UK retailers risk losing revenue by failing to keep up with European payment regulations


Last Friday (1st August) saw the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) migration deadline for countries within the eurozone arrive. The UK, as a non-euro country however, has until 2016 to adhere to the regulations. But British-based online merchants could be missing out on potential revenue from euro customers if they do not migrate ahead of the UK deadline.

Our recent research shows that 53 per cent[i] of UK consumers choose not to complete an online purchase due to their preferred choice of payment method not being made available; this shows that a familiar, trusted and consistent payment process – whatever territory you are in – is crucial to improving conversion rates and encouraging global growth. SEPA is designed to make cross-border euro payments as cheap and straightforward as domestic ones. Although not bound by SEPA regulations just yet, the UK could find itself increasingly isolated by not joining its EU counterparts and lose out on pan-European trade as a result. The value of a simple and trusted payment process can’t be ignored; our research also found that over half of UK consumers would buy more from Europe if it was easier to use familiar payment methods. As well as making it simpler for the consumer, businesses can also benefit from getting ahead, with SEPA methods making it cheaper to send and receive euro payments.

To help UK companies reap the benefits of a SEPA compliant payment method, the PPRO Group has launched a simplified process for online direct debits. The SEPA Direct Debit scheme for recurring payments enables online merchants to receive international payments and gives buyers the opportunity to pay via SEPA direct debit for recurring payments, including regular mortgage, rent payments or mobile phone bills. For the merchant, the SEPA-compliant system also reduces the risk of reversal, by ensuring mandates are issued correctly and less likely to be overturned due to an error. For more information on PPRO’s SEPA Direct Debit scheme or to find out the impact that SEPA regulations will have on your business transactions, please visit