Online Payments

What is the best way to collect payments from people online?

Luis Berga Co-Founder at Music Meets Video

April 18th, 2013

Hi everybody,

I'm working on an idea that would require people to send payments which we would later distribute (think of it like LeagueSafe or an online wedding registry).

Does anyone have any thoughts on the best method to collect and distribute funds? One important caveat, is that we're thinking about taking a percentage of the transaction as a way to monetize so I'm not sure if just simply using Paypal would work (since I believe they also take a cut of transactions).

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Jesal Gadhia

April 18th, 2013

I would suggest looking at

Eric Rogness Technical Product Manager

April 18th, 2013

Balanced and Paypal are the only processors that (a) provide a way to distribute payments; and (b) don't retain their transaction fee when issuing a refund. As popular with developers as Braintree and Stripe may be, it may ruin your business model if you can't recover the 3% you've paid to the processor if you can't issue a refund.

Greg Frank Director of Product Management at 4Finance

April 18th, 2013

I'd be interested in seeing some of the replies you get as I have an idea that would treat payments the same was - I collect and the distribute them.

Have a look at Balanced - they would be a great option except that I'm currently in Canada and they don't support Canadian payments at this time.


Gaurav Sharma

April 18th, 2013 -- Gaurav Sharma (650) 450-9301

Justin Williams Digital Marketer and Data Analyst

April 18th, 2013

So any merchant account which allows you to charge cards is going to take a percentage. Basically what you're looking for is a merchant account.

John Canfield VP, Risk Management at WePay

April 18th, 2013

You should also check out WePay.  They were founded originally for group payments and they are now more focused on payments for service providers.  

Jason Crawford Founder without portfolio

April 18th, 2013

Stripe is popular. If that doesn't have the APIs you want, check out Amazon payments (“Flexible Payment System“) - it is indeed quite flexible and is used by Kickstarter for their unusual requirements (authorize/hold now, charge or void later depending on success of the fundraising).

Joseph Hsieh Growth Marketing & User Acquisition Specialist

April 18th, 2013

Take a look at balanced. I think they support the use case you are talking about. Joseph Hsieh

CJ Barker

April 18th, 2013

Another popular competitor to stripe for online & mobile payments is Braintree. Personally, I haven't investigated them, but you might want to check it out.

Zvi Epner

April 18th, 2013

I've used and found it to be very developer friendly