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Home7 small business payment solutions

Your small business will only thrive in the competitive modern market if you make it safe and easy for your customers to purchase your products and services.

It can be challenging to decide upon the best payment solution, especially if you have an unconventional or primarily online business model. Let’s take a look at a variety of alternative small business payment solutions that aren’t just PayPal, Apple Pay, or traditional credit cards.

The importance of secure payment solutions

Simply put, your business needs a secure payment portal or POS system to attract target customers. These days, people are more aware of identity theft and other digital threats than ever, and they need to feel safe on your site or in your store to be willing to spend their money.

On a certain level, it’s about making your business more accessible. Many local businesses specifically leverage a variety of tools and data analytics methods to better understand their target audiences. For example, you probably already use CRM (customer relationship management) software to communicate with customers, send invoices, and collect payments.

But it’s important to use CRM tools that are made specifically for your industry rather than general CRM tools. Roofing contractors, for instance, might use roofing CRM software tailored specifically for their industry to record details for each client and provide personalized services, versus using a general CRM tool. There’s a solution for every niche, so there’s no need to resort to mainstream options without extra features.

Similarly, you need to be ready to offer secure payment solutions for your small business customers. Your customers will only want to provide personal information online if they’re certain your brand isn’t about to suffer a data breach or put their privacy in jeopardy.

On top of that, secure payment solutions make it easier for you to provide your customers with a wide range of different payment methods. For instance, you can accept cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, which may expand your overall audience base by making it easier for people to buy from you.

The bottom line is that secure payment solutions are important for your brand’s reputation, security, and longevity, and there’s no way around that.

Determining the right payment solution for your brand

To figure out which payment solution is right for your online shop, you’ll want to consider the following factors:

  • Transaction fees. Some payment processing companies charge higher fees for online credit and debit card payments compared to in-person transactions, and those transaction fees can impact your bottom line. It’s generally better to work with a company or platform that charges low fees.
  • Pricing structure. Depending on your payment processor/platform, you might have to subscribe, make a one-time payment, or do something else to use the platform’s services. Which company is most cost-effective depends on whether you need a POS system, online credit card processing, or something else entirely.
  • Customer service. You’ll want to work with a payment processing provider that offers around-the-clock support in case you have technical questions.
  • Simplicity and ease of use. The best small business payment solutions are quick and easy to use and integrate into your site. Check previous users’ reviews to see whether there are any particular features or details that might align with your use cases.

Alternatives to PayPal for small business payment solutions

Now, let’s take a look at some alternatives to PayPal that you can use for your small business’s secure payment needs.

For e-commerce and retail brands

E-commerce and retail brands have a lot in common — mainly the need to quickly and easily accept credit and debit card payments from their customers. Luckily, there are plenty of platforms and technologies you can use to achieve this goal.

  • Stripe – Stripe is customizable, has no monthly fees, and offers both retail and online payment processing options. With minimal payment processing fees and prebuilt checkout pages, you don’t need a lot of technical expertise or web development experience in order to use Stripe to its maximum effect. This makes it an optimal “quick-fix” small business payment solution.
  • Clover – Clover is a cloud-based POS system that provides additional merchant services. It offers both in-store and online payment processing technology with a flat rate pricing structure, so it’s easy to start implementing from the get-go. Mobile device payments, virtual terminals, extensive analytics, and reporting tools make it a stellar choice for business owners who want to learn as much as possible about their customers.
  • Square – Square is a big name in the small business payment solutions sector, and for good reason. With no monthly fees and reasonable payment processing costs, Square provides easy-to-use tools that let you make and maintain an accessible, easy-to-use online payment portal. The Square Payments API allows you to accept payments on sites using a variety of site builder tools like Wix and WooCommerce, all without having to code. Of course, Square also offers a variety of POS and retail payment solutions for small businesses with brick-and-mortar locations.
  • Helcim – You can’t forget Helcim, which also doesn’t have any monthly fees and which has very low in-person and online payment processing fees. The no-minimum interchange plus pricing is certainly attractive, but Helcim is particularly good for larger e-commerce brands. The more credit card payments you receive, the cheaper Helcim becomes. A dedicated payment page creator allows you to create a secure payment portal and space for your customers quickly and easily.
  • Stax – Then there’s Stax, a membership-style merchant account. You have to pay a monthly subscription fee of up to $199 and interchange fees, but you get a huge range of merchant services for the price, like payment gateways, physical credit card terminals, PCI compliance, and integrated merchant accounts. It’s an overall optimal option for blended retail and e-commerce stores that would benefit from a single payment solution partner that offers everything they need.

For independent creators

What if your brand is a bit unorthodox? Say you’re a freelance artist or a YouTube or other kind of independent content creator. In those instances, a traditional payment solution might not fit. Instead, you may need an alternative that allows you to receive donations through one-time follower payments or subscription payments quickly and easily.

  • Ko-Fi – Ko-fi is a donation platform where you can sign up and receive donations from your fans or consumers of your created works. Ko-fi doesn’t take a cut from your donations, so it’s quick and easy to sign up for while centralizing your shop, sales, and creative advertisements all in one place. There are no platform fees either, making it a great place for creators to sell their products.
  • Patreon – Patreon is another good choice in that your fans can sign up for different tiers of membership to receive rewards from you in exchange for monthly subscriptions. It’s a stellar platform for you to monetize your audience through the sharing of gated content. Consider this if you want to reward fans who provide you with ongoing donations or monetary support.

Find your best payment solution

In the end, any of these payment solutions could be just what your business needs and the perfect way to ensure safe, streamlined, secure payments from your customers.

Of course, secure payment portals and tools aren’t the only way to provide security for your customers. Namecheap provides premium DNS services and SSL certification, which can give your target audience members greater peace of mind and your site better security. Consider switching today.