As the platform, together with WeChat Pay, is dominating the Chinese digital payment market, registering an Alipay Account has become a must for international businesses. Alipay, massive in China, is recently growing bigger outside Mainland China including Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, Hong Kong, and other countries. In this article, we will guide you through registering an Alipay account as a foreign company.
What is Alipay and how does it work?
The China-based Alipay app is an electronic wallet; a convenient payment application. Alipay customers can send and receive money electronically without using cash. But in reality, Alipay, a complete super app, offers numerous other features. With one click users can do online grocery shopping, top up mobile phones, pay bills, order takeaway, call a cab, or even purchase insurance. With 1.3 billion users worldwide, Alipay is fast becoming the preferred choice for those who want to make international payments as well.
Customers of Alipay can upload and save their card information to the app. They can make payments in an instant via mobile phones without any hassle. Alipay has teamed up with different finance companies, mostly Chinese credit or debit card companies, as well as Mastercard and Visa.
Alipay has around 54% of the market share in China, and its biggest competitor, WeChat, has 42%. Being the leading payment platform in the country (and worldwide), it has more than 900 million Chinese users, and around 80 million merchants support this payment method. Alipay is a definite must-have in China and it’s hard to go around without having an account on the platform.
Can you trust Alipay as a foreign company?
For safety precautions, Alipay has taken several steps to protect your transactions and data. It is a highly effective and trusted app when it comes to securing customers’ funds. Some of the safety precautions include:
- Advanced Encryption – Alipay encrypts your private data and makes payments
- Alipay offers real-time monitoring – Alipay monitors all transactions and risk levels in real time
- Alipay’s Risk Management Framework protects against money laundering and fraud
How much does it cost to set up Alipay outside China?
The cost of setting up Alipay outside of China will depend on the particular market. Generally speaking, there is a $1000 account setup cost and transaction fees that could be up to 3%. Additional fees may apply if you want to accept Alipay payments through partnering with an Alipay acquirer.
How to register an Alipay account as a business based out of china?
If you are a company with a Chinese bank account, things are relatively easy for you. You can apply and work with Alipay without the need for third-party institutions. The payments will be done via that Chinese bank account belonging to your company. You can follow our instructions with screenshots and you will manage to apply quickly. Let’s take a look.
1. Search the Official Alipay website on your browser
On your web browser go to the Alipay homepage. It is Alipay’s official platform for foreign businesses that are looking to join the system. It is already in English so no translations are required. The website is easy to navigate, so let’s get started.
2. Select the ‘Merchant’ option
Now you have opened up the homepage, you will see two options: Merchant and Partner. Go tap on the Merchant one. When you do so, the choice between Online payments and In-store payments will pop up. Click on the one you are aiming for, Online payment or In-store payment, whichever suits your business.
3. Continue with ‘Get started’
After selecting a product, you’ll be directed to its special page. To begin the registration, tap on “Get Started“. Quickly scanning the page for an overview of how the product works before moving on could be useful for you to understand the process.
4. Complete the registration form
To complete the action you will have to provide some information. What you have to do is follow the instructions and fill in the sections with correct details like company name, business type, links to available websites, emails, phone number, etc.. When you are done, just submit the form for verification.
5. The qualification procedure
Once you’ve completed filling out the form and enclosed your application, Alipay will contact you to begin the qualification procedure. This means verifying that your company is qualified to become an Alipay merchant.
Be ready to prepare a lot of paperwork! You will be asked for various official papers regarding your business including;
- Business bank account
- Business financial records
- Business registry no
- Official business license
- Identification of the people in charge
Registering an Alipay account with no China Bank Account
Unless you have a Chinese bank account, you will need to connect with an Alipay acquirer. They are the institutions that have special arrangements with Alipay. They take payments from Alipay for you and send them to your specific account. They are the third-party organizations between global businesses and Alipay.
If you have already made a deal with your Alipay acquirer, then just go with the same steps and follow the steps above. Just like in the photo choose yes I have an acquire partner option.
What are the benefits of using Alipay?
China is the biggest cashless society in the world and it’s very hard to attract consumers and navigate your business in China without an available mobile payment method. There are multiple benefits of using Alipay (or any other payment method in China), including;
- Security – all the transactions are secure and it’s safer to buy products using mobile payment methods than paying in cash
- Convenience – it takes less time (just two clicks) to pay with the phone than with cash (Chinese people don’t use credit cards)
- Customers are willing to buy and spend more – there are many reports showing that people are willing to spend more if they are paying with their phones
- Individual approach to customers – Alipay offers the possibility to create special offers and marketing campaigns. Customers can receive coupons and discounts on the selected products.
- Tax refunds – Alipay started a partnership with tax refund institutions. Thanks to that, consumers can now secure rebates on their purchases.
- Answer to customers’ needs – having an available Alipay option shows your Chinese customers that you understand their needs and are serious about your business in China, increasing customer loyalty
Do you need help with Alipay account setup?
To learn more, you can reach out to our agency for Alipay Account setup. We specialize in cross-border payments and have a dedicated team that can help you with the process of setting up Alipay for your business.
We have over 10 years of experience in China and Chinese mobile payments are something very natural to us. We helped many of our clients with Alipay setup, so don’t hesitate to contact us if you need help regarding payment methods or your business in China in general.