Paypal's Transaction Fee Sneakiness

Unless you have a very small turnover from website sales then sage page seems to be the better option

PayPal not the best payments, but have on other ways, only choose it

PayPal is probably the best solution for most of us. If you figured their fees wrong in your business plan, you need to redo your business plan.

If you find a better alternative, let us know. I’ll even gladly double your affiliate commission on my signup.

Amazon FPS (Flexible Payment Service) lets Amazon’s 80+ million customers pay you using their account. They’ve duplicated most of the features of PayPal, including the integration methods, in addition to a bunch PP doesn’t offer. The fees are, in general, equal or lower than PayPal’s.

I have an FPS account along with ready-to-go integrations in case there’s ever an issue with my PayPal account.

regardless of whether or not I did any business that month. I haven’t found a better solution that PayPal. I do quite a bit of International business and I keep an eye on exchange rates.

I have to say that Paypal has been the easiest to integrate, and the rates are similar to most of the merchan accounts (including the one offered by banks in my country).

I did look at worldpay once, but at that moment it didn’t fit my needs and was more expensive. This was years ago.

I haven’t looked at amazon for ages, so thank you, Dan… I’ll see if I can benefit from this service.

But unlike Paypal where the seller can be almost anywhere in the world with Amazon you have to live in one specific country to be able to sign up and so that isn’t an option for most sellers.

FPS just came out of beta recently, so like Amazon’s other web services, it’ll surely be offered in other countries eventually. Like PayPal, it will take a while to make arrangements with banks and governments in each country they want to support for sellers. They have good support for buyers already.

I too was surprised the first time the cross-border fees slapped my transaction details page. I was like, oh there are cross-border fees? :-s

And unlike PayPal, Amazon do have a more trustworthy image built up from many years of successful transactions online.

We do not work for PayPal, therefore we cannot tell you why a service in no way related to these forums would not offer services to you. If you want to know why PayPal is not available to you, then ask them.

Chances are it’s Pakistan’s banking regulations or banks themselves that prevent PayPal from operating there. The corporation wouldn’t turn down the business otherwise.

Paypal has screwed me out of money twice. I use alternatives now.

PayPal will also likely stay out of countries which are known to be troublesome in terms of credit card fraud. Because of the way PayPal works, this is a logical move, since PayPal (unlike banks) would be unable to pursue chargebacks if the money has been drawn out of the PayPal system.


Paypal is being sneaky about their website payments pro feature. Here are a 2 things you should know:

  1. Cross Border fees.
  2. You actually need to apply for the rate in order to get it.


I have to agree, I too looked at the offerings from local banks and the fees they wanted to let me hook into their systems for credit card processing were massive compared to PayPal. I’ve been using PayPal for a year or so and generally I’m very happy with them.

I suppose it depends where you live and who you contact, but there are definitely merchant account providers out there that specialize in ecommerce and can give you better rates than PayPal. Especially if you’re doing $xxxx/month volume but not quite enough to qualify for PP’s merchant rates.

If your per-transaction rate is better, then there will be a point at which if you do at least $x per month, the savings per transaction outweigh the monthly fees associated with the account.

It’s something you have to shop around and negotiate for. PNC Bank ran a promo in March where they offered to beat whatever processing rates you’re currently paying or pay you $300 just for making the call to ask if they couldn’t beat them.

I must admit I prefer AlertPay over Paypal. Paypal overdrew my bank account twice. Also, check this out:

There is a very well-hidden setting in Paypal that can save you a lot of money in Paypal fees depending upon the volume of Paypal payments that you receive. This is particularly important for merchants selling goods, or big sites that accept subscriptions, but it’s important for ebay sellers and anyone selling more than $3k/mo via Paypal. It’s called Merchant Rate pricing, and it’s something you have to opt-in to, on this page at Paypal (must be logged into Paypal, then visit that link - yes it’s a real Paypal link and no I’m not a phisher).

Google: “What Paypal Won’t Tell You” for the image of the page. (Sitepoint wont let me post links.)

When I decided to write this post, it took me half an hour to find that page so don’t bother to look for it, they’ve hidden it well. No doubt, their requirement to opt-in to qualify for the discounted tiered pricing is probably buried in some legal agreement, too.
If you earn more than $3,000/mo in Paypal payments, the Merchant Rate switches your transaction fees from 2.9% to 2.5%, and again to 2.2% (>$10k/mo) and 1.9% ($100k/mo) saving you potentially hundreds or even thousands per month. I just assumed that Paypal’s tiered fees adjusted automatically to take my order volume into account but not so, you have to manually choose the lower tier if your sales volume qualifies.

It’s not really accurate to say it’s “well hidden”, “secret” and “PayPal won’t tell you”.

The details of the merchant rates have been in the same place for the past 8 years, two clicks from any page of the site.

Every page of the PayPal site, both internal and external, has a “fees” link at the bottom. If you click on the “1.9% to 2.9% + $0.30” link on the fees page (which you’d do if you want to know why it’s a range), the page with the fee table says that you have to complete a one-time application to qualify for merchant rates.

Once you’ve applied and meet the criteria, your rates are automatically set every month based on the past month’s volume.

I have done the same many times as well even when a site is big, i always end up going back to just paypal as many others have so many issues and are so costly… Wish there was more options though… It would be google checkout was worldwide as well…