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Verified By Visa Best Practices

To help you utilize Verified by Visa to its full potential, Visa has produced a range of best practice recommendations. These best practices draw on Visa-commissioned research, consultation with usability experts and Visa’s extensive experience with merchant implementation. They provide recommendations and suggest approaches to help you optimize the consumer experience with regard to Verified by Visa. 
You are strongly urged to follow these best practices as closely as possible to ensure you get the most out of Verified by Visa.
Further details on recommended best practices can be found in the Verified by Visa Merchant Implementation Guide (pdf | 1,134 kb).

Use of inline authentication page

In the past, the Verified by Visa service allowed for two types of authentication page displays to be presented to cardholders when they clicked on the “Submit” button. One was a pop-up window, the other an inline page. An inline page uses the full browser window to display the authentication information. Research has shown that cardholders may mistake the new window for advertising and will often close pop-up windows indiscriminately. The increased use of pop-up window killers recently could also cause disruption to the authentication process. 
Visa therefore requires that you configure the authentication page to appear as an inline page, rather than a pop-up window. While the inline authentication page is loading, the merchant should also display a short message such as the following:
“Processing, please wait. Do not click the refresh or back button or this transaction may be interrupted or terminated.”

Key messages

Well-placed visible brand marks and simple, concise consumer messaging can optimize the consumer experience, help increase sales and help to decrease shopping cart abandonment. To ensure you take full advantage of the extra trust and confidence that Verified by Visa offers, Visa recommends that you display the Verified by Visa Merchant Mark prominently on your website along with brief and concise messaging to explain how it works. 
To enhance messaging you should:

  • Provide links for the consumer to learn more about Verified by Visa on your home or shopping page banner area.
  • Use phrasing that positions Verified by Visa to make the consumer feel secure and to ensure it is not interpreted only as protection for the merchant. Consumers want to know what is in it for them
  • Emphasize that there is no charge for the service. With “added value”, consumers immediately become suspicious of additional fees
  • Place awareness messaging near the Verified by Visa Merchant Mark, for example:
    • “Use this secure method to pay using your Visa card – at no charge”
    • “Safer shopping with Visa. Committed to providing the most advanced online security features, we support the Verified by Visa security service – at no charge”

Messaging during transaction

Visa strongly recommends  that you use messaging throughout the Verified by Visa process flow to help set proper expectations and to ensure the consumer has a smooth shopping experience. 
Instructions that tell the consumer how to proceed through the checkout process rank among the highest of consumers’ expectations. In a recent study, 88 percent of consumers said that, if enrolled, they would want to see Verified by Visa messaging during the checkout process.


When consumers are at the end of the checkout process they usually think that the next screen will confirm their purchase. Therefore, having a gentle message that explains what is next helps to smoothly guide the consumer through the process. 
- Provide a concise message immediately before Verified by Visa appears to help
   prepare consumers for what is coming.
- Keep messages free from technical jargon. State what consumers will see next, not
   what the technology is doing.
- Keep messages short and concise. Consumers scan for information and will not
   read dense text.

 Checkout page

Processing the order

Visa recommends that you provide a status message and visual indicator to show that the consumer’s order is being processed. Visa research has clearly shown that a simple statement provides the best user experience. 
Providing a “processing” indicator with simple movement is a good visual cue to customers that the purchase process is continuing in the background. Simple dots moving from left to right are sufficient for this purpose. Static “processing” screens confuse consumers because they cannot tell if the system is working or has frozen. One good example is as follows:
“Processing your order. . . Do not click the Refresh or Back button or your transaction may be interrupted.”

Processing Payment Page

  • Printable Page

e-Commerce Merchants’ Guide to Risk Management

  • Tools and best practices for online merchants. (pdf | 304kb)

Account Information Security (AIS) Program

  • AIS is a risk management program sponsored by Visa and run by its member banks.

ESDlife Services Hong Kong – Case Study

  • ESDlife is an award-winning bilingual portal that has pioneered the provision of public and commercial services in Hong Kong. Find out more about ESDlife’s participation in Verified by Visa.
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