Stripe Checkout

May 2023
Stripes in the wild.

WideRange Galleries website shopping carts are fully integrated with Stripe payment processing, and as of Version 5.9 the carts utilize the newest modern version of Stripe Checkout. PayPal payment processing is still available and still works fine, but the Stripe Checkout process is noticeably more streamlined and professional. In the Payment Settings page in the admin, you can choose whether you’d like to use Stripe, PayPal, or both. If you're not using Stripe for your website payments already, I highly recommend activating it!

Advantages of Stripe

Stripe logo

Like PayPal, Stripe is a free payment processing platform to accept payments from your website cart. It's easy and free to sign up for a Stripe account, and their transaction fees are very similar to PayPal's at roughly 2.9% per charge. However, Stripe offers a number of advantages to mention:

  • The Stripe Checkout is overall more streamlined, straightforward, and visually pleasing compared to the standard PayPal checkout (which tries to funnel users towards paying with PayPal or signing up for a PayPal account, with normal credit card payment seemingly a secondary option).
  • Stripe offers accurate address-based sales tax calculations built into the checkout process (the sales tax is automatically calculated once the customer enters their address during checkout, rather than on the cart page beforehand, thus saving a step).
  • Stripe offers a variety of additional payment options beyond credit cards, including Apple Pay, Google Pay, Cash App, GiroPay; various buy-now-pay-later options including Affirm, AfterPay, and Klarna; and direct bank transfers such as ACH and more.
  • Stripe offers extensive checkout customization and configuration options.
  • Stripe payouts to your bank accounts can be configured to happen automatically per payment or scheduled periodically as desired.

To see the Stripe Checkout in action, you can go to any photo page on my photography website, like here for example, add a print item to the cart, then click the "Pay with Card" checkout button. You will then see how the Stripe Checkout looks (don't worry, you don't have to complete the purchase... unless you want to!).

Basic Stripe Setup (if you don't already have a Stripe account)

  1. Sign up for a Stripe account at You will need to follow their instructions to hook up your bank account for deposits and to fill out the various business settings on the account settings pages there.
  2. In your Stripe dashboard, go to the "Developers" menu, then to the "API keys" page (click here). Copy the Secret Key, and paste that into the Stripe Payment Settings in the WideRange admin at Settings > Payments. Make sure it's the LIVE key, not a TEST key. Then click the checkbox to "Use Stripe payment processing" and save.

Your cart will now process payments through Stripe!

Stripe Sales Tax Setup

If you are charging sales tax, you must configure sales tax settings and enter your business address in your Stripe account (not just in the website admin panel).

* Stripe Tax charges an additional fee of 0.5% per transaction, when sales tax is charged (more info).

Additional Payment Methods

In your Stripe account at Settings > Payment Methods, you can activate a variety of additional payment methods, including Apple Pay, Google Pay, Cash App, GiroPay; various buy-now-pay-later options including Affirm, AfterPay, and Klarna; and more.

Stripe Radar for Fraud Prevention

I would highly recommend activating Stripe Radar in your account, which can help to prevent fraudulent charges. The cost is only 2¢ per transaction, so this is a no-brainer. Once activated, you can add additional rules such as blocking payments when the cvc verification code and/or billing zip code doesn't match, or you can block payments from certain countries, and so on.

Stripe Chargeback Protection

You might consider opting in to Stripe's Chargeback Protection feature. When activated, if a customer disputes a charge, Stripe will reimburse you the disputed amount and waive dispute fees, regardless of whether the dispute is legitimate or not. This option is more expensive at 0.4% per transaction, but perhaps it is worth it for the peace of mind.

Checkout Branding Options

In your Stripe account at Settings > Branding, you can configure various brand elements for the checkout page.

The one important one I'd recommend configuring is the "Icon" image which adds a recognizable graphical element to your checkout pages.

You can also configure various brand and access colors if you want, though the default ones are fine.

Checkout Button options in the Admin

You have a few options for what you want the cart checkout button to say on the cart page of your website; you can select your preference in the WideRange admin panel at Settings > Payments.

Configure your "Ship To" Countries in the Admin

One last thing to check is that you've chosen all the countries you can ship to - which you can do in the WideRange admin panel at Settings > Cart. The countries you've selected here will be the ones that show up in the shipping address countries menu during Stripe checkout.

Stripe and/or PayPal?

Because of the advantages listed above, and because the Stripe checkout is generally more streamlined for credit card payments compared to PayPal, I definitely recommend using Stripe as the primary payment processor for your WideRange cart.

That said, you can use BOTH Stripe and PayPal for your website cart! If you active both in the WideRange admin (at Settings > Payments), then your cart will display two checkout buttons: There will be a yellow one that says "PayPal" and a blue one that says "Pay with Card".

In my experience, the vast majority of customers choose the "Pay with Card" (Stripe) option. But, some people still prefer PayPal, so I think it doesn't hurt to still give them that option.

Avoid Live Payment Testing (with your own Credit Card)

Once you've got your Stripe account set up, you might be tempted to test how it works on your website by completing a live transaction yourself with your own credit card. However, doing this may actually be against the terms of service of Stripe (or any payment processing company) and may cause unintended complications such as getting your account flagged or suspended.

If you want to test a complete live sale it is best to have a friend do this for you (with a different credit card, shipping address, and email address that aren't yours). You can temporarily reduce a product or print price for this purpose.

Posted in Features, Knowledge Base and tagged Sales.

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