There are alternatives to PayPal
Mostly everyone is familiar with PayPal as a way for businesses to make sales and for individuals to send and receive money. What many people might not be aware of is that there are other alternatives that just might be better to use for various reasons. Some alternatives are less expensive when it comes to fees so are worth looking at especially for small businesses that operate online shopping sites. Whether you are a business or just someone that frequently sends or receives money it is worth taking a look at these options. They are in order of Alexa traffic rating but keep in mind that Google Wallet and Amazon Payments show first because their main websites have high traffic not because their payment program is necessarily highly visited itself. Judge by reviewing each to see whether they offer the type of service you need at a fee structure that works for you.
Global Alexa Rating: 1 (Google itself is number one of all websites in the world)
The first alternative to Paypal is Google Wallet which works quite simply in that users can send money from their computer or their mobile phone to anyone in the U.S. with an email address as well as receive money. The money be sent from the user’s bank account or a Google Wallet balance with no fee or sent with any credit or debit card with a 2.9% fee per transaction. Receiving money is always free. Besides this feature there are some unique features worth looking at. For example, Google Wallet can be used to store all those annoying store plastic cards and even find other loyalty programs you might not know about. The app also lets you know about promotional offers at tons of merchants. Simply tap the “use now” button and show the screen to the merchant to take advantage of offers. Using funds from Google Wallet to make purchases can be done at lots of vendors online as well as stores with NFC-enabled devices. Safety features include their purchase protection plan and the ability to disable the app from your account should you lose your phone. This combination of services makes this an ideal alternative to PayPal for many people.
Global Alexa Rating: 11 (Amazon itself is number 11 of all websites in the world)
Amazon Payments is a way to utilize your Amazon account for making payments as well as sending and receiving money. One of the unique benefits of this program is that when users show at businesses that accept Amazon Payments they do not need separate log-in information. This streamlines purchasing tremendously and many businesses know this and are adding Amazon. Service fees are low for businesses and free for customers. Users can also send and receive money from friends and family through your Amazon.com email address. There is one downside to Amazon Payments for sending and receiving money however. They currently have a limit of $500 per month until a credit card or bank account registered in the account has been verified. At that point the limit may be raised or removed entirely.
Global Alexa Rating: 578
Intuit is a PayPal alternative for businesses that want to seamlessly integrate receiving payments with their QuickBooks account at a price far below the fees imposed by PayPal. There are no setup fees or monthly fees, just a set $.50 per transaction fee. It is really easy to get paid through Intuit once set up as they provide a custom payment link that can be used anywhere from websites to blogs to classifieds. While payments are not instant like with some other services they are generally received the next day which is still better than some other options. They have also recently added a feature where small business can use IPN to pay vendors and customers as well. IPN is not for individuals that want to send and receive money so this limitation keeps it from being a PayPal alternative for some users.
Global Alexa Rating: 1,585
Authorize.Net is another type of PayPal alternative that is directed only to businesses rather than individuals. The fee structure is far different from other programs in that there is a setup fee, monthly gateway fee, transaction fee and batch fee involved. Because the fees are set by resellers of the program they can vary depending on who you obtain the program from. The benefit of this program is the ability to accept payments online, at a retail store, by mail order or telephone order and through mobile devices. This makes it a great option for businesses that conduct business in many different ways. It is less confusing to have all types of payments using the same program and can make bookkeeping an easier task.
Global Alexa Rating: 1,960
Another alternative to PayPal is Payza and it has both a personal program and one for businesses. The personal features include making and receiving payments anywhere, sending funds by email quickly and for free, requesting funds and getting paid instantly and the use of a Payza prepaid card if desired. Business features include all the above but also include shopping cart integration and payment buttons. As for fees new accounts enjoy no fees to send or receive funds or add funds via prepaid card or bank transfer for the first $400/month or until $2,000 has been reached. After that there is a 2.5% + $.25 fee to receive funds, 3.5% to add funds with a credit card and $.50 fee to withdraw funds via bank transfer. Users that wish to use a Payza prepaid card have a one-time fee of $19.95 as well as various fees when using it. There are some business accounts that may be charged a higher fee. Users never pay to set up an account nor incur any monthly fees. The website is easy to follow and includes a well prepared FAQ section to learn all about the account features and the basics.
Global Alexa Rating: 2,300
Skrill has both a personal program and one for business along with one special feature – the ability to send and receive money internationally. They provide currency conversion at a fee between 2.99% and 4.99% added to the wholesale exchange rate for the country involved. This is a great feature for people such as freelancers or those that collect affiliate commissions as well as those that conduct commerce globally. Their fee structure is that it costs 1% up to $13.43 to send month but is absolutely free to receive money, upload funds or withdraw funds making Skrill one of the cheapest ways there is to send and receive money. One thing to note however is that they will charge $1 per month on any account that has not been logged into or made a transaction in the past 12 months so only those people that plan to use the account actively should select this program.
Global Alexa Rating: 2,404
Previously operated as ING Direct Person2Person, this program operates a bit differently. With it a user obtains a Capital One 360 electronic checking account which can include regular checkbooks if they wish. As an electronic checking account with an actual bank routing number it can be used for direct deposits which is a service other programs do not offer. Another benefit is that money in the checking account earns interest which varies depending on the balance in the account. The downside to this program is that while money can be sent to anyone it cannot be received except by other users of this program. This makes it less flexible than other alternatives. There are no fees to use P2P payments however so it can be advantageous for some people to use.
Global Alexa Rating: 3,381
There are some definite pros and cons with 2Checkout. As for the pros, it is a solid company with a long record of excellent service. It has low merchant fees and fantastic customer service. They offer great fraud protection and the service is available for international users as well. Funds are also deposited very quickly compared to other merchant accounts. The service is also full of great features such as recurring billing options and simple buy buttons. Now for the cons – this is not a service for individuals. Furthermore the fees include a transaction rate and fee which are a little higher than some other options although they do offer volume pricing for businesses that process more than $50k per month. All in all it is a great option for businesses that operate globally, especially start-up businesses. Because it combines a merchant account with a payment gateway businesses can accept customer payments through a variety of ways including those that still hang on to PayPal. It might take a little effort to learn the platform but once learned all the features available will be appreciated.
Global Alexa Rating: 8,623
Stripe is a bit different because it does not require a business to have a merchant account or a gateway. It is designed strictly for businesses and has lots of flexibility so it is just as useful for a small startup as for a Fortune 500 company. They operate with a simple fee structure at about the same level as other programs. With over a hundred powerful features that can grow with your company this is a great choice for businesses. They offer a powerful toolkit and seamless security. Definitely a high-end option yet affordable. Unfortunately it is not an option for individuals just looking to send and receive money from friends and family.
Global Alexa Rating: 24,446
Dwolla is one of the most diverse offerings when it comes to moving money. They can be used by individuals, businesses and even non-profits which many other systems do not. Users can send money to anyone with more options than other programs – email, phone, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and businesses that accept Dwolla are all methods that can be used. The receiver will need to create a Dwolla account to accept the payment. By default the receiver pays the fee but the sender can choose to pay it instead. There is no fee for transactions $10 or less. Higher amounts are a flat fee of $.25 per transaction. There are no other fees. Dwolla can be used on mobile devices as well as from a computer. They also offer a Dwolla merchant kiosk or Dwolla-enabled POS for businesses.
As you can see not all the above PayPal alternatives are ideal for both individuals and businesses so it would take some research to determine which will work for your particular needs. Some have fees that are just about the same as PayPal while others are less expensive. Some have the same features and others have many more. Whether you want to avoid PayPal’s fees or are just not happy with their lack of good customer support, these are some options worth looking into.