Braintree - Features, Pricing, Alternatives, and More

Matthew Guay
Written by Matthew GuayLast updated July 12, 2016

No matter what type of online business or app you're building, there's one crucial ingredient you need: a payment processing tool. A tool that helps you accept credit card payments securely—and making sure your company isn't swamped with fraud—lets you focus on building your business without worrying about financial infrastructure.

There are simple payment options like PayPal and other payment tools that handle credit card payments on their own site. But to keep your customers on your site, and control the entire checkout process, you need a payment platform that can be built into your site and app. Braintree—part of the PayPal family—is a tool for just that.

Braintree includes an API, SDKs for iOS, Android, and a wide variety of popular languages, along with a simple drop-in UI to add a payment form to your site with a code snippet. It also has integrations with eCommerce tools like WooCommerce and subscription providers like Recurly for other ways to accept payments without coding. If you already have your own payment forms, you can add Braintree to them with hosted fields—iFrames that replace the credit card info fields in your forms with Braintree's own fields. That gives you a secure way to process customer finance data, while still being able to hand-code everything about your app.

Credit cards are the default payment option for most non-cash purchases, but they're not the only option with Braintree. You can also choose to accept payments via PayPal, Bitcoin, Venmo, and mobile payment options like Apple Pay and Android Pay. You can also accept international payments from credit cards in most major markets—and if you want to be paid in local currency, you can choose that, too.

Payments aren't all equal. Selling one product perhaps just needs a single checkout button. But your new app may be more complex than that. Braintree includes options for subscription payments, discounts, and trials. You can add plans for every subscription level you offer, with a trial, customized billing period, and an end date if your subscription is for a limited time. There are also options for add-ons and discounts, for an easy way to offer extra features or give annual discounts. Or, if you're building a marketplace—where part or most of the sale price goes to 3rd parties who list their products or services on your site—Braintree includes options to split payments automatically for an easy way to build your next marketplace app.

Then, you'll still need to tweak how strict you want your security to be. Braintree lets you choose which payment options to offer, and includes options to detect and reject duplicate payments automatically, restrict specific IP addresses, and create your own risk thresholds to perhaps watch for the same postal code or unique credit cards per IP address in a period of time. As your payments come in, you can then watch your sales through the dashboard, or dig into payments through Braintree's advanced searches to help you drill down and find specific types of payments. And if you ever need to refund or correct customer info, there's options for that, too.

Braintree's focused on the technical side of billing, with the tools—and pricing—you need to get your new product off the ground without trouble. And if you're worried about fraud, or want the latest payment options for your customers, it has you covered with options to tweak every part of your payments system.

Have any feedback on this overview, or something we should change? Let us know!

Braintree Features

  • Accept credit card, Bitcoin, Apple Pay, Android Pay, Venmo, and PayPal payments through the same payment forms
  • Build secure payments into your existing forms with Hosted Fields, or design your own payment system with Braintree's API
  • Import existing transaction data or export Braintree data to over services to keep all records together
  • Optionally settle payments in international currencies for 14 currencies
  • Subscriptions and split payments support for flexible finance options
  • Set safeholds to prevent fraud

Braintree Pricing

  • Free first $50k of credit card processing volume; free first $1M of Bitcoin transaction volume.
  • 2.9% + $0.30 per credit card or mobile pay transaction, plus additional 1% fee for transactions outside your home country
  • Standard PayPal pricing for transactions processed through PayPal accounts
  • 1% fee for Bitcoin transactions, plus $0.15 fee for each bank disbursement
  • Discounted rates available for nonprofits and businesses processing over $80k/month

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