Online Payment Gateways Explained

You’ve figured out a way to make money out of doing something you love.  That’s great!  Now you just need to figure out the best way to process all those incoming dollars!

Choosing the right online payment gateway is vital for the success of your business.  If it’s not quick, easy to use and secure you might as well forget about converting sales.

Here’s my take on some of the most commonly used payment gateways:


Launched in 2011, Stripe is an online, US-based payment gateway that connects up with your bank account and allows your customers to make payments quickly and easily. At present, Stripe supports payments in 14 different countries including Australia. Stripe charges 2.9% + $0.30 on all transactions.  Stripe is extremely quick and easy to use for customers and offers live chat customer support.  Best of all, customers remain on your site to pay rather than being redirected.


Launched in 2001, PayPal is now in 193 countries and is based in the United States.  For sales within Australia, PayPal charges 2.4% + $0.30 per transaction and international transactions incur the same 2.4% fee with a fixed fee based on the currency. As a merchant, the best way to reach PayPal quickly if you need help is to tweet them at their @AskPaypal account.  Paypal is particularly handy if you processes a lot of AMEX payments as the default rate is 2.7%.


eWay works between your website and the bank by capturing the payee’s credit card details.  Once processed by the bank, the funds are then settled in the bank account you have nominated.  eWay is relatively easy to set up and you can usually be up and running within 7-days from signup.  E-way charges you 1.6% per transaction but if you start making large volumes there is room to haggle with the bank so it’s worth asking them the question.  Based in Australia, the most attractive feature of eWay is by far their 24/7 phone customer support.

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