The Austrian payments landscape is similar to the German one. Other than online banking (credit transfers), direct debits are also quite popular, and should be offered depending on the business model. Card payments are constantly increasing at a rate of close to ten percent every year, which makes it essential to offer as a payment option.
France presents a large market opportunity, with a relatively high ease of doing business. Carte Bancaire (an interbank scheme that requires a connection to a local acquirer) dominates the payments landscape and cards are usually co-branded with Visa or Mastercard.
No local entity is required in France, although (as is the case with most Eurozone countries) an EU entity is mandatory. Adyen offers a direct connection to the CB network, which results in higher authorization rates.
Germans are some of the most open shoppers in the world when it comes to cross-border ecommerce, with over 50% of online retail purchases taking place on an international website. Yet despite this willingness, non-credit card payment methods such as SEPA Direct Debit, (a Europe-wide Direct Debit system) SOFORT, and Giropay account for the majority of online transactions.
In addition to these methods, another popular payment method in Germany is open invoice, where a third party pays the merchant for products and services purchased by shoppers, and then collects payment from shoppers after delivery.
Due to its openness to cross-border payments and size, we recommend businesses considering Europe, enter Germany first.
Despite having a primarily cash-based economy, Italy is the fifth-biggest ecommerce market in Europe, and ecommerce growth is expected to be faster in Italy than in most major European markets over the next few years.
Pre-paid cards are the most popular card type, due in part to (perceived) better security and decreased costs. The most popular credit card is CartaSi (which are co-branded with MasterCard and/or Visa) whilst the most popular prepaid debit card is Postepay (co-branded with Visa).
While purchasing from international websites is relatively common in the Netherlands, the most popular payment method, iDEAL, is local to the Dutch market. iDEAL is an inter-bank system covered by all major Dutch consumer banks, allowing shoppers to use their bank account for online purchases. Direct debits and open invoice payments are also fairly popular.
Adyen has two pieces of advice for entering the Netherlands. 1. Offering iDEAL as a payment method is crucial due to its massive share of online payment transaction volume. 2. Due to its openness, merchants should consider the Netherlands as one of the first European markets to enter.
Norway has one of the highest rates of card use per capita in Europe, making cards the most common way to pay online. Mobile payments are also becoming increasingly popular thanks to mobile apps like VIPPS. Paying after delivery with Klarna is a also common in Norway.
Online banking is by far the most preferred payment method in Poland, with online credit card use relatively modest in comparison.
The Polish market is easy to enter, with no local entity required and like-for-like settlement supported. However, Polish issuers require cardholders to register their card the first time they make a purchase. If they do not, the card is systematically declined for any online purchases.