We love PayPal. They've been doing business online almost as long as we have, and they're constantly improving and adding new features to their service.
According to their website ( PayPal.com ), they have over 100 million accounts and
more than 104,500 people who sign up for new access every day. They deal in transactions totaling over £158 million
per day. In 2010, PayPal processed more than £57 billion in total payment volume and exceeded £2 billion in revenue.
PayPal makes it easy for anyone to take payments over the Net with no need for a merchant account. What that means
to you is lower fees and a level playing field. If you've been hesitant to start your online business because you
thought you couldn't afford your own merchant account, PayPal is all you really need.
There are three types of accounts:
Personal: For your personal shopping use. You cannot accept debit or credit card payments, but sending and
receiving money is free.
Premier: For buying and selling under your own name. Send payments for free, with low fees for accepting
Business: This is perfect for your online business. Add your own name to be included on your customer's
credit card statements. Sending money is free, but you are charged small fees to accept payments.
There are no set up fees and the fee you pay PayPal when accepting cash is based on your sales volume for the
Standard Rate: £0 to £1,500 - pay 3.4% and £0.20p per transaction
£1,501 to £6,000 - 2.9% and £0.20p per transaction,
£6,000.01 to £15,000.00 - 2.4% and £0.20 per transaction,
£15,000.01 to £55,000.00 - 1.9% and £0.20 per transaction,
£55,000 and up - 1.4% and £0.20p per transaction.
To apply for the merchant rate, you'll have to have one month of sales that meet the ranges above and fill out a
short application to get approved.
Many of the options I'm going to point out to you are for "business accounts" only, so you'll want to go that route
when registering or upgrade your current account to that level.
Paypal has added so many new features over the years, it's hard to keep up with just how powerful it is. I'm amazed
every day at the variety of features that can make your life as an online entrepreneur run as smooth as silk.
Let's take a look at some of these options:
1) Shopping Carts: If you sell multiple items on your site, PayPal has a built in shopping cart. Just copy
and paste their buttons for an immediate store front. No third party software needed.
2) Subscriptions/Recurring Payments: If you sell a service that needs to be paid for monthly, you can set
up this type of payment option on your site. This is great for trial periods and membership sites.
3) Donations: Maybe you don't sell anything, but you have a very informative site or newsletter. A PayPal
button suggesting your readers make a donation is one way to help defray your costs.
4) Optional PayPal Accounts: One of the drawbacks to using PayPal used to be your buyer had to register for
their own PayPal account. This is no longer true and you can select in your control panel to make it optional, not
5) Customized Payment Pages: You can add your website colours and logo to PayPal's payment pages. You can
create and save up to three different page styles for a seamless checkout process.
6) Logo Centre: If you accept PayPal on your site you'll want to add logos to your website letting the world
know. You'll find many shapes and sizes to use.
7) Invoicing: Send your customers detailed invoices via email. You can include detailed line items,
descriptions, tax and more. You can save up to 10 customized invoices for later billing purposes.
8) Payment Request Wizard: Did you know you can add payment buttons to your Outlook and Outlook Express
messages? This is a quick and easy way to get paid faster.
9) PayPal Debit Card: If you have a PayPal account you'll want to get a debit card to go with it so you can
easily access your funds at at any ATM. The card has a Mastercard logo so you can go shopping and the money will
come out of your PayPal balance. You can also use it to draw out cash from your account up to £250.00 per day. You'll
also earn 1.5% cash back on your purchase.
10) Refunds: Anytime you receive a payment, you can easily refund it by clicking a button up to 60 days
after the sale.
11) Mass Pay: Easily send payments to large groups of people. This would be an easy way to pay your
affiliates if you run your own affiliate program.
12) Packing Slips: If you sell hard goods you can create packing slips for your shipments.
13) Shipping Calculator: Easily add shipping costs for your "buy it now" buttons or your PayPal shopping
14) Seller Protection Policy: If you meet their guidelines you can protect yourself from liability and
PayPal will absorb the chargeback at no cost to you. Covers on any fraudulent transaction and is
for tangible goods only.
15) Auto Return: You set the url for your buyers to come back to after they make their payments. Great for
setting up your download page for what they purchased and makes for immediate delivery.
Since eBay also owns PayPal, they've also integrated some pretty cool tools for eBay Sellers:
1) End of Auction Emails: When your auction ends, wouldn't it be nice if you could send a customized email
with all of the details included automatically? Now you can. This is great for putting nervous buyers at ease when
they are waiting to hear from you.
2) Auction Logos: If you want to offer an option in your eBay listings so buyers can pay you directly you
can manually add a PayPal logo to do so.
3) Post Sale Manager: If you sell many items on eBay it can be a full time job tracking it all. With PayPal
Post Sale Manager you can easily manage invoices, shipments, and feedback on everything you sell.
4) Shipping Centre: USPS and UPS have teamed up with PayPal to offer you integrated service in one location.
Calculate shipping costs, print shipping labels, track shipments and much more.
5) Buyer Financing: Add promotional financing to your "big ticket" items so your eBay buyers can more
easily afford to purchase with monthly payments. Buyers are approved within 30 seconds and you get paid your full
6) eBay Gift Certificates: Send eBay Gift certificates to your friends and family so they can buy anything
on eBay as long as the seller accepts PayPal.
As you can see, PayPal is all you need to run your online business. If you thought all you could do was accept or
send payments, you're missing out on the powerful features that makes PayPal the perfect business partner for any
entrepreneur. And as partners go, that's one thing you can both agree on.