Do I need a merchant account or can I just use Paypal and money orders

Online shoppers today like to have choices when buying the things they like from web stores. Rather than limiting your customers to one choice when paying it is better to offer several ways for them to buy. For merchants who are just starting out it may be tempting to go with a free payment option like Paypal rather than investing to get a merchant credit card processing account. Before you decide, it’s best to consider what the fee structures of your options are like and how much per transaction they charge. It may cost more to get a merchant account up and running, but the process will be worth it in the long run as you will probably get more converting customers by offering options.

Having Paypal alone as a payment option has drawbacks that may be difficult to overcome. For instance, they reserve the right to freeze funds, so you may be without your money or unable to accept payments. Paypal doesn’t give you the ability to process orders off your web store. You may wish to manually collect payment information on some orders and you won’t be able to do that with Paypal. You may have to wait longer to get your funds deposited into your bank account. Although the process is easy, it may be a hassle for your customers to register with Paypal before ordering with you. It may also be difficult to setup recurring payments for your customers if that is a requirement with your eBusiness.

The only major drawback to merchants who are starting out with a merchant account may be the initial setup fees along with the recurring monthly fee. Some merchant account providers also require you to buy virtual processing software or a processing machine for your office. There may be an initial limit on the amount of orders you can process in a month of the amount of money you can accept per month. These limits are typically present until the merchant account provider gets to know you and your business trends.

Some people love Paypal, some people hate it. When it’s all said and done you have decide what works best for your eBusiness.

You may also wish to research Google Checkout as a merchant account provider.