They exist to

link the customer’s shopping cart to the processing network.

The parties involved in payment gateway transactions are your website or the platform you use, the customer, and the company that provides your payment processing capabilities aka your Payment Processor.

If you would prefer to open a dedicated merchant account with your bank you would skip the Payment Processor and have an eMerchant account set-up directly to a Payment Gateway.

Sometimes, the merchant account and gateway can be handled by the same company; this is the service that CAWS provides to authorised entities in the Cayman Islands and select business worldwide.

The major requirement for payment gateways as well as payment processors is Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) compliance. CAWS has produced a webinar series which discusses PCI DSS in more detail and we invite you to Watch it here.

Direct: A customer can complete a transaction directly on your website.

Redirect: A customer has to leave your website to make a payment. The customer is sent to an

external page to process the payment.

The redirect option is better if your website’s security isn’t 100% ideal and you don’t want to be

ultimately responsible for any lost or stolen information.

CAWS offers both options to its clients.

There are two stages in payment processing: authorization (approving the sale) and settlement (getting

the money into your account).

Here’s what involved with each one:

  • Approving the sale with authorization.

When a customer buys an item from your website using a credit or debit card, the information goes through a payment gateway, which encrypts the data to keep it private. It is then sent to the payment processor, which sends a request to the issuing bank asking for money to pay for your items. The bank can grant or deny the request, depending on availability of funds (for debit cards) or if the customer’s credit limit was reached. Amazingly, this whole process takes just 1-2 seconds to complete.

  • Settling the sale and getting the money to your account.

Once the transaction is approved, the card issuer sends money to the merchant, who deposits the money into your bank account. Once the money hits your bank account, you can access the funds. Sometimes, banks don’t allow you to access all the funds right away, in case you need to refund a customer later on. The entire settlement process can take a few days.

CAWS can assist you with this entire process whether you choose to use its Payment Processing service or to apply to the bank for your own payment processing capabilities. CAWS assists with applying to the bank, helping you to prepare the paperwork, necessary policies and business summaries and can also integrate the payment gateway to your website and/or develop your secure eCommerce website.

Choosing a payment processing solution isn’t as easy as it looks.

Depending on what you sell, where, you’ll be accepting payments from different parts of the world. As such, you’ll have to consider different rules and restraints that affect CAWS payment processing. Here are some questions to answer before choosing a payment processor:

  1. What type of payments do you accept?

Some brick-and-mortar stores only accept cash, but if you have an online store, a cash-only option is basically out of question. Additionally, some retailers prefer debit over credit transactions. Although both types of cards are processed by the same networks (VISA, MasterCard, Pulse, Interlink, etc.), this preference has to do with the fact that debit transactions usually have smaller transaction fees and shorter processing times. Because of the higher transaction fees, some businesses usually require a minimum of $10 to process credit card purchases.

  1. One more thing: will you be charging one-time or continuous payments?

If you’ll be dealing with subscriptions, make sure that your CAWS payment processor can support this need.

  1. What countries do you sell to?

Selling to multiple different countries often involves using different payment processors, so it is important to find processors that work with all of your target customers’ payment types. In your search to find a CAWS payment processor, it’s also worth noting language and currency support, which will definitely matter to your customers. It’s not enough that your customers are able to send payments, so also check for compatibility between your payment provider (processor and gateway) and bank.

  1. Can you ensure transaction security?

As mentioned previously, your ecommerce payment provider must be PCI-compliant, placing a premium on information protection and security. The security professionals at CAWS have over 20 years’ experience with Information Technology, PCI trained, bank approved and use one of the world’s top Gateway providers in addition to being certified Cyber Security experts and Penetration Testers.

  1. Additional CAWS payment processing considerations.

Here are just a few more things to keep in mind:

Customer support

Because you’re dealing with money and personal information, it’s important that your concerns can be addressed quickly.

How fast the company settles.

What good is making tons of sales if it takes your payment processor a long time to send you your money? Don’t forget that you’re still on the hook to pay suppliers and settle your other business expenses in a timely manner according to agreed-upon payment terms. CAWS provides weekly and bi-weekly pay-out options or can tailor a pay-out service to fit your needs.

If you decide to pursue your own payment processing capabilities the average time it takes the banks to settle funds in to your account is 48 to 72 hrs.


You’ll be shouldering the cost of payment processing, so it feels natural to try and default to a payment processor who’s offering the lowest fees. But remember, low fees aren’t everything. Consider what you’re getting for your fees; deciding on a payment processor should not come at the expense of good service or vital features.

Cross-device compatibility

People have become increasingly more dependent on their phones, using them for everything: including shopping and payment. If you want to convert all interested parties, it’s important to ensure that your payment processor works fine across different devices.


CAWS is known for its flexibility when it comes to creating websites for different purposes. When building an ecommerce site with CAWS, you don’t have to build everything from scratch in most instances because we have numerous eCommerce platforms you can choose or work with amazing designers who have site templates ready for every eCommerce business need. CAWS can provide a payment processing plug-in for any site build on WordPress and Woocommerce.


Every party that handles a transaction wants a cut of the total amount: the card-issuing bank, credit card association, and merchant bank.

If you choose to use CAWS payment processing options you can expect a single processing fee of 4.75% of total sales + $0.45 cents per transaction sale and monthly fee. These fees cover all the costs requires to run a payment processing capability for your business and you never have to think about anything except running your business.

If you would prefer to apply for your own payment processing capability with your bank, here are some of the fees you should expect to pay when dealing with CAWS payment processing:

  1. Bank processing fees;
  2. eMerchant account fees
  3. Gateway processing fees, transaction fees, monthly gateway rental;
  4. SSL Certification;
  5. Server security checks and others;


Usually, the payment process is (more or less) smooth: a customer buys an item, then you send the item and get paid. CAWS has produced a detailed webinar series which provides more in depth information on chargebacks, what they are, why you can sometimes get them and the provisions to put in place to avoid them. You can watch it here.