6 Best Online Credit Card Processors of 2022

Price is important, but it's not the only factor to consider when choosing the best credit card processor for online transactions.
Jul 12, 2022

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With credit card processing fees typically ranging from 1.5% to 3.5% of the amount of each sales transaction, the cost of online credit card processing is important when selecting a provider. The processing fees you pay will depend on the pricing structure your processor uses — flat-rate pricing, interchange-plus pricing or something else.

In addition to cost, deposit timing, customer support hours, contract details and integrations are some other factors that can help you determine which credit card processor is right for your online business.

Here are six of the best providers to consider for online credit card processing.

Square: Best flat-rate option

Pricing: Flat-rate pricing model.

  • Online credit card payments: 2.9% plus 30 cents per transaction.

  • Monthly fees: None.

Pros:

  • One to two days for funds to be deposited into your bank account.

  • No monthly fees.

  • No contract.

  • Custom pricing option for processing more than $250,000 annually.

  • Option to build a free e-commerce site or link an existing one.

  • Integrates with a variety of apps across categories, such as accounting, inventory and invoicing.

Cons:

  • Phone support is limited to Monday through Friday.

Why we like it: Square is our pick as the best flat-rate pricing option for online credit card processing. You don’t have to sign a contract to get Square’s competitive transaction rates, and you won’t pay monthly fees, startup fees or PCI compliance fees. Additionally, Square doesn’t collect chargeback fees, which sets it apart from competitors. You have the option to set up a free online store or connect your current website to Square’s payment services. Plus, fraud prevention, dispute management and inventory management are some of the free services included with Square Payments. You get a robust offering of integrations with Square including automatic import of your sales data into accounting software such as QuickBooks and Xero.

Square Payment Processing

Square
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on Square's website

Stripe: Best for businesses with a global presence

Pricing: Flat-rate pricing model.

  • Online credit card payments: 2.9% plus 30 cents per transaction.

  • Monthly fees: None.

Pros:

  • Two days for funds to be deposited into your bank account.

  • No monthly fees.

  • Supports processing payments in numerous currencies.

  • 24/7 customer support.

  • No contract.

  • Integrates with a large number of apps, including QuickBooks.

Cons:

  • May require software development expertise to use.

Why we like it: Stripe is best if your online credit card transactions reach beyond the U.S. because it supports over 135 currencies. Customers can pay in their native currency while you receive funds in yours. Transaction rates are comparable to Square’s, and there’s no contract. You don’t have to worry about an additional monthly fee or setup fee, but there’s a $15 fee for chargebacks. The hosted payments page supports global payment methods and language preference adjustments. Stripe also offers a large number and variety of integrations including ones for accounting software. And email, phone and chat support are available 24/7 from teams in a number of locations.

Stripe

Stripe
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on Stripe's website

QuickBooks Payments: Best for QuickBooks loyalists

Pricing: Flat-rate pricing model.

  • Online credit card payments: 3.5% plus 30 cents per transaction.

  • Monthly fees: $20 for reduced rate of 3.3% plus 30 cents per transaction.

Pros:

  • One to two days for funds to be deposited into your bank account.

  • No monthly fees with pay-as-you-go plan.

  • No contract.

  • Instant Deposit option for same-day funding (for an additional fee).

  • Can link QuickBooks Payment with QuickBooks Desktop or QuickBooks Online.

Cons:

  • Must have an existing e-commerce store.

  • Customer support is limited to Monday through Friday.

Why we like it: If you’re already using QuickBooks for accounting, then adding QuickBooks Payments may be the right fit. You don’t have to sign a long-term contract and can pick from two plans when processing credit cards online. With the pay-as-you-go plan, you won’t pay a monthly fee but will have a higher transaction fee. Or, you can choose to pay a monthly fee of $20 to get a reduced transaction rate of 3.3% plus 30 cents. QuickBooks offers an Instant Deposit feature that will deposit funds (up to $5,000) into your bank account within 30 minutes. However, there is an extra 1% fee associated with the feature. Otherwise, most funds are deposited the next day.

Helcim: Best interchange-plus option

Pricing: Interchange-plus pricing model.

  • Online credit card payments: 0.50% plus 25 cents per transaction, plus interchange fee, for businesses processing up to $25,000 per month.

  • Monthly fees: None.

Pros:

  • Funds deposited within two business days.

  • No monthly fees.

  • Volume discounts that start at $25,001 monthly volume.

  • Pricing transparency with detailed information on processing costs.

  • No contract.

Cons:

  • Customer support isn’t available 24/7.

  • Integrations aren’t as robust as competitors.

Why we like it: Helcim is our pick for best interchange-plus pricing option. Depending on your transaction volume, you may benefit from this type of pricing model. Helcim doesn’t charge monthly fees or make you sign a contract. Pricing information and fees are readily available on the website, including interchange rates for Visa, Mastercard and other credit card networks. Also, you can qualify for reduced fees once your monthly credit card volume surpasses $25,000. Helcim automatically lowers your rates when you reach qualifying volume. And while it will integrate with QuickBooks for accounting, there aren’t a lot of other integration options.

Helcim

Helcim
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on Helcim's website

Dharma: Best for high-volume businesses

Pricing: Interchange-plus pricing model.

  • Online credit card payments: 0.20% plus 11 cents per transaction, plus interchange fee.

  • Monthly fees: $25.

Pros:

  • Funds deposited within two business days.

  • Month-to-month agreements with no early termination fees.

  • 24/7 customer support.

  • Volume discounts for processing over $100,000 or 5,000 transactions monthly.

  • Reduced rates for nonprofits.

Cons:

  • Monthly fee.

  • No direct integration with QuickBooks or other apps.

Why we like it: Dharma can be a good fit for a high-volume business. Dharma recommends that you have a transaction volume of at least a few thousand dollars per month to offset the monthly cost of $25. You only commit to a month-to-month agreement, and you won’t be charged a cancellation fee if it doesn’t work out. If you’re looking to switch providers, Dharma offers a free cost analysis against your current provider to see if a change will save you money. When you need immediate support, help lines are available 24/7 based on your merchant ID and the issue you’ve encountered. You can export sales data to QuickBooks, but you’ll likely need to use a third-party service for integrations with other apps.

Payment Cloud: Best for high-risk businesses

Pricing: Quote-based pricing model.

  • Online credit card payments: Quote-based.

  • Monthly fees: Starting at $10.

Pros:

  • Works with high-risk businesses in addition to low- and medium-risk.

  • No cancellation fees if you end service.

Cons:

  • Monthly volume limits.

  • Third-party payment gateway provider is required.

Why we like it: PaymentCloud is an option for businesses that have a higher chance of fraud or chargebacks and require high-risk merchant accounts. A business labeled high-risk because of industry, transaction sizes, accepted payment methods or something else can find it difficult to obtain payment processing services. PaymentCloud uses a pricing model based on business risk, and transaction fees are not listed on its website. Monthly fees start at $10. While PaymentCloud works with businesses that are classified as high-risk, it also is an option for other businesses. You’ll need to sign a contract (terms range from months to years); however, you can also cancel at any time and have the cancellation fees waived, according to the company. PaymentCloud integrates with accounting software including QuickBooks and Freshbooks and other types of apps. Merchant support services are provided 24/7.

PaymentCloud

PaymentCloud
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on PaymentCloud's website

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