To accept orders and payments on your website, you need an ordering system and a way to accept payment. Services like PayPal are a reasonable option, but if you want to accept payments by credit card, your options seem to be an aggregator service such as Stripe which like PayPal, has a higher processing fee for your transactions than a standard credit card processing account, or you can tie into your own merchant account through a gateway service such as Authorize.net. With the gateway service, you can process transactions at lower processing rates, but with an additional fee for the gateway. A gateway service might charge $25/month plus an additional 10 cents per transaction, but that is better than paying 2.9% at Stripe.
Until recently, those were your only options. Now, to get around the gateway service, you can integrate directly with a great processor through their gateway that is setup to support email invoicing, iPhone apps, and other device connectivity. We’re including the gateway with the card processing accounts, and have integrated it into open source shopping cart solutions so you can easily and freely add real credit card processing to your website without a gateway service. And, you can have this with processing rates that are about as low as they come.
MX Merchant is a really great system for processing payments competitively with powerful tools and features. We’ve been closely following the online ordering and payments world since 1997 and we think that this is currently the best thing out there for website payment processing.