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Tmreya Case Study: Make an App for Online Shops

In this article, I would like to introduce you to one of our latest mobile app projects where we had to make an app for online shops. In the last months of 2017, we worked on an authentic web design for the Tmreya company, based in KSA. Tmreya Company is a renowned sweets and chocolate company in KSA with over 25 branches in KSA alone, and available in Kuwait, UAE, Oman and Qatar. So when you have an online shop, and coming-back customers, then why not mobilize it and put your shop in their pockets?

See What’s Inside

The main features and screens in the app include an original splash screen, main shop screen including filters and categories, product details, non-shop products, branches, gallery, and about/contact info. Using the side menu, we can switch the app to Arabic, login to see our order history, and see featured products.

API Integration

The main feature in the Tmreya app is that it is fully integrated and dynamic to the website. Any changes done on the website backend will be instantly update on the app, from product changes, translation changes to galleries and informative text.

Push Notifications and Updates

Upon each order, you will see instant push notifications as well as email notifications for your order. You will be able to also checkout your orders in the My Orders section, and see the status of each order. By ordering, and specifying your region, the region manager branch will also be notified of your order and start preparing your request till you get there.

Products and Shop

When we had to make an app for this online shop, we wanted it to be fully dynamic. Meaning that we wanted each product shown in the website is instantly shown in the app. You can just update the products and categories in the website, and you will see the API integration updating it in the app. The shop includes beautiful classy chocolate and sweet photos, product info, categories, as well as filter/sort and search functionalities. The shop is also integrated with HyperPay and Sadad, allowing the customers to make purchases with their preferred payment methods.

Bilingual

The app is fully available in Arabic for locals and just like the website, native Arabic speakers can easily navigate and make their orders through the app.

Your Favorite Shop in your Pocket

To wrap up, you can easily install the Tmreya app on your smartphone (available in for android and iOS) and have your favorite sweets and chocolates shop right in your pocket. Make online deliveries with a tap and get notified instantly.

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Best Ecommerce Payment Gateways for Middle East Countries

In the past years, our teams had the privilege to work with a lot of clients in the Middle East, including Saudi Arabia, Iraq, UAE, Lebanon, Kuwait and even Jordan.

We also accomplished many ecommerce or online shopping websites, such as the Jyia Restaurant in KSA, or Tortilla Arabia and Kababji (originally Lebanese) in UAE, and Tmreya (KSA). Many of our clients at start wondered how to integrate a payment gateway into a website and what are the steps? So in this article, I will briefly introduce what a payment gateway is, and some options you will have for your website, and the misconceptions out there. Hopefully by the end, you will see what the best ecommerce payment gateways for the Middle East are out there, and get a main picture of the online shopping requirements.

What is a Payment Gateway?

According to Investopedia, Payment Gateways are a means of authorizing credit cards or other form of electronic payments. They are here to help protect the sensitive payment information by encrypting the data they transmit to merchants and payment processors.

As in the illustration below, you can see the customer first initiates an order at the online store, then the payment gateway is contacted, confirmed and a response is sent back where the payment is processed. The payment is then settled through the bank and funds are transferred to the online store owner (merchant).

best ecommerce payment gateways for the Middle East

Your payment gateway should get and verify the customer billing information, verify the funds for the customer’s order, approve it then allow the store to issue the confirmation, and gets you (store owner) paid.

What do I have to consider for online payments?

Local/International

When you want to setup an online payment for your business website, you should first of all consider whether you want to sell locally or globally. Depending on this, you can choose an international payment gateway such as Stripe or PayPal, or a local one like HyperPay (available for 5 Middle East/North Africa countries initially).

Documentation/API Integration

All online payment gateways have API integration documentation, providing test account for developers to setup the payment system, and do testing before enabling the live account. API stands for Application Programming Interface, but it’s basically a median application between two different platforms. Integration of payment gateways requires skills and expertise of APIs.

Bank Account

Whichever online payment gateway you choose, you should sign up with it and check to see if your bank will accept this. Some banks don’t accept online payment gateways in general so when setting up your business bank account, make a few calls to make sure.

Type of Shopping

Make sure you understand the type of shopping you want in your business website so you can determine the best payment gateway for that. For example, will you have a regular approach? Like B2C? or will you have a multi-vendor website? Or wholesalers (B2B). So all this will determine the type of ecommerce and payment gateway you will need.

Transaction Fees

All payment gateways will ask for a fee for every transaction made, so consider this as the shipping/flat fees in your shopping and product/service pricing. Other type of fees you have consider is if you have deliveries, or if you want to withdraw funds from your bank account.

Payment Gateway Options

If you’re looking for the best ecommerce payment gateway for Middle East countries, take a look at some of the most popular options below:

  • Payfort: Payfort was launched in 2014 in UAE and operating in Saudi Arabia, Egypt. Comelite setup Payfort for Madwave GCC in 2016.
  • Hyperpay: we have setup HyperPay for Tmreya in December 2017. HyperPay is based in Jordan, with offices in KSA and UAE. It was founded in 2010 under the name Gate2play.
  • Paytabs: this one is famous in Saudi Arabia as well, and available for mobile payments too, including recurring, adaptive and alternative payments, and integration with SADAD. Comelite did Paytabs integration for the Marina app based in KSA in 2017.
  • Paypal: PayPal is one of the world’s largest online payment gateways, and supports over 200 countries, and 25 currencies. Payment integration has been done by Comelite teams in numerous projects.
  • Stripe: Stripe is also available globally, for 25 countries. Comelite implemented Stripe for the UR (Universal Restaurant) web and mobile application in 2018 (to be launched soon).
  • 2Checkout: this is another global payment platform with localized payment options but it is available in 87 currencies and 15 languages, with options for extra security as well.

Payment Gateway Misconceptions

One of the misconceptions I have seen in ecommerce projects is that clients think customer can pay directly through their credit card from their web page. Many payment gateways offer the option to pay through credit card (such as PayPal) but to pay directly through credit card will first of all be a breach of your security, then it won’t allow the processing explained above.

Another misconception is to mistaken payment gateways for bank accounts. Payment gateways are simply to facilitate the online payment process and are the middle processor between the merchant website and your bank account. There are other misconceptions you might want to read here.

Wrapping Up

So to close up, you need to consider a number of things for your payment gateway setup on your online store. You can do the preparations and just get in touch with us to help you realize your online business. However, feel free to reach out in case you need consultation from the start.