A payment gateway can be defined as the infrastructure that allows a merchant to accept credit card and other forms of electronic payments.  The e-payments can take place online as well as from the traditional brick and mortar stores. Payment Gateways play an important role in encrypting and transmitting critical information between payment portals and the front end processors/ Banks.

Many e-commerce stores do not have their own payment gateways, as such, they rely on Gateway service providers who charge them a fee for the service or take a commission per each transaction they process.
A Gateway service is different from a payment processor in that, a payment processor analyses and transmits transaction data while a Gateway service authorizes the transfer of funds between buyers and sellers.

Top Payment Gateway Service Providers

1.    PayPal

PayPal is a leading gateway provider that was established in San Jose California and acquired by e-Bay in early 2000. PayPal plays a central role in connecting businesses and customers on an online platform thus enabling the parties to buy and sell goods and services. The platform is liked by many people for it has easier registration requirements.


•    Ease of access and use
PayPal is easy to register and use. There are no stringent requirements for registration. The process is fast, and users need not get any training to be able to navigate their graphical interface. Their service is fast, reliable and provides real-time payment processing updates.

•    Multi - Currency Payment Processing
PayPal enables easy currency exchange by supporting over 24 international currencies. You also save money and time as the currency exchange rate is supplied at the prevailing market rates. PayPal has a global outlook with a presence in many countries thus saving users both money and time.

•    Good rates of money transfer
PayPal offers one of the lowest payment transfer plans and offers, and so it’s an ideal gateway for transferring money across borders.

•    Guaranteed Fraud and Data Protection
PayPal protects its users against unauthorized transactions from their account. PayPal double checks details before authorizing any transaction. They also use payment tokenization, a feature that represents customer’s details and payment instructions as a code. The encryption is vital for the protection of a customer’s information. In the case of a breach, the customer’s information remains safe.

•    Transparency
PayPal is highly transparent when it comes to issues like pricing, fees, and terms. They post information about their pricing, fees, and terms on their website. They are also consistent with the information they provide to users when contacted on different occasions.

•    Monthly fees
Basic PayPal accounts do not attract a monthly fee. However, users can incur a monthly service charge if they sign up for certain services. You can easily find out a comprehensive fee schedule by clicking.

•    Gateway Setup fees
PayPal does not charge for setting up basic payment gateway accounts. However, for customized payment gateway service user need to pay $99 one time setup fee.

•    Customer Service
They provide an excellent customer service through internet and phone.

•    Overall rating
4.7    Out of 5

2.    Worldpay

Worldpay (formerly known as RBS Worldpay) is a giant gateway service provider that was founded in the UK in 2000. It has a presence in more than 40 countries. Worldpay is backed by the Royal Bank of Scotland and thus scores high in terms of authenticity.


•    Authenticity Guarantee
The fact that Worldpay is backed by the Royal Bank of Scotland means that its authenticity is guaranteed. Users can rest assured that their transactions are secured as the bank ensures that all transactions and payment processing are scrutinized thoroughly.

•    Favorable Money Transfer rates
Worldpay users enjoy affordable rates as a result of the Royal Bank of Scotland’s establishment of affordable money transfer charges. The rates are favorable to small, medium and large size businesses.

•    Multi-currency enabled
Worldpay is located in most countries globally thus enabling users across different countries to use their service without worrying about the exchange rate. International transactions are facilitated with ease.

•    Excellent Fraud Screening Mechanism
Worldpay has in place an appropriate mechanism to guard against access to customer information. Transactions are thoroughly verified before authorization to prevent malicious payments.

•    Transparency
Worldpay does not provide any information as regards to their fees on their US website. However, they have some pricing information on their UK website. They also fail when it comes to advertising transparency as they do not provide a disclosure of their processing rates and fees on their websites.

•    Monthly Fees
Although no information is available on their website about monthly fees, users pay monthly and annual fees to maintain their merchant accounts.

•    Gateway setup fees
Initial set up of Worldpay account is relatively high, which discourages many people and makes them less favorable.

•    Customer service
Worldpay provides 24/7 customer support through telephone and email. You can also chat live with customer support representatives during business hours.

•    Overall rating

4.3 out of 5   

3.    2Checkout

2Checkout is an American based international payment platform that allows businesses to accept mobile and online payments from buyers worldwide. 2checkout has worked hard to feature among the best Gateway service providers.


•    Easy and Quick Access
2Checkout is easy to join and use. You are only required to make a one-time payment of $49.97. No monthly and setup fees include while setting up gateway account; However account holder needs to pay fees between 2-5% per transaction. They also offer 30-day money – back guarantee.

•    Integration with shopping carts
2checkout offers users the latest shopping carts solutions that enable them to select products of their choice and pay them at once. It eases and hastens the speed of online purchase thereby increasing profit per unit time.

•    Effective fraud prevention
2checkout verifies all transactions before they are authorized. The system easily flags suspicious transactions and stops them timely.

•    User-friendly control panel for Administrators
2checkout has one of the most user-friendly management control panels for merchants. The merchants need not have advanced technical skills to manage the account transactions.

•    Transparency
2Checkout is transparent to their clients. They post all the necessary information as regards to their pricing, rates, and terms. They have no hidden charges.

•    Monthly Fees
2Checkout does not charge any application or monthly fees

•    Gateway setup
2checkout set up is free

•    Customer service
You can get assistance from 2Checkout friendly customer support staff by contacting them via telephone. You can also use their comprehensive FAQ that is regularly updated with quick answers to questions commonly asked by merchants. A knowledge base is also available on their website for in-depth answers to more complex questions on a broad range of topics.

•    Overall rating
3.7 out of 5

4.    Skrill

Skrill is an internationally acclaimed gateway service that was previously known as Moneybookers. Skrill provides multi- currency payments. They do not accept credit cards as such you have to load funds from your bank account.

•    Available in many countries.
Skrill is available in more than 35 countries globally. They have established local bank relations enabling them to serve their customers from different parts of the country.

•    Fewer restrictions
Unlike other gateway service providers who use credit cards, Skrill’s non-use of credit cards means they have fewer restrictions regarding security clearance which mean faster transactions.

Like others payment gateway service providers, Skrill`s fees charges is between 0.50 – 7.00% per transaction (rates are vary, depend on country).

•    Convenient withdrawals
Skrill is linked to many local bank accounts, which makes it easier for users to withdraw money from to their bank account from Skrill at any time.

•    Lower charges per transaction
Skrill has the lowest charges compared to other gateways such as PayPal, 2Checkout, and Worldpay.

•    Transparency
Skrill gateway service provider is transparent and provides all relevant information as pertains to fees, charges, and terms.

•    Monthly Fees
Skrill does not charge users monthly fees.

•    Gateway Setup fees
Skrill does not charge users for setting up their service.

•    Customer service
Skrill provides around the clock customer support via telephone call and email service.

•    Overall rating
3.5 Out of 5

Importance of Online Gateway Services

•    Increase in sales
An excellent gateway service can increase your sales. Customers like it when they are provided with several payment options such as credit cards and debit cards among others. Providing customers with at least four payment options is believed to raise the rate of conversion.

•    Customers expect online payment options
Nowadays, customers are becoming savvier, and so they expect an e-commerce platform to avail various payment options. When customers know that they can pay online securely, they become more loyal to your store.

•    Help your cash flow
Online gateway services can contribute to improving your cash flow. Payments from your customers undergo various checks before they end up in your account. With the appropriate gateway service partner, you can get your money fast.

•    SSL Security
To guard against cybercrime, gateway service providers use Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) cryptographic system to encrypt and at the same time decrypt data between the users and the server. SSL is important in that it protects sensitive and confidential information such as credit card numbers, user names and passwords against cyber criminals. The SSL certificate makes it extremely difficult for hackers to get access to customer information.

•    PCI Compliance
All online stores are required to be PCI compliance. The use of a competent gateway service will take away all the charges associated with PCI compliance hence saving you the money and headache.

•    Reduce the cost of setting up an online store
You can imagine the kind of investment that is required to put up a secure payment system. Using a gateway service ensures you get quickly into your core business. You don’t have to worry on how to secure your customers’ transactions as the gateway service provider takes care of all your transactions.


Growing your online business involves providing your customers with the best possible customer experience. Every opportunity needs to be utilized. Teaming up with the best gateway service provider will ensure your users have the most convenient payment option. Customers will have more confidence in your online store resulting to more loyal customers, and more sales.