Everything you need to know about managing B2B marketplace payments

26 May 2020

Business Insight

B2B marketplaces — including e-commerce, e-procurement platforms, network marketplaces and circular economies — are where professional buyers and sellers come together to carry out financial transactions. But how exactly do you manage payments on a B2B marketplace? Which elements should you consider to make sure you’re in line with the legislation? And how can you please sellers and buyers, making your platform more attractive? Follow the guide!

A variety of payment features

B2B marketplaces are aimed at businesses, so should meet the expectations of professionals and suit their consumption habits. All B2B marketplaces need a certain set of features.

Deferred payment

To meet market expectations, B2B marketplaces should offer due-date settlement in line with each client’s payment terms. This feature provides a cash-flow facility which can attract new buyers.

Credit insurance

To protect themselves against non-payment by the payment deadline, sellers appreciate the chance to take out credit insurance.

“All B2B marketplaces need to offer due-date settlement as a selling point. This way, they can attract new buyers with a cash-flow facility to boost platform traffic while increasing the average spend. If a marketplace can also offer sellers insurance for their transactions to protect them against non-payment, this is even more attractive and makes them stand out from the crowd.”

Sophie Marot-Rémy, Chief Digital Officer at Euler Hermes France

Dynamic pricing

While on B2C platforms prices are the same for everyone, this isn’t true of B2B marketplaces. Product and service costs may have already been negotiated under the terms of the contract between the operator and the business buyers. This means B2B marketplaces have to display client-specific pricing.

Bulk discounts

In line with sector norms, B2B marketplaces should offer the option of showing volume discounts on a sliding scale.

Managing multi-user rights

The staff member who puts together an order isn’t always the person who can approve it or pay. This means you need to be able to identify everyone involved in a transaction and have a purchase approval workflow.

Free shipping

Sellers often want to give free shipping on orders.

Extra fees

Customs charges, shipment rerouting… Extra fees can add to the base price. These potential hazards should be taken into account when invoicing.

Be internationally-minded

Marketplaces should be accessible in different countries to create opportunities for buyers and sellers. This requires other payment features like accepting several currencies. To meet each country’s specific payment needs, marketplaces should also offer the payment solutions that are popular locally. Everything needs to be in line with international and national legislation.


A highly regulated ecosystem

As well as having to manage different payment flows via different features, B2B marketplaces are subject to strict regulatory oversight. Because they provide payment collection services on behalf of third parties, they must abide by the following regulations and directives;

  • DSP2. To better protect the consumer, the European directive on payment services requires marketplaces to use strong authentication when payment is made by card or bank transfer.
  • KYC & KYB. Established by the French supervisory authority (the ACPR), these practices require businesses to collect and analyse verifying information about their clients and seller partners to protect them from fraud.
  • LCB-FT. The French directive against money laundering and terrorism funding (LCB-FT) requires marketplaces to keep a record of recipients to identify those who may benefit from the economic activity of the companies they own.
  • GDPR. With B2B marketplaces collecting user data to ensure they run smoothly, they are subject to the General Data Protection Regulation. The GDPR came into force in 2019 and protects people’s rights when it comes to personal-data processing.

3 marketplace payment management solutions

As middlemen, marketplaces receive money paid by buyers before passing it on to sellers. This counts as payment services provision and is overseen in France by the ACPR. There are 3 ways for B2B marketplaces to abide by the regulations:



PSPs: providing B2B marketplace payment management

Payment Services Provides (PSPs) are already approved by the ACPR as payment institutions. They have to carry out the various compliance checks to make sure the marketplace is fully abiding by the regulations. PSPs also update buyer payment interfaces and look after capital controls and funds transfers to sellers. Although they play a key role in the payment process, PSPs’ work remains invisible to marketplace users. Partnering with marketplaces, PSPs relieve operators of their responsibility for payment management tasks. This frees up B2B marketplaces to concentrate on what they do best: expanding their business. PSPs’ payment management expertise also provides a fluent and optimised client experience, which enables platforms to improve their conversion rates.

Lemonway is an approved payment services provider working internationally to support a variety of B2B marketplaces. Get advice from our experts to boost your platform’s chances of success!