Credit card payments now accepted

Our most-requested feature is finally here. GunTab now accepts payments by credit card.

Credit card payments now accepted

GunTab now accepts payments by credit card.  As a buyer, you can pay by Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express for a 3.3% surcharge.  As a seller, you now have the ability to easily accept payment by credit card – without the need for a Federal Firearms License or a merchant account.

Why pay by credit card?

  • Faster.  Credit card payments are effectively instant, whereas bank transfers take 1-2 business days and wire transfers usually require a trip to your bank.
  • Less risk of data entry errors.  Credit card information can be validated immediately, whereas we might not be able to alert you of an incorrect bank account number for days.

How much does it cost to pay by credit card?

GunTab charges a 3.3% surcharge on all credit card payments.  We don't make any money on this, we are simply passing along our cost.

Our users seem to feel 3.3% is a reasonable price to pay for the convenience of paying by credit card.  But we understand there may be a few people out there who feel it's too expensive.  If you're one of those people, we have a solution: just pay by bank account.  GunTab continues to cover the cost of bank account transfers so they are completely free to you.  Yes, bank account transfers are slower.  But there is no perfect option out there.  Every payment option has pros and cons.

We have plans to reduce the 3.3% surcharge over time.  By building a successful history with our financial partners, we improve our ability to negotiate this rate.  Tentatively, we hope to reduce it below 3% in 2022.

How many users wanted credit card payments?

Historically, when we asked our users how to make GunTab better, by far the most common answer was: "Accept credit cards."  As a result, credit card processing has been our top priority for years.

Here is some actual feedback we received from users:

  • "Adding credit card processing would be amazing!"
  • "I just wanted to use my flippin credit card."
  • "I'm happy.  If you could accept credit cards I would be very happy."

There were many variations on the theme, but the message was clear.  Users wanted the convenience and speed of credit card payments.  When we asked these users if they would be willing to cover the extra cost of credit card processing, the vast majority didn't even blink.  Yes, they would pay a surcharge to cover the extra cost.  They called it a small price to pay for being able to use their preferred payment method.

What took so long?

Some people have asked us why it took so long to add support for credit card payments.  They have said, "why don't you just use Stripe like everybody else?"  The simple answer is: we can't.  Stripe prohibits firearm and ammo transactions.  In fact, all payment platforms prohibit firearm and ammo transactions.  So GunTab was forced to build credit card processing infrastructure that is usually provided by payment platforms.  To put it simply, that was very complex and difficult.

Infrastructure wasn't the only obstacle.  GunTab also needed to find the right financial partners.  The vast majority of companies in the financial sector won't do business in firearms and ammo.  Of the few that will, many consider it an opportunity to charge exorbitant prices.  GunTab spent countless hours searching for financial partners that were willing to:

  1. Support firearm and ammo transactions.
  2. Charge reasonable prices and offer reasonable terms.
  3. Offer a credible vision for long-term partnership.

Finding these financial partners was actually more difficult than building the infrastructure itself.  Thankfully, persistence paid off.  We were lucky to make some great connections with people in the payment processing industry who believed in GunTab's vision.  Through these facilitators, we were able to begin establishing the relationships we needed.

Basically, GunTab needed some financial partners to "take a chance" on us for credit card processing.  We found our track record of bank transfers was quite persuasive.  We have been accepting payments by bank transfer since 2015, using powerful ACH infrastructure.  That proved we know how to build and securely manage complex payment infrastructure.  So we weren't asking for our first payment processing capability, we were asking for our next one.

What's the big picture?

This isn't just an achievement for GunTab.  This is an achievement for the firearms community as a whole.  There has never been a safe, easy way to pay and get paid by credit card for online firearm and ammo transactions.  GPal tried and failed spectacularly, major marketplaces tried and weren't able to build a working solution.  GunTab has done it.

By unlocking credit cards, GunTab will increase the growth of the online firearms industry as a whole.  By comparison, Stripe's goal is to "increase the GDP of the internet," but they exclude firearms and ammo.  GunTab aims to do what Stripe won't, by "increasing the GDP of the internet for firearms and ammo."  Building credit card payments will be one of GunTab's most effective strategies for accomplishing that goal.