This was a question posted in my private Facebook community last November. With Intuit Payment Network (IPN) ending next month, it seems like a good time to revisit the topic.
Do you use PayPal for invoicing and payments in your business? Do you recommend them? —GB
Yes, I use PayPal as a payment processor, but I invoice clients with my customized invoice in Quickbooks Pro (which is the comprehensive software program where I do all of my bookkeeping).
I’ve been using PayPal since 2000 and have never had a single problem. It’s super easy to use, integrates quickly and easily with web coding, and it’s established and trusted.
A merchant account is an alternative to PayPal, but I’ve always found them more complicated to use, and not necessarily any cheaper, and in my experience, you don’t get the same level of tech support that PayPal provides.
Personally, I could never be bothered with using them, and when I was still in the web design business way back when, I hated trying to integrate their coding onto websites. So convoluted and difficult and they don’t necessarily care about providing more than a superficial level of support.
Maybe that’s changed. And of course, I have programmer now that I let handle that kind of work when it comes up.
The other payment processor I use is IPN which is Intuit Payment Network:https://ipn.intuit.com/.
IPN only charges $0.50 per transaction, which is far less of a fee than others including PayPal charge (although personally, I never sweat those kind of fees, they are pennies in comparison AND they are tax deductible business expense that you get to write off at the end of the year which lowers your tax experience).
The only caveats with IPN are:
1) If you are billing a client over $1,500 on an invoice, they will need to be on IPN as well (you can bill guests up to $1,500 though).
2) You need a checking account with unlimited withdrawals and deposit; and
3) To get approved you will need from 3 – 6 months of consecutive bank statements showing an ongoing minimum balance, the amount of which depends on what you expect to bill out via IPN each month. So, for example, let’s say you will be billing $2,500 a month via IPN. To get approved for an IPN account, you will need to keep a minimum balance of at least $5,000 in that checking account for 3-6 months. The minimum balance they’re looking for all depends on the amount you intend to bill and they have different tiers that you’d have to call them directly to find out what your amount would be specifically. But once you get approved, you don’t have to keep that minimum balance anymore because they don’t monitor your bank account.
UPDATE: Intuit is discontinuintg their popular IPN (Intuit Payment Network) come April 2016. The company is encouraging users to move over to their Quickbooks-integrated merchant account product, Quickbooks Payments. There are two plans to choose from to fit your business, and you can also get mobile credit card processing if that’s of interest to you.
Personally, I probably won’t be switching over as PayPal meets all my needs. It’s easy, I trust it, and the costs are comparable.