When it comes to online stores, having multiple payment options ensures a better user experience for your customers. Your customers can choose the payment method that’s most convenient for them, instead of abandoning your store and going over to your competitor.
There is no shortage of different payment processors, but when it comes to ease of use, Stripe is by far, the easiest payment method to set up. In this post, I’ll explain the benefits of using Stripe on your site and show you how to enable it on your WordPress website.
Stripe Features Overview
Stripe makes it easy to accept credit cards on your site. It has several features that make it an attractive payment option for store owners:
- Ease of use
- Various payment methods such as credit cards, bank transfers, digital wallets, and more
- Built-in financial reporting
- The ability to handle refunds and payment authorizations
- Invoicing options
- Transparent fees
Let’s take a closer look at some of those features below.
Stripe allows you to give your customers a wide array of choice when it comes to making payments. You can accept all major debit and credit cards such as Visa, MasterCard, Diners, Discover, and more. Furthermore, you can accept digital wallets such as Apple Pay, Google Pay, and others. You can easily decide which payment method you want to accept in your store and then enable it in your Stripe account.
It’s also worth mentioning that you can easily invoice customers from your Stripe dashboard as well as set up recurring payments.
Stripe has a transparent pricing policy. Their processing fee is 2.9% + 30¢ per successful charge if you make less than a million dollars per year. The rate does vary from country to country but it’s always a flat rate with no hidden or surprise fees.
Financial Reporting Features
If you want to see how your store is doing, Stripe’s dashboard gives you another place where you can see how many sales you’ve made during a certain period of time as well as your revenue and profit. The reports can be adjusted to show daily, weekly, monthly, yearly, and custom snapshots.
Stripe also integrates with various accounting tools such as Freshbooks, Xero, and others so you can easily export your financial data and manage your books.
Stripe takes security seriously. The sensitive financial data is not stored on your website but rather, it’s sent directly to Stripe. This not only makes it easier to be PCI-compliant, but it also increases the checkout security because if your server is breached, no sensitive data will be stolen.
Stripe vs PayPal
PayPal is another payment processor which is popular with many store owners. However, PayPal does have a certain set of disadvantages that make Stripe a far better choice.
For starters, PayPal’s processing fees are at first glance comparable to Stripe. They charge 2.9% + $.30. However, once you start digging deeper, you’ll quickly realize that PayPal has a lot of extra fees such as:
- a $30 fee for the ability to accept credit cards on your site instead of being redirected to PayPal
- 3.5% processing fee for American Express
- 6.5% + fixed fee for payments that are less than $10
- And more
Another example where PayPal falls short is that there is no easy way to export all your customer’s credit card data if you want to switch to a different payment processor.
As I mentioned earlier, if you use PayPal in your WooCommerce store, your customers will be redirected to PayPal to complete the purchase. This can lead to confusion and cause customers to abandon their purchase simply because they don’t understand what’s going on.
Stripe Pros and Cons
Lastly, let’s talk about the pros and cons of using Stripe on your website. When it comes to benefits of using Stripe, the fact that customers stay on your website instead of being redirected to a third-party website is a major plus.
Another benefit of using Stripe is that it offers a wide range of different payment methods you can accept and it integrates with some of the most popular accounting and marketing tools.
Finally, Stripe is easy to set up and use.
When it comes to cons, the only major downside is that Stripe is not currently available in all countries. It’s available in 26 countries which include USA, Australia, the majority of EU countries, Japan, New Zealand, and certain Asian countries.
How to Enable Stripe in Your WooCommerce Store
Now that we’ve covered Stripe’s features, let’s go over how you can add it to your WooCommerce store. There are a few things you’ll need before you start accepting payments through Stripe.
First, you’ll need to make sure your website has an SSL certificate. You can easily get one for free from Siteground but most reputable hosting companies nowadays offer one. Next, you will need to add a plugin to your site which will enable Stripe as a payment option in your WooCommerce store.
Begin by logging into your WordPress dashboard and go to Plugins > Add New. Search for WooCommerce Stripe Gateway plugin, install it, and then activate it.
After you have the plugin installed, you will need to sign up for a Stripe account so go to Stripe and create your account.
Once you have a Stripe account, go back to your WordPress dashboard and navigate to WooCommerce > Settings > Payments. Click the Manage button next to Stripe and then make sure that the checkbox next to Enable Stripe is ticked.
You can then click the connect link to automatically copy your Stripe keys into your WooCommerce store.
Alternatively, in your Stripe account, go to API and copy your publishable and secret key into the corresponding fields in WooCommerce settings.
When you’re done, click on Save changes and you will then be able to see credit cards as payment options on your checkout form.
You can test the purchase using the dummy credit card information provided by Stripe and check to make sure the payment was successful in your Stripe dashboard. Then, disable the test mode on your site to ensure you receive actual payments for your products.
Below, you’ll find a video walkthrough that shows you how to enable the Stripe payment gateway on your site as well as how to test it to make sure it was set up correctly and works properly.
Stripe is the easiest way to start accepting credit cards in your online store and allow your customers to choose the most convenient payment method for their purchase. Use this article to walk you through the process of adding Stripe to your WordPress website.
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