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April 13, 2017

Advantages of Switching Boleto Processing to PagBrasil

PagBrasil boleto processing

Any Brazilian e-commerce business offering boleto bancário has two options: integrate with a Brazilian bank or with a payment service provider, such as PagBrasil. While Brazilian banks provide very basic boleto processing, PagBrasil’s boletos come with a broad range of services. Merchants benefit from higher conversion rates and many additional functions, such as faster payment confirmation, a responsive version for mobile or automated refunds.


According to the Brazilian Central Bank, 3.7 billion boletos are paid every year in Brazil. Currently, boleto bancário represents nearly 25% of all e-commerce transactions, positioning the method as the second most popular payment choice among Brazilian e-consumers. By offering boleto bancário at their online stores, merchants are also gaining access to a large population of unbanked adults in Brazil, an estimated 55 million people. In addition, it is often the only way to charge enterprise and government businesses.



Benefits of PagBrasil’s boleto


PagBrasil’s boleto is the state-of-the-art all-inclusive solution. While Brazilian banks provide very basic boleto processing with no additional services, PagBrasil has developed 15,000 lines of code to create the most extensive boleto solution in the Brazilian market. A seamless payment process and many conversion optimization features may result in a 10% increase in the number of successfully paid boletos.


  • Confirmation: Both boletos offered by PagBrasil, Boleto Express and Boleto Flash®, provide accelerated automated payment confirmation. While a bank boleto processing requires the merchant to import the data using archaic methods that most of the times requires manual procedures to confirm the payments, Boleto Express is automatically confirmed the next business day up to 10 am Brazilian time for payments done Monday to Friday. Boleto Flash®, on the other hand, is even confirmed in under three hours on the same business day.

  • Expiration: The expiration dates of boletos issued by banks are fixed and cannot be changed or retroactively extended. Boleto Flash® and Boleto Express both allow flexible expiration dates via API and retroactive extension.

  • Format: Bank boletos are not responsive. Itaú and Banco do Brasil, for example, provide their boletos in PDF format. While Bradesco at least uses HTML, it still fails to deliver a mobile friendly version. On the contrary, both Boleto Express and Boleto Flash® are fully responsive, adapting to any mobile screen resolution and allowing easy copying and pasting of the boleto code for a seamless payment experience. Furthermore, bank boletos are provided as pop-ups and Boleto Flash® and Boleto Express are generated as links that merchants can use in a variety of ways.

  • In App use: While boletos issued by banks can’t be used in-app at all, PagBrasil’s boletos fulfill the need, perfectly integrating into any mobile app.

  • Email and SMS service: PagBrasil provides an optional service that automatically sends completely customizable boleto confirmation and payment reminder emails or SMS to the buyer. These emails and SMS include the boleto link and are important for optimizing conversions. Banks don’t offer such a service and merchants need to develop it themselves.

  • Multi-bank failover: Banks’ boleto systems are sometimes unavailable, be it by system failures or maintenance windows. PagBrasil provides a multi-bank failover solution, processing boletos via a secondary bank if the primary one fails.

  • Refund: The boleto system itself doesn’t have a refund function. That’s why PagBrasil created its own solution for automated refunds via API. Brazilian banks on the other hand do not provide any integrated refund option. To refund a boleto issued by a bank, the online merchant needs to manually wire transfer the money back to the buyer.

  • Efficient integration: While each bank and acquirer needs its own technical integration, PagBrasil provides one API for all payment methods, including boleto, credit cards, debit cards and online banking transfer. This significantly reduces time, cost and complexity for the setup.

  • Conciliation: When it comes to conciliation, the main advantages of using PagBrasil’s Boleto Flash® and Boleto Express is reliability and simplicity. Banks do not provide information in an organized way. Merchants must import payment data via online banking or EDI from the bank into their systems and afterwards manually check if the bank has deposited the correct amount and charged the agreed fee. This is important as bank systems sometimes fail and Brazilian banks often change fees without informing their customers. In contrary, payment confirmations for PagBrasil’s boletos are pushed automatically via API. For each payout PagBrasil provides one settlement report that includes all paid boletos, the paid amounts and the fees charged, matching exactly the payout amount. Therefore, merchants benefit from a more reliable report, in addition to an automated process, reducing time and cost for manual processing and checks.

  • Consistent API: Banks regularly change the requirements for technical integration. PagBrasil aims to resolve all changes at its own end. So far, merchants have never been requested to update the integration with PagBrasil, even with the switch to registered boleto.


In the table below we sum up all the points above regarding the differences between bank boleto processing and PagBrasil boleto processing:


Boleto Flash®Boleto ExpressBank boleto
Payable anywherecheck-1check-1check-1
Pushed confirmation via APIcheck-1check-1
3 hours payment confirmation*check-1
Flexible and extendable expirationcheck-1check-1
Mobile friendlycheck-1check-1
In App usecheck-1check-1
Email and SMS servicecheck-1check-1
Multi-bank failovercheck-1check-1
Automated refundcheck-1check-1
Efficient integrationcheck-1check-1
Reliable and automated conciliationcheck-1check-1
Consistent APIcheck-1check-1

* Payment confirmation within 3 hours for payments made at partner banks: Caixa, Banco do Brasil, Itaú, as well as in lottery shops.

There is no doubt that offering boleto bancário is key to reaching a bigger audience of online buyers in Brazil. It can even be used to drive further conversions when credit card payments fail. However, choosing the right boleto provider for your business is as important as making the option available at the checkout. Merchants must ask themselves what are their priorities: pricing, conversion, automation, accessibility, etc. and then choose the option that best suits their requirements.

“Our experience of over 20 years processing payments in Brazil has given us deep insights on how to bring our boleto solution to perfection. We started developing Boleto Express with faster payment confirmations and then went even further with Boleto Flash®, the only boleto in the market that confirms paid boletos in less than three hours. Furthermore, today nearly a quarter of all internet users in Brazil use mobile devices to make their purchases. Mobile devices are already the main point of internet access in the country and will be even more important for e-commerce in the future. Anticipating this new reality was crucial to bring our boleto solution even closer to the current needs of Brazilian buyers.”, explains Alex Hoffmann, PagBrasil’s CEO.

/ Written by Bianca Lopez - Follow @biancatlopez

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