Accept Credit Cards Online Without a Merchant Account

Compare all credit card processors at once

This is a basic review of available payment processors for web based businesses including a comparison of some of the most popular credit card processors enabling you to accept credit cards online today.

OverviewAccept credit card payment online

compare 3rd party credit card processors

Who accepts which credit card?

What should I consider before I sign up with a credit card processor?

Miscelaneous notes on particular 3rd party processors

Merchant accounts

The traditional method of accepting credit cards requires applying to a bank for a merchant account, these accounts usually require weeks to get up and running and require fees of $500 or more just to apply.

Most banks have a relationship with only one credit card so once you are approved for Visa, for example, you will have to apply again, often to another bank, for a MasterCard account and so on.

So why do people apply for merchant accounts? The main benefit is that your business will get a low discount rate, typically around 3%. The discount rate is the percentage of each sale that the credit card processor charges you.

accept credit cards online


Third party processors

The credit card processors listed in the table below are known as 3rd party processors. They have traditional merchant accounts and process your customers’ payments through them. As they are accepting the risks that traditional banks might not, they will charge you more for the privilege of accepting credit cards via their service

Online credit card processors comparison table*

2Checkout $49 0 5.5% $0.45 yes yes no yes yes 0 yes ACH 1-12 hrs
MerchantPlus free $19.95 2.15% $0.25 yes no yes yes 0 yes ACH 24-72 hrs
Authorizeit $49 $29.99 2.19% $0.50 yes yes $900 US,CAN 24-72 hrs
Cardservice $49 $29.99 $0.30 yes yes yes yes $25 no ACH 24-72 hrs
ccbill free 0 14.5% $0.30 – $1 ONLY yes yes Primarily a subscription service* 0 CHECK 24-48 hrs
ccnow $9.95 $9.95 4.99% $0.50 no yes no $100 yes ACH, CHK, W
Charge FREE - 2.25% $0.25 yes yes yes yes 0 ACH same day
Chase Paymentech™ free $22.95 CALL $0.20 yes Alternative payments support, including PayPal, Bill Me Later and private label cards* no yes yes yes 135 different currencies* ACH 24- 72 hrs*
Digibuy $29.99 0 13.9% $0 ONLY no no no no yes no ACH, CHECK same day
GoogleCheckout free* 0 2%* $0.20* yes no no no yes no 0 no ACH to US varies
Kagi free 0 2.5% $.15 – $5 yes no yes 0 yes CHECK or WIRE 1hour plus
NOCHEX $90 0 2.9% $0.40 no no no 0 no
PayPal free 0 2.9% $0.30 yes yes no no yes no 0 yes ACH same day
Propay free $4.99 3.25% $.65 no no yes 0 no ACH
World Pay quote quote quote no no Available with Future Pay option 0 Yes, over 140 currencies* 7-10 days

*Hover your mouse over bold table headings and figures above for definitions and more details .

Check which online processors accept which credit cards. Next Page >