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Has anyone used Paypal Recurring/Subscription Billing?

We already use recurly and I understand they are best for subscription, but paypal provides the benefit of not having to pull out your credit card so thinking of implementing it as another option. Has anyone used it and had good or negative experiences?

9 Replies

Michele Tivey
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Michele Tivey Entrepreneur
COO at FinTech Payments Corp, Director CNP-Solutions
As an alternative form of payment, PayPal seems like a good idea, because it will help with conversion rates. However, there are many companies who provide this kind of alternative payments service, at far better rates.

In addition, using something other than the PayPal gateway could open you up to several other convenience Payment options, like Amazon Payments, which allows customers to pay for your service using the credit card saved to their Amazon account.

I hope you will consider speaking with somebody experienced in this space before establishing your payments landscape, since this decision can exponentially increase a recurring business model's profitability.

I'm very happy to discuss offline. Our company works for Merchants and has developed a piece of FinTech for processors. We are very well connected in payments, and working with startups is one of our specialties. You can learn more on our website:
www.cnp-solutions.com. Good luck!











Chuck Bartok
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Chuck Bartok Entrepreneur
Marketing and Sales Manager at MD Building Systems of Florida, Inc
We enjoy simple business mindsets. Paypal has been our financial third party platform for many years. Excellent service provided, ability to talk to live, English speaking, representatives and the subscription system is flawless. Of course we realize the importance of communicating with our subscribers, especially the annual subscriptions and remind them of a coming renewal.
Also gives them an opportunity to cancel. So far less than .5% ever have but appreciate the service.
We also appreciate benefiting on Paypal's global notoriety for safety and the ease of currency transactions.
Kelly Kuhn-Wallace
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Kelly Kuhn-Wallace Entrepreneur • Advisor
Marketing and Strategy Consultant
I encourage businesses (especially SaaS) to accept as many forms of payment as they can in a secure manner. You never know what particular thing a prospect might be looking for.

I have not implemented PayPay recurring directly nor have I had a client do so. The partners we have worked with have not had great experiences with that process. It is completely do-able, you just have to be ready for some not-so-awesome documentation.

Since you are familiar with Recurly, you might look for a similar service that is like Recurly but includes PayPal as a payment option. (I'm surprised that Recurly does not.) I know that ChargeOver does (I did some marketing work for them a while back - they are super helpful to work with) and there are probably others.

The benefit of having all of your payments come through one management system is that your reporting will still be correct, your payment reminders will work, all of your customers can log-in and update their payment information through one portal, etc. (You might not be using all of those services in Recurly if you have built your own or engaged external services.) It gets complicated quickly from a reporting perspective if you have to add an additional payment method's worth of receipts to all of the other data.

Just my two cents!
Darren Fraser
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Darren Fraser Entrepreneur
Software Developer
PayPal is a reliable solution and their APIs make it quite flexible for many needs.

Another option to consider might be Stripe, which has an excellent dashboard, APIs and documentation.

Both of these are practically identical in terms of rates: 2.9% plus 30? per transaction, with some breaks given as monthly sales volume increases.

While it's true there can be better rates to be had with other processors, PayPal and Stripe are very developer-friendly (more than many I've seen) and feature rich in their offerings.
Michele Tivey
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Michele Tivey Entrepreneur
COO at FinTech Payments Corp, Director CNP-Solutions
If you are a small company or a company selling one-off products, PayPal and Stripe are a quick way to get up and running. They are not designed for a SaaS model, because there is a lot that needs to be considered.

Please don't hesitate to reach out if I can be of further help.
















Kevin Carney
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Kevin Carney Entrepreneur
Content Marketing Training and Consulting
I have. I like it. It works well, but having said that I have no knowledge of competing mechanisms so I'm not sure what to compare it too. Managing subscriptions and payments is easy. Kevin Carney *Inbound Marketing University * kevin@InboundMarketingUniversity.biz [removed to protect privacy]
Fred Bliss
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Fred Bliss Entrepreneur
Director of Technology at Block Chaser
+1 for Stripe. It is built specifically with monthly recurring plans in mind, and includes convenient features like automatic pro-rating (should a customer want to switch to a different plan), they also allow payment information storage (they handle it, not you!) so that clients won't have to re-enter their payment information, as well as the ability to create plans *with* trial periods. Their rates are nearly equivalent to Paypal, but with a much more well-defined interface, API, and great customer service (whereas I have seen Paypal mishandle customer accounts over the last 10 years).

I've been actively evaluating and implementing payment solutions for clients for the last decade, and from that, I would recommend Stripe.
Darren Fraser
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Darren Fraser Entrepreneur
Software Developer
I'd have to disagree with Stripe and PayPal being only for small business or one-off products. For instance, I wouldn't characterize Shopify as being a small business but yet they built their payment solution on Stripe.

Historically, I would say that PayPal got a little complacent and their technology didn't keep up with the times. However, more recently they have upped their game from what I have seen and they are closing the gap with Stripe on the API/integration side of things.
James Hipkin
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James Hipkin Advisor
CEO, Managing Director at Red8 Interactive
At risk of being the outlier here, I think you are asking the wrong question. PayPal and the others mentioned in the previous comments are payment gateways. If they are set up correctly and the information is sent to them correctly, they will process the payment.In our experience, and we've done this many times, the issue/opportunity lies on the other side of the transaction, usually a website, sometimes an app.

To get a bit Toyota on you, why are you asking the question? What functionality are you looking for? If you define your requirements, acompetentdeveloper can get you set up.
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