The payment service “Stripe” is available to organizers in many countries in the Western Hemisphere and allows them to receive credit card payments from any country. If you expect many participants from the People's Republic of China, it is usually advisable to enable Alipay via Stripe as well, as Alipay is the major payment platform in China.
Receiving payments via “Stripe” requires a Stripe merchant account. The account is free, there are no monthly or setup fees, but Stripe charges payment fees per successful charge as listed on the Stripe website (usually 1.4% to 2.9% of the payment amount plus €0.25).
The following steps describe how to set up a Stripe account, link it to your ConfTool Pro installation and how to use Stripe for receiving payments from participants in China via Alipay.
1. How to Create a New Stripe Account
Creating a Stripe account is straightforward: Please go to https://dashboard.stripe.com/ to start the process. Click on “Sign up” (image 1), enter your account details (e-mail, full name and password), and click the button to create the new account (image 2). You will receive an automatic e-mail with a button on which you have to click to confirm your e-mail address and Stripe account (image 3).
2. Activation and Configuration of your Stripe Account
After logging in to your Stripe account, you see the “Stripe Dashboard”. The next step is the activation of your account. To do this, click on “Activate your account” on the upper left of the dashboard (image 4) and enter your personal details (address, phone and tax numbers etc.) as well as your reference bank account information. This is required to allow Stripe to process payments on behalf of you and to transfer the funds to your account (image 5). Your account will be activated after having filled in this form.
Please note: Stripe has a “test mode” and a “live mode”. Only in live mode payments will be processed; in “test mode”, payments will not be processed! To switch between both modes, use the button in the bottom left of the main menu bar (see image 6).
3. Linking Stripe to ConfTool Pro
Two “API keys” (“Secret Key” and “Publishable Key”) are required to link ConfTool Pro to your Stripe account. To access these keys, please select the menu item “Developers” in the left main menu bar of the dashboard (see image 7). A submenu item “API Keys” appears that allows you to access the required parameters as well as other data, which you don’t need at the moment.
Important: Stripe provides two sets of keys: “test keys” and “live keys”. Use the test keys in ConfTool Pro for testing purposes and the live keys for live mode. You will also find a test / live mode switch in Stripe on the bottom left side of the dashboard (see image 6) as well as on the upper right side in the submenu “API Keys” (see image 7). The setting of this switch does not determine the payment mode for ConfTool Pro, which is only determined by the type of API keys you use (test or live), but it only switches between the display of the recorded payment results in Stripe.
Now please open another browser window and log in to your ConfTool Pro installation as administrative user and go to the page:
Overview => Settings => Manage Payment Options
Scroll down to “Payment via Stripe” (see image 8) and:
- Set "Enable Stripe Checkout" to Yes.
- Enter a short payment description (Usually your conference abbreviation and the ID of the user, to identify the payments). Example: “Event 2018, ID %1”. The parameter %1 will be replaced by the ID of the ConfTool user. Please note that this description has to be kept short.
- Enter the “secret key” and the “publishable key” from your Stripe account (see image 7). You can use the test key pair if you first want to test how the system works, but usually it is safe to use the live keys right away and do a test payment in live mode only.
Please remember: If you use the test keys, payments will not be processed, if you use the live keys, payments will be processed.
4. Making a Stripe Payment for Testing Purposes
Finally, please test your configuration and your live Stripe account by processing/paying a small amount (e.g. €1.00) using your personal credit card. First, please register a test user as a participant in ConfTool Pro, and log in to this user’s account (e.g. using “login as”). Now you should see the stripe payment button on the user’s overview page. After clicking the button, a payment window appears where you can enter your card details.
If the payment was successful, the payment should appear within seconds in the “Stripe Dashboard”. It takes about 7 days until the amount (minus the payment fees) is credited to your bank account.
- Please also have a look at our general information about receiving credit card payments.
- We always recommend to offer bank transfer as payment method, too, as this is usually the cheapest payment method for local participants (or EU participants if you are within the Eurozone.)
- Please note that ConfTool GmbH has no business connection to Stripe. Still, if you encounter any problems, please feel free to contact us at email@example.com.
- If you want to try the system in test mode, please do not use real credit card details, but the following test cards:
- 4111 1111 1111 1111 (Payment will be successful)
- 4000 0000 0000 0002 (Card will be declined)
- 4000 0000 0000 0341 (Payment exception, card will also be declined).
5. Identity verification required for Stripe account
After you have received one or more payments, or after some time, Stripe (like all other payment providers) will ask you for "identity verification". This is required by the anti-money laundering laws of most countries. To identify yourself, you have to upload scanned images of the front and back side of your ID, passport or driving license. We recommend that you already prepare this information / these images when you open your Stripe account. With the ID card, the owner of the Stripe Account will be verified. You can go live even before your identity has been verified, but failure to prove identity might result in the termination of the contract with Stripe.
6. Using Stripe for receiving payments via Alipay from China
Alipay is a Chinese mobile and online payment platform, which enables Chinese consumers to pay directly via online transfer from their bank account. It is currently the largest payment platform in the People's Republic of China. You can use Stripe with ConfTool Pro to receive payments via Alipay from China. The Stripe transaction fees for Alipay are about 2.9% of the payment amount.
Before you can use Alipay, you must activate it in the dashboard of your Stripe account.
Click on “Settings” on the bottom left of the main menu bar and then on “Payment methods” in the column “Payments and Payouts” of the main menu (see image 15). Here you can configure which payment methods should be accepted. (Please note: Other payment methods besides credit cards and Alipay are not supported by ConfTool Pro, because every method needs a different programming.) For enabling Alipay as payment method, click on the corresponding button “Activate” (see image 16). Please note that the payment method “cards” must be activated before you can add Alipay as further payment method.
Now Stripe requires you to do a test payment via Alipay in test mode. To switch between live mode and test mode of Stripe, use the button in the bottom left of the main menu bar (see image 17). To do the test payment, enter the Stripe test keys and enable Alipay in ConfTool Pro for Admins only by setting “Enable Alipay via Stripe” to “Only available to administrative users“ (see image 18). Now register a test user as participant in the backend of ConfTool Pro and choose Alipay as payment method. Then log in as that user and perform a test payment with Alipay (In test mode Alipay is always available). Finally, please remember to enter the Stripe live keys in the ConfTool system again.
After your successful test payment in test mode, Alipay will usually be activated for the live mode of Stripe. The activation process might take several hours, please be patient. You will receive an e-mail from Stripe support.
After receiving the confirmation from Stripe that Alipay has been enabled, please log in to your ConfTool Pro installation as administrative user and go to the page:
Overview => Settings => Manage Payment Options
Scroll down to “Payment via Stripe” and set "Enable Alipay via Stripe" to “Yes, enabled for all participants” (see image 18). As a final check, please create another test registration in the ConfTool system and choose Alipay as payment method again. Then click on the payment button in ConfTool Pro to see if the Alipay payment page is successfully called. If the call works, you are ready to receive payments via Alipay.
Finally, please remember to delete your test payments and registrations from the ConfTool system.