Vincent Ritter

Sublime Ads - Choosing, and then changing, payment providers.

So yesterday was interesting. I spent all morning and afternoon integrating Paddle into Sublime Ads, but then it dawned on me it’s not really developer friendly and there is no way I can separate test orders with real orders. Turned out to be such a massive pain. I had to use my very own card, although with a free token. Eventually it just refused my card...

Then I figured out that all their invoice emails have click tracking and spy pixels. They’re using Postmark for sending emails, just like me. Click tracking is off by default… and that is how it should be kept.

I wanted to use Paddle because they act as a “Merchant of Record”, which is great for someone like me based in the EU. It means they are a reseller, as such, to my service/software. Which means they are responsible for accounting and declaring correct VAT and Tax collection with the tax man.

EU tax and VAT law is super complicated, heck I even have an accountant to do everything for me for my small client list. So having a service like Paddle would be great, as I don't have to deal with writing a program to generate correctly formatted invoices for my accounts.

Unfortunate that it didn't bring me developer happiness and also super unfortunate for a bad customer experience with the emails (tracking pixels and such).

So, what now you ask? Well, I'm using Stripe. They opened up to allow Polish based businesses to use the service last year.

I'm working on integrating it at the moment, with PROPER nice test payments and test cards - allowing me to trigger different scenarios.

On top, I decided to use their Checkout integration, which suits me super fine and I don't have to deal with extra implementation steps and headaches. As this is an MVP I'm building, I don't want to mess around. Stipe has super awesome developer tools, that work.

As you can guess, I was up for a very long time yesterday.

What works already:

There are more things I need to integrate, especially for EU based customers, however I'm happy I got some of the basics done now - even though I died a little inside when I figured out Paddle just isn't there yet.

And if you're interested, here is the Stripe hosted checkout page:

I allow you to add your payment details at any time. So any trial days remaining will be passed to the payment screen without a fuss as long as you have more than 2 days remaining on your trial (it's a Stripe limitation, but I get it!).

As I'm EU based, I have to charge the correct VAT amounts for EU customers, so I will need to work on that next and make sure it all works as expected. Something I was hoping to avoid, but I'd rather do the work and get it right and not worry about shady business practices.

Whilst billing is super hard, I'm hoping I will have that section completed this week at some stage. Which means I can start work on the actual functional aspect of Sublime Ads... which are the ads.