This is a complicated question in that no single payment system is correct for every chapter. Proteon integrates with many different payment systems and each payment system has different pricing structure. Given this Proteon has not been able to adequately track all the changes to create a comprehensive list. When choosing a payment system are a few things that should be considered:
PCI compliance. The card capture screen is the screen where the user types in their credit card information. This is a very important screen. If the user types in their credit card information within a screen on the chapter website then PCI compliance becomes much more difficult. If the user types in their credit card information within a screen that exists on the payment gateway website (vendor website) then all PCI compliance issues are taken care of by the vendor. We strongly recommend this approach has PCI compliance guidelines evolve rapidly and this puts technical pressure on the chapter to stay in compliance.
Variable fee. Some payment gateway systems will add a percentage fee to each transaction in order to pay their costs. The transactions typically range from 2 to 3% of the transaction amount. If you had this fee to the typical 3% credit card fee that the bank will charge the total fee for the transaction can be between 5 and 6%. We typically don't recommend vendors with this type of payment method as it can get expensive quickly.
Fixed fee. Some payment gateway systems will pursue more the fixed price model of monthly fee plus transaction fee. The typical pricing method will be somewhere between 20 and $30 per month plus $.10-$.20 per transaction. We found this to be a much more predictable and much less expensive fee structure for the chapters.
Country restrictions. Some payment systems are legal for use in specific countries and they customize their service for the laws of that country. An example would be eWay is a payment system that is optimized for Australian businesses.
Transaction management fees. Different payment gateway systems can have vastly different charges for management functions like issuing a refund on a transaction.
Summary. While it may seem confusing at first the decision quickly boils down to a few important items: Total fees, country restrictions, and PCI compliance. Here are the payments systems that our clients have chosen:
- PayPal. Around 90% of our clients chose PayPal. They use off-host card capture screens so PCI compliance is taken care of. They are the industry standard so they are increasingly trusted by users. The website user does not need to have a PayPal account to use this service as they can do anonymous (guest) payments with their credit card. They also do currency conversions as a part of their service.
- Google checkout. The system operates much like the PayPal system does with the exception that the user must have a Google checkout account.
- eWay. They use off-host card capture screens so PCI compliance is taken care of. This payment system is for the Australian chapters.
- PsiGate. They use off-host card capture screens so PCI compliance is taken care of. This payment system is used by some Canadian chapters and US chapters.
- Authorize.net. This system uses on–host card capture screens so PCI compliance can be an issue. The system this used by some US chapters that bank with authorize.net partners.
As you can see PayPal tends to be the overwhelming favorite for chapters and for obvious reasons but they're not always the best pick. Part of the service Proteon provides is in-depth discussions to decide which of the over 20 payment gateways that we provide is the best one for your chapter. Many times the chapter already has a relationship with a payment gateway provider and Proteon will simply connect with the current provider.