PayPal

PayPal Updates

PayPal mention · January 11, 2019

The Best Free Invoice Software for 2019

You've finished the work, and it's time to get paid. Now you need to create an invoice, send it, and give your customer options for how to pay. And while you could draft an invoice in your favorite word processor, print it off, send it via snail mail...read more
PayPal mention · January 1, 2019

The Best Invoicing Software: 19 Apps to Get Paid for Your Work

You've already found clients, put in the hours, and completed the work. Now it's time to get paid. Invoicing should be the easiest part of your process, but creating and sending an invoice can be a time suck—and one you're not getting paid for. Invoicing software...read more
PayPal mention · August 27, 2018

Payment Processor Showdown: Stripe vs. PayPal

Online business all starts with a simple transaction. Back in the day, in order to complete that transaction, you needed a merchant account—a special bank account that allows you to accept credit card payments—and loads of cumbersome equipment. Today, all you need is a standard checking account and...read more
PayPal mention · August 8, 2018

Zapier Saves a Startup's Founder 40 Hours—Each Month

"Zapier saves me at least 40 hours a month. And as we plan to grow, we will rely more on Zapier."Swapnil Wale, Founder & Director, Techno-PMAs digital products become more common, product delivery has to be even more reliable than the mail—after all, we live in an...read more
PayPal mention · December 12, 2017

The Zapier Guide to Line Items

e pluribus unum. The timeworn phrase that graces most US banknotes—Latin for "Out of many, one"—was intended to represent the United States being one nation of many states, could easily have a double meaning. After all, so often when you open your wallet to pay a receipt or...read more
PayPal mention · August 15, 2013

How to Automate a Web Consulting Project from Start to Finish

Every so often we stumble across someone who has created a proverbial Rube Goldberg machine with a set of Zaps that automates a tremendous amount of work. For those of you have ever done consistent web consulting work, you know how much stuff has to happen when you land a...read more
Stephanie Gonzaga
Written by Stephanie GonzagaLast updated June 18, 2018

PayPal is a pioneer in the digital payments age, started in 1998 as one of the first companies to make it possible to send funds to almost anywhere or anyone on earth, online. It’s become a staple payment method for thousands of eCommerce websites all over the world, catering to over 200 markets and 100 currencies. This arguably is PayPal’s main selling point, since most up-and-coming payments solutions are still often exclusive to countries like USA, UK, and Australia.

The first way you'll use PayPal is often as a way to pay for something online. You find something you want, go to pay for it online, and see a payment screen asking for your credit card info or for you to login with PayPal. If you do the latter, you can pay with money you have in your PayPal account, your bank account, or a linked credit account—all without sharing your actual payment details with the vendor. That's one of PayPal's best advantages. It lets you quickly pay online with a simple account, without putting your credit card info in every website.

If you're starting a store, the same applies there too. You can add PayPal payments to your store for an easy way for anyone to pay with their PayPal account or directly with their credit card, if they want. You can also send an invoice to someone to request payment in PayPal, or can send a friend a gift or your part of the rent there as well. Your money will start filling up your online PayPal account where you can use it to buy other items, or can transfer it to your own bank account. It's not exactly an online bank—but it's the next closest thing.

The PayPal Summary page is the first thing to greet you when you log in. If you’ve been using your account for quite sometime, it displays a full list of completed transactions with their respective dates and amounts. The main menu sits at the top of the page where you can easily access other core features: Activity, Wallet, Send/Request Payments, notifications and account settings. On the left side of the screen is an overview of your PayPal balance, your list of banks and cards, and info links you may be interested in. Overall, the new site design has made everything more visible and accessible, even if you’ve just started using the platform.

Sending and receiving payments with PayPal remains consistent. You can send funds to another PayPal account, request payments from anyone with an email address, and/or withdraw funds to a supported bank account. If you’re a seller using PayPal as a payments platform, you can create and manage your invoices as well. All transactions are covered by the PayPal Buyer and Seller Protection policy, which any user will need to read to get the full scoop on how PayPal operates and, more importantly, how the company settles the score when dealing with buyer/seller disputes.

Need to recheck or retrieve info about a previous transaction? The Activity page has been revamped to make retrieving activity history fast and easy. You can search for transactions dating 30-90 days or specific transactions (e.g. Payments received, refunds) by setting the proper filters. If you need a soft copy, simply click on Statements (underneath Simple and Detailed views) and click on Activity export to download a spreadsheet of transactions.

There's only one catch: Fees. Send a gift to a friend in PayPal, and it's free—everything else comes with a small payment processing fee, much like you'd get from any other credit card transaction. They apply to currency conversions for overseas payments (e.g. USD to AUD) and to sellers’ accounts for every sale made. It helps to have a copy of the fees table on hand, in case you need to know how much PayPal will add on top of your purchase.

PayPal’s long history and global reputation has made it a popular choice for a digital payment solution; whether it’s the right payments platform for you or not depends on your needs. At the very least, it's one of the simplest ways to send money to almost anywhere around the world.

Originally published March 16, 2016; updated June 18, 2018 with new international fee, screenshot, and details.

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PayPal is a fast, safe way to send money, make an online payment, receive money or set up a merchant account. With over 150 million active registered accounts, PayPal helps people and businesses receive and make payments in more than 100 currencies in 203 markets.

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