Learn about the Square APIs and SDKs that support eCommerce (online) payment processing.
Take Payments

Online Payment Options

Learn about the website payment processing options in the Square developer platform.

There are two ways you can integrate Square into your website for processing payments:

  • Use Square payments on your own website. When integrating payments into your own website, this option offers flexibility in designing a payment UI, processing orders, and completing payments. This option provides a secure, PCI-compliant, customizable payment experience for accepting debit cards, credit cards, Square gift cards, digital wallet payment cards, or bank transfers.

  • Redirect a buyer to a prebuilt checkout page. The Checkout API is a simple, Square-hosted solution that enables you to integrate payments into any workflow with minimal coding. Your checkout page can be flexibly configured to accept a variety of payment methods and features like subscriptions, tipping, and a redirect after checkout. This option enables developers to quickly integrate Square payments, but offers less flexibility than a payments flow fully built from scratch.

For online payment pricing, see Pricing for handling online and in app-payments.

Using the Square Web Payments SDK and the server-side Payments API, you can take payments with Square on your website. This is a two-step process:

  1. Generate a single-use secure token. Using the Web Payments SDK, develop a payment form in your web page. The SDK provides payment methods.

    After a buyer provides payment information, the SDK generates a secure single-use payment token.

  2. Charge the payment token. Use the Payments API to take the payment. In the request, specify the token as the payment source. This approach provides greater flexibility.

    • The ability to customize the payment method UI. The SDK allows you to control the look and feel of the payment method. For example, you can customize fonts and colors, add custom branding to the card fields, and integrate the payment method cleanly into your payment page.

    • The flexibility in processing orders and payments. After taking payment information, use the Payments API to charge a payment source. The Payments API offer additional flexibility, such as:

      • Using flexible payment source options. You can charge a payment token generated on a web client by the Web Payments SDK, a card on file, or a gift card on file.

      • Using the delayed payment option, also known as delayed capture. Using the Payments API, you have the option to only obtain payment authorization and complete the payment later.

      • Taking partial payments with gift cards. If a buyer provides a gift card as a payment source and the gift card does not have sufficient funds, you have the option to take a partial amount and ask the buyer for more payment options.

      • Taking application fees for multi-party transactions. You can create an application that integrates with Square for processing payments. Square sellers can sign up to use the application for a fee. When they do, you collect a fee from each payment that Square processes through the application. For more information about using the Payments API to take application fees, see Take Payments and Collect Fees.

    • The ability to save a card on file. Using the payment token you receive from the Web Payments SDK, save a card on file and then charge the card on file for future purchases. For an example of a Web Payments SDK integration, see Take a Card Payment with Web Payments SDK.

The Square Checkout API provides a prebuilt UI solution for verifying purchase details and taking payments. When you integrate Checkout API into your payments workflow, you send a checkout request to Square from your server when a customer is ready to pay – whether via email, SMS, your website, or your ERP system. In the request, include the order information and other details to configure the checkout page to your payments workflow.

After receiving the request, Square prebuilds the checkout page and returns a link to that page to your server. This prebuilt checkout page is hosted on Square servers. After the buyer provides valid payment information on the checkout page, Square processes the payment. The customer then gets sent a Square receipt.

The Checkout API requires minimal coding and shortens your development time by offering a wide variety of Square features (from our payment methods to subscriptions and customer management) out of the box.

For more information, see the Checkout API overview.

If you need more assistance, contact Developer Support or ask for help in the Developer Forums.