PayPal vs Recurly vs Stripe

PayPal
PayPal

8.1K
5.8K
+ 1
644
Recurly
Recurly

94
64
+ 1
60
Stripe
Stripe

8.7K
4.9K
+ 1
1.5K
Advice on PayPal, Recurly, and Stripe
Needs advice
on
StripeStripe
vs
ChargebeeChargebee
vs
BraintreeBraintree

Dear StackShare Community,

I am seeking inspiration on creating a billing & subscription stack and came across this wonderful website and community.

From what I understood so far, I need something like Stripe or Braintree to collect payments without dealing with PCI compliance or setting up merchant accounts, etc... Additionally, services like Chargebee, Recurly, Chargify, etc. are said to make life easier when dealing with recurring billing.

Stated below, I've tried to give you some context on what I want to achieve. I am very curious about your ideas and how you'd configure an optimal stack.

Project context (very high level):

  • Loyalty program for local merchants (stores, restaurants,...).

  • Customers support their community and merchants by shopping local.

  • Merchants grant points to customers based on a customer's value spent in a store, restaurant, etc.

  • Customers can redeem their points at any participating merchant.

Billing / Subscription scenarios to be considered:

(affecting merchants only)

One-time setup fee

  • What: Merchant pays a setup fee by signing up for the service

  • Where: Order placed on the website

Monthly retainer fee

  • What: Merchant pays a monthly recurring retainer for the service.

  • Where: Order placed on the website

Manually initiated payment

  • What: Merchant initiates a payment to top up his virtual points wallet. E.g. pays 100 USD to top up 100000 points which then can be used by the merchant for granting points to customers.

  • Why: Points issued to members need to be paid for by the merchant. We first considered billing the merchants post-ante, e.g. monthly based on the points they've granted to their customers in the last 30 days, but this seems too risky: If they can't / won't pay we'd still have to pay out points to the customers (technically to the merchants where the customers redeem their points). Thus, the pragmatic idea to reduce risk by having the merchants to pre-pay for their points by topping up their balance.

  • Where: Web application (with the merchant logged in)

  • Nice to have: Opt-in for automatically initiated top-ups if a merchant's balance falls below a certain amount.

Invoicing

  • What: After every transaction (setup, retainer, top-up,...), we need to automatically issue and send (E-Mail) an invoice to the merchant.

  • Nice to have: Customer portal with all their invoices.

Other potentially relevant parameters

  • Currency: Only Euro

  • Country: Only Germany (so far)

  • Tax: Only one tax rate

  • Payment for setup & retainer: Credit Card; ideally SEPA Direct Debit (but that still causes headache due to the SEPA regulatory and risk of chargebacks still after weeks), PayPal?

  • Payment for top-up: Same as above plus any other that makes sense (Klarna, Sofort, PayPal...)

Again, thank you very much for sharing your ideas and thoughts! I'd highly appreciate any input :-)

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Decisions about PayPal, Recurly, and Stripe
Taylor Lindores-Reeves
Taylor Lindores-Reeves

With COVID-19 looming over us, businesses are, more than ever, looking for ways to set up online payments.

And having recently gone through implementing both Stripe and GoCardless to get monthly subscriptions set up and automated on my company website, I felt there was no better time to write this blog post!

If you're currently looking at working with a Payment Gateway provider API, or you're currently working with one but are not a fan, are looking to automate things a bit more, or are just generally thinking about changing, then you should have a read of my latest blog post where I compare Stripe and GoCardless.

I compare APIs in depth, specifically the subscription checkout flow that both offer (they're very similar, with some BIG differences).

There are plenty of code examples on how to set it up in a Node.js environment and right at the end, I rate each API based on the following factors:

  • API ease of use
  • API documentation
  • Payment pages
  • Costs / fees
  • Security
  • Developer appeal
  • Customer experience
  • Free Trial

So feel free to check it out, and I hope you like it. Please leave any feedback as it is very helpful. Thanks!

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Shawn Varughese
Shawn Varughese

Stripe was made with developers in mind first so the extensibility of it is great! This makes it very easy for us to integrate and automate as much as we need with its APIs and SDK. It allows a lot of customization of exactly what we need to build our applications. They also manage all of our customers from a tax and accounting perspective which makes it easy from a business standpoint.

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What is PayPal?

PayPal is an online payments and money transfer service that allows you to send money via email, phone, text message or Skype. They offer products to both individuals and businesses alike, including online vendors, auction sites and corporate users. PayPal connects effortlessly to bank accounts and credit cards. PayPal Mobile is one of PayPal’s newest products. It allows you to send payments by text message or by using PayPal’s mobile browser.

What is Recurly?

Recurly is the leading pay-as-you-go recurring billing service because setup is easy, integrations are quick, and our service grows with the needs of your business.

What is Stripe?

Stripe makes it easy for developers to accept credit cards on the web.
Why do developers choose PayPal?
Why do developers choose Recurly?
Why do developers choose Stripe?

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    What companies use PayPal?
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    What tools integrate with PayPal?
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    What are some alternatives to PayPal, Recurly, and Stripe?
    WePay
    WePay helps people sell tickets to events, send invoices, sell items online, and accept donations online. WePay also provides an API that allows developers to access its payments platform.
    Payoneer
    It is a financial services company that provides online money transfer and digital payment services and working capital solutions
    TransferWise
    It bypasses pricey international payments entirely by using two local transfers instead of one international transaction. If you want to convert your pounds to euros, you send the money in pounds to its UK-based account.
    Amazon Pay
    It makes simple for millions of customers around the globe to check-in and checkout using information already stored in their Amazon account.
    Braintree
    Braintree replaces traditional payment gateways and merchant accounts. From one touch payments, to mobile SDKs and international sales, we provide everything you need to start accepting payments today.
    See all alternatives
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    Reviews of PayPal, Recurly, and Stripe
    Review ofStripeStripe

    Stripe has been developed for web users not by banks just moving bank apps to web. Their APIs are easy to use and understandable and they have support for lots of languages.

    They are also incredibly flexible and it's possible to do things with Stripe that other providers don't allow (for example implementing annual billing it's difficult to get authorisation as a start-up - even if it's only $20 a month, that's $240 annually which means there's a year to charge-back - so implement it as a one off payment, which does mean doing annual billing yourself, but there's a year to get it right).

    They also have fantastic start-up deals (if you know the right accelerator or other provider) easy to get transaction fees waived.

    They also have engineers at hand to help you with any issues, who actually know the product.

    Review ofPayPalPayPal

    Paypal comes with tons of old APIs, and new ones that are incomplete. There are bugs in the documentation, bug with their implementation. And their support department is completely clueless.

    Frankly it is only good if you use its light mode: a direct payment with no recurring fees. So forget about it if you want to put in place things like Subscription mode, their are better players out there to do that.

    Avatar of themeteorchef
    The Meteor Chef
    Review ofRecurlyRecurly

    Overall I've enjoyed working with Recurly, however, their XML only API response produced some headaches/delays in a Node-based (Meteor) project. Conversion of the XML worked, but the way responses were formed wasn't always consistent (e.g. for error handling) resulting in a lot of extra work.

    The product is pretty good, but this XML issue along with improved API documentation would make it great.

    Review ofStripeStripe

    I love Stripe. They were super, super easy to set up — it was less than 5 minutes and I could already put test payments through my app! They take a huge chunk off of small transactions (if you're only charging $3, you only get $2.61), so they kind of make you raise prices on small fees. However, I love not having to worry about security or managing anything, just getting paid!

    How developers use PayPal, Recurly, and Stripe
    Avatar of Volkan Özçelik
    Volkan Özçelik uses StripeStripe

    Integrating Stripe to your app is dead simple.

    It removes all the hassle of integrating with a payment gateway.

    Its API is developer-friendly and intuitive, reliable, and works all the time.

    It’s my payment gateway of choice.

    Avatar of Scrayos UG (haftungsbeschränkt)
    Scrayos UG (haftungsbeschränkt) uses PayPalPayPal

    PayPal is used as one of our payment-gateways included in our shop-solution. We only use PayPal for direct debits/charges from bank-accounts as we got Stripe for credit-card transactions.

    Avatar of Scrayos UG (haftungsbeschränkt)
    Scrayos UG (haftungsbeschränkt) uses StripeStripe

    Stripe is used as one of our payment-gateways included in our shop-solution. We only use the credit-card features of it and don't accept any bitcoins (yet).

    Avatar of Refractal
    Refractal uses StripeStripe

    Payments? Stripe. There's pretty much no other option that's as easy or pretty to work with out of the box, you just plug it in and watch the fireworks.

    Avatar of AngeloR
    AngeloR uses StripeStripe

    CC handler for our membership system. It was an easy choice for how quickly we were able to implement it, as well as the disputed payment process.

    Avatar of Gitt
    Gitt uses PayPalPayPal

    Recognized by millions of customers as the most secure and reliable platform, we giving options to the customer on how they will subscribe.

    Avatar of Pathwright
    Pathwright uses StripeStripe

    We started with PayPal initially, but Stripe appeared and made our lives much easier. They are now our primary payment service.

    Avatar of osu! Ripple
    osu! Ripple uses PayPalPayPal

    Donations are processed through PayPal, mostly. So it's a pretty indespensable tool, as it's our main source of income.

    Avatar of eXon Technologies
    eXon Technologies uses PayPalPayPal

    We are using Braintree that is PayPal company for our payments on our website. No more redirects to PayPal :-)

    Avatar of Promethean TV
    Promethean TV uses PayPalPayPal

    PrometheanTV utilizes the Paypal Payment services to provide various e-commerce and payment related features.

    Avatar of Frontify-0
    Frontify-0 uses RecurlyRecurly

    We use Recurly for recurring subscription management and payments.

    Avatar of Sail Tactics
    Sail Tactics uses RecurlyRecurly

    Recurring subscription payments

    How much does PayPal cost?
    How much does Recurly cost?
    How much does Stripe cost?