ccavenue_highresCCAvenue*, payment gateway operated by Avenues India Pvt Ltd, has launched an in-stream payment collection service for social networking websites called Social Networks In-stream Payments (SNIP). This service enables consumers to buy products through social networking sites.

CCAvenue said that it will offer this service as a part of its package for all merchants who sign up with the company. However, merchants will not be charged separately for integrating this service. Its worth noting however that P2P (peer-to-peer) payments will not be possible on this service.

How does it work?

To use this service, merchants can create a campaign on their MARS (Merchant Accounting & Reporting System) account with requisite details like the product name, price, the number of each product up for sale, and a product photograph.Following this, a SNIP short link will be generated on the domain, which can be posted onto various social networks by merchants.

When a consumer clicks on this link, it would take them directly to the payment gateway with the product details and consumers can purchase these items by entering their card details to complete the payment. The campaign comes to an end when all the stock is sold out.

We feel this service will allow merchants to push for more sales, since the ‘Add to cart’ step has been essentially eliminated for users. However, large merchants might face some difficulties in creating campaigns for each individual product.

QR Codes On Mobile

What’s particularly interesting about this service is that merchants can also generate QR codes for these products and use it in offline campaigns like newspapers, posters, magazines, among others. Consumers can simply scan the QR code on their smart phones and buy the respective product through a payment page directly on their mobile phones.

Analytics For Merchants

After a transaction is completed, CCAvenue will send the the transaction details to merchant back end and the company said that merchants can also insert their Google analytics code while creating the campaign. Speaking to Medianama, CCAvenue CEO Vishwas Patel however clarified that the Google analytics of different merchants will be password protected and will not be accessible to CCAvenue itself.

Security on Social Media: Patel said that social media websites will also not be able to access the consumer details since the payment will be made on CCAvenue’s server outside social media sites and this service will offer all the existing security precautions that CCAvenue offers.

Twitter’s Ban On In-stream Payments: Twitter had recently banned an in-stream service launched by a US based payments startup Ribbon due to the use of Twitter cards, according to a TechCrunch report. Last week, it had also blocked social micropayment service Flattr from offering a service which allowed Twitter users to make payments to others by using the Favorite button.

When asked if CCAvenue will face any similar problems, Patel said that they have had no issues with Twitter so far and Twitter might not raise issues with link based in-stream services. However, we will find out only with time if Twitter will force CCAvenue to stop this service.

Related developments

In February 2013, CCAvenue had launched real-time tracking of bank servers, which will track the servers that are running and the ones that are having down time in real-time and provide this data to merchants, who can then offer only active banks as payment options to their consumers

The company had also introduced a free package for e-commerce companies who intend to use CCAvenue as their payment gateway. Through this package, CCAvenue had waived off the initial payment of Rs.7,500 and the annual software upgradation fee of Rs. 1,200 for the first year. The company said that this free package will allow startups to test its ideas without making any investments on the payment gateway.

*Disclosure: CCAvenue is an advertiser with Medianama