We were looking for a solid payments platform and after conducting an RFP, we selected Payment Highway since it was the most capable solution and was good value. It had all the functionalities we needed and the sales discussions were very easy—it was a no-brainer.Kai Lindström, Neste
When Kai Lindström joined the Neste payments team in late 2015, work on Neste’s mobile app had already started. The initial plan had been to enable payments at their fuel stations via a mobile application, but only to the owners of a Neste fuel card.
While this was a good start, it would have severely limited the user scope and volume. In order to gain critical mass in transaction volumes, Kai and his team wanted to bring mobile payments to a much larger audience through the Neste app.
Defining the technical requirements and business objectives
In the beginning of the project, the Neste team came together to set technical requirements and business objectives for the new app.
From the technical perspective, the solution needed to meet three major requirements:
- The ability to accept a variety of major payment methods such as Visa & Mastercard
- A strong level of security with PCI compliance
- The ability to add further payment options in the future, such as Apple Pay, Siirto, and Mobile Pay
In the fuel business, margins are paper thin so the payments team needed to be very careful with costs. From a business perspective, the three major objectives were:
- Increased number of transactions through the mobile application
- Effective cost vs. performance rate
- A much improved customer experience
“We were looking for a solid payments platform and after conducting an RFP, we selected Payment Highway since it was the most capable solution and was good value. It had all the functionalities we needed and the sales discussions were very easy—it was a no-brainer,” Kai says.
Building mobile payments into Neste’s mobile app
Kai and his team set out to deliver a vastly improved customer experience through mobile payments.
With the new app, Neste customers can drive to a gas station, open up the Neste app, and simply select the pump they’re about to use. This releases the fuel pump, allowing customers to get back on the road immediately after filling up. And because Payment Highway takes care of the transaction in the background, customers no longer have to stand outside during the cold Nordic winters and wait for their payments to go through.
“The deployment process was pretty straightforward. When we were looking at the connections between our system and Payment Highway’s, their interfaces were really clear and easy to implement,” Kai says.
Another key requirement was security. When planning the solution the Neste team wanted a payment provider that would safely store their customers’ information under PCI DSS compliance (The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard). Payment Highway checked all the security boxes, which saved the Neste team a lot of time and hassle, as they didn’t have to undergo the lengthy process of PCI compliance.
Increased card payments, happier customers, and better security
After working with Payment Highway’s developer team, Neste was ready to launch the app and start accepting mobile payments.
“The initial response was really positive. Our customers had been waiting for the app and we were happy to launch just before the summer vacation when people were driving to their summer cottages,” Kai explains.
“Now about 75% of transactions are made by debit or credit on Payment Highway, the growth rate of our debit and credit card payments through the app is very steep, and the number of Neste card transactions are growing steadily. We’ve been able to acquire new customers, especially those who like to use new technologies, improve our customer satisfaction, and it’s also helped to improve security.”
Overall, Kai seems very happy with the collaboration. “The personal cooperation between Neste’s developer team and the guys from Payment Highway was always very easy and there was a very open atmosphere to discuss and work together. The relationship has been excellent and it’s like working with friends. It’s been effortless and if something isn’t right we can openly say that in both directions. There doesn’t need to be any silver-plating, which I find a real benefit.”
When it comes to the future, Kai sounds optimistic. “We have been really happy and they are building some new things regarding mobile payments and how the payments flow from Payment Highway onwards. The Payment Highway team is helping us increase our cost-savings and efficiency and we’re looking forward to continue working together with them.”