The striking similarity between Google Checkout and PayPal

Anyone noticed the amazing similarity between Google Checkout’s charges and PayPal’s? Are there credible alternatives?

It is almost as if they have colluded, or one has just ripped the other one off. As Google’s charges changed most recently, I guess they just decided to set them at a ‘market rate’. Great to know we got a choice.

Google Checkout:

Transaction Processing Fees as of 5 May 2009

Beginning on 5 May 2009, transaction processing rates will be determined by your sales volume during April 2009. Each month thereafter, we’ll continue to use the prior month’s sales volume to determine your transaction processing rate. Learn more.

Monthly Sales Through Google Checkout Fees Per Transaction
Less than £1500 3.4% + £0.20
£1500 – £5999.99 2.9% + £0.20
£6000 – £14999.99 2.4% + £0.20
£15000 – £54999.99 1.9% + £0.20
£55000 or more

1.4% + £0.20

PayPal fees:

Your account is enabled for Standard Rate. Based on your sales volume, you are currently being charged .

View cross-border transaction fees
Monthly sales Price per transaction
£0.00 GBP – £1,500.00 GBP 3.4% + £0.20 GBP
£1,500.01 GBP – £6,000.00 GBP 2.9% + £0.20 GBP
£6,000.01 GBP – £15,000.00 GBP 2.4% + £0.20 GBP
£15,000.01 GBP – £55,000.00 GBP 1.9% + £0.20 GBP
above £55,000.00 GBP* 1.4% + £0.20 GB

4 responses to “The striking similarity between Google Checkout and PayPal”

  1. Peter C says:

    Both are fairly poor.

    Google Checkout stuffed itself by releasing too early, and not supporting enough payment methods. Now they support a variety of payment methods it’s too late to persuade consumers to use it. I once checked Google Checkout and it didn’t support Maestro cards and therefore in my eyes it never will.

    With Paypal you live in a world of fear – you read *so* many horror stories online with people losing money they’ve sent or received and simply lost it. Gone.

    When it comes to MONEY users are (fortunately) remarkably aware of what brands should and shouldn’t be used.

  2. Peter C says:

    PS: Founders at Work by Jessica Livingstone has a great interview with Max Levchin about why there aren’t many (any?) other competitors in this market. Namely, you need lots of cash, you’re sieged with fraud and brand loyalty with money is crazy hard to attain without a parent company (eg, eBay/Google)

  3. I looked into this for (my record label, no seriously) a while back, and it turned out that even with the oligopoly going on here, unless you’re doing serious volumes it was *still* cheaper than going with WorldPay. Basically unless you’re big enough to merit a merchant account with a proper bank, you’re kind of stuffed.

    There has to be a market opportunity here for someone, but I’m damned if I can see what it is.

  4. Peter C says:

    It’s the kind of thing HSBC or some forward thinking (and still in business) bank should bank roll as a marketing strategy.

    Massively undercut everyone else, require HSBC bank accounts if you get above n transactions and make the user experience gorgeous.

    Every transaction anyone makes is a) reassured because its HSBC, b) made aware whatever awesome deals HSBC are offering. Every. Single. Transaction.

    It takes POS advertising to the next logical step…