Advantages of Using Stripe for a WordPress Website
Let’s take a look at some of the advantages of using Stripe for a WordPress website for someone who needs an immediate solution they can plug right in. There is no way to cover all the benefits without writing a book. Here are the most important reasons why you would want to choose Stripe as a small or medium-sized business owner.
1. Opening a Stripe Account Is Easy
The first thing to check is if Stripe is available in your country. You can do that on the Stripe website. Stripe accounts are currently available in 30+ countries, and the number is growing. Setting up your account only takes around 20 minutes on the Stripe website. You will need the following information to get started opening your account:
- your name and company information
- your taxation information
- your bank account details
- your business location information
- your support telephone number
- your website address
2. Affordable Stripe Flat Fees
Stripe charges a flat rate of 2.3% + 30 cents for international payments as long as you are not turning over more than one million dollars a year. That isn’t much at all considering you don’t need the hassle of a merchant bank account. Those fees are very competitive for an instant payment gateway without monthly fees or a subscription.
Stripe is very open about their fees and international exchange rates. Remember, you will be receiving the currency of the location of your Stripe account. Currency exchange fees are quite low. Refunds don’t cost either. You don’t get another charge that came out of nowhere.
3. Testing Your Transactions Is Easy
Click the ‘test data’ toggle inside Stripe, and now you are in test mode for that account/website. Copy the testing key and secret to your site and paste into the plugin settings. You can use Stripe’s prefigured credit card details for unlimited test transactions.
If you want, you can put in place customized security to the way your Stripe account deals with different customers and transactions.
4. Adding & Testing Extra Fraud Protection with Radar
Stripe has a reputation as a company that is on the cutting-edge of fraud prevention. Radar allows you to customize the way you want to deal with fraud risk. If you are using a plugin, WordPress, and a Stripe account, you are probably running a small business through your website. Chargebacks can kill a small business.
Click the Radar button inside your Stripe account to turn on fraud risk-reduction features for your account. Radar makes it easy to:
- add your own custom fraud rules – the way Stripe will assess a transaction
- review payments deemed suspicious by Radar
- create blacklists and whitelists with a range of parameters
- access Stripe’s enhanced fraud insights dashboard
You don’t need any coding skills to implement Radar rules. The implementation explanation is clear. Adding fraud rules is similar to adding shortcodes on a WordPress page except you are adding them to your Radar dashboard.
Radar is a feature that is unrivaled when it comes to instant payment gateways for WordPress.
5. One Stripe Account for Multiple Website Payments
One Stripe account allows you to connect several websites to a single business and bank account. Adding a secondary website inside your Stripe account only takes a few minutes. Most of your information is already filled out for you. Update such details as the website, support number, and whatever else is necessary. I have one Stripe account connected to eight sites without issue.
There are other features that I could put on this list, but the points I have listed are more than enough for this conversation. Now, let’s get down to payment types.
Stripe Allows for Multiple Payment Methods for More Revenue
Stripe is always changing, and the number of payment methods is growing. Here are the payment methods available at the time of writing this article. Some of the payment methods are for a small number of possible users in Europe. Stripe deemed those payment methods important enough to include to cover all potential EU customers.
- ACH credit transfers
- ACH debit
- Apple Pay
- Credit cards
- Google Pay
- SEPA Direct Debit
- WeChat Pay
The currencies available vary depending on the available payment method. For example, Google Pay provides transactions using the following currencies; USD, GBP, EUR, AUD, HKD, SGD, NZD.
Stripe currently offers 135+ currencies depending on the payment method.
The next issue is choosing your plugin to bridge the gap between your website and Stripe.
6 Best Plugins to Connect Your WordPress Website to Stripe
The WordPress repository houses many plugins to connect Stripe to your website. A significant advantage of Stripe is that you don’t need much technical skill to get it working.
There are a lot of plugins to choose from with WordPress. Different Stripe gateway plugins are better for specific purposes than others. As with most plugins, since WordPress went PHP 7, premium plugins are usually the best choice.
Always look at the update history of any plugin before deciding. The plugin could be making claims it can no longer provide as Stripe upgrades. Apart from what you need and what the plugin claims, regular updates are the most critical factor to look for when choosing a Stripe payment gateway plugin.
Unlike many other payment gateway options, Stripe provides a wide array of payment options that is growing all the time. That is even more reason why you need to choose a plugin from a developer or team who are focused on their product.
I have included the plugins I know well and those plugins I have tried to integrate into WordPress. These plugins are a good sample of the issues you face when choosing a plugin.
Your location will always impact the features available through the plugin because your Stripe account ultimately dictates what currencies and payment methods are available.
1. Stripe for Woocommerce Plugin – Free
The Stripe for WooCommerce plugin is popular with WooCommerce users because it is an official WooCommerce extension. The installation is easy, and all you need to do is go to the payments section of the WooCommerce settings and follow the steps on integration.
“You can accept all major debit and credit cards from customers in every country in 135+ currencies, as well as Apple Pay, Google Pay, and other local payment methods, such as Alipay, iDeal or SEPA Direct Debit.”
– Source: WooCommerce
The Stripe 3D option for enhanced security option no longer exists inside the plugin. Even so, you can be sure that all transactions have 3D Secure 2 and Strong Customer Authentication included. For example, cards requiring Verified by Visa and other verification methods, are catered for with the appropriate popup. You can use the risk testing virtual card numbers available in Radar to see this.
Stripe for WooCommerce is an excellent choice for most WooCommerce websites that want to accept credit and debit card payments from via a majority of payment providers. Numerous paid extensions are also available from WooCommerce.
2. YITH WooCommerce Stripe Plugin – Free & Premium
The free version of the YITH WooCommerce Stripe plugin only allows for credit and debit card payments. The premium version claims that users complete the checkout without leaving your site or through an embedded form that popups up to make payment and enter card details with the security offered by Stripe. Known as modal, this is not available with Stripe for Woocommerce and did not work during testing as is. The premium version also claims to take Bitcoin payments, which no longer exist on the Stripe platform.
The YITH WooCommerce Stripe plugin is a perfect example where the plugin is not updated, and the claims haven’t been either. YITH has a vast array of extensions for this and their many other plugins. I recommend confirming all claimed features with the developers before using this plugin.
3. YITH WooCommerce Stripe Connect Plugin – Free & Premium
The free version of the YITH WooCommerce Stripe Connect plugin only allows for credit and debit card payments. The premium version enables administrators to split payouts between different partners. This feature is excellent if you are working with suppliers or affiliates on your ecommerce site. Naturally, there are limitations, and everyone needs a working Stripe account. Extra work is required inside your Stripe account dashboard to get this working through the Connect application. The YITH WooCommerce Stripe Connect plugin includes the YITH WooCommerce Stripe plugin.
The plugin is great if you want to split payouts but does require study of how to integrate Stripe Connect as a platform (not as an extension.)
Interestingly, the Modal checkout option is not available. The on-page version where the customer enters credit card details directly into the WooCommerce checkout is standard. Unlike the YITH WooCommerce Stripe plugin, the primary advantage of this plugin is that it works. You can also integrate the many YITH extensions if you can afford them.
4. WP Stripe Global – WordPress Payments Plugin – Premium
The developers at WP Stripe Global – WordPress Payments Plugin have created a clean shortcode-method to implement Stripe credit/debit card, AliPay, and WeChat Pay payments. Currently, you can only set the price for the item you want customers to pay for through a mini-checkout or form. Recurring payments are included. The payment process is enhanced by a smooth dropdown checkout page that automatically displays the appropriate checkout requirements based on what payment method the customer selected.
The significant upside of the WP Stripe Global – WordPress Payments Plugin is the integration of AliPay and, more importantly, WeChat Pay. Both methods are currently available in beta from Stripe in the EU and other locations. I am not aware of another plugin that provides WeChat Pay with such ease.
If you want to sell to the growing middle class in China with substantial consumer power, WeChat Pay is the way to go. Over the last few years, China has been rocked by numerous food scandals and deaths as a result of “fake foods and beverages.” These products are often made of chemicals and not edible products. As a result, consumer-grade produce products from outside of China are in huge demand by a massive market of middle-class Chinese consumers.
This plugin’s real strength is the fact that it offers WeChat Pay without any hassle. WeChat is the number one messaging app in China by far, and that flows over to payments. If you want an easy way to implement WeChat Pay today, the WP Stripe Global – WordPress Payments Plugin is the best solution. This plugin is easy to install and setup with minimal adjustments inside your Stripe account. You may need to enable Alipay and WeChat Pay if they are in public beta. Let’s see what they add next.
5. WooCommerce Stripe Payment Gateway (Credit Card, AliPay, Apple Pay) Plugin – Free & Premium
The premium WooCommerce Stripe Payment Gateway (Credit Card, AliPay, Apple Pay) plugin allows payments via Credit Card, AliPay, and Apple Pay. The free version doesn’t include Apple Pay. You will need to read up on integrating asynchronous payments and webhooks as you will find three separate buttons for payments on the checkout page of WooCommerce. The premium version also includes subscriptions as well as full Apple Pay integration with the cart and checkout page.
The plugin is suitable for integrating Apple Pay and AliPay into WooCommerce as long as you are prepared to dig into Stripe documentation and setup asynchronous payments and the appropriate webhooks.
6. Stripe Checkout Plugin For WordPress Plugin – Free
The Stripe Checkout Plugin For WordPress Free is a free plugin that allows you to add the Stripe Checkout and products you have configured inside your Stripe account. While Stripe is generally easy to use, this plugin doesn’t help you with anything but the shortcodes to add a checkout button for each product. You cannot add variable pricing as everything is set up directly inside your Stripe account.
The main advantage of this plugin is that you can have easy shortcodes to add Stripe credit and debit card payments with the off-site Stripe Checkout for extra security. The other advantage is that it is free. The off-site checkout page also adds perceived security. The setup of the Stripe Checkout and adding products requires additional reading, technical skill, and time to deploy.
Despite this plugin is free and appears easy to use, you might need a Stripe developer to help you with the Stripe Checkout and adding products inside your Stripe account.
A Final Tip
Stripe is an excellent solution for receiving payments via credit cards, debit cards, and a growing number of other payment methods from around 135+ countries and currencies.
The big bonus is how easy it is to set up an account and add websites you want to monetize. The smaller downside is that your business needs to be in one of the 30+ Stripe supported countries.
With so many plugins available, choosing the right plugin for your needs often requires a bit of trial and error. As mentioned, the plugin must meet the claims made by the developers.
In my experience, this is not always the case. I recommend that you make sure all claimed features are functioning before you pay.