Best online and offline credit card processing services for entrepreneurs

Finding a reliable credit card processing company can be a real hassle for first time business owners, or entrepreneurs with a business idea. Last year a friend and I started a business providing an affordable referral service to medical doctors. Our clients were people needing uncommon prescription drugs. One of the reasons why the business did not do as well as it could have is because we could not find a payment processor who would do business with us. startup-payment-processing

There were various reasons. Some of the companies we reached out to had very strict requirements. That is understandable as there are a lot of regulations in the financial services industry, especially payment processing. However, when we see how simple it is get started and run a business with Square, it does not make sense when having to cross as many hurdles as we had to. We eventually had one of our payment providers freeze our merchant account with over USD $2000 in it. That was rough, especially for a group of enthusiastic and self-motivated entrepreneurs. That’s a story for a different day.

Having done quite some research to solve this credit card payment processing problem, below are my top recommendations for entrepreneurs starting a new business.

I have an account with Stripe and their platform and API is well documented for developers. Stripe charges 2.9% + 30¢ per successful charge, or less based on volume. Earnings are transferred to your bank account on a 7-day rolling basis.

My account was created to take better advantage of the API. requires you to have and connect your account to have access to their service and process your payments.

Dwolla is one of the most startup friendly payment processors. The charge just 25¢ per transaction or free for transactions $10 or less. Nobody beats this price.

Through very good PR and advertising campaigns, Square has positioned itself as the go to company for small businesses and individuals when payment processing is mentioned. I have a Squareup account and find their user interface very well designed. They will send you a free Square reader for your smartphone in exchange for a $10 donation to fight AIDS. Well worth the money.

Gumroad is the best platform is you want to sell and deliver digital files online. Digital files include electronic books, softwares, images, and anything else that can be sent via email. This is a great resource for those starting up with selling information online.

Flint is one of the latest startups in the payment processing sphere. With a smartphone and their app, you take a picture of your client’s credit cards and the payment is done. They claim to be very safe and secure, and the details of the credit card are not stored on the phone. Their service does not require a card reader. Worth a try. Their fees start at 1.95%

As mentioned on their website home page, FastSpring provides an all-in-one cloud-based e-commerce, merchandising & fulfillment platform. Sell your desktop software, SaaS, games, e-books or other digital products online—worldwide. I have not personally tried their service but it was highly rated when I did my research.

Amazon payments works, I have used them personally. For a company as big as they are, I must say that they do quite well with their customer service. My emails to them are always answered within the first 24 hours.

Do you know of any other startup friendly payment processing company or service that should be on this list? Mention it or them in the comments box below.