PaymentCloud is a credit card processor that specializes in medium- and high-risk vendors and industries. In fact, it’s our top recommended high-risk merchant account for any business type. The platform offers both traditional and ecommerce terminals, and users report that customer service is excellent. Pricing isn’t available online, which is to be expected for high-risk processors, but you can fill out a free online application online to get custom pricing.
When to Use PaymentCloud
After spending years reviewing merchant services, I can say PaymentCloud offers fast and easy applications and approvals, affordable rates, and options for in-person and online transactions.
In particular, PaymentCloud is best for:
- High-risk businesses: PaymentCloud specializes in catering to “hard-to-place” businesses. If you’re in the high-risk category and need fast approvals with affordable rates, PaymentCloud ranks among the best high-risk merchant accounts.
- Retail credit card processing: PaymentCloud has a full EMV credit card terminal, POS system, and mobile card reader, as well as hundreds of integrations for in-person retail credit card processing.
- Cheapest credit card processing: PaymentCloud uses multiple backend processors to help you find the lowest rates. You can also view our guide to the cheapest credit card processing to compare PaymentCloud to other options.
- Merchants who need hands-on help: PaymentCloud’s support team will help you from day one. They’ll assist you with setup and migrating over from existing platforms, and they’re also available via phone for hands-on help after you’re up and running.
When PaymentCloud Would Not Be a Good Fit
- Low-risk ecommerce businesses: If you take more payments online, you might look for a dedicated online payment processor. PaymentCloud has lots of valuable tools for retail settings, though there may be other options better suited for businesses focused on ecommerce such as PayPal, Payment Depot, or Helcim.
- Businesses wanting no monthly fee: Though PaymentCloud’s specific fees vary on a case-by-case basis, monthly fees are a part of the deal. If you’re looking for no monthly fee, you might check out one of our recommended free merchant accounts.
- All-in-one payment processing: Lack of transparent pricing and needing a third-party for tools like payment gateways and virtual terminals prevented PaymentCloud from earning a higher score in this evaluation. If you need an all-inclusive solution, try Square or Stax by Fattmerchant.
Looking for something different? See our guide to the best merchant services for small businesses to find a solution that’s right for you.
|Same-day setup (once approved)||No pricing information on its website|
|Brick and mortar and ecommerce terminals available||Difficult to navigate its website|
|Excellent customer support||Only supports a limited number of CBD products|
|Excellent high-risk placements||High fees if you’re not a high-risk business|
|Comparatively low rates and fees|
Unique to PaymentCloud when compared with other payment processors is its hands-on approach throughout the application process. Because it specializes in high-risk businesses and others with difficulty finding a processor, it assists businesses every step of the way. It also offers support post-setup, so you’re completely left to your own devices.
While many users complain about the lengthy and comprehensive application process, this is common for high-risk merchant account providers and payment processors. Plus, PaymentCloud offers pretty quick approvals.
PaymentCloud doesn’t advertise pricing online, which is common for high-risk processors. To get estimated pricing for your small business, you’ll need to submit a free online application and then review it with a specialist. Though it might be tedious, this additional step is especially helpful for the medium- and high-risk businesses it caters to—as rates are more likely to vary between industries and clients. That being said, you can negotiate rates and also compare different processing options to find the most affordable for you.
PaymentCloud doesn’t charge any setup, annual, or cancellation fees.
PaymentCloud Alternatives and Fees Comparison
PaymentCloud isn’t transparent about its pricing on its website, so we had to do some sleuthing online to get some estimates.
Stax by Fattmerchant
Established and growing businesses
Most small businesses and individual sellers
Small online sellers and occasional mobile sales
starts at $99/month
starts at $0/month
starts at $0/month
Card-present transaction fee
Interchange + 8 cents
2.6% + 10 cents
Keyed transaction fee
Interchange + 15 cents
3.5% + 15 cents
3.5% + fixed fee
Ecommerce transaction fee
Interchange + 15 cents
2.9% + 30 cents
Starts at 3.4% + 30 cents
Looking for the lowest rates? The payment processing rates you will pay can vary based on your business’s size, type, and average order value. To find the most affordable option and compare multiple processing rates, read our guide on the cheapest credit card processing.
PaymentCloud isn’t the most feature-rich payment processor, but there are a few notable features to consider:
- Merchant services: PaymentCloud does offer traditional merchant services in addition to high-risk accounts. However, high-risk payment processing is what PaymentCloud is best known for. Many other merchant service providers, including Dharma, refer high-risk businesses to PaymentCloud.
- Payment types: PaymentCloud can process both online and in-person transactions. You can accept all major credit cards, as well as ACH, digital checks, and NFC-based methods, like Apple Pay and Google Pay.
- High-risk industry coverage: PaymentCloud stands out because it specializes in medium- and high-risk industries that other payment processors are less likely to service. For example, options like Payment Depot do not service CBD companies or online alcohol sales because they’re considered high-risk industries.
- Integrations: PaymentCloud has hundreds of integrations with systems like Shopify, WooCommerce, WordPress, and Wix, as well as other tools to help run your business.
- Dispute management: Chargeback protection is especially important for high-risk businesses, so PaymentCloud offers robust dispute resolution support. It partners with Chargeback Gurus to detect, track, and resolve disputes on the behalf of merchants.
- Customer support: PaymentCloud clients get a dedicated account manager who can help with common problems like chargebacks, technical issues, and other challenges faced by higher-risk vendors. You can also reach customer support via phone from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Pacific time, Monday through Friday.
- Fraud prevention: PaymentCloud is PCI compliant and uses industry-standard Address Verification System (AVS) technology, tokenization, and 3D Secure technology to validate cardholders at the point of purchase.
As far as payment processing hardware goes, PaymentCloud has options for POS systems and full EMV credit card terminals that work well for physical retail stores. There’s also a mobile card reader you can use in-store or on-location at events, markets, and fairs, for example.
PaymentCloud works with other payment processing tools like Verifone and Clover. Its team will also reprogram any existing POS system if you’re migrating over.
PaymentCloud Ease of Use
PaymentCloud is widely acknowledged for its ease of use by users and industry experts alike. The hands-on customer support team will help you get up and running, and the interface itself is intuitive enough even for people who aren’t technically savvy.
While hardware options aren’t super extensive, PaymentCloud does have several valuable integrations. You can connect it to most ecommerce platforms like Shopify, WooCommerce, WordPress, and Shift4Shop (formerly 3dcart) with open APIs. Many other business tools, like customer relationship management software and POS systems, have dedicated integrations for the high-risk processor.
PaymentCloud Customer Support
PaymentCloud customer support is available via phone or email from 7 a.m.–6 p.m. Pacific time, Monday through Friday. Some customers dislike the fact that support isn’t available 24/7. For times when you can’t get in touch with a customer service agent, you can check out its online support center with a FAQ section, as well as find links to email addresses for various support departments. Overall, getting in touch with PaymentCloud support is a bit difficult, but once you do, they’re extremely helpful.
What Users Think of PaymentCloud
The majority of PaymentCloud users enjoy using the platform. Many reviews praise its customer support and how easy it is to use PaymentCloud. However, there are also some comments about how long it takes the application to process, though this is common and often expected in high-risk businesses.
- Capterra: 16 users rated PaymentCloud with an overall average 4.65 out of 5 stars, mostly commending the customer service experience.
- Trustpilot: On Trustpilot, PaymentCloud received a 3.3-star rating. Similar to Capterra, users raved about the customer service, but some noted issues with rate transparency and application processing.
Users Don’t Like
Responsive and helpful customer service
Lengthy application process
Efficient and user-friendly system
Rate and fee transparency
Overall, PaymentCloud is one of the best overall high-risk merchant accounts for small businesses. The processor offers helpful customer support, fast approvals, and protections against fraud and chargebacks. Plus, the company offers plenty of hardware and solutions for online, storefront, and mobile sellers. Visit PaymentCloud today for more information.