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Shopping Online and the Many Online Payment Options

Thanks to modern technology the need to stand in long lines just to pay utility bills or purchase various items has dwindled, and become nothing more than a distant memory. Today, no matter what it is we want to buy, or what bill we need to pay, there is a simple method of paying online. Many companies offer a variety of different payment options, making it much more convenient for people to stay current on bills and shop from home. The following article will discuss some of the more common methods of paying online.

Credit Card Payments

Most companies have a simple online interface which is SSL or verisign secured, enabling safe and easy credit card payments to be made. Often, a consumer must register and create a unique log in order to view and pay bills at these various sites. Security standards are a lot tighter these days than in the earlier days of the internet. For this reason, more people feel comfortable entering their credit card information than they did back in the 1990’s. Additionally, most credit card companies have websites with comprehensive online tools so that reviewing your transaction history online is simple.

Debit Card Payments

Online debit card payments work almost the same as credit card payments, however, the major difference is that a person must have enough money in his/her account in order to make a payment, or make a purchase. For example, most bank cards carry a Visa or MasterCard logo which allows the card to work in the same way as a credit card, to an extent. With a credit card you will have a line of credit which you pay against each month. With a debit card you draw against your account balance. In addition, debit card transactions require a pin (personal identification number) to be entered when making a transaction. Because of this, many online sites only allow “credit” transactions when using a debit card.

PayPal

PayPal is powered by e-commerce and is a service which allows money to be transferred via the internet. PayPal offers an innovative alternative to older methods of payments such as money orders or checks. A person can fund his/her PayPal account electronically through a debit from his/her bank account. Additionally, PayPal users can transfer back and forth. For example, a person with a PayPal account can easily send friends, family or even vendors, money, provided they also have a PayPal account. Many online stores and other major companies, such as utility providers have added a PayPal button to their website allowing people to use money that is kept in their PayPal account to make payments simply by clicking the button and logging into their account. Many people who buy and sell on eBay use PayPal as their sole method of payment.

Gift Cards and Online Shopping

There are a number of gift cards offered both by major retailers such as Wal-Mart, and by online stores which allow a person to purchase just about anything they want online. These cards are a very popular gift option because they allow consumers to buy gifts for each other without having to guess at what the perfect gift would be. In addition, gift cards are more personal than cash but offer the same versatility. Gift cards have replaced traditional gift certificates in most places and can be used not only online but also in stores and restaurants.

Online shopping offers consumers the privilege of making purchases without having to deal with major traffic jams or parking dilemmas that occur, especially around the holidays. Online payment methods make shopping online even easier.