It's not easy being a small business owner. Two of the biggest challenges on every entrepreneur's mind are how to minimize expenses and how to accelerate the growth of their business. The right payment processing solution can help on both fronts. So we did a thorough review of the leading payment solutions providers, and PayPal came out on top for more reasons than one.

PayPal has long been known to offer an excellent consumer experience, giving them an easy online checkout that accommodates different ways to pay. And for business owners, it's essential to provide this ease to your customers to gain referrals, return visits, and a good reputation. Fraud protection, security, ease of setup, and low overhead are all qualities to look for in selecting a good payment processor. PayPal checks the box on all of these key criteria. Here's how PayPal sets itself apart:

1. No hidden fees.

PayPal has simple, flat-rate pricing and transparency. It doesn't use "show rates" like other services who reel you in with lower fees, but whose add-ons add up. No long-term commitments, monthly minimums, startup or cancellation fees are also a huge plus.

2. It's not just for ecommerce.

Although a lot of customers do their shopping online, PayPal hasn't forgotten the brick-and-mortar businesses. If your business sells at farmer's markets, craft fairs, or on-site with clients, no need for a cash box. PayPal's mobile card readers allow you to accept credit and debit cards – even contactless payments like Apple Pay – in person or at your store.

3. Make it personal.

PayPal.me gives you a personalized link to your online store that you can share with your customers. All they have to do is click your link, type in the amount they owe, and send the money.

4. Get even more with PayPal Payments Pro

With PayPal Payments Pro, you're able to create a customizable checkout experience. You can seamlessly integrate PayPal to fit the look and feel of your website, maintaining your business integrity and aesthetic. Also, you can accept credit and debit cards, PayPal, and PayPal Credit.

5. Big purchases? No problem.

With PayPal Credit, your customers get access to special financing so they have more time to pay for their purchases. The best part: even though customers can pay over time 1, merchants get paid, in full, up front. For high-end items, this can make a huge difference to customers on the fence about a purchase. Some small and mid-size merchants saw up to 68% larger transaction sizes for customers using PayPal Credit compared to credit/debit transactions.2

6. Help fund your business.

Business cycles always include dips, like when you need to restock inventory or hire additional help. Certain businesses may qualify for a PayPal Working Capital 3 business loan – without a credit check and with a flexible payment schedule.

7. Go global.

One of the largest concerns with selling internationally is fraud. PayPal's reputation goes beyond the U.S., giving customers protection with secure payments and 24/7 monitoring, adding in that extra layer of confidence. They also allow you to accept payments in 25 currencies and from 203 markets around the globe.

8. It's a trusted business partner - starting at $0 a month.

Whether you're just starting out and have no experience in online sales, or have been in the business for years and want to expand, PayPal offers a trustworthy payment processing solution. For basic business solutions you can sign up for PayPal Payments Standard for no monthly fee; for a more customizable experience, you can sign up for PayPal Payments Pro for just $30 a month.

Of all the payment processors, PayPal is the most comprehensive payment processing solution that aims to help you attract new customers and sell more - online and off. PayPal is more than just a vendor for your business, but a partner to help you organize and optimize your sales. It's key to taking your business to the next level.

Update: Signing up for PayPal takes as little as 15 minutes! Follow this link to start accelerating your business with PayPal today.

1PayPal Credit is subject to consumer credit approval, as determined by the lender, Comenity Capital Bank. 2As reported in Nielsen's PayPal Credit Average Order Value Study for activity occurring from April 2015 to March 2016 (small merchants) and October 2015 to March 2016 (midsize merchants), which compared PayPal Credit transactions to credit and debit card transactions on websites that offer PayPal Credit as a payment option or within the PayPal Wallet. Nielsen measured 284890 transactions across 27 mid and small merchants. Copyright Nielsen 2016. 3PayPal Working Capital is subject to credit approval, as determined by the lender, WebBank, member FDIC. To apply for PayPal Working Capital, your business must have a PayPal business or premier account for at least 3 months and process between $20,000 (or, for certain qualifying business accounts, $15,000) and $10 million within those 3 months or within any time period less than or equal to 12 months. PayPal sales include processing on PayPal Express Checkout, PayPal Payments Standard, PayPal Payments Pro, and PayPal Here. Advertisement

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I thought I had a pretty good handle on my finances out of school. I worked several jobs while attending university and had little to no problem managing my income. However, once I graduated, I realized how much more complicated personal accounting could really be.

There were so many variables I needed to keep track of. Biweekly bills, monthly charges, and general necessities amounted to a heap of confusing numbers that were often impossible to decipher. The funniest part was that I was actually trying to do this by hand (I don't know what I was trying to prove to myself, either).

After messing up for the 17th time, I decided to give Microsoft Excel a shot. I used Excel a bit in school and I knew all the big-wig finance people used it, so what could I possibly have to lose? The answer is about six hours of my precious time. Excel isn't much of an improvement over handwriting and it's still dependent on the user to manually input all of the information. It's like doing everything by hand with the slightest help, meaning that it still required a tremendous amount of time and concentration. Well that was all for nothing, I guess.

It's sort of funny. I was certain that I could manage my personal finances with ease, when it's practically a full-time job. I was already stressed out enough with my first job and I knew I didn't have enough time to give my finances the attention it deserved.

That's why I decided to try out a budgeting app. My best friend told me that he uses an app called Truebill to manage his finances. "What does it even mean to manage your finances?" I asked him. He told me that Truebill was the personal financial assistant I wished I could have. It could aggregate all of my account information into one place and give me specific insights and actions.

I loved the idea of having full control over my finances, especially during a time of financial uncertainty, and I realized that Truebill would be the easiest way to accomplish this. The user interface is incredibly simple and intuitive, so it doesn't even feel like a finance app! Truebill offers a multitude of features, with their most popular being the ability to cancel subscriptions with the press of a button.

Okay, I had no idea how many subscriptions I was still subscribed to. In fact, I wasn't even using a quarter of the subscription services I was signed up for. Subscription boxes, streaming services, my old gym, and even an old subscription to my favorite magazine--it was all there and I was livid. How could I let myself waste all of this money and how did I never catch this? Thank goodness for Truebill.

Truebill also offers bill negotiations. There is a 40% fee based on how much you save and Truebill even claims that there is an 85% chance that they'll be able to lower your bill once a negotiation is requested. Why wouldn't I take them up on this? There was zero risk and I would only have to pay once my bill was lowered (which means that I would be saving money regardless).

More standard features of Truebill include the ability to generate a credit report on-demand and even request a pay advance. I only used the pay advance feature once when I wanted to buy a gift for my mom, but didn't have enough cash in hand and Truebill automatically reimbursed itself when I got my next paycheck.

The credit report is another fantastic feature and practically taught me what good credit meant. Truebill's credit report basically shows you which financial decisions have the most significant impact on your credit score and ways that you can improve your credit month-over-month. I've never had such control over my credit and it feels good.

I'll be the first to admit that I was extremely naive coming out of school. I figured that as long as I was attentive, I could manage my finances with ease. We manage money to some extent throughout our entire lives, but once you're thrown out on your own, it's a completely different story. With Truebill, I've finally been able to take control over my finances and stay on top of all of my responsibilities.

Update: Our friends at Truebill are extending a special offer to our readers! Follow this link to sign-up for Truebill.

My buddies and I always try to make it out to a game, but we never really care which one we end up at. Obviously we have our favorite sports and teams, but it was rarely about what game we went to or who we saw playing. It was about watching the game live.

In the early months of lockdown, all we had was Korean baseball, and trust me, we loved it. The only issue was, none of us had any idea what the commentators were saying. Even then, a few of my friends weren't huge fans of baseball. They were into sports like football and basketball, ones that moved at a quicker pace with less down-time in between plays.

We decided to see if there were any other events going down and came across horse racing. Yes, horse racing. It was perfect--short, fast-paced, and most importantly, an opportunity for betting.

I had never really considered watching a horse race any time other than the Belmont Stakes, but the prospects of the sport seemed exhilarating. Even better, with horse racing we knew we could still recreate the atmosphere of a race track. Salty snacks? Check. Stale beer? Check. A simple and easy way to bet? Check.

One quick Google search later, we came across TVG, powered by FanDuel. It's an online betting platform that takes you right to the heart of the action. We were a little apprehensive about using a mobile app to place our bets, but TVG's ability to bet on live horse races from all over the world was too good to pass up.

Here are 5 reasons why we are obsessed with horse racing thanks to TVG:

1. Betting has never been easier

Use your phone or computer to watch and bet on live horse races in real-time. TVG offers a bunch of features to make betting even simpler--live odds and handicapping tips leverage recent learnings to help you make your best bet. Not to mention, TVG's exclusive race content and wagering guide offers an under-the-hood look into the strategy behind horse race betting.

2. The biggest selection of horse races out there

If you're looking to drop a little dough on a horse race, chances are your best option is your local race track. But watching the same few horses races over and over again isn't the most exciting thing. With TVG you have access to over 150 tracks worldwide with races happening consistently throughout the day.

3. Get a generous sign-up offer when you place your first bet

Once you register your account, you will be eligible for a $200 risk-free bet. All you have to do is place your first bet and you're covered. If you happen to lose, TVG will insure you for up to $200 as a sort of wagering credit. I may have been a little trigger happy when placing my first bet, so having this insurance was a great perk. There are also a bunch of promotional offers available year-round.

4. Making deposits and cashing out at the touch of button

With a ton of payment options such as PayPal, BetCash, debit/credit, wire transfers, and other third-party services, making a deposit is a breeze. But what about the payout? Depending on your deposit method, your withdrawal will be available in a few days. No more waiting in-line to collect your winnings!

5. Watching live races with your friends while betting is exhilarating

Even when we were watching Korean baseball, Zoom calls with my friends were a little dull.

With TVG, we haven't had this sort of fun in months! Every weekend we'll turn on a race and throw our bets in. After a few races, and quite a few drinks, we'll tally up our winnings to see who won the most! Sometimes it's not even about making money, but just having a good time.

TVG is the perfect way to add a little excitement to an otherwise mundane afternoon. It introduced me to the world of horse racing, a sport I never would have considered otherwise.

The races just keep ramping up and thanks to TVG, I can always get in on the fun.

UPDATE: The biggest derby in horse racing is THIS WEEKEND. Get in on the action with your $200 risk-free bet!

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