Stripe claims to offer “online payment processing for Internet businesses,” while Gumroad’s mission can be summed up with its tagline: “Creators deserve to get paid for their work. Gumroad makes it easy.”
In other words, where Stripe is intended for general e-commerce, Gumroad is a payment processing solution designed specifically for digital creators who want a simple way to share their products (e.g. ebooks, videos, music, software, or artwork) with their fans.
But how do these differences between Stripe and Gumroad play out in practice? In this article, we’ll offer a full Stripe vs. Gumroad comparison, including features, pricing, reviews, and more.
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Stripe vs. Gumroad: Features
Both Stripe and Gumroad have a wide variety of features to offer, with their own pros and cons.
The Stripe features you should know about are:
- Large ecosystem: The Stripe payments platform is just one part of the larger Stripe ecosystem, which includes Stripe Terminal for in-person payments, Stripe Billing for subscriptions and invoicing, Stripe Issuing for creating business payment cards, etc.
- Rich developer toolkit: Stripe includes high-tech developer tools such as Stripe Elements, Stripe Sources, and Stripe Connect for putting your own touch on how your business handles payments.
- Wide range of payment options: Stripe accepts many different payment types, including MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Discover, and mobile wallets such as Google Pay and Apple Pay. In addition, the Stripe payment processor can accept more than 135 international currencies.
Some of the most noteworthy Gumroad features include:
- Free tier: Gumroad offers a free tier for new users getting started with the platform. This option lets users sell an unlimited number of products with tools for real-time analytics and customer management, but only a limited number of posts and standard definition (SD) video streaming.
- Customization and flexibility: Gumroad users can create and customize their landing page, making it simple to start selling digital products within seconds. In addition, Gumroad lets users sell their products how they want: using license keys and offer codes, selling multiple versions of a product (e.g. different ebook formats), using multiple currencies, adding a “pay what you want” option, letting users rent a film, etc.
- Wide range of payment options: Gumroad accepts PayPal as well as all major credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, Diners Club, and JCB).
Stripe vs. Gumroad: Pricing
So far, we’ve talked about the different features of Stripe and Gumroad—but is this functionality worth the cost? In this section, we’ll discuss all the details about Stripe and Gumroad pricing.
Stripe pricing depends on whether you’re using the “integrated” or “customized” pricing model. The integrated model, which is likely appropriate for most businesses, offers a “pay-as-you-go” option that charges 2.9 percent plus $0.30 for each transaction. For example, if you sell a product for $10, Stripe will charge you $0.59 ($0.29 + $0.30).
There are a few things to note about integrated Stripe pricing:
- Non-profits have a reduced rate of 2.2 percent plus $0.30, while the rate increases by 1 percent for currency conversions or international credit cards.
- ACH direct debit costs 0.8 percent per transaction, with a maximum cost of $5.00.
- Stripe also supports international payment methods such as Bancontact, iDEAL, giropay, Przelewy24, Sofort, and SEPA Direct Debit, with prices starting at $0.80 per transaction.
Meanwhile, Stripe’s custom pricing model is available on-demand for businesses with special requirements: e.g. volume discounts, multi-product discounts, and country-specific rates.
Gumroad pricing has multiple tiers based on the number of customers you have per year. Your plan will automatically adjust as your customer count rises or falls over time.
For example, you’ll pay $10 per month in Gumroad for fewer than 1,000 annual customers, $100 per month for between 10,000 and 15,000 annual customers, and $250 per month for more than 50,000 annual customers. You can also save 10 percent on these prices by purchasing a yearly plan in advance.
In addition to the monthly subscription fee, Gumroad customers pay a per-charge fee of 3.5 percent plus $0.30. For example, if you sell a product for $10, Gumroad will charge you $0.65 ($0.35 + $0.30).
As mentioned above, Gumroad also offers a “free” tier for new users with no monthly fee, but with a higher cost per transaction: 5 percent, plus the per-charge fee. For example, if you sell a product for $10 while in the free tier, Gumroad will charge you $1.15 ($0.50 + $0.35 + $0.30).
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Stripe vs. Gumroad: Reviews
Stripe has an average rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars on the business software review website G2, based on 88 Stripe user reviews. Small business owner Mary Catherine L. says that “Stripe has helped our online store go completely live so that we can sell online merchandise!”, adding:
“Stripe's setup took a matter of minutes, which was incredibly helpful. I like how user-friendly the interface is and how efficiently it weaves into our Squarespace site. All of the customer interactions, even refunds, are simple to execute … For us (a smaller music store that does not do a ton of online business), it's the perfect fit.”
Gumroad has an average rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars on G2, based on 5 Gumroad user reviews. One customer, an ebook author, praises Gumroad for how simple it is for creators to start selling on the platform:
“The thing that I most appreciate about Gumroad is how easy the platform makes it to get a product out into the world without the hurdles of first having to have a website, set up an online store, or pay costly software fees. I also appreciate that using Gumroad lets me keep most of my profits for myself… Gumroad is best for creators who already have an audience to sell to. I wouldn't recommend it as a way for someone with no audience to reach an audience… If you have a website and you have the capability of easily setting up an e-commerce store on your website, I would probably recommend just doing that instead.”
Gumroad user reviews generally praise features of the platform such as:
- The ease of installation, integration, and use.
- A free plan for new users to get up and running quickly.
- Multiple payment options, including one-time payments, subscriptions, and memberships.
However, Gumroad reviews also cite a few negatives, such as:
- Lack of customization options for less technically savvy users.
- Lack of alternative payment options such as Apple Pay or Google Pay.
- Support only available through email, not phone or live chat.
Stripe vs. Gumroad: The Bottom Line
Stripe is likely the better payment processing solution for the following types of customers:
- Users who don’t want to pay a monthly fee: Whereas Gumroad charges a monthly fee on top of each transaction, Stripe pricing is based only on per-transaction fees.
- Users who are tech-savvy: Stripe offers many different customization options, but you’ll need a skilled developer to take advantage of them.
- Sellers of physical products: Stripe is likely better for businesses that sell physical products who are expanding into e-commerce as well.
Gumroad is likely the better payment processing solution for the following types of customers:
- Digital creators: Gumroad has been built explicitly for users who sell digital products, and includes many features to that effect.
- Users who want to accept PayPal: Because Stripe and PayPal are essentially direct competitors, Stripe doesn’t accept payments through PayPal—so you’ll need to use a Stripe alternative like Gumroad.
Whether you go with Stripe or Gumroad, you need to actively manage and monitor your choice of payment processing solution to make sure that your business has a healthy cash flow.
Baremetrics has created a powerful, user-friendly analytics tool for Stripe users that helps capture hidden insights and trends, empowering you to make smarter, data-driven predictions and decisions.
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