WeChat, a social networking platform developed by Chinese internet giant Tencent, is the most popular platform in China, with over 1.2 billion active users. It provides a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to connect out to the Chinese people.
While WeChat is the most popular social networking platform in the country, WeChat Pay is the most popular payment platform. With over 900 million users a month, the payment platform with its convenient payment options have driven China to become the virtually cash-and-card-free economy it is today.
WeChat has recently brought together a number of essential features, including a game platform, a bank, and even a food delivery and thrift shopping gateway. As a result, it has become a must-have tool for foreign businesses looking to expand in the world’s most populous country. WeChat is not just a significant social tool for Chinese users, but it is also at the core of commercial corporate operations in China, making it the best and only opportunity for foreign companies wishing to establish a business in the country.
With 1.21 billion monthly active WeChat users worldwide and a +7 million quarter-over-quarter increase in global monthly active users, there is no doubt that WeChat and WeChat Pay are the most essential platforms for any foreign company looking to establish a presence in China and gain broad access to one of the world’s largest markets.
In order to get started on the process, you’ll first need a WeChat official account. Then, using your WeChat Official Account login information you can set up your WeChat Pay. As with Facebook pages, these are official WeChat brand accounts.
Setting up WeChat Pay is pretty straightforward if you already have a WeChat Official Account. If you don’t, you’ll need to create one. Here are some options on how an overseas business can set up WeChat Pay to conquer the Chinese audience.
1. Establish using Tencent directly
Through Tencent’s WeChat Pay website, businesses can easily set up WeChat Pay. Their Tencent’s bank account will transfer any money you receive immediately to your company’s account.
Setting up your WeChat Pay account directly with Tencent normally takes 2-4 months. Currently, there are limited refund alternatives, and you can only offer one if that day’s inbound transactions are larger than the refund amount. WeChat Pay will collect a 1-2% commission on all transactions.
2. Establish using Tencent-authorized WeChat Pay distributors
With the support of authorised payment agencies, WeChat Pay has worked with brands in different countries to enable them to set up cross-border payments.
Setting up your WeChat Pay through an authorized WeChat partner normally takes 1-2 weeks. Currently, there are flexible refund options; most orders placed within the past month can be refunded. To the WeChat Pay rate/transaction the service provider will add a minor surcharge of 2-3%.
Irrespective of which option you choose to set up your account, there are several documents you must provide:
- Companies registration certification
- All directors’ identification documentation
- Financial license
- Anti-money laundering agreement
- Primary business contacts and legal representatives
Therefore, WeChat Pay is an essential medium for seamless selling of products and conducting business with a Chinese audience. It connects global businesses with Chinese consumers, allowing them to pay for transactions with overseas vendors in RMB.
Furthermore, because WeChat Pay can be linked to a WeChat Official Account, you can increase your brand awareness by creating a WeChat Official Account and encouraging your WeChat Pay users to follow and interact with it.