Towards the end of last year, PayPal introduced PayPal Automatic Billing. It’s a new payment option that could be interesting if you need to take recurring payments from your customers where the amounts may vary with each payment.
PayPal Automatic Billing works with PayPal Website Payments Standard accounts (rather than Website Payments Pro).
Before Automatic Billing was available, you could already take recurring payments with PayPal’s Subscriptions and Billing service. What’s new here is being able to charge different amounts from payment to payment. This could be very useful if you’re looking to charge for usage.
Like the existing PayPal Website Payments Standard offerings, Automatic Billing is implemented via customisable buttons that you create via your PayPal account, then paste into your website. It looks like it could be a useful low-tech solution for smaller businesses wanting to do usage-based billing.
When it comes to recurring billing, there are now lots of services out there. They typically allow you to set up different pricing plans (e.g. £10 per month and £20 per month), but for now very few offer this kind of usage-based billing. We’ll be doing a full review of recurring payments services soon.
If you’re trying out PayPal Automatic Billing, let us know how you’re getting on.