Originally I’ve posted this article on Syndicode blog.
Syndicode has compiled a list of the best payment tools to consider for your business. These options will expand the number of payment methods you can accept which will attract more clients, facilitate faster payment, and ensure a secure environment for both parties during every transaction you make.
When deciding which digital payment options your company will adopt, consider what your needs are and then pick the service that suits those needs.
What’s wrong with PayPal?
Undoubtedly, PayPal is one of the most trusted payment platforms online. It was one of the first that provided freelancers with a way to accept credit card and debit card payments without having to partner with a credit card processing company and face high monthly and transaction fees. Now it allows you to accept payment in foreign currency and then handles the currency exchange process for you with a minimal fee. Even Bitcoin now can be accepted there!
As a business owner, you know that with PayPal integration visitors can buy items from your site. You can also create, send and receive payments for invoices with this service.
Yes, it’s awesome. But why do we need an alternative?
PayPal is dominant for a reason — it has been around the longest, it’s spent millions enhancing its brand, and it provides all the standard functions you’d expect. However, that doesn’t always make it the best choice. Here’s why:
- Not all clients can make PayPal payments. Some of your clients might not be in the area that PayPal accepts payments from, or their accounting systems don’t support PayPal.
- Blocking risk. You don’t want all your online payments “in one basket”. PayPal is notorious for blocking accounts (sometimes, for no reason). That means you can’t receive payments or access your funds until they decide to unblock you. So alternative payment options are essential as a plan B.
- PayPal is best for smaller amounts. The fees you pay for PayPal can really add up, especially for larger transactions. Other payment providers may charge lower fees, so you keep costs down (and that means greater profits).
- PayPal’s international fees are really (really) high. If you dig into PayPal’s fees, you’ll see they charge a big premium for accepting international payments.
Combine this with less than ideal exchange rates, and you’ll pay a hefty overhead for any international business.
What are the best alternatives to PayPal?
Best payment systems for online business, alternative to PayPal
Some people call Square a PayPal’s main competitor.
Square is a credit card processing company that provides a way for small businesses to accept credit cards without carrying the burden of all those fees that typically get added in by other credit card processors. You will be able to accept credit cards anywhere and process gift cards with their free magstripe reader that works with the Square app on smartphones and tablets. Features include fraud protection and deposits on demand with payments received in your bank account in one to two business days. You only pay per transaction with no set-up or monthly fees.
Square offers you a free online storage where you can list and sell your items and services. Items can be embedded onto your own website. These embeds act as the gateway for your customers to complete their transactions. Square also allows you the ability to send and receive payments on invoices. And the company offers a credit card reader for accepting payments in-person from customers.
Sure, you know it! If you’re a merchant, then it’s time to consider accepting Apple Pay. Transactions are faster and more secure since Apple Pay uses touch ID confirmation. In other words, customers can use their fingerprint to pay for their purchase. Apple Pay is still relatively young, but don’t be surprised if the service will adapt to support older machines. Also, word on the street is that Apple is working on a P2P payments system within iMessage…
Stripe was built for developers to create custom payment solutions, but it can also be used in its basic form. Even as a standardized payment platform, it is packed with features like integrated mobile payments for iOS and Android, checkout, the ability to add coupons and recurring billing. As a global payment option, it works with over 100 currencies, as well as Bitcoin and local payment instruments like Alipay. You can also accept digital payment services like Apple Pay, Android Pay, and AmEx Express Checkout.
It has powerful and flexible API that allows you to tailor the platform to meet your specific needs. Stripe integrates with hundreds of other applications, so even if you’re not a professional coder, you can get up and running quickly. The lack of setup, monthly, or hidden fees is an added bonus.
Once Stripe payment forms are embedded onto your company’s website, you can begin accepting digital payments from your customers. Stripe works across multiple devices with no extra work on your part.
Due made a name for itself through its innovative time-tracking and invoicing tools, which are especially useful for freelancers and small business owners. More recently, Due has allowed users to start accepting secure online payments for just a 2.7 percent transaction rate. Due also accepts global payments, which typically occur within two business days, as well as a digital wallet to send or receive money to anyone in the world instantly with little to no cost. It even has an e-bank where you can store your cash online.
Payments through Amazon enable you to accept digital and online payments from your customers. Whenever they make a purchase on your site, they automatically go through Amazon’s checkout. This means that they’ll use their Amazon credentials, which makes the checkout process more convenient and trustworthy. After you sign up for a free Amazon account, you’ll be able to create copy-and-paste code that you place on your website. When your site’s visitors want to purchase an item there, they’ll be directed to complete the transaction through Checkout by Amazon.
Dwolla is a developer-friendly payments system that lets you customize how you make and receive recurring, bulk or single payments. Offering a free account with no transaction fees, it only links to a U.S. bank account or credit union account.
Dwolla has similar features to PayPal when it comes to transferring funds, but thanks to its API, it focuses more on bank transfers, or ACH payments, so users can create a customized payment solution where payments are received within a day. However, Dwolla is strictly made for making payments within the U.S.
Dolla allows you to send and receive money through your email. This is not an app that allows you to accept credit cards, but Dwolla admits that many businesses run its app alongside another credit card reader.
PayStand is part of a new generation of payment system for small businesses. It promises users no transaction fees. Instead, PayStand offers monthly flat fees to use it. PayStand allows you to accept all forms of payment from credit cards, e-cash, e-checks, foreign monies, and Bitcoins. You can embed product codes onto your website or into emails. Transactions are completed through a pop-up window rather than directing you to a third-party site.
Payoneer is one of the oldest global payment processing services. It is available in more than 200 countries and accepts 150 different currencies. Receiving payments is free, and the platform includes a flexible API that grows with your business. Like with PayPal, you can receive a plastic MasterCard if you aren’t ready to go 100 percent digital.
Braintree is a part of PayPal and took the best payments expertise from parent service. But also Braintree expanded the list of available options for your customers. Except for basic functions of accepting credit card payments from your customers on your website and mobile app, there are also features that allow you to set up recurring payments and other transactions from your clients.
There are no extra fees, including no fees for refunds, inactivity or failed transactions. You only pay for those transactions you actually carry out.
The service says you — and an experienced web developer — can integrate Braintree onto your website or mobile app in about a half-hour.
2Checkout focuses on global payment acceptance, providing you with a secure and compliant gateway to do business in nearly every country around the world. It offers both online and mobile platforms for payments, including numerous language and currency options, recurring billing, hosted checkout and fraud protection. You can accept all major credit and debit cards as well as PayPal, and then get paid by bank or wire transfer.
If you’re approved by 2Checkout, you’ll have the option to choose between a Plug-and-Play integration or one of 2Checkout’s shopping carts. Once a customer clicks on a “Buy” button, they’ll be directed to 2Checkout’s secure payment page. Once the transaction is complete, your customers will be sent back to your website.
Authorize.net has been processing payments since 1996 and stays current today. Authorize.net is a payments gateway that offers US and some international transactions for small to medium-sized businesses. You can accept all major credit cards, signature debit cards, e-checks and digital payment options like Apple Pay, PayPal and Visa Checkout. Other features include automated recurring billing, a free suite of security and fraud prevention tools.
Once known as Google Checkout, Google Wallet is an online payment service that allows users to send safe, simple, and speedy money transfers from their browser, smartphone, or Gmail account. You can store credit cards, debit cards, loyalty cards, and even gift cards to your account.
Google Wallet allows you to offer your customers an easy way to check out when they want to purchase items on your mobile app. Wallet users can sign in to your app through Google+ and will be able to speed through a typically arduous checkout process in just two taps of their screen. Google Wallet also lets you send and receive money through your email.
You should have heard of it. Shopify allows you to set up an online store, which you can host at your own domain. There are three tiers of monthly payment options and the more you pay for those, the less your transaction fees cost. There is an easy-to-use backend to Shopify that tracks your sales, payments, and customer information.
Wepay is an online payments processing platform that is completely customizable. Its standard payments solution is fully integrated into your business, offers fraud prevention and fraud detection tools, direct bank transfer, recurring payments and multi-party payments, all major credit cards and ACH payments.
WePay prides itself on its top-notch customer service and fraud protection. Merchants, however, like the fact that customers can make their purchases without having to leave their site, thanks to a virtual terminal. WePay also offers Know Your Customer collection and risk management and can be used for invoicing, event ticketing, and marketing automation.
You can find the current fees for payment systems mentioned above on their official sites. When you’re comparing payment services, here’s some useful advice:
- Always look at all the fees. Some payment processors charge hidden fees. Always review the entire fee schedule so you can do a like-for-like comparison.
- Explore other supported features. If you want recurring billing, subscription services, the point of sale support, or other options, make sure you understand all of the features.
- Custom Integrations. Explore options for customizing the API and integrations with other apps to help all your various SaaS apps work together better.
Surely, there are more payment systems to compete with PayPal. And it’s up to you choose which one is more convenient to you. Make your choice!
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