We've been with them for 10 years and their customer service is atrocious on this position, which is unfortunate since historically it's been quite good.
We went through the arduous process of switching our corporate credit card structure to Stripe away from another vendor, and we probably have to go back to the other vendor now. Starting to understand the anti-Stripe comments that pop up from various people on HN.
The real client is the VC who writes cheques and provides validation in increasing valuations. The "regular clients" are a raw material, to be converted into the service provided to VC.
Clearly, in the early days, you desperately need "regular clients" to prove yourself to the "VC clients". But eventually you earned your stripes and you can again care about valuation over revenue and profit, and consequently customer retention.
Add to it the SV dream of inventing a niche and monopolising it, and you care about your customers less still.
If Stripe want to sacrifice customer experience to chase a higher valuation that's their prerogative. But their current investors better hope they can cut and run before the core business substantially declines.
which is about where we're at, so
Your description is exactly how Capitalism goes late stage. Use the profits from the committed work and effort of employees to "buy back" stocks, depriving the company of reinvestments and growth. Jack up the share price, therefore increasing the lauded "shareholder value". Keep going until only a husk of the company is left, and peace out with walkaway money.
This is all great, for those with platinum parachutes and those that know what's going on. These are vulture capitalists, but they infiltrate a company first and then eat away at it from the inside.
This is how America lost GE and Boeing. They served "ownership" very well however.
Because I have to switch to something else and they're completely incompetent / unwilling to work with us (not sure which one it is, but I think it's primarily the first one), we're gonna switch payment providers too. No reason to give them any business if they're going to make my dev team and managers do a shitload of work.
I’d guess Stripe has an exceptionally good view of what’s going on in the economy, worldwide.
Just wild that AMEX and other banks have zero issue giving us a limit 3-5x that (verified it today!) but Stripe can't. AMEX account rep is begging for us to come back. Just sucks since Stripe's invoicing integration is absolutely nails, and all third party ones I've used are horrible (special shout to SAP Concur for being the worst of all time).
Probably because Stripe is about 50-60B in valuation lower than AMEX and AMEX is a bank with long history with the government so bailouts are probably a high possibility for them to play loose like that. Stripe not so much.
While Stripe is big, they have not been around long enough to have built up the "To big to fail" government crony status of larger, longer lived companies so stripe would likely be allowed to fail where other companies will never have to pay for their miscalculations
A month later, I ran into an issue where the Stripe API contradicted the API documentation. I contacted support, and support told me that it's intended behavior for the API to violate its own documentation. I emailed Edwin since that seemed like the exact scenario he volunteered to help with, and he didn't respond. I followed up a week later, and he didn't respond.
Rather than trying to solve the problem of "customers having serious problems", listening to HN and replying here says "we only really care about people being critical of our product in public; we don't actually care about the underlying issue people are criticising us about." It's not real support if Joe Random can't access it without knowing the secret formula.
Support-by-HN-replies is theatre, even if it works sometimes.
I'm not really suggesting Stripe are guilty of this. Stripe support has actually been fine for me in the past.
Now, "Edwin" looks even more pathetic and bot like
For every person who gets an HN post/comment with traction, there's a thousand people with no voice or platform just as fucked over or more.
If you complain loudly and publicly in a popular forum, everyone’s opinion of the company will degrade the longer your cries go visibly unanswered, so it requires immediate attention. Your request gets elevated to critical.
Nobody said that.
> likely the front-line staff are overwhelmed
Which means that the company knowingly and intentionally decided to skimp on support, or have other policies which lead to their staff being overwhelmed.
> don't know how to cut through the corporate hoops/politics to find and deliver the fix
Which means the corporation decided to skimp on their training and or efforts to streamline the issue resolution.
> and/or too shy/embarrassed to admit ignorance and having to pass it to the higher-ups for someone who knows how to fix things
Same as above.
> It's more likely going in circles because they want to resolve it within their levels without having to escalate it.
And why is that? Ah yes, because the company knowingly and intentionally set the incentives as such.
I don’t have a problem with the front line support. They are just humans like you and me. But I will have zero pitty on companies who under allocate resources to their problems and then try to hide behind their overworked support line as some meat shield.
If I'm running a business and losing money because your service is fubar I really don't give a damn that you're all too busy or too ignorant to solve the problem. I'm going to do what I know works and that's basically blast over HN/Twitter/Reddit that your service sucks and has been broke for X duration.
Why don't they (whoever at the company is in a position to make a difference) care before there is bad publicity? It's either incompetence or indifference. krisoft left another comment already that explains it quite well. There is little - if any - reason to give Stripe the benefit of the doubt here, and there are a lot of reasons to believe it's intentional.
Don't blame minimum wage earners for barriers intentionally thrown up by management to reduce labor costs.
If that's directed at me, I am not blaming anyone. Chill. I'm saying it's a human thing.
There's no equivalent for "overhearing a customer problem" at FAANG scale.
It would be dramatically inefficient for software engineers / product managers / those implementing functionality to triage all support tickets.
About 0.5% of support tickets are interesting enough to be a case study the way this user has offered. At both large and small scale.
In other words, human labor would be too costly. It not a FAANG thing either, the government does it just as well as most other big entities that are betting they can let some problems slip through without too much loss.
> but also slashed our corporate card limits with no explanation and refused to restore them despite our bank writing letters supporting our position.
Even a response stating “we do not have the capacity to resolve your issue” is acceptable.
Getting black holed or wasting hours of customers’ time in phone trees and getting passed around is not acceptable.
A random movie reference can be expected to not caught by anyone more than 10 years different from you in age, or who is from a different culture. You will also miss some mavericks like me who really don't care much about a lot of popular culture.
If you value matching on those criteria over, say, knowing about something interesting, then I'm happy to ignore you.
But that begs the question of why you'd bother seeking out a forum whose entire purpose is conversations that you're apparently not interested in. Why not seek out like-minded people whose conversational interests match yours more closely?
HN, you're getting weird.
And it works until it doesn’t.
Edwin reached out to me but their team can't override their faulty algorithm apparently. Other banks/payment providers have no issue giving us 3-5x the limit Stripe slashed us to, but they can't. Root cause is the fact that Stripe fundamentally doesn't understand eCommerce / cyclical LOCs in their algorithms apparently as our business hasn't changed meaningfully regarding effective cash positions.
Fairly surprising Stripe doesn't understand how to evaluate financial positions correctly. Oh well.
I've used Square's on-premises processing for minor stuff like a side business of mine, but nothing too serious. Their fees aren't too good; they're comparable to Stripe but Stripe's ecosystem for developers is far better.
If/when we switch, we'll probably just go to a bare bones payment processor that is much cheaper than Stripe with less support.
> If/when we switch, we'll probably just go to a bare bones payment processor that is much cheaper than Stripe with less support.
Also what we're considering right about now
I hate to switch off Stripe, but the premium I'm paying is theoretically for better support and developer-friendly actions. I'm not getting that right now, so... why am I paying a premium?
Years ago their customer service slashed our rates because of our increased volume and even pc himself reached out to me about a technical matter (and the company was not small). Over the last year the customer service has gone to complete shit in our experience and the rates are still uncompetitively high. Frustrating.
When I mention the experience to friends, they joke that I have Stockholm Syndrome; to want to continue pursuing them, despite their complete disregard.
About a year later, we hit revenue targets ABC, I waited a month (just for systems to catch up) and emailed them. We had a good discussion about a rate cut and they knocked their fees down as they promised.
I emailed in 3-4 years after that and asked for a rate cut as our revenues had gone up by about 10x, and they said they could not, but provided explanations on why because of high international processing, high AMEX/Discover processing, etc. Totally cool, I understood that and appreciated the detailed email. Wasn't disappointed at all.
I tried back a year or so later when our revenues shot up but got the same message more or less, but still personalized. Again, I had to try, but also, not unhappy.
And since all of those excellent customer service responses - many of which did not go my way, which is not how I rate interactions - it's been awful. The corporate card team refuses to answer questions or even apologize for their insane limit cuts. They presumably are hiding behind bullshit KYC/AML justifications for their actions or protecting their algorithmic decisions in order to provide us zero actionable customer support with no personalization. It's embarrassing.
Humorously enough we needed a sales tax solution, and Stripe Tax is vastly outgunned by its competitors, possibly leading to the layoffs in its department. It is a significantly inferior product to Avalara, which is the leading product in the space.
Instead, perhaps consider a billing platform that handles payments, subscriptions and sales tax all in one. With the merchant of record model, you remove the need to worry about sales tax altogether, the payment provider does so on your behalf (including liability if there is a miscalculation). Shoot me an email if you want any more info nick.read @paddle.com, happy to provide more info
I mean, those aren't even high risk businesses. Credit card fraud usually happens when you offer high priced electronics. Chargebacks usually happen when you sell digital goods like templates, ebooks, videos etc.
The US federal overturn of the Texas law was based around Roe v Wade which has itself been overturned so the Texas law is now back in action.
liberal propaganda derived from an SNL skit.
Here a starting point:
Here is one of the better articles I found: https://instabill.com/do-adult-toys-fall-into-the-high-risk-...
They likely don’t actually prohibit adult toys specifically but payment processors can be conservative in fear of having major disruptions from the networks.
If the new provider has less features/ease-of-use, then you have to start from square one on integration. If you have a team, then maybe not as big of a burden as being a solo dev.
At that point I nope'd out of there and moved to Stripe.
But elsewhere they also still seem to recommend doing things involving your production site for testing purposes. That seems like it's probably a bad idea that could be risky if anything goes wrong and possibly mess up things like reporting and compliance even if everything "works".
There's another interesting competitor that uses Stripe: https://getrevin.com. Their pricing is cheaper than Paddle, making them the cheapest I've seen so far. Not sure if they're any good, though.
I want to get some idea of how much it's going to cost but they dance around the issue completely.
All they do is recommend jumping on a call, which judging by the language on their site, will sound alot like talking to a stereotypical used car salesman.
For one thing Paddle is a merchant of record so it's more like "outsource your entire payment system including all the processing of different payment methods and the global tax admin". For a lot of businesses, particularly smaller ones with international sales, that is going to be an attractive option compared to services like Stripe even at this price point.
For another thing Stripe has introduced so many extras that bump up their cut now that some types of business will end up paying quite a bit more than the analogous headline rate. So even if it were an apples to apples comparison the difference on the bottom line still wouldn't be as wide as it might first appear for those merchants.
Having a checkout bundled with paypal/apple pay/card is pretty compelling however.
Paddle handle it all + take full liability. Shoot me a email nick.read @paddle.com if you want a little more info :)
I have contemplated Stripe vs Paddle couple of months ago. But ultimately chose to stay with Stripe and deal with tax complexities when there is sizable revenue.
For those CTOs in the back:
YOU NEED TO PAY REAL MONEY TO GET REAL SERVICE.
So yes, CTO's should "pay real money to get real support," but that only makes sense if the costs don't scale with every dollar of revenue.
A 5% fee is basically impossible to pay for anything that's not software (90%+) margins. Ecommerce, for example, has about 5%-10% net margins. 2%, net, extra payment processing fees is huge.
They also randomly removed domain approval for some days without even sending any notification
They will also take you VAT if user inputs his VAT number but you have “VAT included in price” option enabled
session = stripe.checkout.Session.create(
Five hours later I finally made the change. UGH.
And yet when my website's card payments were abruptly disabled because some opaque ML algorithm decided one of my transactions was fraudulent (in spite of the customer's own insistence that it was genuine), you wouldn't even respond to my emails.
If you want a no-bullshit payment processor that actually gives a fuck about their customers, try pinpayments.com.
Double checked my inbox and confirmed exactly what happened (it was in Jan 2019).
- The algorithm flagged a transaction, which led to the whole account being blocked and the buyer being refunded (which confused the heck out of them, as they didn't file any complaints).
- I was sent a link to a form to fill in so the account could be verified and reinstated, but due to a computer bug it simply lead to a 404 page.
- I contacted email@example.com to ask where we could go from there, radio silence. I remember looking for a phone support number at the time too, but it didn't seem to exist.
While I do understand that IT failures happen, payment processing is critical infrastructure for small business owners and this level of support is/was unacceptable.
Edwin, I’ve seen dozens of claims of Stripe simply ignoring complaints to firstname.lastname@example.org, a few in this very thread.
You even fess up to dropping one personally in this thread:
This is totally par for the course for Stripe - how on earth can you say that quote in good faith?
A week ago, I emailed nkohari in regards to an issue with an API Stripe has repeatedly suggested to me via the dashboard. This is after previously being invited to email documentation questions on a previous HN thread. No replies have arrived yet.
I'll forward that email to you, also (assuming that by "we", you mean Stripe as opposed to a tax-specific team).
I’m surprised only a small fraction of Stripe customers collect sales taxes.
Just saying "contact me" will cover for awhile, until people start mentioning that you never get back or never get anything fixed ...
Hopefully by then you've IPO'd and exited.
Sorry, but true class isn't just elegant rectangles decorated by various subtle shades of gray sans serif.
if their status is a percentage of requests, then a relatively small number of 500s compared to a big total volume will be tiny, even if ongoing.
That's what I'd expect a reported number to be, since that's what a client experiences on average.
If you're more on the infra/operations side, you're used to that stuff anyway.
Tax calculation software handles all the different tax rates for product categories your business sells, changes in city/district/federal tax rates, brackets and min/max caps, sales tax holidays, etc. It costs money to maintain those databases.
Saying it can be done by any developer in a day is absurd.
By the way, Stripe responses to BBB complaints are hilarious . Most of the ones I read close with an identical snippet of text dismissing the claim as "baseless", even when they admit they made a mistake. It's astonishingly inept and says a lot about the attitude toward the customer.
I think what really did it was that it took somebody a while back to post on HN about issues with Stripe regarding tax that jepordized his business to get the situation fixed.
I don't know but lately it seems like so much of YC's production is just pure garbage. From coinbase to ponzi metaverses to now Stripe screwing up like this.
If anybody has alternative to Stripe please reply here, been with Stripe for almost 7 years and looking to bounce.
I still use what everyone used before Stripe: a "merchant account" from an ISO/MSP of a bank. Google "interchange plus merchant account" to find a hundred options. You pay some fixed markup over interchange rates set by the card networks, as low as 0.05% + $0.21 to charge a debit or check card for example. Quite a bit of savings over Stripe for most card mixes...
I used to recommend Spreedly to go with that, a payment gateway agnostic credit card vault so you can take your customers with you if you switch merchant accounts or payment gateways in the future, but they turned toxic over the years. Seemingly only care about enterprise customers, their sales/support team I've interacted with are useless, and they raised my subscription rate by over 30x without an ounce of empathy. I'm still trying to find time to replace them.
I know that some Western states have better privacy laws, but those are designed for setting up tax shelters, not corporations you hope to scale.
But their record on de-platforming people for dubious reasons is not great.