Payments · Shopping Carts

Choosing a payment gateway and shopping cart provider?

Inder Singh Founder & CEO at Kinsa

November 25th, 2013

Hi All,

We are evaluating options for a basic e-commerce site and would love your input. We've looked at several payment gateway/shopping cart options, but are having trouble sorting through the complexities. We need a very basic solution (we only have one product)and are open to either a full service provider (shopping cart and payment gateway in one) or multiple providers.

In particular, we are having trouble finding a provider(s) that offers all of the following:

(1) a shopping cart that integrates with Fulfillment by Amazon;

(2) an easy option for our accountants, who use Quickbooks and are not technical (most solutions don't offer direct Quickbooks integration); and

(3) a payment gateway that offers complete data portability (are Stripe and Braintree the only providers that offer this?).

A full list of our evaluation criteria is below.

Thanks in advance for any advice!

Inder

Shopping Cart criteria:

- Simple and low-cost: we only have one product, no need for features like recurring billing, but system should be able to calculate taxes and shipping costs

- Integration with our payment gateway, Quickbooks, and Fulfillment by Amazon

- Good user experience

- Ideally we would like to host it on our site

- Customer support

Payment Gateway criteria

- Cost
- Integration with Quickbooks and shopping cart provider
- Portability of data
- Accessibility of funds (e.g. Payout period, risk of holding back money)

- Customer support
- Setup time
- Back end support costs

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Daniel Ice

November 25th, 2013

Cart

There are not a lot of carts that integrate with Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA).  Most of the time you are looking at an OMS (Order Management System) that integrates with FBA.  The problem is that an OMS for a single product is a bit overkill, and will cost you as much as your cart.

3D cart looks like it might be a good fit, they have a FBA plugin (http://www.3dcart.com/ecommerce-apps/fba-fulfillment-by-amazon-shopping-cart.html), integrate with Quickbooks, and support Stripe as a Payment Gateway.

Payment Gateway

Given the feature set you listed you have three options:
* Stripe
* Braintree
* Balanced

They all charge the same rate: 2.9% + $.25 a transaction.  I would say they are all pretty much the same, but they do have a few differences:

* Stripe - focused on recurring billing and only let's you save 1 card per customer
* Braintree - the oldest, pretty fast payout, multiple cards, good if you plan to accept cards outside the US
* Balanced - the newest, designed to support marketplaces where you collect money from a buyer and pay it to a seller

If saving data is important, I would recommend one of the three above.  Other places might be a point cheaper, but they won't save you data and the rates they quote will probably change depending on the types of cards used by your customers.

If you have more questions feel free to send me a message and we can hop on a call.

-DICE

Ian McLean Developing Startup Grunt, Tech Co-Founder

November 26th, 2013

If you're just aiming for a basic ecommerce site make sure you check out all of the SAS options (Shopify, etc) before looking at software that you would need to install and maintain yourself (oscommerce, zencart and so on). You might find just what you need in terms of functionality, the ability to run on your own domain, and the flexibility style your page exactly to your liking. Then your SAS usage becomes transparent and you can avoid numerous configuration and deployment frustrations that could delay your launch.

+1 for Balanced. https://github.com/balanced/billy looks awesome.

Mark Cline Developer at PitchPoint Solutions

November 30th, 2013

Another good option I've had a really positive experience with is BeanStream:

Easy to integrate with and great customer service. :-)

Patrick Roch Founder & CEO at Roch Systems

November 25th, 2013

Hi Inder,

Please provide a little more details on your deployment environment including development language(PHP, JAVA etc), are you using a CMS? Which one?

Let me know

Thanks

Patrick

Michael Richards GoMotive CEO (mobile client retention system) & PRR Chief Operating Officer

November 25th, 2013

I would be interested in what you learn.

A year ago we were thinking about First Data Merchant Services, but it was for a different set of criteria.

Thx.

helloandyhihi

December 2nd, 2013

I didn't realize Shopify put their integration with FBA on hold. Either way, I'd suggest looking closely at the costs of FBA. It's expensive. I'm using Shipwire, which is less, but soon I'll look into a local fulfillment service that should be even cheaper. 

For most of our shipments, First Class Mail sent from one location gets things to customers just as fast as shipping it from multiple locations. Plus, it's very cheap. 

Eric Rogness Technical Product Manager

November 25th, 2013

Except for integration with Amazon, there is ShopLocket. They do, however, integrate with http://www.shipwire.com/, if that's an option.

Paul Travis Multifaceted Online Executor: Product Marketing to Program Mgmt. to Business Development

December 2nd, 2013

Good catch, Jake.

Anyone have experience with http://SalesVu.com ?

helloandyhihi

December 1st, 2013

My company uses Shopify. Since my company launched in May, they have been a big part of my life every day and I recommend them with enthusiasm. 

I can't think of any company that has ever impressed me so consistently. Considering how deeply integrated they are with my company, they're worth every penny I pay. 

My store uses both Shopify Payments by Stripe and PayPal. About 1/3 of orders use PayPal. Shopify stores can now easily accept Bitcoin and convert the currency into cash. 

Andy Bosselman, Founder
Arithmetic: Smart skincare for adults with acne. 

Jake Carlson Software Development Manager at Oracle

December 1st, 2013

Normally I'd recommend something like Shopify to simplify things, but it looks like they might not fully support AFB:

http://docs.shopify.com/manual/settings/shipping/fulfillment-services#amazon