Knowledge to Power Your Website

How to Accept Payments Through Your WordPress Website

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Being able to accept credit card payments for services or products is crucial to opening up new entrepreneurial opportunities on your WordPress website. But deciding which payment gateways to offer and whether they’re compatible with your e-commerce store’s structure can be tricky.

To make things easier, we’ve gathered the research together all in one place for you. After all, the checkout process for online customers can be a significant factor in lead conversion.

Understanding what each payment gateway has to offer can help you create the best possible experience for customers.

In this article, we’ll cover the basics of online payment platforms. We’ll also review a number of free and premium payment applications that you can add to your WordPress website. If you’re ready, let’s dive right in!

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Why It’s Important to Choose the Right Payment Gateways for Your Website

Payment gateways are the services that facilitate processing credit and debit card payments for merchants. The gateway you choose is pretty important, especially when you consider that 75% of retail consumers abandon their carts during the checkout process. Offering your customers a variety of payment options is one excellent way to keep them happy.

A payment gateway can simply be a software application or involve physical hardware to be used in Point of Sale (POS) transactions. Either way, there are a lot of essential elements to consider when choosing a gateway for your business, including:

  • Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). PCI DSS compliance means that the service provider adheres to the information security standard for anyone handling major credit cards.
  • Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) Certificates. It’s recommended that websites with online payment options also purchase SSL certificates. This means data exchanges will occur over a secure connection.
  • Plugin compatibility. You’ll want to make sure your chosen gateway has a plugin that will deliver what you need and be compatible with your site’s theme.
  • User experience. Make sure your chosen gateway can be tested to ensure its ability to deliver the most effective user experience during checkout and after.

If it seems too hard to choose, it’s not unusual to employ more than one. In fact, customers are more likely to complete a purchase when they have lots of payment options.

The 5 Best Payment Gateways for WordPress

Now that you understand what elements to keep in mind while shopping around for a payment gateway, we’ll take a look at five of the best options for WordPress store owners.

1. Authorize.Net

The Authorize.net website.

Authorize.Net offers advanced fraud detection services for free, among other services. You’ll also have a Quickbooks sync option and the ability to accept multiple currencies.

In terms of POS services, you can easily turn any Windows-based computer into a POS terminal using Authorize.net’s free software. You’ll need to purchase a card reader to complete the system, however.

Authorize.net fees:

  • Account set-up fee: $49.00
  • Monthly gateway fee: $25.00
  • Per transaction processing fee: $0.10

With a simple checkout experience and no contracts, Authorize.net is an excellent gateway option.

2. PayPal

The PayPal website.

PayPal is probably the most trusted name in payment gateways. That’s a huge plus for new businesses.

What’s more, PayPal is consistent and transparent in its fee schedule and offers an extensive suite of tools. You can also set up a POS checkout with several hardware options, which include mobile and traditional terminal possibilities.

PayPal fees:

  • All online sales: 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
  • Non-keyed POS transactions: 2.7%
  • Keyed-in mobile and in-store transactions: 3.5% + $0.15
  • Virtual terminal: 3.1% + $0.30 per transaction

PayPal has 286 million active user accounts globally. That’s a pretty big group of potential customers who are more likely to complete their checkouts if PayPal is an option.

3. Stripe

The Stripe website.

Stripe is a top choice if you plan on doing a lot of international business. It accepts over 100 foreign currencies and converts them automatically.

The company has also created its own POS Terminal system, as well. You’ll have to purchase this, but it’s a nice option if you plan on doing events or setting up a physical storefront.

Stripe fees:

  • Credit cards: 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
  • Suite of tools: Stripe charges fees separately for each option
  • International conversion: 1% fee on top of normal Stripe transaction fees
  • Terminal transactions: 2.7% + $0.5 per transaction, plus the cost of hardware

Stripe is definitely a workhorse, with many options for developers.

4. Amazon Pay

The Amazon Pay website.

Aside from brand recognition, one of the most significant benefits of using Amazon Pay is that unlike PayPal, shoppers don’t have to leave your website to complete their payments. Users can log in with their Amazon accounts and complete “in-line” purchases in a familiar and smooth checkout process.

While Amazon Pay does not offer a POS system, you’ll have access to other benefits. These include the ability to set up recurring payments, fraud detection, and donation settings.

Amazon domestic-only fees:

  • Web and mobile processing: 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
  • Alexa voice-activated purchases: 4% processing fee + $0.30 per transaction
  • Charitable organizations: 2.2% processing fee + $0.30 per transaction

Amazon is an excellent choice for a small business looking to grow its reach and audience. The power of Amazon offers a lot of potential for just about any new business.

5. Square

The Square website.

Square is a leader in the payment gateway industry. There are so many features and tools you’ll get for free, such as the virtual terminal. This application enables you to turn any web-connected device into a credit card payment terminal, even without a card swiper.

Square also offers a sophisticated POS system, which incorporates iPad hardware into a stylish and easy-to-use digital terminal.

Square fees:

  • Keyed-in and card on file: 3.5% + $0.15 per transaction
  • E-commerce and invoices: 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
  • Point of sale: 2.6% + $0.10 per transaction

Like some of the other gateway options, Square is definitely a top choice for startups and businesses with small monthly transaction numbers.

6 Free and Premium Payment Gateway Plugins

As you evaluate which gateway might be the best option for your business, you’ll also want to make sure it can integrate with your WordPress website. So let’s look at a few plugins that may help you simplify that process.

1. PayPal Payments Pro

The PayPal Payments Pro plugin.

The PayPal Payments Pro plugin solves one of the downsides of using PayPal. Your customers will no longer be taken away from your website when they choose to use a credit card.

Key Features:

  • Easy to configure
  • Offers on-site checkout

Price: This is a free plugin.

2. WP Full Stripe

The WP Full Stripe plugin.

WP Full Stripe is powered (naturally) by Stripe. This plugin is designed to make it easy for you to add payment options to your website. This includes embedding payment forms into your site and setting up subscription options or recurring payments.

Key Features:

  • Accepts donations online
  • Lets you set up recurring payments for users
  • Saves payment information for repeat customers

Price: $39. At the time of publication, the free version hadn’t been tested with recent versions of WordPress so it’s not a recommended solution.

3. WP Simple Pay

The WP Simple Pay plugin.

If you choose Stripe as your payment gateway, WP Simple Pay is another option for integrating payments into your WordPress site. This plugin is pretty much an “all-in-one” option, which eliminates the need for additional plugins to create a payment experience.

Key Features:

  • Displays product images on checkout pages
  • Support over 135 currencies
  • Is mobile responsive

Price: The “lite” version is free, while the “pro” version is $99–$499.

4. Authorize.net Payment Gateway for WooCommerce

The Authorize.net WooCommerce plugin.

Explicitly designed for WooCommerce users, Authorize.net Payment Gateway for WooCommerce offers unique security features for your website. You’ll be able to take credit and debit card payments right on your store through Authorize.net.

Key Features:

  • Does not require SSL
  • Secures payments through Authorize.net servers
  • Includes optional success and failure messages

Price: This is another free option.

5. WooCommerce

The WooCommerce plugin.

WooCommerce is a perfect partner for your WordPress e-commerce website. Packed with features and options, WooCommerce also has over 300 add-ons available that extend its functionality. This includes extensions that connect it up with a wide variety of payment gateways.

Key Features:

  • Is an open-source option
  • Includes customizable product, cart, and checkout pages
  • Integrates with over 140 payment gateways

Price: Free for the base plugin with payment gateway add-ons ranging from $0–$79.

6. Amazon Pay WooCommerce Payment Gateway

The Amazon Payments website.

Finally, the Amazon Pay WooCommerce Payment Gateway plugin is designed to specifically integrate Amazon Pay into a WooCommerce online store. The recognition and trust consumers have with Amazon can be a massive benefit to your website.

Key Features:

  • Lets you use customer-stored Amazon account information to make payments
  • Enables management of refunds from your WordPress admin dashboard
  • Handles single, recurring, and subscription payments

Price: You won’t pay a cent to use this particular plugin.

How to Avoid Mistakes When Adding Payment Options to Your Website

There are a few things you’ll want to avoid while setting up your payment gateways in WordPress. For example, you’ll want to avoid choosing options that lack easy WordPress integration.

You’ll also want to choose a web host that’s equipped to handle payments online. When shopping for a hosting provider, check to see if each one offers SSL/TLS certificates with its packages or if you’ll have to purchase one separately. Regardless, you’ll need to clearly inform site users about what kind of security you offer for payment transactions.

It’s also necessary to understand that you don’t have to incorporate complete shopping cart functionality into your website. You can add just one or two simple payment options if that’s the approach that will work best with your customers and your products or services.

Accepting Payments Made Easy

Generating income through a website is not uncommon in today’s digital marketplace. To get the most out of your WordPress store’s earning potential, you’ll want to choose the best payment gateway options.

Here at DreamHost, we want you to be able to focus on building your online business. That’s why we offer managed WordPress hosting plans for a variety of needs. We’ll take care of keeping your WordPress installation up-to-date and running smoothly!

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A long-time WordPress user, Megan has wielded a red pen (and keyboard) at DreamHost since 2017. Her passion: helping others turn great ideas into thriving websites. Her arsenal includes insightful guides, in-depth tutorials, and the occasional pun.