February 21, 2023 | 5 min read

Demystifying Cards: guide to building a payments program

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Thinking about launching a payment card?

You’ve come to the right place.

Whether you’re a traditional financial institution looking to modernise, or are a tech savvy business exploring the possibility of using cards to improve customer user journeys through personalisation and data insights, Marqeta’s Demystifying Cards guide will help you get off on the right foot.

We’ve developed this user-friendly online manual in an effort to condense into one platform all the essential information aspiring and veteran innovators alike need to build a card programme from scratch – and then help it succeed.

So, what’s covered in Demystifying Cards?

After talking about how cards came into existence and what types are available today, the guide explains the mechanics of the payment card ecosystem, looking at the different parties involved in making transactions flow smoothly, as well as the intricacies of settlement and batch clearing.

It then looks at considerations for licensing with the aim of helping readers choose the right licensing model for their business. Will you opt for BIN Sponsorship or become a principal member of a scheme like Mastercard or Visa? Demystifing Cards aims to equip you with the information needed to make an informed decision.

And where there’s payments, there’s the threat of fraud. But there are ways to keep your customer accounts safe, as the guide explains.

The section on monetising a card programme describes the anatomy of a successful proposition, and spells out what a workable route to profitability might look like. For example, will you rely on monthly fees or utilise interchange? Or will network incentives and referrals work best for your business?

Then, having built a new card programme, the next thing you’ll want to do is bring it to market. The ‘Launching a card programme’ section addresses this topic, before discussing where you might take your proposition once it’s up and running.

Like any trade or profession, card issuing and processing has its fair share of industry terms.

As a result, we’ve included a handy jargon buster – to make Demystifing Cards accessible to a wider audience.

On that note, no matter what innovation stage you’re at, we hope Demystifying Cards is useful to your business.

And if you’ve got any questions about building a successful card programme, the team at Marqeta is here to help.

Contact us at europe@marqeta.com

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