Payments

Choosing the Best Payment Gateway

Let us help you choose your payment gateway
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Choosing the right payment gateway for your online business is an important but confusing task. There are many things to consider like fees, recurring billing, and even currency support. We've put together this payment gateway comparison chart to examine everything from monthly fees to most popular features. For additional information, review our 4 Major Factors and Fee Considerations for selecting the best payment gateway.

Payment Gateway Comparison Chart

NOTE: These amounts reflect the monthly subscription for the payment provider.
Formstack does not charge a fee to integrate with any of our payment partners.

Monthly
Fees
Transaction
Fees
Countries Currencies Card Types Limits On-Form
Payments
Recurring
Billing
Mobile
Payments
authorize.net $25* 2.9% + 30¢ 5 6 6 check check check
beanstream $0 2.25-2.65% 3 2 5 check check check
chargify $129+ n/a Based on your payment gateway 20 Based on your payment gateway check check
dwolla $0 - $1500 n/a USA 1 Linked Bank Account Personal: $5,000
Business: $10,000
check check check
firstdata Must contact FirstData Must contact FirstData 50+ 140 5 check check check
paypal $0 2.9% + 30¢ All countries. 20 5 $10,000 check check
paypal pro $30 2.9% + 30¢ 3 23 5 check check check
paypal payflow $0-25 0.10¢ 4 22 5 check check check
stripe $0 2.9% + 30¢ 9 100+ 6 check check check
wepay $0 2.9% + 30¢ USA 1 4 check

1 This comparative information is based on an average for these providers. Many of these payment processors have fluctuating pricing structures and fees according to volume.

2 This table also compares the capabilities of the Formstack integration and does not necessarily reflect the full capabilities of the payment processor.

Choosing a Payment Gateway: 4 Major Factors

When choosing a payment gateway, there are four major factors you need to consider: transaction fees, card types, on-form payments, and recurring billing. These factors will vary by processor, so make sure you choose one that meets your needs and budget.

transaction fees

Transaction Fees

When you process a payment, some gateways will keep a small part of the charge for letting you use their app. You will either pay a flat fee per each transaction, an established percentage from each purchase or a combination of both charges.


credit card types

Card Types

It's important to know what types of credit or debit cards are accepted by your chosen payment gateway. Additionally, some processors require users to link their bank accounts rather than entering a card.


accept payments

On-Form Payments

If you use a pre-built form integrated with a payment gateway to collect your funds, pay attention to this factor. Some gateways will collect the payment right on the form, while others will direct users to another page to complete the purchase.


recurring billing

Recurring Billing

Recurring billing gives you the ability to set up a payment that reoccurs over a set period of time. If you need to bill your customers on a monthly basis without having to worry about performing this action manually, then you need a payment gateway that supports recurring billing. Examples of companies that might need this feature include subscription-based companies or nonprofits who have repeat donors.

Payment Gateway Comparison: Know Your Fees

So many payment gateways have different cost structures, but you will encounter a few standard charges during your research. Read on to learn about the different charges you must account for.

transaction payment fees

Transaction fees

When you process a payment, some gateways will keep a small part of the charge for letting you use their app. You will either pay a flat fee per each transaction, an established percentage from each purchase or a combination of both charges. These charges encompass a transaction fee.


monthly fees

Monthly Fees

Some payment gateways will charge a subscription fee to let you collect money with their app. This monthly charge might vary based on the volume of payments being processed or the number of bank accounts where the payments are going.


setup fees

Setup Fees

Setup fees include any costs that might be associated with setting up your payment gateway account. You will only need to pay this fee once.

Merchant Account vs. Payment Gateway

Merchant accounts and payment gateways both provide ways to collect money from your customers, but they do it in very different ways. It's important to know the difference between the two as you assess the ways to manage your company's funds.

online payment flow chart

Payment Gateways

For every credit card transaction online and in-store, a service must communicate with the customer's credit card company to check for sufficient funds. In-store, typically, a POS (point of sale) machine performs this action. For online transactions, a payment gateway verifies the funds.

Merchant Accounts

A merchant account is a lot like a bank account, but its purpose is to collect funds from credit card payments until they are transferred to a normal business bank account.

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Authorize

A leading provider of payment gateway services, Authorize.Net offers customers a reliable and secure processing system. This provider easily integrates with many online apps and offers phone, email, and live chat support.

* Integrates with Formstack

Visit Authorize.Net
Beanstream

Beanstream's payment gateway is compatible with 150 currencies in over 200 countries. Users can pay with several major credit or debit cards, and you can easily access your balance on Beanstream's online account tool.

* Integrates with Formstack

Visit Beanstream
Chargify

Specializing in Web 2.0 and SaaS companies, Chargify offers an easy solution for recurring or subscription-based billing. Their scalable pricing plans, starting at $65/month, will grow with your small business.

* Integrates with Formstack

Visit Chargify
Dwolla

Dwolla is an awesome payment processor with super low fees. It's secure because you only share your unique ID or email address versus your credit card number or banking information.

* Integrates with Formstack

Visit Dwolla
FirstData

First Data is committed to providing customers an integrated payment processing experience, making it easy to collect funds in-store, online and via mobile devices.

* Integrates with Formstack

Visit FirstData
PayPal

Collect payments securely with one of the most popular payment gateways. With PayPal, you can set up single, multiple, or recurring payments. PayPal also gives users the ability to pay through their bank accounts, in addition to credit or debit cards.

* Integrates with Formstack

Visit PayPal
PayPal Pro

Use PayPal Website Payments Pro to collect recurring or subscription payments. PayPal Pro also gives you the ability to process payments on-form instead of redirecting to an external page.

* Integrates with Formstack

Visit PayPal Pro
PayPal Payflow

Need to keep costs low? PayPal Payflow's 10-cent transaction fee is great for retailers who process large volumes of transactions.

* Integrates with Formstack

Visit PayPal Payflow
Stripe

Advertised as the payment gateway for developers, Stripe markets open APIs and no hidden costs. The only fee you can expect with Stripe is their low transaction fee. Formstack's Stripe integration allows users to be PCI compliant. For more details, please visit our Support page.

* Integrates with Formstack

Visit Stripe
WePay

WePay allows you to collect secure payments, set up recurring and subscription billing, and easy create invoices. WePay is a great option for organizations that need to collect money from large groups of people.

* Integrates with Formstack

Visit WePay