25 July 2022

How payment orchestration can increase streaming companies’ bottom line

People around the world are turning to digital streaming services as a way to entertain themselves and engage with others, with the average person now consuming five hours of streaming content per week. Even against the current backdrop of economic uncertainty, the market’s expansion continues, with Grand View Research expecting the now-nearly $60 billion industry to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 21.3% between 2022 to 2030.

One key driver of market growth is live online sports events, which are becoming increasingly popular as more international, national, and local leagues and clubs stream their matches directly into fans’ living rooms. Verified Market Research estimates that the live sports streaming segment itself will be worth $87.3 million by 2028.

For streaming service providers, however, content doesn't always equate to conversion on the buy-side for consumers. Let’s look at how a cloud-native payment orchestration solution can boost streaming companies’ bottom lines and help them enter new and emerging markets. 

Payment-related headaches

One way that streaming companies can attract new customers is by enabling them to pay for the service they want in the manner they want, whether that’s via a digital wallet, online cash application, QR code, money transfer, or cryptocurrency. For consumers, that flexibility is more important than ever: in exchange for their loyalty, they want merchants and service providers to respect their payment preferences.

The problem is, onboarding, integrating, scaling, and managing any new payment method—let alone multiple—is a challenge. First, it can be laborious for a company to negotiate with multiple payment service providers and costly to accommodate their different APIs and functionalities. Often, months of painstaking integration work are required to add a single payment type to an existing payment stack and to related payment, fulfillment, and accounting systems. Then there’s the back-end work needed to support updates and enhancements to a payment type across its lifecycle.

There’s also geographic complexity to contend with. With e-commerce knowing no bounds and open banking initiatives providing favorable trading terms, many streaming companies want to expand to new markets. However, this requires deep knowledge of a market’s unique payment landscape plus technical and linguistic skills that many do not have. 

Regulation presents still more complexity. In Europe, the EU General Data Protection Regulation mandates the local storage and management of citizens’ payment data. India and Brazil boast similar regulations. Meeting these diverse requirements is a significant challenge and requires cloud-driven Edge computing capabilities that bring computation and storage closer to the sources of data.

If these factors weren’t enough, there’s also payment fragmentation based on generational preferences. Baby Boomer and Generation X consumers, for instance, like credit and debit cards. In contrast, mobile-centric Generation Z shoppers prefer digital wallets, pre-paid vouchers, and BNPL solutions. Millennials sit somewhere in the middle. In order to capture the largest potential market share, streaming companies need to have the financial and technical wherewithal to accommodate these different options.

So, how can they—and particularly those with finite resources—cope with such varied challenges?

Harnessing the cloud to solve management challenges

One solution is to use a cloud-native payment orchestration platform (POP), which facilitates payment routing and processing between multiple payment providers and unifies all the components of a transaction under a single control layer, enabling the end-to-end management and automation of payments processing. A POP can allow streaming companies to manage all their payment services and transactions in one place while dispensing with the time-consuming and costly coding and integration work involved in onboarding and supporting different payment methods.

A POP also helps keep them in compliance with local regulations governing the use and storage of citizen data by processing and storing data at the Edge.

Another advantage is that a POP allows streaming companies to work with a variety of payment providers and thus avoid being locked into proprietary APIs or a single ecosystem. The result? More payment options for consumers, which helps to optimize conversion and increase sales. 

At a macro level, a POP acts as the foundation for all current and future cross-border payments, making it easier for streaming service providers to enter new markets and scale for international success. 

Case study: How ELEVEN Sports is meeting customer payment expectations with Gr4vy

One streaming company that sees the value in POPs is ELEVEN, a rapidly growing broadcaster of live sports events. The 24/7 service generates tens of millions of views per month from users from over 200 countries and territories through a range of packages from free to periodic subscriptions. 

ELEVEN Sports chose a cloud-native POP from Gr4vy to accommodate local customers’ preferred payment methods on its flagship ElevenSports.com platform. The company selected Gr4vy because of the platform’s advanced features and benefits, and its ability to provide quick access to multiple payment methods and providers such as PayPal with no additional coding required. By enlisting Gr4vy's payment expertise and industry knowledge, ELEVEN Sports was able to test different payment methods in different markets in just a few clicks. The insights from these assessments have enabled ELEVEN Sports to achieve new user acquisition and global country coverage without hiring or reassigning software developers.

Read the full ELEVEN Sports case study here

While accommodating different consumer payment preferences can significantly enhance the growth prospects for a streaming service provider, they also bring the burden of integration and long-term management.

A POP, such as that from Gr4vy, leverages the power of the cloud to give users the capability to streamline and manage payment methods, services, and transactions all in one place. Its orchestration layer upgrades a company's payment stacks to make infrastructure nimbler while its intuitive, no-code dashboard centralizes the integration and administration of payment methods, providers, conditions, and transactions. With Gr4vy, streaming companies never have to lose a transaction again.

For more information about cloud POPs and the benefits of Gr4vy, visit gr4vy.com