Stripe Vs Paypal 2019

Stripe Vs Paypal: You may have the most competitive prices on your online store, but you won’t taste success if your payment gateway does not provide a smooth or a trustworthy experience to your customers. And while there are plenty of names that crop up in the payment gateway discussion (like, BlueSnap, Wepay, Stripe, and PayPal, etc.), it’s important to choose the one with a good reputation and provides convenience to the customers.

When you talk about reputation and convenience, two names stand out: Stripe and PayPal!

Both have a reputation for being highly secure as well, so you’re going down the right path. But it’s important that you choose the one that suits your business needs.

To help you with your decision, we’ve created this awesome payment gateway showdown of Stripe vs PayPal!

Stripe Vs Paypal
Stripe Vs Paypal 2019

PayPal (see our review) and Stripe (see our review) are tools you can use to handle online payment processing, but they’re also so much more. With its slew of interconnected products ranging from mobile payments to financing services, I think it’s safe to say that PayPal is a household name. And Stripe — while more of a “behind the scenes” processor with a brand name customers don’t necessarily recognize — also has a long list of very popular clients and partners. So in the PayPal vs. Stripe debate, which has the advantage?

Starting an eCommerce business is an exciting, chaotic time. You have so many things to consider: should you use a hosted platform or manage your store with a plugin? What are the strategies you need to skyrocket your sales?

But no question is more daunting than this one: How should you accept payments?

After you do your homework, there will be two pretty clear contenders for your merchant buck: Stripe and PayPal. Offering comparable features, choosing between the two feels like picking between apples… and yet more apples. This is where this article comes in.

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First, allow me to explain that neither PayPal nor Stripe offers the cheapest payment processing rates around. For a basic payment processor with lower rates, you’d be better off getting a regular merchant account. You’ll get some basic eCommerce support, which might be best if you’re focused on cost and not so much on features.

No, Stripe doesn’t integrate with PayPal — we currently support credit and debit card payments. The fact is that PayPal and Stripe both serve the same purpose and that is processing debit and credit card payments. Merchant Maverick gets into much more detail on this comparison.

Its software allows individuals and businesses to make and receive payments over the Internet. Stripe provides the technical, fraud prevention, and banking infrastructure required to operate online payment systems.

Square is the best overall PayPal alternative for retailers, online sellers, and personal payments. It matches most of PayPal’s capabilities and, in many instances, exceeds them. Square delivers a better retail POS system and better mobile payments than PayPal, plus it has no monthly fees.

Stripe Vs Paypal Vs Square/Stripe Vs Square Vs Paypal

As top players in the payments industry continue to innovate rapidly, understanding your options can get complicated. Once you’re familiar with all of the names you should know, you’ve got to turn around and choose one of them for your business. So, how does a small business owner even begin to distinguish between Stripe vs. PayPal vs. Square? Even more, how do you choose one of these payment companies for your business?

We’ll help you understand the details that distinguish Stripe vs. PayPal vs. Square, including the ins and outs of their offerings, plus a detailed description of the costs that each comes with.

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Here is your ultimate guide to understanding whether Square, PayPal, or Square offers up the best payment processing solutions possible for your business’s payment needs.

Stripe Overview

The core product that Stripe offers is an online payment API for businesses’ websites and apps. Stripe is an extremely developer-centric online payment option that offers customized payment styles like billing and platform payments.

Stripe offers payment APIs through the Integrated and Customized versions of their product. Overall, Stripe is so developer-friendly that their integrations into websites are seamless: It’s hard to tell when you’re using a Stripe payment API to checkout. But odds are, you probably have. Stripe automates online payments for some of the biggest brands out there, like Target, Glossier, and Lyft.

PayPal Overview

Compared to Stripe, PayPal’s offerings are much broader. That said, because of how many products PayPal has begun to offer, trying to understand PayPal’s payment options can be a bit overwhelming. Let’s break them down to make PayPal’s payments suite easier to wrap your head around.

First, PayPal’s core product is the checkout experience they offer. There are three options for this product. PayPal Checkout is simply a plugin “Pay With PayPal” button that you can integrate into a pre-existing checkout. In contrast, PayPal Payments Standard offers a full, generic, and free checkout experience for your business’s website. Finally, PayPal Payments Pro is a customizable payments API, much like Stripe’s basic product.

Second, PayPal also offers online invoicing. Creating and sending invoices through PayPal is free, though you will have to pay a transaction fee once your customer fulfills the invoice with a credit or debit card, which we’ll cover later.

Finally, PayPal also offers in-person payments through its app PayPal Here and mobile card readers that turn smart devices into functioning POS systems.

Square Overview

Let’s take a look at what payment solutions Square can offer your business. Just as PayPal’s payments solutions were broader—and therefore more complicated—than Stripe’s offerings, so too are Square’s when compared to PayPal’s.

That’s right—Square offers up even more payment solutions than PayPal and Stripe. But that also means they will be even tougher to understand.

Let’s carefully pore over all of the payments solutions Square offers:

Square’s first and core product is its in-person POS system. These started as the quintessential smart device POS systems that Square is known for. Their card readers—the headphone jack magstripe reader, their headphone jack chip reader, and their Bluetooth contactless chip reader—allow your smart device to read the card and contactless payments. And their free Square POS app turns your smart device into a powerful point-of-sale system. Their Square Stand, meanwhile, can turn an iPad into a countertop POS system. Finally, the Square Terminal and Square Register are both fully self-sufficient POS systems that respectively offer mobile and countertop solutions.

Square also offers eCommerce solutions for businesses that want to set up online shopping for their customers. These solutions include Weebly eCommerce stores fully equipped with a built-in Square checkout experience. If you already have your own online store set up, then you can simply set up Square checkout or a custom Square payments API, as well.

Stripe Fees Vs Paypal

Stripe Vs Paypal
Stripe Fees Vs Paypal

As the web becomes a more secure place in which to conduct business and website owners take more care to improve site speed and user experience, we’re seeing more and more consumers feeling comfortable enough to make purchases online. If you want your business’s website to be one of those spots where customers trust that payments will be handled securely, then you need to use a payment processor. But not just any payment processor will do.

At the top of the heap of payment processor tools stands PayPal and Stripe.

While consumers are much more familiar with a platform like PayPal, Stripe has made a name for itself behind the scenes, too. But just because customers might instantly spring up at the sight of the PayPal logo at checkout, does that make it any more worthy of a contender when choosing between the two payment processors? It might.

There are many factors to consider when choosing a payment processing method for your WordPress site. If you haven’t taken the time to think them through, you may find yourself having to start all over again with another platform after watching sales dip.

It can be difficult to sift through all the information included on their respective websites, so I want to do a quick rundown of the advantages and disadvantages of each platform. To get the most out of this information, we’re going to pit Stripe’s and PayPal’s features side-by-side–at least the ones that matter most to you as a merchant.

Transaction Fees

The first thing you consider before adding any new software or service to your business is how much will it cost. According to Christine Choi at, transaction fees can be best described as a fee charged per purchase.  As luck would have it, however, both PayPal and Stripe are free to use–at least the basic plans are. So, signup is easy. Just enter the account details and get started. There’s nothing to pay to initiate any services, no monthly fees assessed, and so on.

That said, there are fee structures that dictate how you will be charged as you begin to collect payments. For the most part, pricing is similar for both platforms.

Transaction Costs and Fees

On the micropayments side, PayPal is the clear victor, charging significantly less than Stripe per microtransaction. Micropayments are generally those under $10.

Paypal Micropayment Fees 

  • $1.00: 5% of $1 = 5¢ and 5¢ + 5¢ = 10¢
  • $5.00: 5% of $5 = 25¢ and 25¢ +5¢ = 30¢

Stripe Micropayment Fees

  • $1.00: 2.9% of $1 = 2.9¢ and 2.9¢ + 30¢ = 32.9¢
  • $5.00: 2.9% of $5 = 14.5¢ and 14.5¢ +30¢ = 44.5¢

Standard Fees

But assuming that you’re interested in more than micropayments, the picture starts to get more complicated.

PayPal’s current fee is 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction.

Stripe Vs Paypal 2017

Both Stripe (founded in 2011) and PayPal (founded in 1998) are payment gateways, acting as the go-between for merchants and the appropriate credit card networks/financial institutions to authorize and accept payments.

The intricacies of these relationships can get pretty convoluted. A simple way to look at a payment gateway is as an envoy that routes information between merchants and banks. Here’s a visual breakdown of where payment gateways fall into the web of eCommerce.

A payment gateway isn’t the only solution for accepting online payments, but it is one of the easier options to get started with. Because, unlike a payment processor, gateways give your financial data the armed guard it needs to travel between the credit card networks, your customer, and your store.

In other words, in most scenarios, it can help take PCI compliance off your hands. And if you decide to go the gateway route, you’re going to come across Stripe and Paypal again and again. There are plenty of other payment gateways out there such as Authorize.Net, 2Checkout, and Braintree (owned by Paypal), but Stripe and PayPal are by far two of the easiest ones to use.

Different Perspective

For good reason, too: they have a longstanding stranglehold on the market. According to data from Datanyze, PayPal is used by 64% of the market. Stripe comes in second with around 20%. As of September 2018, Stripe is now valued at $20 billion!

Note that in the above graphic, Square is also emerging as a strong competitor in the market. While it only takes 2% of the market share, it is growing fast.

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With that caveat out of the way, what are payment gateways used for? First and most obviously, eCommerce stores use payment gateways. Under Armour is an example of a store that utilizes both Stripe and PayPal. Perfmatters, a WordPress performance plugin is an example of a digitally downloadable product that accepts both payment gateways. They do this using integrations with the Easy Digital Downloads eCommerce plugin. You can even use both payment gateways as a way to accept donations. UNICEF, a nonprofit organization does this on its website.

Should You Use One Payment Gateway or Two?

All of the above begs the obvious question: If you can use both payment gateways, why do you have to choose at all?

Because unless you’re as big as Under Armour, UNICEF, or are tech-savvy and have extra time to spare, you’re asking for extra headaches. With two payment gateways come twice as many vendors, twice as many things to go wrong, and you’ll likely lose out on volume-based discounts from the respective gateways. If you have a custom back-end or other integrations, development around products or services you sell could turn this into a ridiculously complex task. Not good or very tenable for a small business.

However, with that being said. Sometimes having both payment gateways could be an advantage for your business. Especially in other countries. Not everyone has a credit card and a lot of consumers and bloggers use PayPal balances to pay for everything. Running just one or two payment gateways very much depends on the industry, what you’re selling, and the type of customers you have.

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