It seems like every time you go to checkout online there is a new payment option. If you’ve shopped recently, you may have noticed a few of the newer options available to consumers: PayPal Credit, Visa Checkout and Stripe. These newer rollouts offer speedier checkout which is good for customers and merchants. So, let’s take a look at how these services differ and what makes them beneficial.
PayPal’s new service, Credit, is really just Bill Me Later with upgrades and a new name. Like the old service, PayPal Credit offers users a flexible payment option for purchases but contains many new features:
More user-friendly interface
Consolidated account management system
More payment options
In-store purchase capability
Send and receive money to other users
Receive special offers from merchants
May be eligible for PayPal’s Purchase Protection
The service provides a credit line, via Comenity Capital Bank, built into the user account. However, don’t be deceived by the ease of the service because it comes with a 19.99% APR. Find out more here.
Visa Checkout also replaces an old service, V.me, and was designed to directly compete with PayPal’s services. Company representative say the goal is provide consumers with an online payment option that is as quick as swiping a card in-store and by the sound of it, they may have succeeded.
The Visa Checkout system utilizes a single login to store your payment information. The best part? You don’t have to use a Visa card! You can create and connect an account to any major credit or debit card. When it’s time to pay all you have to do is click the Visa Checkout button, enter your login info and you’re done! Find out more here.
Amazon is getting in the game too with Amazon Payments. For per transaction fee, merchants can install the 'Pay with Amazon' button on their site which allows customers to checkout quickly and securely. Amazon Payments stores customer billing and shipping information all in one place so the customer just needs to login to complete their checkout process. The system utilizes the same fraud detection technology and security measures as Amazon.com at no extra cost to merchants. Find out more here.
Though Stripe was founded in 2010, it is definitely the new system on the scene. They offer a suite of APIs for businesses of all sizes with the goal of (you guessed it!) simplifying the checkout process for consumers. While the system offers a variety of features, Stripe Checkout is their payment flow.
Like Visa Checkout, the system stores information under a single login. But, unlike anyone else, Stripe doesn’t require customers to remember yet another password. Instead, users enter their email and phone number which then sends a verification code to the user’s phone to enter. Not only does this keep things easy for the user, but it’s an added security measure to prevent fraud purchases. Find out more here.
What's the difference?
The differences between the two services are few, but important.
- PayPal Credit is a wallet. PayPal Credit can be used to make and receive transfers from other users. While Visa Checkout, Amazon Payments and Stripe can only be used to make purchases. Visa Checkout reps say it is intended to be a digital representation of your stored card.
PayPal leaves the site. When customers click the Visa Checkout and Amazon Payments buttons, or use Stripe, a pop-up window displays where they enter their login information. This is very different from PayPal Credit which redirects customers to an entirely new page to enter their information.
Stripe doesn’t use a password. Instead, the system utilizes customer emails and phone numbers to authenticate the user. PayPal Credit, Visa Checkout and Amazon Payments still do things the old-fashioned way with email and password verification.
Honorable Mention: Bitcoin
While Bitcoin isn’t exactly new, it is on the rise. If you aren’t already considering Bitcoin as a payment option, or aren’t even sure what it is, check out our comprehensive breakdown of the digital currency here.
So, which payment method will you choose?
Update: Apple Pay
When announcing iPhone 6 features, Apple also introduced their new payment system, Apple Pay. Simple to set up (just take a photo of the card to auto-populate the correct fields) and use (just tap your phone to a sensor), Apple Pay is the company's answer to simplifying the payment process. Even better, Apple is already working with retailers, such as Target, to have Apple Pay built in to their shopping apps. Customers would pay with the the press of a button. That's it!
Apple assures customers that they want to make online purchasing fast, secure and private. The company says they are not in the business of collecting data and that Apple Pay doesn't even store your credit card number. Instead, it uses a device-only number protected by a secure element and generates one-time codes for every transaction.
Apple also named the following retailers as adding Apple Pay to their respective apps:
- Uber (as Ride Now feature)
- Panera Bread
- Apple Store
Apple Pay will launch in October 2014 as a free update to iOS 8. API will also be available to developers in iOS 8.
Apple introduced Apple Pay on Sept. 9, 2014 at 1:37pm EDT.