One of the most frequently asked questions to us as an official Stipe implementation partner is: “Is Stripe easy to implement?” Our typical reply is – it depends on your setup, requirements, and how you want to customize the payment platform is a more complex integration compared to regular Stripe payments because it involves setting up a platform to manage payments for multiple sellers or vendors.
Stripe Connect is a product that allows businesses o accept payments from customers and pay out funds to multiple sellers or service providers.
Here are 5 topics you would like to know about Stripe Connect:
I. What are the alternatives for Stripe Connect for platforms?
THE FIRST TOPIC OF INTEREST is what are the alternatives for Stripe Connect for platforms or are there any competitors which are better tuned for my requirements?
When choosing an alternative to Stripe Connect, it's important to consider factors such as pricing, features, integrations, and overall user experience. There are several alternatives to Stripe Connect that platforms can consider, depending on their specific needs and preferences. Here are the most popular ones:
1. Adyen MarketPay: Adyen for Platforms is an end-to-end payment solution for peer-to-peer marketplaces, on-demand services, crowdfunding platforms, and any other platform business models.
With this solution, you can:
Onboard and verify your users: Onboard sellers, service providers, or contractors on to your platform, and let Adyen verify them before paying out. Adyen informs you of the results of the verification checks.
Process payments: Accept payments on behalf of your users. You can split the payments between one or more users, deduct costs as needed, and hold funds until payout.
Pay out and transfer funds: Decide when and how your users are paid, on-demand or automated. Move funds within your platform to debit or credit funds to your user when needed.
Offer additional financial products: Expand your platform's offerings by issuing debit cards and business bank accounts, or by providing business financing.
Adyen for Platforms is available in most European Countries plus the USA and Canada. Adyen is suitable for different platform types. First, the most common: marketplaces which bring together buyers and sellers of a certain good or service and facilitate a sale. Second, the platform option can also allow the platform feature to be offered on-demand to customers who order a service and gig works to deliver as quickly as possible. And thirdly, it is great for SaaS platforms as it provides applications to enable businesses to operate online and in-store.
2. WePay: WePay is designed for platforms, offering features such as risk management, payment processing, and compliance management. WePay is backed by J.P.Morgan’s global scale. It provides an integrated and customizable payment solution, through its APIs, to platform businesses such as crowdfunding sites, marketplaces and small business software companies. It also offers partners fraud and risk protection.
3. Braintree Marketplace: is a payment platform that offers marketplace-specific features such as flexible fee structures, payouts to multiple parties, and customizable payment flows. Braintree's Marketplace APIs enable Merchant Service Providers to submit payments to Braintree from sellers that are transacting on the platform. The payments are processed by Braintree and split between the provider and the Sub-Merchant, as directed by the provider. Braintree target mainly the retail industry. They are used for number of educational websites as well.
4. Square Connect: Square Connect is a payment platform that offers APIs for managing payments, customer data, and more. It is particularly well-suited for small and medium-sized businesses. Generally speaking Square's target audience is B2C business, however broad the target customer segment is. In B2B front Square selected as target customer segment small businesses facing difficulties accepting credit cards.
5. Mango pay: Mangopay’s payment solutions are dedicated to marketplaces and crowdfunding platforms headquartered in the European Economic Area. Unlike traditional payment solutions, the company provides its customers with a developer-friendly API and a white-label solution that can be seamlessly integrated in design. It enables platforms to accept multiple currencies and multiple payment methods online, hold the funds in segregated accounts and automate payouts. Mangopay is mostly used in the fashion and apparel sector.
II. Which countries is it supported in?
THE SECOND TOPIC OF INTEREST on Stripe Connect is which countries is it supported in - for platforms and for merchants?
Stripe Connect is supported in most European countries, a few in the Asian Pacific and Latin America and for just one country in the middle east (Israel) and one in Africa (Republic of South Africa). Namely the supported countries currently are: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Custom accounts can be created for any country Stripe supports.
Countries that don’t support Stripe connect are the United Arab Emirates, India, Thailand, most countries in Africa, Asia and South America, as well as Cuba, Belarus, Kosovo and Moldova. As this information may change over time, it is always best to check with Stripe directly for the most up-to-date information.
Different countries get access to local payment methods which would be of particular interest for the merchants and the platform facilitator in order to convert easier and in bigger scale.
III. What is the difference between the three types of Stripe Connect accounts: Standard, Express and Custom?
THE THIRD TOPIC OF INTEREST on Stripe Connect is what is the difference between the three types of Stripe Connect accounts: Standard, Express and Custom.
You must consider several factors when choosing an account type. Integration effort and user experience are especially important because they can affect engineering resource expenditure and conversion rates. You can’t change a connected account’s type after creation. Stripe recommends you use Express or Standard accounts for an easier integration effort. If you want more control over the user experience, Express or Custom accounts might meet your needs better. Keep in mind that there’s an additional cost for using Express or Custom accounts.
A Standard Stripe account is a conventional Stripe account where the account holder (that is, your platform’s user) has a relationship with Stripe, is able to log in to the Dashboard, and can process charges on their own.
Use Standard accounts when you:
Want to get started quickly and don’t need a lot of control over your user’s experience
Have users that are familiar with running online businesses or might already have a Stripe account.
Prefer that Stripe handles direct communication with the user for account issues (for example, to request more information for identity verification purposes)
Examples of platforms that would use Standard accounts include but are not limited to: a store builder like Shopify, or a software as a service like Invoice2go.
Global compliance requirements do evolve and change over time. With Standard, Stripe proactively collects information when requirements change.
With Express accounts, Stripe handles the onboarding and identities verification processes. The platform has the ability to specify charge types and set the connected account’s payout settings programmatically. The platform is responsible for handling disputes and refunds, which is similar to a Custom account.
Although your user has interactions with Stripe, they primarily interact with your platform, particularly for the core payment processing functionality. For Express account holders, Stripe provides an Express Dashboard (a lighter version of the Dashboard) that allows them to manage their personal information and see payouts to their bank.
Examples of platforms that would use Express accounts include, but are not limited to: a home-rental marketplace like Airbnb, or a ride-hailing service like Lyft.
Global compliance requirements do evolve and change over time. With Express, Stripe proactively collects information when requirements change.
A Custom Stripe account is almost completely invisible to the account holder. You—the platform—are responsible for all interactions with your user, including collecting any information Stripe needs. You can change all of the account’s settings programmatically.
Custom account holders don’t have access to the Dashboard, and Stripe doesn’t contact them directly. Use Custom accounts when you:
Want complete control over your user’s experience
Can build the significant infrastructure required to collect user information, create a user dashboard, and handle support
Want to handle all communication with your users, rather than having your users contact Stripe directly
Creating and managing Custom accounts requires a larger integration effort than the other account types.
IV. Who determines currency and how is currency conversion done?
THE FOURTH TOPIC OF INTEREST on Stripe Connect is: who determines currency and how is currency conversion done?
The currency used in Stripe Connect is determined by the seller's account settings, which can be set by the seller when they sign up for a Stripe account.
When a payment is made in a different currency than the seller's account currency, Stripe will automatically convert the payment amount into the seller's account currency at the current exchange rate. Stripe uses a third-party service to determine the exchange rate, which is typically updated every 24 hours.
Stripe also offers merchants the option to set their own exchange rate markup or discount on top of the mid-market rate. This allows merchants to earn a small profit on foreign currency transactions or offer discounts to customers.
V. How are merchants paid out by Stripe Connect?
THE FIFTH TOPIC OF INTEREST on Stripe Connect is how are merchants paid out by Stripe Connect?
First, the customer makes a payment on the merchant's website or app using a credit or debit card, bank transfer, or other supported payment methods. It is very important that the Connected account be in a supported country for the specific payment method that the customer chooses. Some payment methods are available by default, such as Bank redirects, Affirm, ACH credit transfers (for USD only), SEPA direct debit, Sofort or iDeal (in Netherlands). Others should be additionally activated as capability in the dashboard settings page by the connected accounts, like Alipay, BLIK, Klarna or Konbini. Apple Pay is available with Checkout by default, but with the most advance features of Stripe Elements, the connected accounts must configure it in manually in their settings.
Stripe Connect processes the payment and deducts any fees, such as transaction/network fees and platform fees, that have been set up by the merchant.
The remaining funds are then transferred to the merchant's Stripe account, where they are either automatically paid out as per the defined schedule or held until the platform initiates a manual payout.
By default, any funds that you transfer to a connected account accumulates in the connected account's Stripe balance and is paid out on a daily rolling basis. You can change the payout schedule as needed.
Stripe charges a fee for each payout for an Express and Custom account, which is typically a fixed amount per transaction or a percentage of the payout amount, depending on the merchant's agreement with Stripe. Payouts are free of charge if you use a Standard Connect account.
Overall, Stripe Connect provides a simple and secure way for merchants to accept payments and manage payouts to third-party sellers or service providers.
We at VR Team are the experts to help you in your Stripe Connect integration. Reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also see our article on marketplace payments: “5 Topics To Consider When Enabling Payments For A Marketplace”.