PayPal Holdings, Inc. is an American company, established in 1998 as a worldwide online payments system. PayPal is one of the world’s largest Internet payment companies. The company operates as an acquirer, performing payment processing for online vendors, auction sites and other commercial users, for which it charges a fee. Online money transfers serve as electronic alternatives to traditional paper methods like checks and money orders.
PayPal had its IPO in 2002, and became a wholly owned subsidiary of eBay later that year. In 2014, PayPal moved $228 billion in 26 currencies across more than 190 nations, generating a total revenue of $7.9 billion (44% of eBay’s total profits). The same year, eBay announced plans to spin-off PayPal into an independent company by mid-2015 and was completed on July 18, 2015.
As of 2016, PayPal operates in 203 markets and has 179 million active, registered accounts. PayPal allows customers to send, receive and hold funds in 26 currencies worldwide. Paypal’s specialty service is online financial transactions by transferring funds electronically, and is not a traditional currency exchange platform, rather incidentally Paypal clients are actually making currency exchanges with almost every international transaction.
Services are organized into four categories:
Buying- Paying for global purchase using PayPal is easy, although, when purchasing items in a foreign currency through PayPal, the company imposes a 2.5% fee in addition to credit card charges.
Selling- Merchants have access to PayPal’s vast array of business products which include several APIs and checkout buttons that are designed to expedite customer’s shopping experience.
Money transfers are simplified:
Business: Over 7 million worldwide businesses have used Paypal, primarily because the company is determined to make its services as easy to use as possible. Benefits include:
Accept payments with one of PayPal’s APIs allow websites to accept payments from PayPal, ApplePay, Android Pay and Venmo. Benefits include:
|Monthly Sales||Fee Per Transaction||Examples|
|$0.00 USD to $3,000.00 USD||2.9% + $0.30 USD||$3.20 USD fee on a $100.00 USD sale|
|$3,000.01 USD to $10,000.00 USD||2.5% + $0.30 USD*||$2.80 USD fee on a $100.00 USD sale|
|$10,000.01 USD to $100,000.00 USD||2.2% + $0.30 USD*||$2.50 USD fee on a $100.00 USD sale|
Cross Border Commercial Payments and other Fees:
No charges for paying through PayPal, receiving funds is charged at: 1.9% to 3.4% +.35 euro.
Personal Transfer fees for sending or receiving money are 3.4% +.35 euro
If the transaction requires a currency conversion, PayPal uses their retail exchange rate, based on the rate a bank would use and they add currency conversion fee which differs depending on the currency used. Additionally a cross-border fee is applied.
Dynamic video images show business around the world in action with PayPal’s message: we’ve got you covered reassuring clients of their reimbursement policy. Obviously initiating business clients is the priority , rather than transparency with rates. Payal’s emphasis to ‘help clients get their money back’ should something they’ve ordered on PayPal not arrive as specified generates a high level of trust.
For those who enjoy squinting at small legal disclaimers, PayPal offers plenty of fascinating content. There are reams of special fees to be ferreted out of copious data. Also development details regarding options for business websites that make designing the ideal business site a task best left to an expert- not simple, nor easy at all to navigate the options.
Unmercifully rushing visitors along, PayPal is allergic to transparency. Promising smart tailored solutions for small and large business, the company will hurry past the competition’s well established good exchange rates and far more responsive customer service.
TRUSTPILOT rates PayPal at 1.5-Bad with 2325 reviews. Ebay vendors who rely on PayPal are consistently describing the company’s policy of holding their funds for 180 days, crushing their cottage industry’s business’ necessary cash flow. Customer service was described as very slow with apathetic and robotic responses when clients tried to get specific details about when their money would be freed up.
A review of merchant account providers by CPO gave PayPal 3.4 out of 5 stars and found he was inundated with comments detailing issues with the company. 142 comments were made with only 2 being positive. A familiar practice is PayPal’s policy of freezing business accounts with no explanations offered. A small business owners nightmare this meant that companies were unexpectedly unable pay employees, send or receive orders until PayPal unfroze the business account. Customer service, described as ‘really atrocious’ included customers service representatives with poor English skills keeping clients waiting on long hold times.
Our Review: Using PayPal for business is tricky enough, but trusting PayPal with making transfers is simply not recommended.
Add the 2%-3% conversion rate to the bad initial exchange rate, then load on PayPal’s additional fees and clients are left with the same high rates banks charge and the same poor customer service wait times. For many small businesses relying on eBay, PayPal is a double edged sword that allows them to sell online while sometimes randomly freezing their accounts. The same customer services issues already seen are likely to make using the firm for foreign exchange risky. Since the rates and fees make it an expensive risk, there’s no incentive to take the chance when trustworthy firms abound.
2.5 out of 5- for those who must use the service for business-beware of account freezing. Not recommended at all for international transfers.
PayPal is determined to get the whole world to checkout as fast as possible. Using the company to purchase goods is very straightforward for domestic purchases.
For eCommerce, the fees applied are nipping away at profit margins. For transfers PayPal’s wholesale rate isn’t competitive, nor is it upfront. Fees added to an already low rate make this company the lazy, expensive way to send money.