When Bill Parodi founded WTS in 1997, he sought to install a business model that really worked for a billing company in the adult market online. He decided his company would specialize in offering Automated Clearing House (ACH) services, an electronic network for financial transactions that processes large volumes of debit and credit transactions that include direct deposit and direct debit transfers.
Now, 14 years later, it’s clear that he was right.
The product that we’ve really concentrated on through our lifespan is ACH, we cut our teeth on ACH.
“We’ve done business with quite a large percentage of the major adult players,” says Parodi. “We continue to do business with most of the major programs in the industry. I think it’s safe to say we were the first ACH processors in this space. We have come to the market since that time with a number of products and services that revolve around the ACH payment options that have benefitted the adult merchants. We have gone through the difficult waters of regulation that entered the ACH space, much like the credit card [models] had to deal with when the chargeback thresholds were implemented, and we’ve instituted a number of features in our system that allow our merchants to remain below the one percent chargeback threshold. And we continue to add other payment options in addition to the ACH.”
Among the other options is an IPSP credit card processing service that is offered through WTSeu. This, and other innovations, is what have separated WTS from the fierce competition in online adult billing.
“The product that we’ve really concentrated on through our lifespan is ACH,” Parodi points out. “We cut our teeth on ACH. We really focused on that one payment option, and it’s allowed us to keep focus on what makes ACH work. It’s allowed us to know what services in the ACH model are more customized to the adult market.
‘When we came into the space, checks were a much misunderstood processing payment option. It took quite a few years for people to realize that by offering checks as a payment option, they were opening a door to additional revenue with their existing traffic. There is a percentage of people who will not use credit cards on the Internet to pay for goods or services. By focusing on ACH for so many years now, it’s allowed us to perfect our craft and it has put us in the lead in that particular sector.”
Parodi believes another reason for his firm’s success lies in his belief that the adult online billing marketplace is no more risky than other billing arenas.
“In fact, we think that there’s actually less risk, because of the business model,” he says. “First, there’s no product being delivered. Typically, it’s just services. And the fact that many people don’t want others to know what they’re paying for on the adult web, it almost works in our favor, because we don’t have as many charge-back disputes. And if a check bounces, the account is deleted right away.
“We’ve been able to mitigate the risks in the adult space mainly because all the services that are offered are online, like access to content.”
Recognizing the importance of keeping up with trends, Parodi has put WTS firmly into the mobile market now by offering mobile join pages that have ACH services. In fact, at this point Parodi believes that WTS is the only firm that is mobile-ready in the respect that customers can use their checking accounts to pay for membership or content via their mobile phones.
It’s just another way for Parodi and WTS to help their customers rake in an additional five to 10 percent in new revenue.