Here are the best payment gateways for e-commerce marketplaces

When you’re looking for a new payment gateway, it’s important to consider more than just transaction costs and monthly fees. You should also consider features like the ability to set up recurring or subscription payments, refund costs, customizability, and from which countries you can receive payments. For multivendor marketplaces, you also need to make sure you can split payments between vendors for a true multi-vendor checkout. Shuup’s multi-vendor marketplace integrates with a number of payment gateways to make customer check out and vendor payment fast and easy.

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Keep your business goals in mind when you’re choosing your payment gateway. Although the cheaper option always appears more attractive at first sight, those costs might add up if you choose to scale your transactions; likewise, if you plan on expanding to other regions, check that a provider covers those areas.

Before we get started, here’s a tip: We suggest contacting a provider’s sales team to ask about costs before you sign up. When putting this article together we found that many providers don’t list information about additional costs and need to be contacted for further information.

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PayPal

A tech product has become a part of our everyday lives when its name becomes a verb, and with 346m active accounts and 20m merchant accounts, millions of people every day are “paypalling it”.

PayPal is a great choice for online sellers, supporting e-commerce, auction sites, and subscription services. There are two PayPal plans that merchants can use: PayPal and PayPal Payment Pro.

PayPal overview

  • Cost per transaction: 2.5% + 30¢
  • Monthly fee/contract: No
  • Recurring billing: Yes
  • Chargeback: $15.00
  • Refund: Fees not returned
  • Countries available: 30+
  • Invoicing: Yes, up to $1m in sales
  • PCI compliant: Yes
  • Support: Email, help center, phone, chat
  • Customizations available: company logo, auto-return to store, PayPal account creation optional, seller customer service number

PayPal Payment Pro overview

  • Cost per transaction: 2.9% + 30¢
  • Monthly fee/contract: $30.00/month
  • Recurring billing: Yes
  • Chargeback: $20.00
  • Refund: 2.9% transaction fee, processing fee not returned
  • Countries available: 200+
  • Invoicing: Yes
  • PCI compliant: Yes
  • Customizations available: Fully customizable APIs, including checkout layout, brand colors, language, page sequence. You’ll need developer skills or have a developer available to make the best of Payment Pro.

Which is the best solution?

The main difference between the two options is the ability to customize the look of your checkout in the Pro option.  For smaller sellers, we’d recommend sticking with the basic PayPal gateway for a while and then upgrade if you want to brand your cart and checkout process.

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stripe logo - payment methods for e-commerce - shuup copy

Stripe

An increasingly popular option, Stripe is great for businesses who want a customized payment gateway solution and have the developer skills to realize it. It’s not an out-of-the-box gateway like PayPal, so keep that in mind. As well as the regular one-click checkout, Stripe supports subscription billing (great for SaaS products), crowdfunding, and multi-vendor marketplace businesses.

Overview

  • Cost per transaction: 2.9% + 25¢ (much cheaper for EU users: 1.4% + 25¢)
  • Monthly fee/contract: No
  • Recurring billing: Yes
  • Chargeback: $15.00
  • Refund: No charge, but fees aren’t returned
  • Countries available: 30+
  • Invoicing: Yes
  • Support: Email, help center, phone & chat
  • PCI compliant: Yes
  • Customizations: Stripe is a strong choice for medium- and enterprise-sized companies who want API flexibility and the chance to customize and optimize every aspect of their payment, subscription, and billing processes.

Stripe offers a sophisticated range of backend features including unified dashboards and automated financial reporting features—great for larger or more established retailers but perhaps not essential for early-stage or smaller businesses. Although founded in the US, Stripe’s significantly lower transaction fees for EU users make it an attractive option for European merchants.

authoize.net logo - payment methods for e-commerce - shuup

Authorize.net

A subsidiary of the credit card giant Visa, Authorize.net claims almost half a million merchant customers handling one billion transactions annually. We should note that to use an Authorize.net merchant account your business needs to be registered in the US, Canada, Australia, or UK/Europe, but payments can be received from buyers pretty much anywhere in the world. Authorize.net offers two options: an all-in-one merchant account and payment gateway or just a gateway.

Merchant account + payment gateway overview 

  • Cost per transaction: 2.9% + 30¢
  • Monthly fee/contract: $25.00
  • Recurring billing: Yes
  • Chargeback: $25.00
  • Refund: No information available
  • Countries available: Global (no figure given)
  • Invoicing: Yes
  • Support: Email, phone, live support
  • PCI compliant: Yes

Customizations: Custom text, information about payment options, and color customizations are possible. Adding pictures to your payment page is possible but you’ll need to contact support. Most customizations will probably require developer assistance and developer guides are available.

Payment gateway overview 

  • Cost per transaction: 10¢, daily batch fee* 10¢

+

  • All the features of the all-in-one plan
  • Sellers must already have a merchant account to connect to the Authorize.net payment gateway

Authorize.net’s all-in-one plan is a great option for those who don’t already have a merchant account. The fees are similar to other solutions that only offer payment gateways so you’ll save money on not paying the costs of a merchant account. That said, it was difficult to find up-to-date information and its website wasn’t the most helpful.

*According to Authorize.net: “Once a day, Authorize.net takes all your transactions from the previous 24-hours and aggregates them into a “batch” which is then sent off to the processing networks. The Daily Batch Fee is the fee assessed for this process.”

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adyen logo - payment methods for e-commerce - shuup copy 2

Adyen

Adyen hit the headlines recently after eBay announced it’s now switching to the payment gateway provider. eBay joins other big-name brands that currently use the service, including Microsoft, Spotify, Uber, and Pinterest. Such multinationals are no doubt attracted to Adyen because of its end-to-end solution: it functions as both a payment gateway and a merchant account.

As you can see from our features overview below, Adyen pricing model isn’t particularly easy to understand. Transaction and processing fees differ depending on the region or country and the payment or credit card type.

However, in its defense, the complexity is down to Adyen’s focus on helping merchants acquire international and local customers by reducing fees for country-specific payment methods rather than offering blanket pricing. For example, its Dynamic Currency Conversion functionality allows merchants to offer pricing in local currencies at the point of sale.

Its MarketPay is a great feature for multi-vendor marketplace owners giving the ability to split payments across multiple sub-merchants as well as schedule payments and transfer funds.

Overview

  • Cost per transaction: Dependent on region and card type. Payment method fee: 3.95%-10%
  • + processing fee (0.12¢)
  • Monthly fee/contract: No (but a required monthly minimum invoice of $120.00)
  • Recurring billing: Yes
  • Chargeback: $7.50*
  • Refund: No charge but transaction fees not returned
  • Countries available: Information unavailable
  • Invoicing: Yes
  • Support: Email, 24/7 phone
  • PCI compliant: Yes
  • Customizations: Changes can be made to the payment form, credit card fields, and language translations. Adyen provides the code required but you might need a developer’s help if coding is an issue.

*Information gathered from a third party. Adyen doesn’t currently list the chargeback fee publicly.

Adyen’s all-in-one product with a focus on removing friction for local buyers and its dedicated marketplace features make it an attractive option for multi-vendor marketplace owners. However, its pricing complexity might frustrate smaller sellers who don’t have the time or resources to dig into the details.

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Payline Data

A standout feature of Payline Data is its fraud and chargeback protection. This emphasis has made the provider popular with so-called “high-risk industries”. Products or services such as gambling and adult entertainment can often incur chargebacks and higher fraud rates and may be rejected by other gateway providers.

Overview (Connect plan for e-commerce)

  • Cost per transaction: Interchange fee + 0.3% + 20¢
  • Monthly fee/contract: $20.00
  • Recurring billing: Yes
  • Chargeback: $25.00
  • Refund: n/a
  • Countries available: n/a
  • Invoicing: Yes
  • Support: 24/7 Phone, email
  • PCI compliant: Yes
  • Customizations: We couldn’t find any information about customization on their site but you can request API and developer documentation by submitting a form.

Even with its reputation for high-risk industries, Payline offers most of the regular features you’d expect from a payment gateway, and its fees are slightly lower than the other providers in this list. This is one to consider if you’re a seller looking to provide customers with advanced security and fraud prevention.

Final thoughts about payment gateways for e-commerce

With pretty similar costs per transaction and monthly fees, there isn’t a great deal of difference between these five providers in terms of costs. It’s best to see how each meets your wider business goals in terms of the territories they cover, subscription billing, and the ability to customize. Again, we recommend contacting the provider directly before making a decision.

If you are interested in learning more or having an expert evaluate your marketplace or marketplace idea, get in touch with a Shuup marketplace expert today!

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