Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX) is a payment services provider focused on improving customer loyalty and shopping experience while providing scalability, security, data insights and cost efficiency for its merchants.
MCX wanted the ability to own, shape and influence the payment experience of customers while lowering and ultimately eliminating transaction fees from credit card companies and financial institutions. To make this vision a reality, MCX turned to Quisitive for help in developing a digital gateway between the MCX consortium partners (Best Buy, Target, CVS, etc.), large banks that handle the payment process, and digital wallet providers such as Apple Pay.
Scalability and performance were key must-haves in this solution. Not only did it have to handle large transaction volumes, but MCX wanted sub-second processing on all transactions to provide the ultimate customer experience. Iron-clad security was also a non-negotiable.
MCX initially thought they would need to build a custom solution to meet these requirements, but Quisitive helped them realize that utilizing Microsoft Azure as the foundation would provide the flexibility and key elements they needed to make this solution a success.
In order to create highly performant and scalable services, Quisitive utilized Application Service Environments at the core of the solution, enforcing network security and isolation to protect highly sensitive consumer transaction data. To add even further protection on top of the ASEs, the services were secured behind Azure API Management, and additional steps were taken to encrypt the data using Key Vault.
To address the desired balance between monthly operational costs over and against storage and performance needs, a hybrid storage approach was taken leveraging Table Storage, Azure Search Services, and DocumentDB. Lastly, to provide the insights needed to operate the product, Application Insights was implemented to track service requests, dependencies, and performance of the system.
Powered by Microsoft Azure, the digital gateway now allows MCX to have a direct relationship with their customers while removing the need for a third-party processing vendor. This has substantially reduced transaction processing fees and enabled MCX’s partners to develop their own digital wallets or negotiate preferential terms with existing digital wallet providers. In addition to these cost efficiencies, the gateway puts customer data back in their hands, giving merchants the ability to create a customized customer experience through aligned promotions to ultimately increase revenue.