Accepting payments online can be more of a challenge than what most people think and that is especially true for offshore companies. In this article, I review the best payment processing services around the world.

Stripe

Availability: US, Canada, Europe, Japan, HK, Singapore, Australia, NZ, Brazil, Mexico
Pricing structure: Percentage + fixed transaction fee
Stripe has become a popular option for developers thanks to how easy it is to implement. Bitcoin and Alipay are supported which is a major plus especially for China-focused businesses. That said, Stripe’s fees are among the highest in the industry and customer support is generally poor.

PayPal

Availability: Global
Pricing structure: Percentage
PayPal is by far the most popular payment processing company in the world. Opening an account is easy and takes only a few minutes. Integration is also easy and well documented. PayPal is fairly expensive however and customer service tends to be poor. I mainly recommend it to businesses processing a low volume of transactions. That said, I recommend all businesses to accept it as a secondary payment method as it can help boost conversion rates.

Braintree

Availability: US, Canada, Europe, HK, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia and NZ
Pricing structure: Percentage + fixed transaction fee
Braintree has been growing at a breakneck speed over the past few years thanks to its excellent API, reasonable rates and near-global presence. The fact that it is owned by PayPal hasn’t hurt either. For those looking at Stripe, Braintree is the best alternative. PayPal is supported as a secondary payment method.

AsiaPay

Availability: China (including HK), India, ASEAN, Japan, Australia
Pricing structure: Percentage + transaction fee + monthly fee + setup fee
AsiaPay is one of the most successful payment processing companies in the Asia-Pacific region. Their fees tend to be high compared with the competition but they do support nearly every local payment services. As such, they are a good option for businesses targeting those who do not have credit cards.

Wirecard

Availability: European Union
Pricing structure: Percentage + fixed transaction fee
Wirecard is one of Europe’s largest payment processing companies. It also is the company behind the popular bank Number26. Wirecard mainly caters to large online businesses but in some cases it may also be possible for startups to open an account. Pricing varies depending on volume but is usually Interchange Plus + a transaction fee.

Paymill

Availability: European Union
Pricing structure: Percentage + fixed transaction fee
Paymill is Europe’s answer to Stripe. It is easy to implement and unlike Stripe, it supports PayPal as a secondary payment method. Their prices are fairly high, especially compared with Braintree and some of the local alternatives. Only companies registered in the EU are accepted. Plugins for WordPress and the major shopping carts are provided.

Adyen

Availability: Global
Pricing structure: Percentage + fixed transaction fee (minimum 100€ per month)
Adyen is the Swiss army knife of payment processing. They accept every payment methods under the sun. This makes them a good choice for businesses looking to reach as many customers as possible, especially in the developing world. One caveat, they charge a minimum of 100€ in processing fees every month. Also, opening an account for a startup is nearly impossible.

Cybersource

Availability: Global
Pricing structure: Percentage + fixed transaction fee + monthly fee + setup fee
Cybersource is one of the world’s largest payment processing companies, it also is one of the few who accepts businesses regardless of their country of registration (except for the countries on the US sanction list). It is owned and operated by Visa Inc, the company behind the famous Visa card brand. This allows it to offer better rates than any other payment processing companies. Cybersource is my favorite option for IBCs and other tax haven companies.

Authorize.net

Availability: US, Canada, Europe, Australia
Pricing structure: Percentage + fixed transaction fee + monthly fee
Authorize.net is one of the largest payment processing companies in the US. It is a subsidiary of Cybersource and caters mainly to small online businesses and non-profits. Quite frankly, I see no reason to recommend it. Pricing is not competitive, there is an extra monthly fee if you want to process payments in more than one currency and PayPal isn’t supported as a secondary payment method.

Worldpay

Availability: Global
Pricing structure: Percentage + fixed transaction fee + monthly fee + setup fee
Worldpay is one of the largest payment processing companies in the world. They mainly cater to large businesses and high volume online retailers. Pricing is volume-based and as such, isn’t likely to be advantageous for businesses processing under 50k USD per month.

Beanstream

Availability: US, Canada, UK
Pricing structure: Percentage
Beanstream is a Canadian company that offers a payment processing service similar to that of 2Checkout but with the added benefit of a physical card reader a la Square UP. Their prices are fairly high but considering all the features they offer, they are somewhat justified. I would only recommend them to Canada-focused businesses however.

Alipay

Availability: Global
Pricing structure: Percentage + setup fee
Alipay is the largest digital wallet in the world. It is based in China where it is used to process trillions of Yuan annually. Accepting it is a must for any China-focused business. There is a setup fee of 1000$US but once your application is approved, the only fee is a small percentage of each transactions. It is important to note that CNY payouts are currently not available.

Coinbase

Availability: US, Canada, Europe, Singapore, Australia
Pricing structure: Percentage
Coinbase is the leading Bitcoin payment processor. They process payments for several large companies including Expedia, Dell, Intuit and Wikimedia. Pricing is very reasonable at 1% especially when you consider that the first million USD is processed free of charge. I recommend every business to accept Bitcoin as a secondary payment method.

2Checkout

Availability: Global
Pricing structure: Percentage + fixed transaction fee
2Checkout, also known as 2CO, is a leading payment processing company that caters mainly to high risk merchants, small online businesses and offshore companies. Its rates are fairly high but in line with those of PayPal. Speaking of which, 2Checkout is a great option for those who want to accept PayPal without having to open an actual PayPal account (or for those in countries poorly supported by PayPal).