Everything you need to know about Stripe Billing
Finding the right billing platform for your subscription business is crucial. Everything from invoicing customers to fighting fraud becomes easier with a high-quality billing platform.
But with such a huge range of options out there, how do you know which to choose?
Read on to learn everything you need to know about the Stripe billing platform, from its origins to user reviews.
What is Stripe Billing?
Stripe describes itself as a “fully integrated suite of payments products” that provides businesses with a unified billing solution. The company was founded by brothers John and Patrick Collison in 2009, in Palo Alto, California. With investment from Elon Musk and other parties, Stripe grew, gathering users worldwide. It has since partnered with major brands like Spotify and Twitter to process countless subscription transactions worldwide.
What are Stripe Billing's main features?
With Stripe Billing, businesses can start accepting recurring payments instantly and then manage their recurring revenue and accounts in one dashboard. This all-in-one platform has a long list of valuable features for subscription businesses. Here are just a few standouts.
Different subscription models
Stripe Billing lets you choose the best pricing models for your offerings. Their models use flexible billing logic that makes finding the best pricing structures for your subscribers easy. Different models include:
- Flat-rate pricing
- Good-better-best pricing
- Tiered pricing
- Per-seat pricing
Offering your subscribers a discount, free trial, or promotional pricing is an excellent customer acquisition strategy. Stripe Billing includes tools to quickly set up discounts, coupons, promotion codes, etc.
Businesses can create payment links to sell their subscriptions anywhere online — all potential subscribers need to do is click on the link and enter their payment details. Stripe makes it easy to create easy-to-use, attractive payment links without the hassle of coding.
Stripe Billing’s customer portal makes it easy for subscribers to manage their own accounts. Users can update their payment details, access invoices, and manage their subscriptions in one place. This is an essential feature for businesses looking to make it easy for customers to cancel their subscriptions and comply with subscription regulations.
Stripe Billing pricing
Stripe Billing is priced based on usage and is designed to be flexible to suit your business. Their two main pricing tiers are called Starter and Scale.
The Starter pricing tier allows businesses to create subscriptions, offer trials and discounts, and manage recurring billing. Starter customers can access features including automatic recurring billing, reminder notifications, and a customer portal.
Stripe takes a fee of 0.5% on recurring payments in this pricing tier.
The Scale plan is designed to be a “complete billing and reporting solution” for businesses looking to automate their revenue operations. In addition to all the features of the Starter plan, Scale includes the ability to create one-time invoices, invoice auto-reconciliation, quotes for subscriptions or invoices, automatic payment retries, and automated revenue reporting.
On the Scale plan, Stripe takes a 0.8% fee on recurring payments and one-time invoice payments.
It’s also important to note that Stripe Billing is built on the Stripe Payments platform, which lets businesses accept credit, debit, and mobile wallet payments. Stripe Payments take 2.9% + 30¢ for every card charge and 0.8% for every ACH direct debit transaction.
Who are some of Stripe's customers?
Let’s take a look at how Slack and The Atlantic use Stripe.
Slack is a wildly popular messaging and communication platform, with over 18 million active users communicating daily (as of 2020). As the brand continued to achieve spectacular growth, Slack needed a way to:
- Enable global credit card and ACH payments
- Automate usage-based invoices
- Allow customers to update payment plans
- Deliver a smooth payment experience
The company partnered with Stripe to use Stripe Payments, Billing, Radar, and Sigma. Since then, Slack has started to accept payments across 15 countries and implemented the latest reporting to save time on querying customer usage.
The Atlantic was first published in 1857, and started offering digital subscriptions in 2019 as consumers’ interest in digital media increased. The company wanted to deliver a smooth digital subscription model to engage existing and new readers but understood it needed a new payment strategy.
As a result, The Atlantic chose Stripe Billing to handle online payments associated with digital subscriptions. The Atlantic has acquired more than 800,000 digital subscribers since 2019 and recovered over $650,000 in revenue thanks to increased retention rates.
What do people like about Stripe?
- Its ease of use
- High-quality support
- How easy it is to set up
- Its reliability
What do people think Stripe could improve?
No platform is perfect, and reviewers at G2 highlight some improvement opportunities for Stripe Billing. These include:
- Payment processing can take a few days
- Some fees are higher than competitors’ fees, especially when considering payment processing
- Loading times can be slow
Fortunately, most users have had a positive experience with Stripe despite these potential issues.
Choose the right billing platform for your subscription business
Businesses that choose Stripe for subscription billing can benefit from fast, secure, simple payment processing.