Understanding Payment Gateway Fees and Costs

Every merchant knows that accepting online payments is important: e-commerce has exploded in South Africa. With that comes navigating and understanding payment gateway fees and costs. Become an expert on those charges so you can knock those profits out the park!

Payflex is a trusted payment gateway for hundreds of e-commerce set ups. Learn more about our payment gateway today.

Types of payment gateway fees and costs

You don’t want to be caught by those pesky hidden costs. Payment gateways usually charge a fee for being the hard-working middleperson between shoppers and customers. This portal has top-notch security, authorises the transaction and transfers funds into the merchant’s account. These value-adds make understanding payment gateway fees and costs easier. Meanwhile, we delve into what kinds of payment gateway charges you’ll come across.

Monthly fees

These are flat-rate fees charged, no matter how many orders you sell.

Setup fees

Several payment gateway providers charge for an initiation fee. This is usually once-off.

Transaction fees

Transaction fees are by far the most common type and are charged per transaction. These are either a flat charge or calculated as a percentage of the sale total.

Batch fees

These are charged in a batch for processing a group of payments. This is usually done every day and is sent off to the payment processor.

International transaction fees

An extra levy may be added to cover the associated admin of processing processes cross-border sales where currencies and conversion rates come into play.

Features and add-ons

Payment gateways may offer additional features or services, such as fraud detection, recurring billing, or mobile payment compatibility. These features may incur extra charges, either as a one-time setup fee or an ongoing subscription fee.

Chargeback Fee

Generally, a payment gateway may charge a fee if shoppers change their minds about a purchase.

We’ve written in-depth about how Payflex works with merchants. Evidently, our payment gateway ticks all the boxes.

Considerations for selecting a payment gateway

Merchants, we’re here to help you compile a basic checklist when choosing a payment gateway.


Equally important is checking that the payment gateway integrates easily with your website or e-commerce platform. Look for plugins, APIs, or pre-built integrations available for your platform to simplify the setup process.

Supported payment methods

By the same token, ensure your payment gateway can handle various payment options. These could be major credit cards, debit cards, and popular digital wallets.

User Experience

All in all, a user-friendly checkout process can significantly increase sales. Look for features like a mobile-optimised interface and a seamless checkout.

Customer Support

Consider the level of customer support offered by the payment gateway provider. Look for accessible customer service channels, such as phone, email, or live chat. These should be able to address any issues you encounter.

Scalability and growth

Additionally, consider your future business growth and scalability needs. Ensure the payment gateway can handle increasing transaction volumes without affecting performance or incurring exorbitant fees.

Contract Terms and Flexibility

Then, review the contract terms, including any minimum commitment periods or termination fees. Opt for a provider that offers flexibility and aligns with your business needs.

Once you’ve chosen your provider, remember to regularly review your costs

Finally, Payflex should pique your interest as one of South Africa’s leading online payment gateways. Not only do we guarantee simple, secure online transactions but our interest-free payment plan drives up order value, repurchase rates and increases overall sales. Learn more about our payment gateway.