I'm accepting credit cards on my website, using PayPal's "hosted" solution (an IFRAME that collects the credit card information, PayPal calls this "PayFlow").

I chose PayPal because they were a brand I recognized. However, PayPal has been absolutely dreadful to deal with, accidentally deleting my account overnight and whole comedy of errors, bad service, and hidden fees; so I'm looking for a replacement.

I will eventually be taking recurring payments. These are for simple website service subscriptions, so it will be a custom "shopping cart". I don't want to touch the credit card numbers, to limit my risk as much as possible.

Can anyone else recommend a major player that they trust to do this, please? I don't see where Google Checkout offers a hosted form, but I could be wrong.

And if this is a bad place for this question, would you please give me a bit of advice on where to take it? There is supposed to be a FAQ at https://stackoverflow.com/questions/982953/what-is-the-best-credit-card-processing-service , but it is gone.

edit: Based on one of the answers, I should mention this is for North American (almost exclusively US) business.

2 Answers 2


It's strange how some people either have a perfectly delightful experience with paypal, yet others experience the wrath of the underworld.

You might consider zoho. I started out just testing them, however I have moved my entire business there. Both zoho invoice and zoho books can accept payment.

You can get an account there for free. www.zoho.com look at the top of the page in micro-font for the sign up free link.

As a side note, anytime you accept plastic in any way, you can expect any or all of the following:

  • per transaction set fee
  • per transaction % of amount fee
  • monthly access charge

Sadly, this is simply a cost of business.

  • Yes, I'm fine with all of those fees. PayPal charged me an extra $20/mo to remove the "finance this purchase with PayPal" option, but that button hadn't displayed in testing because they only provided the "upgraded" test accounts. They also charge fees for things the salesperson said were included in the upgraded account, like recurring payments. Sadly, the fee situation was not as bad as other issues, for example their test environment going offline for a week and interrupting our development.
    – shannon
    Feb 26, 2013 at 22:26
  • Thank you. Looking at zoho, I think you might have understood me to mean web consulting services. The product I'm taking payment for is a subscription-based web application. I don't see a good way to have zoho support that.
    – shannon
    Feb 27, 2013 at 20:25

Your best scenario is to give user an option to choose payment method.

As for choices I'd recommend:

  • PayPal - I that usually people find it most comfortable
  • SagePay - for direct credit card transactions
  • Google Checkout / Google Wallet - for Android geeks
  • optional: BitCoin if you are willing to sacrifice more time for giving your clients an anonymous payment option.

In general as far as PayPal can be a nasty solution - I'd highly recommend keeping it on your website. Yes, it is a hassle, but in the end people really appreciate added security.

Oh, and be aware that these "hidden fees" are everywhere. It's not a charity ;)

  • Are you in the UK, using SagePay? p.s. I understand there are fees. But when a company puts ads on my live checkout page that weren't there in the provided test environment, and then charges an upgrade to remove them, I call that "hidden".
    – shannon
    Feb 26, 2013 at 22:31
  • Yep. The company I work for uses SagePay as a standard payments platform in UK. Feb 26, 2013 at 22:33

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