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6 Best Recurring Payment Processing Services To Try in 2024

Roxana David Roxana DavidFinance Specialist
When you have a subscription-model business, you need a capable payment processor that allows you to schedule recurring transactions from the same customer. But not all processors can give you the tools you need. You’ll want to trust your business with a processor that’s Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliant, has strong security features, and can integrate with payment gateways, which are essential for recurrent billing.

I compared dozens of processors to find out which ones are best suited for your subscription-based business. This list includes secure and full-service options that offer seamless recurring payments for any industry, from software-as-a-service (SaaS) to membership services and direct-to-consumer (DTC) e-commerce.

All things considered, Leaders Merchant Services (LMS) is my first choice. Not only is it great for all business types, but it offers negotiable plans and a meet-or-beat pricing guarantee if you’re switching processors. Plus, it offers 24/7 support and onboarding is really quick and easy.

Short on Time? These Are the Best Recurring Payment Processing Services in 2024

  1. Leaders Merchant Services – Versatile processor with industry-low fees and a suite of subscription tools ideal for most industries.
  2. PAYARC – Proprietary and third-party payment gateways and e-commerce integrations perfect for recurring and subscription billing.
  3. ProMerchant – Recurring payment processing with transparent pricing and 24/7 support.

See 3 More Great Options | Comparison Table

What We Look For in the Best Credit Card Processors for Recurring Payments

In addition to providing advanced recurring billing options, I also looked for processors that score high on these features.
  • Reasonable and transparent fees. Subscription-based businesses predominantly handle payments online, where card-not-present (CNP) transactions are the norm. I looked for processors with affordable card-not-present fees. Some even offer free virtual terminals to process these transactions.
  • Integration with payment gateways. The processors on my list offer secure payment gateways or can easily integrate with third-party payment gateways to make the checkout process easier and faster for customers.
  • Diverse payment options. You can enhance your customer’s convenience by offering a wide range of payment options such as credit cards, debit cards, ACH, and digital wallets. This flexibility is essential for subscription businesses aiming to cater to a broad customer base with varying preferences.
  • PCI compliance and strong security features. Security is paramount for businesses handling online transactions, so we prioritized processors that are PCI-compliant and have robust security measures. This ensures the secure handling of cardholder data and reduces the risk of data breaches and fraud.
  • Reliable support and quick setup. If your business is primarily online and accepting payments at any given time, having round-the-clock support and easy setup ensures minimal downtime and a fast response to any issue.

Leaders Merchant Services (LMS) tops my list due to its tailored plans and great phone support. Through its integration with popular payment gateway Authorize.Net, you’ll be able to access subscription tools like automated recurring billing and a Customer Information Manager (CIM), which securely saves billing information to allow repeat customers to check out faster.

In addition to Authorize.Net, LMS also offers an integration with CartManager. You’ll be able to set up recurring billing through this secure shopping cart solution, plus offer your customers coupons and discounts, email receipts, and multiple payment options including PayPal and e-checks. For phone and mail orders, LMS also has a virtual terminal.

LMS offers a highly competitive interchange-plus pricing structure with a flat monthly fee of approximately $9.00 and CNP fees as low as ~2.9% + 30¢. There’s an additional monthly fee to use Authorize.Net and an annual PCI-compliance fee but in most cases, LMS allows you to tailor your plan to your unique business needs. This means your negotiated contract may still end up being a better deal than what you’d get with most other processors.

Features and Benefits

  • High approval rate. At 98%, LMS has one of the highest approval rates in the industry. Regardless of credit history or business type, LMS will approve your account as long as you meet its underwriting standards.
  • 24/7 technical support. LMS’s friendly technical support team is available 24/7 and can help you set up your Authorize.Net integration, which is often completed on the same day.
  • Meet-or-beat guarantee. If it can’t meet or beat your current overall monthly costs, LMS will give you a $200 AMEX gift card. If you’re thinking of switching processors, it’s worth considering getting a quote from LMS.
  • Chargeback protection. In addition to Authorize.Net’s security tools, you and your repeat customers will receive an additional layer of protection with LMS’s dedicated fraud and chargeback department, which is also available 24/7.
See our full Leaders Merchant Services review for more details.

Payment gateway integration
Payment methods accepted Credit and debit cards, digital wallets, ACH, bank transfers
Support 24/7 phone support
Transaction fees on cheapest plan ~2.9% + 30¢
Monthly fee on cheapest plan $9.00

PAYARC is a cost-effective, secure, and user-friendly processor with impressive invoicing and payment tools. You can set up, access, and manage your recurring billing through PAYARC’s dashboard, which also provides sales and customer reports to help you maximize your bottom line.

PAYARC’s proprietary payment gateway requires very little tech know-how and allows you to easily integrate subscription or membership options on your website. This in-house solution also offers a smooth checkout experience with pre-filled forms for repeat customers, digital invoices, and automated confirmation emails.

Because of its various payment models, PAYARC will most likely have a plan that can lower your processing fees. The Flat Rate plan charges a per-transaction fee of 2.9% + 30¢ (online) with no monthly or hidden fees. Once your business grows, you can still enjoy competitive pricing with the tiered membership plans. There’s a monthly fee attached but you’ll pay a 0% markup and a small fee per transaction.

Features and Benefits

  • International payment gateways. Whether you currently sell internationally or plan to in the future, PAYARC’s partnerships with Planet Payment, TSYS, and RS2 allow you to safely receive payments in over 100 currencies.
  • Customizable invoices and reminders. You can easily create, customize, and automatically resend unpaid invoices for your clients through PAYARC’s dashboard, as well as adjusting billing when you have an ongoing promotion.
  • Strong security. Compliance with Level 1 PCI DSS standards underscores PAYARC’s commitment to security. This includes additional advanced security measures like data encryption, transaction limits, and velocity filters.
  • Comprehensive hub. While PAYARC offers an abundance of integrations, its dashboard allows you to manage accounts, subscriptions, invoices, deposits, and disputes in one place.
For more features, check out our expert PAYARC review.

Payment gateway integration
Payment methods accepted Credit cards, debit cards, ACH, digital wallets (Apple Pay and Google Pay only)
Support 24/7 customer support by phone, email, and social media
Transaction fees on cheapest plan 2.49% + 30¢ (in-person)
Monthly fee on cheapest plan N/A
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ProMerchant offers recurring payment solutions through its integration with Authorize.Net, which is compatible with popular e-commerce solutions such as BigCommerce and Magento. On top of this, Authorize.Net offers industry-specific software integrations and comprehensive API documentation to help you set up your own custom subscription billing.

ProMerchant also offers a Payments Hub virtual terminal that’s included in your monthly plan. With this virtual terminal, you can key in payments received over phone, mail, email, fax, or text. You can also manage any voids or returns through the Payments Hub portal, as well as take advantage of its reporting and invoicing tools.

ProMerchant’s pricing is very transparent and it doesn’t have any additional charges for account setup, application, cancellation, or PCI compliance fees – regardless of your risk level. On its Interchange Plus Fixed Rate plan, you’ll pay a low monthly fee of $7.95 and a fixed rate for both debit and credit transactions. This commitment to transparency and simple pricing makes ProMerchant a compelling option for recurring payment businesses.

Features and Benefits

  • One-click checkout. Authorize.Net’s no-coding-required simple checkout feature allows you to place a distinct “Buy Now” or “Donate” call to action button on your website. Once clicked, your customers will go to a secure form to finish the checkout process.s.
  • Quick onboarding. ProMerchant offers high approval rates regardless of credit history or industry type. Once you apply, you should expect a response within a business day. If you’re approved, you’ll be able to start taking payments within 48 to 72 hours.
  • Responsive support. ProMerchant’s 24/7 availability via email or phone provides reliable and timely support, even if you need assistance outside of typical business hours.
  • Fraud protection. ProMerchant provides end-to-end encryption, tokenization, and payer verification for all its merchants. It also provides additional protection to high-risk merchants, effectively reducing the rate of chargebacks and fraudulent activity.
To learn more, take a look at our in-depth ProMerchant review.

Payment gateway integration
Payment methods accepted Credit and debit cards, digital wallets, ACH, bank transfers
Support 24/7 phone and email support
Transaction fees on cheapest plan 3% + 10¢ (credit)
Monthly fee on cheapest plan $7.95

Flagship Merchant Services offers a Subscription Payments service, which is specially designed for phone and mail order (MOTO) subscriptions. It allows you to create and manage subscriptions and recurring payments directly through a secure virtual terminal. To enhance efficiency, you can integrate this feature into your website to enable the automatic setup of recurring payments.

For recurring or subscription billing, Flagship Merchant Services offers a secure and convenient integration with Authorize.Net for $7.95/month. This gateway features an address verification service (AVS), CVV2 code validation, and custom security parameters to block suspicious IP addresses or transaction limits.

Flagship is a reasonably priced processor, but you’ll need to speak to an agent to get a clear picture of its fees and plans. While it generally offers tiered pricing, with careful negotiation, you can opt for a more transparent and affordable interchange-plus plan.

Features and Benefits

  • Same-day funding. If you need a cash injection, Flagship offers a same-day funding option. While its payout times are 48 hours as standard, for an additional fee you can receive your funds right away.
  • Integrated shopping cart. Flagship doesn’t come with a prebuilt cart but you can integrate one through its API.
  • Fast setup. By filling out a simple form, Flagship allows you to potentially have your merchant account up and running in just a few hours. Flagship will also assign a dedicated account manager to help you set up your payment gateway and virtual terminal.
  • iAccess management software. Your Flagship account comes with a comprehensive business management portal. Not only will you be able to view and analyze your account details, but you’ll also have access to industry trends and local competitor data to make informed business decisions.
Our expert Flagship review has more on pricing and support.

Payment gateway integration
Payment methods accepted Credit and debit cards, digital wallets, ACH, bank transfers
Support Phone support
Transaction fees on cheapest plan 1.98% + 0.21¢ (online)
Monthly fee on cheapest plan $7.95

CreditCardProcessing.com partners with Vindicia, a subscription management platform that takes care of all your recurring and subscription billing. In addition to helping you manage repeat billing, Vindicia also offers solutions to attract new customers and retain the current ones through special offers and upselling/cross-selling opportunities.

You’ll also gain access to Vindicia Retain, a feature that automatically addresses and rectifies failed transactions. Vindicia Retain has the capability to convert up to 30% of failed transactions into successful payments, often without the customer even realizing there was an issue.

CreditCardProcessing.com offers a flexible subscription-style pricing model, with four plans ranging from 0% + 30¢ (Starter) to 0% + 0.05¢ (High volume). Each subsequent plan reduces the per-transaction fee while increasing the monthly subscription, making it an economical choice for businesses handling a high volume of recurring transactions.

Features and Benefits

  • Advanced security features. CreditCardProcessing.com offers insurance against data breaches of up to $100,000. It also provides end-to-end encryption for all transactions to circumvent potential cybersecurity threats.
  • Authorize.Net integration. If you opt for Authorize.Net as your payment gateway, you’ll benefit from Authorize.Net’s extra layer of protection, which includes 128-bit Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption, a free fraud-detection suite, and custom security options.
  • Free training. CreditCardProcessing.com offers complimentary training for its e-commerce solutions, including how to set up recurring payments.
  • High-risk business support. If you’re turned away because of lack of credit, bad credit, or type of business, consider contacting CreditCardProcessing.com. This payment processor accepts high-risk merchants, including those that offer SaaS products or online downloads.
To learn more about Vindicia, see our full CreditCardProcessing.com review.

Payment gateway integration
Payment methods accepted Credit and debit cards, digital wallets, ACH, bank transfers
Support Phone and email support (technical support available 24/7, sales available Monday – Friday)
Transaction fees on cheapest plan 0.30% + 0.10¢
Monthly fee on cheapest plan $15.00

For large subscription- and membership-based businesses, Stax offers advanced solutions through Stax Bill. This platform automates the billing process, which can save valuable time when it comes to collecting payments and reconciling your accounts. This platform even takes care of client communications so you can automatically send reminders of upcoming renewals and past due payments.

Stax Bill also offers a self-service portal that allows your customers to view their invoices, manage their billing information, and renew or change subscription plans. You’ll be able to adjust membership tiers, offer special bundles or promotions, and give discounts to select clients.

Stax can save you up to 40% on processing fees if you process at least $8,000 a month – otherwise you’re better off with Leaders Merchant Services or ProMerchant. It also supports Level 2 credit card processing and will automatically collect and send the required additional data (customer code, tax amount, and shipping amount) for business and government customers. By collecting this data, you can lower your interchange fees by up to 0.50%.

Features and Benefits

  • Automated invoicing. Stax’s all-in-one platform allows you to store customer data securely and schedule automatic reminders if you need to send periodic invoices or payment links.
  • E-commerce solutions. You can get access to useful features like ready-made checkout pages, shopping carts, and in-depth analytics. However, keep in mind that a lot of these features are not included in your monthly plan, so you’ll have to pay extra to access them.
  • Short message service (SMS) payments. Stax’s Text2Pay contactless payment solution lets you send an invoice with payment link over text so your customers can easily settle their bills. This also makes your payment collection process faster.
  • Business and customer management integrations. With a host of integration options, you can further extend Stax’s functionality or connect your preferred app to the platform. Options include QuickBooks and Xero for accounting, Mailchimp for mailing lists, and HubSpot for customer management.
If you’re wondering if Stax is for you, our expert review has more.

Payment gateway integration
Payment methods accepted Credit and debit cards, selected digital wallets, ACH, bank transfers
Support Live chat, email, ticket, fax, and phone support
Transaction fees on cheapest plan 0% + 10¢ (online)
Monthly fee on cheapest plan $99.00

Pick the Best Recurring Payment Processing Service for Your Business

If your business runs a subscription- or membership-based model or offers recurring billing options and needs a reliable and secure payment processor with low fees, my recommendations are a good place to start.

From my research, Leaders Merchant Services (LMS) is my top choice. Its integration with Authorize.Net guarantees a quick and secure payment process for your recurring payments, and its free 24/7 technical support can be very helpful for an online business.

PAYARC is another excellent choice for subscription-based businesses expecting growth. You’ll benefit from its user-friendly interface and affordable flat rate pricing with no monthly fee. PAYARC also integrates with many popular payment gateways and has solid security features.

If you want to set up your merchant account in no time, ProMerchant is your best bet. It has a very high acceptance rate, added fraud-protection benefits, and no cancellation fee.

Here’s a quick overview of the best recurring payments processing services:
Best Feature Best For Monthly fee on cheapest plan Transaction fees on cheapest plan
Leaders Merchant Services Industry-low rates and negotiable plans to suit subscription- or membership-based businesses New businesses looking for custom contracts or established businesses looking for lower rates $9.00 ~2.9% + 30¢
PAYARC A selection of pricing models for growing subscription or membership businesses Small subscription-based businesses looking for growth options N/A 2.49% + 30¢ (in-person)
ProMerchant Transparent pricing models and no additional fees for many features High-risk merchants that need fast approval $7.95 3% + 10¢ (credit)
Flagship Merchant Services Advanced virtual terminal service with same-day setup and dedicated client support Phone and mail order subscription-based businesses $7.95 1.98% + 0.21¢ (online)
CreditCardProcessing.com Access to an automated subscription management platform High-volume recurring payment businesses $15.00 0.30% + 0.10¢
Stax Subscription-based model with advanced billing solutions Large businesses or enterprises looking for an all-in-one recurring payment platform $99.00 0% + 10¢ (online)


What is the best payment processing service provider for recurring payments?

Leaders Merchant Services (LMS) is the best payment processor for businesses that rely on recurring payments. It integrates with Authorize.Net and offers round-the-clock technical support. If you’re currently with another processor, LMS’s meet-or-beat guarantee is a standout feature. If LMS can’t at least meet your current rates, you’ll receive a gift card.

Is PAYARC good for recurring billing?

Yes, PAYARC is a great choice – especially for businesses that need to receive recurring international payments in multiple currencies. It offers advanced security features and a flexible API. Its friendly customer support team can help you onboard and resolve any issues you may encounter.

Can you use a credit card processing solution if you’re a high-risk subscription-based merchant?

Although it may be challenging to find a card processor for your high-risk subscription-based business, it’s not an impossible task. For example, ProMerchant has a high acceptance rate for all industries, including SaaS and other subscription-based businesses. You can also consider CreditCardProcessing.com if you have no credit or work in a high-risk industry.

Does Stax work with Authorize.Net?

You can integrate Stax with Authorize.Net and use its Automated Recurring Billing tool to manage recurring payments. Plus, its monthly subscription model makes it easy to save on processing fees. Stax also offers Stax Bill, an automated, revenue recognition-compliant recurring payment processing service with its own gateway.

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