Elavon vs Stripe explained – Payment processing comparison

Updated on 8 December 2023

Running a business today, big or small, requires a robust payment processing solution. With consumers increasingly embracing digital payments, it’s critical for businesses to offer frictionless transactions. Two big players in the field, Elavon vs Stripe, have become popular choices for businesses worldwide.

 
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In this article, we’ll delve into a detailed comparison of Elavon vs Stripe, focusing on their features, pricing, customer support, and more, to help you determine which one could best fit your business needs.

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Elavon vs Stripe

Features/FeesElavonStripe
Payment OptionsCredit/debit cards, contactless payments, mobile wallets. Over 120 currencies supported.Credit/debit cards, contactless payments, mobile wallets, Alipay, SEPA Direct Debit, and more. Over 135 currencies supported.
E-commerce IntegrationIntegrates with various e-commerce platforms; robust POS solutions; bespoke solutions for niche industries.Integrates seamlessly with multiple platforms including Shopify, WooCommerce, Magento. API-first architecture for custom checkout experiences, subscription tools.
SecurityPCI DSS compliant, end-to-end encryption, secure tokenisation, fraud detection.PCI DSS compliant, machine learning for fraud detection, Radar feature for preventing fraudulent transactions.
Customer Support24/7 via phone and email, online resources, FAQ section.24/7 email support, chat support for some plans, comprehensive online knowledge base, community support.
Pricing ModelQuote-based, varies depending on the business size, industry, and transaction volumes.Pay-as-you-go pricing. 1.4% + 20p for European cards, 2.9% + 20p for non-European cards for online transactions. Customised pricing for large volumes.
Monthly FeesVaries, based on quote.None, pay-as-you-go.
Setup FeesVaries, based on quote.None.
Elavon vs Stripe

For the most accurate and current fee structures, you should check directly with Elavon and Stripe.

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Understanding payment processing

Before diving into the comparison, it’s important to understand what payment processing is.

At its core, it’s a system that handles the transactions between customers’ payment methods (credit and debit card, digital wallets etc.) and the businesses’ bank accounts.

It verifies the transaction details, ensures funds are available, facilitates the transfer, and usually provides a range of ancillary services, from fraud detection to analytics.

Background on Elavon and Stripe

Elavon

Elavon is a payment processing company that’s been in the business for over 25 years. It’s a subsidiary of U.S. Bancorp and operates in more than 30 countries. Elavon offers a comprehensive suite of payment solutions designed to cater to businesses of all sizes and sectors, including retail, hospitality, health, and public sectors.

Stripe

Stripe, a relative newcomer, was established in 2010 and has rapidly become a go-to solution for online businesses. Headquartered in San Francisco, Stripe has expanded its operations to over 40 countries, offering a suite of payment and software solutions to support e-commerce and subscription-based businesses.

Features comparison

Payment options

Both Elavon and Stripe support an extensive range of payment options. Elavon offers all the standard options, including credit cards and debit cards, contactless payments, and mobile wallet transactions. They also have an extensive global reach, accepting payments in over 120 currencies.

Stripe, on the other hand, goes a step further, offering over 135 currencies and a plethora of payment methods, including less traditional ones like Alipay and SEPA Direct Debit. Stripe’s API-driven architecture allows businesses to customise their checkout experiences, making it particularly appealing to tech-savvy and international businesses.

E-commerce and integrations

Stripe is built with e-commerce and online businesses in mind. Its API-first architecture allows for seamless integrations with a multitude of platforms, including popular ones like Shopify, WooCommerce, and Magento. It also provides pre-built checkout pages and subscriptions tools.

Elavon also integrates with several e-commerce platforms, but its strength lies in its robust point-of-sale (POS) solutions, making it ideal for businesses with physical storefronts. Furthermore, it offers bespoke solutions to industries like airlines, education, and government entities, demonstrating its broad appeal.

Security

Both companies offer robust security measures, adhering to PCI DSS standards. Elavon provides end-to-end encryption, secure tokenisation, and fraud detection services. They also provide the necessary tools for businesses to be PCI-compliant.

Stripe, similarly, uses machine learning to detect fraud and assists businesses with PCI compliance. Its Radar feature uses sophisticated algorithms to prevent fraudulent transactions, making it a powerful tool for online businesses.

Pricing comparison

Elavon

Elavon operates on a quote-based pricing model, with rates varying based on factors like business size, sector, and transaction volumes. This means that it can offer competitive rates for larger businesses or those with high transaction volumes. However, this lack of transparency can make it challenging for small businesses to ascertain their likely costs upfront.

Stripe

Stripe operates on a pay-as-you-go pricing model, charging a flat rate for online card transactions. As of 2024, the fee was 1.4% + 20p for European cards and 2.9% + 20p for non-European cards for online transactions. For businesses with large volumes, customised pricing is available. Stripe’s transparent pricing model is often appreciated by start-ups and small businesses.

Customer support

Elavon has a dedicated customer service team available 24/7 via phone and email. Additionally, they offer a range of online resources and a comprehensive FAQ section.

Stripe’s primary customer support is via email, with 24/7 availability. However, they also offer support via chat for certain plans. While some users have reported slower response times, Stripe offers a rich knowledge base and community support to help users troubleshoot issues.

The final verdict – Elavon vs Stripe

Choosing between Elavon vs Stripe largely depends on your business needs.

If your business operates mainly online and seeks an innovative, API-first payment processor with transparent pricing, Stripe may be the best fit.

However, if you’re running a business that requires robust POS solutions, operates in a niche industry, or you prefer a personalised pricing model, Elavon could be the better choice.

Before making a decision, it’s worth reaching out to both companies, explaining your business needs and asking for a detailed quote. It’s crucial to pick a payment processor that aligns with your current needs and future aspirations, ensuring that as your business grows, your payment processing capabilities can scale along with it.

FAQ

What are the main differences between Elavon and Stripe?

The main differences between Elavon and Stripe are in their target markets, pricing models, and areas of specialisation. Elavon offers bespoke solutions and operates on a quote-based pricing model, whereas Stripe targets online businesses with an API-first approach and transparent, flat-rate pricing.

Which between Elavon and Stripe provides more payment options?

Both Elavon and Stripe support a wide range of payment options, but Stripe supports more, including over 135 currencies and less traditional methods like Alipay and SEPA Direct Debit.

How do the e-commerce integrations of Elavon and Stripe compare?

Elavon integrates with several e-commerce platforms and offers robust POS solutions. Stripe, designed with e-commerce in mind, integrates with a multitude of platforms, and allows businesses to customise their checkout experiences.

Which company between Elavon and Stripe offers better security features?

Both Elavon and Stripe offer robust security features that are compliant with PCI DSS standards. However, Stripe employs machine learning for fraud detection, giving it a slight edge for online businesses.

Which is cheaper to use, Elavon or Stripe?

It depends. Elavon operates on a quote-based pricing model which could be more competitive for larger businesses. Stripe, however, has a transparent flat-rate fee which may be more favourable for smaller businesses and startups.

How do Elavon and Stripe handle customer support?

Elavon provides 24/7 customer support via phone and email. Stripe primarily offers email support, with chat available for certain plans, and they provide extensive online resources.

Can I accept international payments with both Elavon and Stripe?

Yes, both Elavon and Stripe allow businesses to accept international payments. Elavon supports over 120 currencies, while Stripe supports over 135.

Which is better for online businesses, Elavon or Stripe?

Stripe, with its API-first architecture, seamless integrations with e-commerce platforms, and flat-rate pricing, is generally more favoured by online businesses.

Which is better for physical businesses, Elavon or Stripe?

Elavon, with its robust point-of-sale (POS) solutions, might be more suitable for businesses with a physical presence.

Can both Elavon and Stripe be integrated with my existing e-commerce platform?

Yes, both Elavon and Stripe can be integrated with various e-commerce platforms. However, you should check the specific platforms they each support.

Are both Elavon and Stripe suitable for small businesses?

Yes, both can be used by small businesses. Stripe’s transparent pricing might be more appealing to smaller businesses, while Elavon might offer competitive rates depending on your transaction volume and sector.

Do both Elavon and Stripe offer mobile payment solutions?

Yes, both Elavon and Stripe support mobile wallet transactions.

Which between Elavon and Stripe offers more customisable solutions?

While both offer customisable solutions, Stripe’s API-first approach provides a higher degree of customisation, especially for online businesses.

How do the fraud detection systems of Elavon and Stripe compare?

Both companies offer robust fraud detection systems. Elavon provides secure tokenisation, while Stripe uses machine learning and its Radar feature to prevent fraudulent transactions.

Are both Elavon and Stripe compliant with PCI DSS standards?

Yes, both Elavon and Stripe are compliant with PCI DSS standards and provide tools to assist businesses with their own compliance.

Can I get a customised pricing model with both Elavon and Stripe?

Elavon operates on a custom quote-based pricing model. Stripe offers customised pricing for businesses with large transaction volumes.

Do both Elavon and Stripe offer solutions for subscription-based businesses?

Yes, both offer solutions for subscription-based businesses, but Stripe’s pre-built tools might make it the preferred choice for these businesses.

Which between Elavon and Stripe provides faster customer support responses?

While this can vary, Elavon’s dedicated phone support line often provides faster response times. Stripe primarily offers email support, with some users reporting slower response times.

Are there setup fees for both Elavon and Stripe?

Elavon’s setup fees will depend on the quote provided. Stripe does not charge setup fees.

Can I negotiate fees with both Elavon and Stripe?

With Elavon, you can negotiate fees as they provide a custom quote. Stripe’s fees are flat-rate and non-negotiable, though they offer custom pricing for large volumes.

Reviewed by , Managing Director

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