Payment gateways are what make e-commerce transactions possible. Without them, there would be no security for mobile transactions, which can leave customers vulnerable.
Yet, choosing the best payment gateway for course creators can be difficult when there are so many viable options on the market. Here’s what you need to know about payment getaways to pick the best one for your small online course business.
What is a payment gateway?
A payment gateway allows online shoppers to enter their payment information securely. The data is then encrypted and transmitted, allowing payments to be processed and other online wallet transactions to be authorized. This process verifies the legitimacy of the payment option used and protects customers from online fraud.
Payment gateways work via a merchant account and payment processor system. The merchant account is a separate banking solution that businesses use to accept payments. Payment processing is how customer cards are authorized to ensure they have enough money for payment.
How do small business course creators use payment gateways?
Payment systems benefit small business owners in many ways. When you’re just starting or transitioning your existing marketing strategy to keep up with the digital world, payment gateways will be one of the first things you consider. They are also an essential part of your learning management system (LMS) e-commerce feature. Here’s how they benefit you:
Eliminate barriers to completing purchases
The added convenience of online payments is one of the primary ways to make shopping easier for learners. With solid integration, you can set up automation for abandoned cart sequences and pop-ups to reduce bounce rates.
Improve buyer experience
The payment gateway's main function is to streamline the customer payment experience. Gone are the days of arranging payments for online services. Now, learners can pay instantly, and you don’t have to worry about not receiving due funds. This simplifies the user experience for your learners, which can build trust over time.
In 2022, an estimated $12 billion was lost to credit card fraud. With payment processing software, you have a secure channel for payments that prevents fraud and protects customer data.
What to consider when choosing a payment gateway
The best payment gateway option for your business depends on your sales volume and overall payment needs.
For monthly transactions less than $10,000, flat rate pricing will likely be more cost-effective for your small business.
You should also consider the easiest option for your buyers so that you can reduce cart abandonment. Other things to keep in mind when choosing a payment platform include:
- Integration – Does this platform work with my LMS?
- Cost – What fees are associated with this payment solution? What are the transaction and monthly fees?
- Multiple currency support – Do they offer multiple currency payment options?
- Security – Is this a reputable, secure transaction platform? Is it PCI-compliant?
- Customer support – If something goes wrong with your payment, is someone available to help?
If you choose a payment gateway that does not integrate well with your learning platform, it can result in a frustrating sales process for your customers. For example, with INDIE LMS by CYPHER LEARNING, you can have an all-in-one solution for building, hosting, and setting up payment processing so you can sell your online courses.
Best payment gateways for small business course creators
Here are the best payment gateways for small business online course creators. These four payment processors are optimized for online businesses, allow sales volume from any stage, and all have currency exchange options.
1. PayPal and PayPal Payments Pro
PayPal and PayPal Payments Pro are feature-packed options for small business course creators who want to keep everything in one place. The standout quality of PayPal payment processing is its ample currency exchange and ability to take multiple payment options. With PayPal, you can process payment via:
- Buy now pay later financing
- QR Code
- Link to pay
- Automatic recurring payment
Few other platforms offer this much variety, and it comes in handy for small business course creators who manage sales, invoicing, and even paying others all through one app. PayPal is also a well-known payment brand, which may increase credibility with your learners.
There are two things to keep in mind with PayPal. Fees for both processing payment and potential chargeback can add up quickly as a small business expense. Total fees will vary based on your location, but most transactions cost 3.49% plus a flat fee of $0.49.
Authorize.net is owned by Visa and it is a well-known standalone payment gateway option. It is secure and includes anti-fraud features to protect your business. This mobile payment option supports international currencies and is best for small to medium-sized businesses that need international payment support. Some of the biggest benefits include:
- Supports complex payment needs
- Is easy to set up
- Has a free mobile app
However, you should keep in mind that there is a $25 monthly fee regardless of how much you use the platform, and has limited in-person payment features if you need that kind of thing. Authorize.net is a great choice if you want the best security options with a reputable brand.
Stripe offers free plans available and charges a 2.9% plus $0.30 transaction fee. It’s great for small businesses because there are no additional fees for cancellation, set up, or monthly use. With dozens of payment methods available and exchange rates for up to 135 currencies, Stripe is a worthy contender for small to medium-sized businesses that are interested in a platform with flat rate cost and simple payment service.
It also offers 24/7 customer support via multiple channels and supports many payment options and currencies.
PagSeguro is a Brazil-based international payment gateway that supports over 140 payment methods. This is for you if your business is focused on Latin American countries, as you can manage payments without incurring any monthly fees for using the platform.
You also have easy mobile payment options, the ability to automate recurring payments, and balance insurance.
PagSeguro is a great choice for Brazil-based creators who are just getting started with their online course business. The platform specializes in micropayments and has a low fee structure, so newer creators have a cost-effective option available.
Selling online courses made easy
Choosing the best payment processor for your online course business depends on preference and your unique audience needs, like location and currency support.
However, as your online course business grows, you can make things easier by having everything in one place: a reliable payment gateway and a solution to market, sell and deliver your online courses.
With INDIE, CYPHER LEARNING's platform for Entrepreneurs, you integrate all the solutions discussed in this article. Want to learn more? See a full list of payment gateway integrations that can help you take your small online course business to the next level.