Braintree Payments Review: Features, Pricing and Alternatives

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Braintree’s focus on e-commerce payments makes it a poor option for traditional brick-and-mortar retail operations. Businesses that accept online payments will still appreciate the company’s transparent pricing and wide range of payment options.

Braintree is a merchant services provider that offers payment processing services for mobile apps and websites and is connected to some well-known names in mobile payments: PayPal and Venmo. Founded in 2007, Braintree acquired Venmo in 2012 and was purchased by PayPal the following year.

Online payment processing

This is Braintree’s bread and butter. Braintree Direct makes it easy for businesses to accept online payments and use their mobile app.

Businesses can accept the following payment methods with Braintree:

  • Credit cards: Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover and Diners Club.

  • Debit cards: Visa, Mastercard and Maestro (some markets).

  • Digital wallets: Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay.

  • ACH.

  • Venmo (available only in the United States).

  • PayPal.

Point-of-sale payments

While Braintree focuses on e-commerce, the service does support in-person payments using PayPal Here card readers. Business owners who accept PayPal payments can order a PayPal Here reader for $24.99. All transactions are subject to PayPal Here pricing. Braintree charges no additional fees for transactions.

Features

Aspects

Availability

Credit card processing

Yes.

Digital wallets

Yes.

ACH payment processing

Yes.

PCI compliance

Yes.

Cryptocurrency processing

No.

Multi-currency support

Yes.

Invoicing

No.

Recurring billing and subscriptions

Yes.

Transaction reports

Yes.

Braintree charges a flat rate depending on the payment type, with different rates for credit cards and digital wallets versus payments processed by check, PayPal or Venmo. Select businesses may also be eligible for interchange-plus pricing or discounted rates.

Cards and digital wallets: 2. 59% plus 49 cents per transaction for most. Purchases made with an American Express card will be charged 3.5%, plus a fixed fee of 0.25 cents per transaction.

Additional fees apply for credit cards issued outside of the United States and for transactions in a foreign currency. Custom flat rates and interchange-plus pricing are available for businesses that process more than $80,000 per month.

Chargebacks are $15 each.

Venmo: 3. 49% plus 49 cents per transaction. For certain businesses, flat pricing can be customized.

ACH: 0. 75% per transaction, maximum fee of $5. Enterprise businesses can get discounted rates.

PayPal and PayPal credit: Rates are determined by the terms of your PayPal account.

There are no fees for payment card industry compliance or early cancellation, and most customers have no additional monthly fees, with one exception: businesses that use Braintree solely as a payment gateway. Those businesses pay $49 per month and 10 cents per transaction, along with any fees charged by their merchant account provider.

Transparent, competitive pricing

Braintree’s rates are refreshingly straightforward when compared with other merchant service providers. The company charges a flat fee for most businesses, and it publishes the prices on its website. Braintree’s rates can be competitive because it doesn’t charge additional monthly fees in addition to its per-transaction rate. (Learn more below). Brick-and-mortar stores looking for a gateway to the Internet will find better deals.

No contract, minimal fees

Braintree customers sign up on a month-to-month basis, so there’s no lengthy contract or pricey early termination fees. Beyond the flat-rate per-transaction fee, there are no additional fees. Braintree does not charge any additional monthly fees, PCI compliance fee or minimum transaction fees.

The only fees customers can expect are a chargeback fee of $15 per incident and a 1% fee for converting transactions paid in foreign currency to U.S. dollars.

Customer service

Braintree has a rating of just 1.2 stars on TrustPilot, a consumer review website, primarily due to poor reviews related to customer service. Many complainants have to wait several weeks before they are resolved. Braintree provides customer support via email only. There is no phone option, other than to contact its sales team.

Not suited for brick-and-mortar retail

While Braintree offers the option to take in-person payments with a PayPal Here reader, the service is not set up to support traditional brick-and-mortar operations. Retail stores, restaurants, and other businesses that accept in-person payments should consider other options.

Square

Square and Braintree offer many of the same benefits: transparent pricing, no monthly fees or PCI compliance fees, and no long-term contracts. However, Square offers payment processing solutions for brick-and-mortar retailers and restaurants (Braintree caters to e-commerce businesses).

Other benefits include:

  • Easy setup.

  • Competitive transaction rates.

  • No processing fees on customer refunds.

  • Free point-of-sale software and mobile card reader.

Dharma

Dharma Merchant Services is another top option for e-commerce businesses, with transparent rates and low transaction fees for online payments. But it does charge a monthly software fee ($25) and an account closure fee ($49). Dharma uses an interchange-plus pricing model and offers reduced rates for businesses processing over $100,000 per month.

Other benefits include:

  • Compatible with a variety of point-of-sale systems.

  • No PCI compliance fees.

  • No minimum transaction fees.

Kelsey Sheehy, https://www.nerdwallet.com/article/small-business/braintree-payments-review
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