A review of the main Internet billing companies
So you want to accept
payments online, but you dont want the expense
of a merchant account? How do you compare
internet billing companies? Here is my research
into payment processors, along with user comments.
The findings here are
from my personal online research. I was hunting
for a payment processor for a membership site
which I've since sold. The winner at the time
was Membership+, with 2Checkout a close second
but if I were choosing today, it'd be 2Checkout.
Read on to find out why.
This page includes comments based on my experiences.
If you want more user reports, just ask at
any of the internet forums.
The list is alphabetical. Hope you find it
when updates are necessary.
Important: Before making your final
selection, do a thorough search in Google
for complaints. Not sure how to do this research?
explains how. Since you can buy payment processor
scripts cheaply now, this whole area is one
in which billing companies come and go rather
too quickly, always leaving financial damage
behind them. PaySat.com is one example where
you will find glowing reports as well as detailed
accounts of businesses not getting paid by
PaySat. So be thorough in your research.
Discover how to setup accepting
every major credit card. Plus you will
get completely setup for free. Little
known tricks that will allow you to accept
credit cards today without paying any
fees. Set up merchant accounts for free.
Learn how to accept order using a tollfree
1800 number at no cost. Applies to tangible
products and downloadables. Global. Be
up and running within minutes of reading
this 10 page ebook. Lifetime guarantee
on this report. And $29.97 for this ebook
is cheaper than setup fees elsewhere!
Major credit cards. Pay by phone,
ATM debit cards, Palm. No application fee.
No setup fees on this bank-direct Merchant
Account. 1.49% fees. No equipment, no software
required. Instant approval. International.
3-tier affiliate program, too. Real-time processing.
"We beat any price by 10%".
Tangible and digital products with no price
limits. Supports rebilling and membership
sites. Wont let you pay people in an affiliate
program? Fees: 5.5% plus $0.45 per transaction.
$49 joining fee. "Be
live in 3 minutes" says their site. My web
host said "It took me many hours to configure
iBill's system to mine and it was confusing.
I put the 2Checkout pay buttons up inside
of 10 minutes." Recommended.
Handles subscriptions and micro payments.
E-checks. Digital content.
Global. All major credit cards.
Buy by phone (1800 number). No setup fees.
No monthly fees. 9% on each sale. Tangible
products only. Full service electronic commerce
solution. Integrated shopping cart encourages
multiple purchases. Get notified by email
so you can ship the product. Sophisticated
fraud risk management. Hassle free auction
selling. Accepts international merchants,
but only allows sales of tangible goods, not
e-books or digital goods. Costs are US $11.95/month
plus 11% over $100 for internationals, $9.95/month
plus 9% for US residents.
No application fees, no setup fees.
Check software is free. Accept credit cards
at 2.35% + $0.30. Online checks by web, fax,
phone. Realtime processing available for a
fee. See their Price Comparison Chart - they'll
pay you $100 to find a cheaper deal. International.
Click-and-build. "Charge.Com has the lowest
prices on the Internet, and we guarantee it.
Most companies charge two to five times the
prices we charge." Recommended by Internet
$49.95 setup fee. No monthly fees.
180 currencies. Transaction costs $1 + 7.5%.
Digital products only. Will manage your affiliate
program at no cost. Handles the sale but not
the delivery. Reliable. Improved security
now prevents most affiliate commission theft.
All digital products, stored on
their server. Accept Visa, MC, Amex, and Discover
with real-time processing. Phone, fax. Set-up
is quick and easy. You have complete control
of pricing, order forms, and delivery options.
Set-up fee of $29.99, plus $9.99 for each
additional product. Handles transaction, download,
and registration. Charges 13.9% of the sale
or $3, whichever is greater. Compatible with
Commission Junction, Affiliate Tracking. Customisable
forms (extra cost). Automatic customer registration
codes for each product. Accepts international
to American university students and faculty.
Credit cards, online checks, phone
checks. No transaction fees for electronic
online checks. Fees are scaled, $0.89c or
less per check, with verification. Electronic
check conversion, $0.26c or less. Setup $149.
Home based businesses welcome.
More credit cards than others. Pay by phone
(global phone billing) or cheque. No setup
fees. No monthly fees. 15.95% on each sale
(no other costs). Downloadables included.
Accepts per-minute dialers through your
website. The sign-up and activation process
is completely on-line, so you can be up
and running within the hour.
With the multi-level aspect of partner-pro,
you can operate a multi-level (2 levels)
partnership program. By activating this
feature for your partnership program, each
of your partners can refer other partners
to your partner program and themselves get
a percentage of those partners' gross sales!
This makes your partner program easier to
sell to webmasters, as they not only get
their main percentage on each sale they
send you, but a percentage of all the gross
sales of the tens or hundreds of other webmasters
they get to join your program. They mail
checks out to partners. At one of the forums,
someone posted this: "This company makes
a good choice if you are going to be doing
some type of monthly or quarterly rebilling
for a membership site. They are higher priced
than the others (15.95%) but the rebilling
capacity is their best service. You also
have the ability to set up a flexible affiliate
partner program. Their tech and customer
support is outstanding."
Credit cards, phone billing, online checks.
Affiliate management. For products, downloads,
memberships, services. No startup fees,
no surprise fees or special costs. 15% (less
with volume). Recurring billing too. Global.
Fraud management. Not for auctions. An example
of a site using iBill is eBookWholesaler.
Personally I've had troubles
in my dealings with iBill.
No longer operating.
Handles transaction, download, and product
registration. No sign-up or monthly fee.
Compatible with several affiliate programs.
They specialise in the sale of digital products.
Their fees are LOW, on a sliding scale.
Here's their impressive list of features
which includes affiliate
tracking, multiple payment-sharing possibilities,
multiple currencies and languages, all major
credit cards (including by pay by phone),
checks, Verisign-approved, several software
registration options to increase your fraud
resistance, royalty splits between collaborators,
optional Kagi hosting for digital downloads
(2% fee), and more. Does not handle recurring
No longer accepting
No longer operating.
No longer functioning? The latest update
at the site is dated May 2005, so this can
no longer be recommended.
Handles products and services.
USA, Canada only. $49.95 per month, no other
US only at this time. FreeToSell
Includes high seller protection against
fraud. Buyer protection against fraud is
high if credit card is used, acceptable
otherwise. Seller protection against chargebacks
is high. One writer said "The only hitch
was that the buyers could only pay for an
auction, so I went to a free auction site
and posted auctions for this purpose". International
For digital products only. Works with PayPal,
allowing you to conceal your links because
sales pass (invisibly) through the PayLoadz
site. Free for the basic account. Download
links below will expire in 48 hours, a good
fraud-prevention feature. Downloads can
live on your server (free) or theirs. Does
not handle subscriptions.
You can pay your affiliates a specified
$amount or percentage, by downloading a
text file with details of payments you need
to make, then you upload that to PayPal
and their system makes the payments for
Handles subscriptions as well as single
purchases. Australian based but works worldwide.
Paymate is officially licensed in Australia
- details at the site.
World's largest online payment
service. $0.30 + 2.2% (2.9%) to send, $0 to
receive. Compare fees.
Free fraud insurance up to $100,000. Recommended.
Physical goods + membership sites
+ digital products. Online checks. Global,
180 currencies. Customisable order + payment
pages. Setup $49 ($79 tangible goods) - requires
business check account or equivalent document.
No monthly fees. Unlimited products. Recurring
billing. Advanced fraud scrubbing/ management.
uses PaySystems. Charges are 4.95% + 1 Euro
+ 25 Euro per chargeback.
No setup fees. No monthly fees. Accept
credit cards online by sending an email
request - buyers don't sign up. Phone sales.
$0.35 + 3.5% per sale. USA only (international
soon). Free merchant account (= ProPay Commerce
Account). Can be approved within 24 hours.
No monthly fees. No setup fees. No exclusivity
(ie, you can also use other payment systems).
$3 per transaction or 10% whichever is greater.
Payment options include credit cards, fax,
Eurocheques, checks, phone orders (including
international phone). No cost for chargebacks.
Automatic customer registration process.
Get your products listed in HotDownloads.com.
Excellent fraud protection. Customise your
forms. You can also use their SellShareware
Due to recent changes in the way they do
business, this is no longer recommended.
Accept payments by credit cards,
fax, toll-free phone, mail, email. Real-time
processing. No setup fees, no monthly fees.
$3 + 3% per sale, less for low-price items.
Various software registration procedures.
Products + software (except "adult"). Global.
Customisable order + pay pages. Supports password-protected
Electronic Software Delivery from their server.
Accepts Visa, American Express, MasterCard,
Novus (Discover), money orders, US checks,
foreign checks in US dollars payable to Visage
Inc. and cash in a variety of currencies.
They couldn't process my payment using
my valid credit card "because I live
in Australia". And a reader
says it's the same in the UK. So if you're
planning a global marketplace, look elsewhere.
And here's a helpful review from Louis Allport,
the owner/webmaster at AllportPublishing.
Louis releases a new ebook each month, where
he interviews one of the top online money-makers.
In December 2002, one of his subscribers asked...
"I am very new to online business and
in fact just about to get started.
Initially, will be reselling third party
info products while I am working on my own
proprietary ones. I am undecided as to which
is the most ideal online payment agent to
The ones that I have short-listed are listed
below for your advice as to the one best to
1. ClickBank - their charge per sale is quite
high or the highest right now?
4. GloBill.com - no setup fee but basically
their system is for membership sites.
Please advise as to the one I should use
to facilitate my new info product online business.
Thank you so much for your time and attention.
That's a very useful question...
Planet Payment don't give much information
on their web site you'll notice. I actually
asked them for information once and found
it was pretty much a full merchant account
$200+ on signup and a % and perhaps even
You'll have to contact them for up to date
details, but I don't feel such a set up is
necessary -- especially if you're just starting
You're right -- it's really for membership
sites since they automate recurring billing,
affiliate management, password management
If you're going for a membership site they
might work for you.
However, they take 16% per transaction which
I feel is extortionate. I know many recurring
billing companies have similar transaction
percentages since they may deal with a lot
of adult sites which have high charge back
ratios ... I honestly wouldn't recommend them
for selling info-products.
Can't speak from experience, but I've heard
good things about them, and their processing
fees are very reasonable. No integrated affiliate
Couldn't speak from experience with this
company either I'm afraid.
I have to say though their processing fees
are surprisingly low (around 4%) and I've
dealt with them as a customer and their service
was good. Sometimes it's quite amazing to
actually get through on the phone with such
companies and I did so with relative ease!
Well, I'm sure you've heard a LOT about ClickBank.
Who hasn't? ;-)
Since many successful marketers depend on
them for their online businesses, that's a
strong endorsement. If I hadn't taken the
route I did, I would have used ClickBank.
Plus they offer the integrated affiliate
And 7.5% + $1 per transaction isn't too bad.
When it comes to something as important as
payment processing you CAN'T risk it. So listen
to endorsements from people who aren't sending
you to an affiliate link.
I decided on WorldPay.com and they
were recommended to me by Neil Shearing of
They're kind of in-between a third-party
processor and a merchant account.
The set up fee was quite high (around £200/$300)
but they have only a 4.5% per transaction
fee which is good and they're actually part
of a large British bank and have such customers
as Vodaphone ... so that's reassuring.
And the nice thing is they don't even mail
checks ... you get a transfer straight into
your bank account once a week.
And I've found their service is very flexible
and reliable. Plus support is helpful and
responsive too which is very important.
However, they don't have affiliate or password
management so I've had to arrange those separately
and pay extra.
In conclusion -- I would say ClickBank is
a good way to go unless you really need recurring
billing or want the flexibility of your own