iDEAL Implementation guide

iDEAL, one of the most used online banking method in the Netherlands, allows the customer to buy securely on the Internet, directly from his bank account opened at one of the major Dutch banks: ABN AMRO, SNS Bank, RegioBank, Rabobank, Knab, Moneyou, ASN Bank, Triodos Bank, ING, Rabobank, Van Lanschot Bankiers,Knab, Bunq, Moneyou and Handelsbanken.

iDEAL was developed by the Dutch banking community in order to facilitate easier payment for online products and services. iDEAL enables direct and secure real-time online payments between bank accounts of Consumers and iDEAL Merchants. The main characteristics of iDEAL are:

  • Real-time payment through accepted and trusted Internet banking that is already familiar to Consumers;
  • Real-time payment authorisation for the Consumer and real-time confirmation to the Merchant by the Acquiring bank, followed by the irrevocable transfer of funds to the Merchant;
  • Suitability for online delivery (e.g. downloads, mobile top-ups), offline delivery (e.g. goods) and time-critical payments (e.g. airline tickets);
  • Offers the flexibility to make payments for many different purposes (e.g. charitable donations, telephone/e-mail orders).

Please ask for the latest iDEAL Merchant Implementation Guide (MIG) and the necessary operation manuals.

iDEAL Four Party Model

When talking about iDeal transaction, one must know that there are at least four parties involved:

  • The Consumer: buys a product or service online from a Merchant that offers the iDEAL payment method
  • The Merchant: sells products or services online to Consumers
  • The Issuer (the Consumers’ bank): the Consumer executes iDEAL payments in his Internet banking environment – through his Issuer
  • The Acquirer (the Merchant’s bank): the Merchant accepts iDEAL payments – through his Acquirer

Additional parties can be involved in an iDEAL transaction:

  • The Merchant can, for example, use a Payment Service Provider (PSP) to establish the connection with its Acquiring bank. When this PSP receives/collects the payments before they are paid to the Merchant, this is called a “Collecting PSP” (CPSP). In this case the Collecting PSP acts as the Merchant for the purpose of the iDEAL payments and holds the iDEAL contract with the Acquiring bank on behalf of one or multiple other Merchants.
Issuer Selection List Presentation

To ensure that the Consumer experience of an iDEAL transaction is consistent and recognizable through all Merchant websites; all Merchants have to comply with certain presentation standards:

  • All Issuers in the DirectoryResponse (to be collected at least monthly) have to be shown in a list (e.g. dropdown list or list of radio buttons) in alphabetic order and exactly as presented in the DirectoryResponse message.
  • The list should be accompanied by the instruction phrase “Kies uw bank” (UK: “Choose your bank”). In case of an HTML SELECT, the first element in the list states this instruction phrase and is selected by default (to prevent accidental Issuer selection).
  • It is not allowed to exclude or grey out any active Issuers from the Issuer list. In case of a new Issuer, the Issuer list should be updated wihtin one month (preferably earlier).
  • It is recommended to configure the HTML “value” field of the items in the list box to be the issuerID (BIC) of the corresponding Issuer, because this value is used in subsequent messages (TransactionRequest).
  • The Merchant may preselect an Issuer only to allow for an improved user experience (e.g. if the Consumer has previously initiated an iDEAL payment with a specific Issuer). The Consumer must however always be offered the possibility to alter the preselected Issuer.

An example of a correct presentation of the Issuer selection list is shown in the figure:

iDEAL banners and logo’s

Merchants that want to use a banner on their website to promote iDEAL can download the most recent banners at These banners need to be installed only once, since the URL will always refer to the latest version of the banner containing the right logos of the participating Issuing banks.

The iDEAL logo must be used by anyone who offers iDEAL as a payment method, informing customers from the beginning that they can pay with iDEAL.

The iDEAL logo may only be used in the provided form and colour. The use of other colours is not permitted.

For more information and instructions for using the iDEAL logo, checkout the iDEAL logo manual.