Ecommerce is like a fairy godmother for Indian retailers. It has opened a whole new world of customers, helping small merchants and startups escape the limitations of geography. Today, even a small business owner or entrepreneur in a remote corner of India can make it big and win customers from across the country and even overseas, thanks to eCommerce selling. 

But, before you turn your eCommerce dreams into a reality, there’s a major hurdle to cross. You need a reliable and secure payment gateway that makes it easy for customers to pay using their preferred online payment mode. 

Until a couple of years back, setting up a payment gateway in India was a challenging task. It involved extensive documentation, lengthy verification, steep setup fees, technical know-how and more. 

Fast forward to today – setting up a payment gateway is hassle-free and merchants have more than a dozen choices to choose from. This raises another question - how do you find the best payment gateway among the options available? 

Worry not, CreditMantri has got your back! In this article, we compare the key features and transaction charges of five popular payment gateways, helping you make the right choice. Before, we begin, here is a brief introduction. 

What is a payment gateway and how does it work? 

A payment gateway is a tool that eCommerce stores use to confirm the card details of a customer. Without a payment gateway, online merchants will not be able to process credit/debit card payments from customers. 

Here is a brief guide on how payment gateways work: 

  1. The customer checks out and initiates a payment on your website/mobile app. 

  2. The customer is directed to the payment page provided by the payment gateway. At this stage, the customer has to choose his/her preferred payment mode - credit/debit card, netbanking, UPI, mobile wallet, etc. 

  3. The payment gateway verifies the banking details provided by the customer and processes the transaction. Once the transaction is approved by the buyer’s bank, the amount goes to the payment gateway’s account. 

  4. The payment gateway then transfers it to the merchant’s bank account, within the pre-agreed settlement time after deducting a transaction fee on it. 

Why do you need a payment gateway? 

In a recent consumer study, it was found that a whopping 87% of customers abandoned their shopping carts if the checkout was tedious, complicated or lengthy. Providing customers with a swift, seamless and enhanced checkout experience is a must to retain existing customers and win new ones. 

Besides offering an enhanced checkout experience, a payment gateway improves the security of transactions, multiple payment options, fraud management, recurring billing (subscriptions) and much more. To summarise, a payment gateway helps to increase sales, reduce cart abandonments, wins customer trust, all of which boost your overall revenue and brand value.  

Top 5 Payment Gateways in India

Now that we've seen what a payment gateway is, how it works and benefits, the next step is to check out the different options available to merchants. Here's a rundown of the 5 best payment gateways in India.

1. Razorpay 

USP: Support for 90+ currencies; Ease of integration, Painless to set up and Feature-rich.

If you're looking for a payment gateway that is effortless to integrate and comes with an array of features, Razorpay is your best choice. It is the only payment solution provider in India that offers a complete end-to-end product suite. It provides merchants access to all popular payment modes like a credit card, debit card, internet banking from 58 banks, UPI, PayLater, and 8 mobile wallets.

Salient Features of the Razorpay Payment Gateway:

  • Flash checkout – Merchants can access 4+ million saved cards, thereby eliminating the need for customers to retype their card details.

  • Powerful dashboard – To easily manage payments, refunds, invoices, subscriptions, virtual accounts, transfers, etc. 

  • No additional costs for international payment gateway setup – Razorpay helps your international customers pay in their local currency. There are no additional charges for setting up an international payment gateway. 

  • Razorpay works best for both international and domestic orders. 

  • Support for 92 currencies and offers real-time currency conversion. 

  • You can choose to receive international payments either in INR or your preferred foreign currency. 

Fees

  • Zero annual maintenance charges 

  • Fee per transaction – 2% for domestic transactions; +1% for international transactions + applicable GST

  • No setup fees or any other hidden charges

  • Zero withdrawal fees

  • Payments are credited within 3 days to your bank account.

 

2. Cashfree 

USP: Supports 100+ payment options; Fast settlement cycle. 

Cashfree is another popular payment gateway in India. Just like Razorpay, it offers support for both domestic and international payments. You can choose from several integration options to provide your customers with an enhanced checkout experience. 

Salient Features of the Cashfree Payment Gateway:

  • Cashfree offers the fastest settlement cycle in India – 24 to 48 hours. Additionally, you can choose an instant settlement feature to receive payments within 15 minutes.

  • Support for a wide range of domestic payment options – debit/credit cards, 75+ net banking, 6 popular mobile wallets, PayLater, and cardless EMI. 

  • It supports international payments in 30 currencies. 

Fees:

  • Zero initial setup charges and annual maintenance fees 

  • Per transaction charges:

    • For credit/debit cards, mobile wallets, UPI: Flat fee of 1.75% on each transaction

    • For international transactions: Flat fee of 3.5% + Rs. 7 per transaction 

 

3. PayU

USP: Hassle-free onboarding with zero coding; support for both web stores and mobile apps; 

PayU (formerly known as PayU Money) is a popular payment gateway service in India that offers payment support for some big brands like Dream11, Airbnb, Ola, Goibibo, Bookmyshow, etc. It is used by 3.5+ lakh businesses in India. This payment gateway offers a seamless checkout experience for your customers. 

The one minor drawback of this payment gateway is that you need to pay an initial setup fee to start accepting international payments. 

Salient Features of the PayU Payment Gateway:

  • Supports both domestic and international credit/debit cards 

  • Support for 100+ foreign currencies 

  • World-class security

  • Easy onboarding with zero coding 

  • Settlement days: Around 2 days from the time of the transaction

  • Offers support for both iOS and Android mobile apps 

Fees:

  • Zero annual maintenance charges

  • Fees per transaction:

    • For domestic payments: 2% + GST 

    • For American Express Cards: 3% + GST 

    • For international payments: initial setup fees + 3% + Rs. 6 

 

4. PayPal 

USP: Well-known and popular with international shoppers; 

It's one of the most widely known payment gateways and has been around for a long time. PayPal is available in 200+ countries across the globe, and over 173 customers use it regularly. If you're expecting several orders from international customers, then it's a good idea to opt for PayPal as it is well-known. However, it is not widely popular with Indian customers.

Salient Features of the PayPal Payment Gateway:

  • Supports payments in 100 currencies with withdrawals in 57 currencies. 

  • PayPal wallets can hold 26 currencies. 

  • All payments received in your PayPal account are auto-credited into your local bank account daily. 

  • However, you cannot use it to receive payments directly in INR. Hence, there are conversion charges. 

Fees:

  • Annual Maintenance Charge – Zero

  • Fee per transaction

    • 4.4% + US $0.30 + Conversion Charges 

 

5. CCAvenue 

USP: Simple and Hassle-free checkout for returning customers; multilingual payment page in 18 languages;

It’s one of the oldest and largest payment gateways in India. It supports 200+ payment options. Recently, CCAvenue has received an upgrade with new features making it suitable for mobile apps and web payments.  

Salient Features of the CCAvenue Payment Gateway:

  • Supports 27 major international currencies

  • Represent your product pricing in major international currencies 

  • Multilingual payment page that supports 18 languages (Indian and international) 

  • Payment settlement time takes around a week.

Fees:

  • Zero initial setup fees 

  • The annual maintenance charge is Rs. 1200 for a beginner account

  • Fee per transaction

    • Domestic credit/debit cards, mobile wallets, UPI : 2% + applicable taxes

    • International payments: 3% + applicable taxes

Factors to Consider while Choosing a Payment Gateway

Still confused about which payment gateway is the right choice for you? Here are a few tips to help you make the right choice.

  • The first step is to compare transaction fees. Look for payment gateways that charge a flat fee. Watch out for hidden charges, setup fees, and other miscellaneous expenses.

  • Compare the different payment options supported by the payment gateway. Having multiple options is a great choice, as it gives customers the flexibility to pay using their preferred method. 

  • Next, evaluate the currencies supported by the payment gateway. For instance, if you have several customers from Australia, then providing them with a payment gateway that accepts payments in AUD will improve your conversion rates. 

  • Remember that customers do not want to spend time filling up a form before they can check out. Having a payment gateway that offers instant checkout without the need to sign up is an added advantage.

  • Another crucial factor in comparing payment solution providers is the payment settlement time. Payment gateways that disburse the transaction amount quickly will help in boosting your cash flow.

  • Finally, make sure to read the terms and conditions thoroughly before you fix an option. A payment gateway that offers you extensive support both before and after the installation is a huge benefit. 

EndNote 

To make your brand stand out in the hyper-competitive online market, you need to provide your customers with an efficient and seamless checkout experience. Compare the features and fees of the top 5 payment gateways listed here and pick the best one that works for you.