All About SMS and USSD payments

SMS and USSD payments refer to payments made by text messages. SMS (short message service) and USSD (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) are two methods used by telecom companies to allow users to send and receive text messages. Of the two, SMS is by far the most commonly used. With SMS, messages are sent to SMS centers, which store the message. The SMS center then tries to transmit the message to the recipient. If the recipient is not reachable, more attempts are made until the recipient receives the message. In contrast, USSD makes a direct connection between text message senders and recipients, making it more responsive. Demand has developed for payment processing using both of these text message systems.

How payments are made using SMS and USSD

Most SMS and USSD payment processing is carried out by sending a text message using one of these systems to a provider of services. Upon receipt, the amount of the purchase is charged to an online payment system or the amount is added to the buyer’s phone bill. The goods or services are then released and the money is transferred to the merchant account after payment. The delivery of the products themselves is often conducted by MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service). MMS is a set of guidelines that permit files to be sent to users with SMS. If the buyer purchased a physical item, proof of purchase can also be sent by SMS or MMS. Most purchases made using SMS or USSD take place in Asia or Europe.

Advantages and disadvantages of SMS and USSD payment 

The primary advantage of SMS and USSD payment processing is that it utilizes a text message system that users are already familiar with. Digital products such as ringtones, music, and images can also be easily purchased in a short amount of time with these systems.

Disadvantages of these payment systems include reliability and security issues. Text messages occasionally get lost, for example. Also, since text messages are received as plain text files, there may also be potential security issues, especially if merchants accept credit cards. The costs of running a system to handle payment processing by text messaging may also be rather high.


Those considering utilizing SMS and USSD to process purchases would be best off selling goods which will lead to a high profit margin using these systems to offset the costs. They should also consider processing credit card numbers and other payment information in a different, more secure manner than text messages. This method of processing can be used in conjunction with SMS using PINs or keys to make SMS and USSD payment processing more secure.


Leave a Reply



It took me a while to decide who I wanted to settle with to handle all of my credit card transactions because every company wants to make it sound like they're offering you the best rates. was able compare and beat all of the other offers I received. They were also able to provide me the fairest price on my EMV-compliant terminal. My sales representative and the support team were there to assist every step of the way. Ultimately, I'm looking forward to a long term relationship with this company.

Roland Tran from the Hong Kong Kitchen

It is a pleasure dealing with these folks. Their pricing is fair, their statements are understandable and their employees are knowledgeable and friendly.

John MacMillian from the Great Lakes Baking Company

The service was very professional, my sales person (Steven B.) was very well versed in the product and most helpful in getting our company set up to accept credit cards via my cell phone. Their rates are some of the lowest on the market and their service is unparalleled. I will recommend them to anyone requiring a credit card processing service.

Michael Harper from Deluxe Auto Body

Jonathan C. is wonderful to work with. He is very helpful, accommodating and resolves any issue quickly. It is hard these days to find someone who gives great customer service, but I can say, Jonathan is the best! I would not hesitate to recommend him to any business owner and to assist you in helping to grow your business.

Linda Garner from Regali Da Forno

I called indecisive about getting a device, but speaking to your Sales Consultant completely settled me. He was very professional, knowledgeable and patiently walked me through the process. He always responded to my voicemails and answered all my questions. After I received my merchandise, he called following up to ensure that I had received it. Customer service I would say is 5 stars. Stellar! Thanks Credit Card Processing, I will definitely recommend you.

Sarah Morgan from Vision International Ministries
Call Us Today! (866) 837-0751

© 2016 All rights reserved. Privacy Policy
CREDITCARDPROCESSING.COM, LLC is a registered ISO of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. Walnut Creek, CA

*Further terms and conditions may apply. Promotion contingent upon's receipt of written competing offer(s).

**Certain restrictions may apply.

Promotional offers brought to you by

Call (866) 837-0751 for details.