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What is Google Pay, and how does it work?

In the realm of digital payments, there are so many different options and solutions to explore. However, among many, Google Pay is one of the preferred choices for consumers and businesses.

In the following sections, we take a deep dive into this topic and explore:

  • What is Google Pay?
  • How does Google Pay work?
  • Which devices have Google Pay?
  • Is Google Pay safe?
  • What are the benefits of Google Pay for the business?

And more.

Here’s everything you need to know.

What is Google Pay?

Google Pay is a mobile payment system or digital wallet that allows users to make secure in-store and online transactions via websites and apps. 

Previously known as Google Wallet, the solution joined with Android Pay in 2018 and resulted in the service we now know as Google Pay. 

This swift, easy-to-use, secure mobile payment service enables shoppers to purchase products and services through contactless payments using an NFC-enabled Android phone or other Android devices. 

Using Google Pay, you can do the following things:

  • Make contactless payments;
  • Shop online or in-store;
  • Withdraw money; 
  • Request money transfers across countries with nothing but a phone number, internet connection, and an email address;
  • Pay for transit;
  • Enjoy rewards for transactions and referrals;
  • Receive access to data about your transactions;
  • Seamlessly access your digital wallet.

But how does Google Pay work?

How does Google Pay work?

Google Pay works through the Google Pay app. 

To use Google Pay as a consumer, you must download the Google app and add your desired payment method to your account. You can include more than one payment method and multiple cards, such as debit cards and credit cards.

It’s important to note that not all cards are compatible with Google Pay. Ensure your default card is compatible with the app before you add your payment details. 

Here’s a detailed breakdown of how you can set up your Google Pay on your phone:

  • Download Google Pay on your mobile device;
  • Open the app;
  • Add a payment card either manually or via the available scanning mechanism;
  • Create a screen lock (in case you don’t already have one);
  • Add as many payment cards as necessary.

After you’ve set up your Google Pay, you can use it to buy things in stores and online. 

When paying in-store, you’ll simply have to tap send to initiate a contactless payment, a process similar to contactless cards.

On the other hand, if you’re using Google Pay to pay online, you can select this option at checkout. You won’t need to fill out your payment and shipping details, as they’ll automatically appear on the website, having been previously stored in your account.

How does Google Pay work?

Which devices have Google Pay?

Currently, Google Pay is compatible with the majority of Android devices. These include mobile phones, tablets, smartwatches, and Wear OS by Google devices. 

The range of available devices that support Google Pay is extensive, meaning you can likely use this payment system easily.

Google Pay is available in more than 50 countries, including the UK. If you’ve successfully set up your account, you can enjoy contactless payments anywhere you shop with merchants supporting Google Pay.

Is Google Pay safe?

Security is among Google Pay’s key priorities. In short, yes, Google Pay is safe to use, as it relies on internal security and ensures that all sensitive information is encrypted. 

Transactions performed via Google Pay are secured in two ways. First, a unique virtual account number is created once a transaction is made. In addition, the user must unlock their screen lock to complete a purchase. 

All payment data is stored on secure servers. This prevents the chances of account details being hacked and misused. 

Moreover, in the case of phone theft or loss, users can use Google Device Manager to lock their accounts remotely. 

Of course, some best practices will help you keep your account safe. For instance, remember to create a screen lock on your device.

The benefits of Google Pay for the business

From a business perspective, Google Pay is a much-preferred payment option for several reasons.

The most significant advantages are as follows:

  • No fees – With Google Pay, merchants can receive money directly into their bank account with zero fees; 
  • Rewards – Google Pay also offers businesses financial rewards depending on how many transactions they accumulate within a specific time frame;
  • Flexibility – When merchants take advantage of the flexibility provided by Google Pay, they can attract more clients and increase their sales revenue. In that way, they guarantee speed, simplicity, and convenience to shoppers;
  • Transaction data – Transaction data is essential from a business perspective, and with Google Pay, accessing this information is simple. 
  • Security – As noted above, Google Pay is highly secure as it relies on a token system that prevents the sharing of credit or debit card details with retailers. This minimises the chances of data theft, fraud, and other privacy concerns. 

When combined, these benefits shape an unmissable opportunity for businesses to explore the realm of digital payments.

How to use Google Pay for your business?

How to accept Google Pay at your business

If you want to explore Google Pay’s advantages and are ready to accept it at your business, here are the steps you’ll need to take.

Set up a business account with Google Pay

First, you must create a business account on the Google Pay platform with your Unified Payments Interface ID (UPI ID). If you don’t know this ID, you can get it from your business’s bank. 

Next, link your business account to a Gmail account. Sign into your Gmail account and provide the requested information about your business.

Confirm your virtual payment address 

Transfer a small sum to your bank account to make sure your virtual payment address is correct. This process may proceed over several days for you to receive a verification that the transaction is successful. 

Next, you’ll need to receive authorisation from the Google Pay team, which also requires about five business days. 

Implement a reliable Point-of-Sale (POS) system

After you’ve received confirmation that your Google Pay business account is verified, you’ll need to implement a POS system to receive payments. 

Ensure the selected hardware supports “tap-to-pay” or “tap-and-go” payments.

Add Google Pay to your online shop

Finally, you must ensure your website supports Google API to receive payments via Google Pay. 

You can familiarise yourself with the process through their in-depth guides for business owners who operate via Shopify, BigCommerce, or other popular eCommerce platforms. 

In addition, make sure that you’re using a payment gateway that’s compatible with Google Pay.


In summary, Google Pay offers businesses a convenient and reliable way to accept contactless payments and provide convenience to clients. 

As the business environment continues growing and consumer demands keep shifting, innovations will likely reshape the nature of contactless payments worldwide.

Frequently Asked Questions

No, one of the advantages of this payment solution is that there are no extra fees for accepting Google Pay.

Yes, Google Pay supports multiple cards, including debit and credit. However, not all payment cards are compatible with Google Pay, so consumers must verify they are supported before adding them to their accounts.

Yes, as long as contactless payments are supported, Google Pay can make mobile payments across countries.

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