Why Operating a Web Service in Canada Sucks – Part II: Google Checkout

Google Checkout looks pretty cool (even though it was banned by Ebay) and has great potential for many very small businesses out there looking for a good online payment solution.  Unfortunately, like many other services including PayPal Website Payments Pro, it is not yet available to Canadian merchants. 

Now I can fully appreciate why the people at Google and PayPal would focus primarily on their US customers (it is the largest market and their home base), but for goodness sake, can they not communicate that a little better so poor saps like me don’t spend half an hour getting it all ready to go only to find out at the last step that it won’t work unless you have a US tax id and address. Of course if I had taken the time to read the fine print (below), I would have known straight off that it doesn’t work in Canada.

Before you start, you’ll need:

  • The federal tax ID number (or a credit card and an authorized Social Security number) for your business.
  • A text-only version of your return, cancellation, and shipping policies.
  • A shopping cart on your business website to accept online orders (unless you’re integrating via Buy Now buttons).


But no, I had to walk through everything and get all excited about trying out the service before getting to the final step that asked for my tax id.  Funny enough, the exact same thing happened to me about six months ago when attempting to sign-up for PayPal Website Payments Pro.  I think they have improved communications since then, but initially it stated nowhere that you had to be US based.  It was worse than Google because I actually finished the setup and then attempted to try it before I was thwarted.

Since I didn’t get to try Google checkout, here’s what some others are saying about it: Mark Evans isn’t too impressed, Mathew Ingram thinks they are in for a fight with PayPal, and Ian Lurie does a complete review here (thanks to Seth Godin for that post).

The frustrating thing is that this happens not just with payment services, it happens all over the web.  Just ask Mike when he spent a half an hour getting an awesome deal with Expedia.com only to find out he had to have a US address to receive the plane tickets.  Or talk to my fiancee who tried to order a gift for a friend at Williams Sonoma and the service is only available for US customers.  Baaahh.

I think Tara Hunt would agree with her Pinko marketing philosophy that it would be very worthwhile for these companies to get things setup for us hungry Canadians, or at the very least have a big banner that says US ONLY!

So, alas, this post was going to be about the great new Google checkout service, but now its a rant about expanding new online services to Canadians.  I really have to get one of those US addresses and tax id’s sooner rather than later.

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  • Konrad

    I compleatly agree with you. I looked at paypal pro for proceessing payments directly through my website only to find out that I can’t get API to work unless I had a US address.
    Also the fact that checkout.google.com works only for Americans is bullshit. What about all of us Canadians?? I stick with 2checkout.com for processing payments.

  • http://www.gift-and-art.com Ron

    And one more “virtual thing” you can’t get in Canada…..a SKYPE-IN Canada area code. They have it for ESTONIA, for goodness sake, but not the Great White North.

    PS: If you’re looking for a totally different kind of beautiful framed art to hang on your wall, check out our website, http://www.gift-and-art.com!

  • Skype user

    I’d also be interested in a Skype-in number but there are alternatives. http://www.vbuzzer.com/buzz_and_be_buzzed.php

  • http://www.freshbooks.com Levi Cooperman

    Sounds intriguing, there is also this service to call in to a number from your cell phone: http://www.rebtel.com/getstarted/

  • Skype user

    Thanks for that link. Do you know how good the quality is? Rebtel seems very similar to http://www.jajah.com

  • http://www.freshbooks.com Levi Cooperman

    Skype user,

    I’ve never actually tried it, just heard about it from techcrunch (http://www.techcrunch.com/2006/07/26/rebtel-makes-international-calling-easy-and-cheap/).

    All I know first hand is that it doesn’t work in Thailand because my sister wanted to use it but couldn’t.

    Let me know if you like it.

  • http://www.xuzo.com Bruno Vincent

    Hi Levi,

    I agree that the US only Google check out sucks as a lot of sites out there…

    The first thing I do before even filling any kind of form and waste my time is:

    A. Look for info on the site to see if Canadians are eligible

    B. If no info is available (and it is clearly stated in the top 5 FAQ’s for Google), email the company and ask them.

    C. If they don’t answer? If I think it might be even worth my “one” click form filling password manager, I fill out the form in 1 second and see what happens!


    From a fellow Canadian living in Thailand 😉

  • http://www.freshbooks.com Levi Cooperman

    Thanks for the advice Bruno. I think Google has actually updated their site since I first tried to signup. Maybe they read my blog post…………..NOT!

  • Bill Riemers

    I agree Google Checkout sucks. You presented it from the merchant’s perspective, but from the Consumers perspective it is even worse. The take payments from Countries all over the world. You have to toggle through the “C” countries several times to realize that while countries like Cambodia are included, Canada is not. Is there something about Canadian banking laws blocking Google?


  • Chris

    Skype needs Canadian Government approval before they can tap into the telecommunication industry. And I am assuming the same thing with Google and Paypal Checkout. As soon as we kick out all the ancient lawmakers, we might be able to see these features in Canada.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com Levi Cooperman

    Chris, good point – it may just be the laws that are slowing them down. I’ll ping my contact over at PayPal and see if he can shed any light.


  • Andy

    Interesting comments, … now i am really confused.
    I’ve been through the same experience working on a site based in Canada.
    Now I am thinking maybe there is ~ no business for them in Canada or it’s not worth their time…..mmm.
    The website I’ve worked on for the past one year is getting 30 times more visits and phone inquiries from the States where this company don’t sell to.
    I think Canadians are still not buying much online……..
    Let’s move to the States – we get all these nice services + Sales.

  • James

    I think Canada got the SHAFTA, not the NAFTA. The mexicans got the better end of the deal. One thing I love about Canadians.. they come to visit, but they love their country and they go home. I wish our Canadian brothers were treated better by US business. It’s good for everyone.

  • http://www.carametis.com Nicolas Mekchoudi

    I am a new permanent resident of Canada, I came here for the quality of life but in terms of e-commerce business, when you think about what was said on this post plus the very expensive Canadadian post, it is not the best move i made transferring my online jewelry and fashion business here…I hope it will improve.

  • http://www.seeitdoit.tv Nitin Mistry

    You just saved me a ton of research and work. I was looking into google checkout for our website: http://www.seeitdoit.tv. We currently have a buy now paypal checkout process. I looked into the paypal website payment pro solution but alas! this is not provided for Canadians!!! And so i thought about google checkout. Aarrghhhhh not for Candians.


  • http://www.websitesinbusiness.co.uk Rob Wilson

    Google Checkout now in UK as well as UK. Signup was very smooth for a merchant account … even get a fee pence in my account to verify my bank details…

    About to test customer experience….

  • Antonio

    Everyone seems to be putting the blame on foreign businesses and how they exclude Canadians customers (which they do, apparently), but I’ve come to realise that businesses set up in Canada, for Canadians, are appallingly deficient in both quantity and quality.

    The dearth of articles available at amazon.ca is highlighted when compared to amazon.com.
    I’ve recently tried purchasing a headphone set from jvc.com (the US site) and they wouldn’t ship to Canada, a visit to jvc.ca showed me that not only did they not have the product in stock (or in their catalogue), nor do they allow for online purchases.

    I could give further examples but I believe that the gist of my argument is pretty clear.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#aaron Aaron Adams

    Well, typically when you’re looking at subsidiaries of larger companies—particularly Japanese companies—the U.S. and Canadian corporations are completely unaffiliated with each other, and are actually in competition. If a Canadian goes down to the States to buy a Toyota, they won’t service it up here; if I go down to pick up a Nikon camera, the Canadian service depots will spot the serial number and refuse to do repairs. And so on, and so forth.

    I’ve always wondered what’s gained from pitting your subsidiaries against each other. I guess there’s something I’m missing.

  • Antonio

    Aaron Adams:

    U.S. and Canadian corporations are completely unaffiliated with each other, and are actually in competition


    Oh I see your point. What I was trying to put across is that the US affiliate provides their customers with more options, namely the possibility of purchasing online. JVC Canada doesn’t. Amazon.com has many more articles at their customers disposable, amazon.ca pales in comparison.

    What do JVC Canada and amazon.ca have in common? For starters they employ Canadians to run their business.

  • http://astravera.ca/ Raven Morris

    I have been looking for a payment system for a computer / IT company http://astravera.ca/ which does not have steep monthly fees. Just looking for an inexpensive way for customers to pay their invoices using credit card.

    The Google Checkout help page did not mention anything at all about what countries were eligible, and I did look for this information all through their promo pages (which were doing nothing but trying to get you to sign up, there was almost no information about the technical aspects of the system). It mentioned an invoice-via-email service, which seemed like it would work well enough.

    I finally went and tried signing up, as I couldn’t find the information anywhere. The drop-down had only USA and UK as “What country do you reside in?”, so presumably that means they can only give payouts to people in those countries … but it still did not so much as say “Google Checkout is only available to residents of these countries:” or similar, nothing at all was said.

    I am quite unimpressed with the lack of information on Google Checkouts’ own site. Usually the various Google services give a decent amount of information on their web sites.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#aaron Aaron Adams

    Really? The only place I’ve ever found Google being detailed and in-depth was when they unveiled programs like Google TiSP and MentalPlex, or discussed their PigeonRank technology, stuff like that. Otherwise they always seem to be a little vague.

  • Canuck

    “If a Canadian goes down to the States to buy a Toyota, they won’t service it up here; if I go down to pick up a Nikon camera, the Canadian service depots will spot the serial number and refuse to do repairs. And so on, and so forth.”

    Aaron Adams,

    There are many corporations which are based in the US which have offices in Canada, and they do not compete. For example, Microsoft, IBM, HP, etc.

    I am not sure how accurate your Toyota and Nikon examples are, but if you buy a Lexus in the US you can take it to any Lexus dealer in Canada to honor the warranty. Same with GM.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#aaron Aaron Adams

    Unfortunately that’s just not true, for instance:

    Toyota/Lexus, Honda/Acura and others are the exact same. U.S. dealers are barred from selling to Canadian customers, and Canadian service depots refuse to honour the U.S. warranties. It hasn’t always been this way with auto makers, but with Nikon for instance, it always has been.

  • http://astravera.ca/ Raven Morris

    Reply to Aaron Adams:

    I was thinking of most of their web apps and downloadable apps (such as Google Earth) which tend to have detailed information pages and a large FAQ section.

    I found very little useful information about Google Checkout on their own site. It was sites such as this one that actually had background info! At least Google is able to find these third-party help pages for their own services.

    But these days, Google is expanding so quickly, buying up third-party code left and right, it is not surprising that many of their newer services are lacking proper support.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#aaron Aaron Adams

    I tried signing up for a merchant account the other day… I honestly didn’t realize it wasn’t available outside the U.S. and the U.K. yet. As a Canadian I’m used to being shunned, of course, but I completely agree; their website was impossible. Ironically, I had to find it through Google Search.

  • http://www.DearEmployeeQuickMoney.com 27amDotCom

    Pretty ridiculous…

    Especially now that they are open for business in the UK. Nothing against the UK (by any means), but I’d imagine Canada is AT LEAST an equal sized market.

    In fact, checking my own web stats, Canada is typically 2nd highest for my own visitor base and customer base. So shouldn’t Canada be ready to go here?

    Some of the best merchant account providers such as PowerPay also operate only in US.

    Pretty silly!

    Rob Toth

  • jb

    Forget the tax id stuff. If you have a degree, just move to the US. It took me 8 years to get my green card and I make 3x more than I made in Toronto. If you are a Canuck-like me, don’t wine about Nafta. 4 out of 5 jobs in Canada depend on it. Without the US, you are shot. Imagine if they decided to charge for using the internet(invented by Department of Defense and all the root servers sit it the US? And if you guys had to research your own medicine instead of the US handing over free drugs after millions of dollars of research?). Only Canadians complain about US healthcate-Americans never talk about it. They all hate their underpayed crappy 7-15 dollar an hour jobs. Canadian rich? Does that mean you have 5 grand in the bank. Don’t even go there because I lived in that socialist crappy country for 42 years. I know why the population never goes up.

  • http://www.westcoastwebdesigns.com Jim

    Very disappointing Google checkout is STILL not available in Canada…a huge market for sure. Thanks for the article as it saves many people a lot of wasted time…good ‘rant’!

  • http://www.westcoastwebdesigns.com Jim

    Larry G. Roberts could be labelled as one of the people who invented the internet because he built its first links: between the University of California and Stanford Research Institute in 1969. Known as ARPANET (Advanced Research Projects Agency Networks), the network was gradually expanded to link military, scientific and educational institutions all over the country. The Internet and the world wide web has grown and has greatly advanced since 1969. Many many people are responsible for inventing and reinventing the internet. If not, kids would still be playing pong! We are the Web!

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#aaron Aaron Adams

    Heh… nice to start my morning with a nice injection of humour. :)

  • mike

    yet another who just tried to sign up for google checkout, give me a break. Could someone post reputable alternatives for us Canadians? thanks

  • Glitch

    It is Canada’s own problem. Canada is a protectionist country, especially in the banking and telecom sector. Paypal and Google are not banks – they need a bank to issue merchant accounts. Same as IPhone service. How many countries have signed up with Apple. May be Canada will eventually sign up when it is the only country that does not have such a service.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#aaron Aaron Adams

    Glitch, I think you might be a bit confused on how PayPal and Google Checkout work… not to mention on a few points about Canada. :) Easy mistakes to make if you’re unfamiliar, though.

    PayPal and Google Checkout don’t issue merchant accounts, and don’t have direct relationships with the “banking sector.” They charge credit cards and/or debit bank accounts on your behalf, and give you the money when it’s done. The primary benefit of their services is you don’t need a merchant account.

    Regardless, the real issue is this: Google Checkout completely neglects mentioning their service is U.S.-only. PayPal did a fairly poor job of communicating this at the time as well. It’s a symptom of being a U.S.-based company; it’s easy to forget there’s a rest-of-the-world out there.

    The reason their services aren’t yet available in Canada is simple: we’re a small market. They’ll launch when the time is right.

    The iPhone issue is very different, and you have a valid point that economic protectionism is part of the cause. It’s also because it’s so expensive to run a mobile network in such a huge, sparsely populated country; because two of the three Canadian mobile players have CDMA networks, and the iPhone is GSM; and because, well, we’re a small market, again. If there were more money awaiting Apple in the Canadian market, they’d already be here. :)

    Thanks for chiming in!

  • Glitch

    Aaron, I went through steps to set up a merchant account a couple of years ago. What you said is simply not true. First I am located in Canada and knows the country well. We are talking about google checkout and paypal pro here – both do require merchant accounts. Banking industry is heavily regulated in every country, and a business needs a merchant account from a bank to accept credit cards.
    If someone pay your goods through paypal with a credit card, paypal uses its US merchant account to collect the money and move it to you. Now if they let the business charge directly (the pro version), the business must have a merchant account. In this setting Paypal is reselling merchant accounts issued by a US bank.. In order for this service to be available in Canada, Paypal has to obtain backing from a Canadian bank.
    If you understand what I said, you know why Paypay and Google require a US tax ID in order to get their pro services. This also explains why you can not obtain Amex US dollar merchant account in Canada. Shopping cart/payment gateway companies like you to believe that you do not need a merchant account to use their services, you actualy got a merchant account from a bank through them. Because Amex Canda does not issue USD merchant accounts, there is no way for a Canadian business to charge US dollars on Amex Cards, unless you open an account with Amex US.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#aaron Aaron Adams

    Glitch: I had no idea. Anywhere you can point me for more details on that? In the meantime, I’m going to ask PayPal myself the next time I get the chance. It would explain how their new Website Payments Pro products are so closely aligned with their Payflow Pro products now, if they’re actually just the same thing.

    One thing to note is that we do have a USD Internet merchant account, and both Visa and MasterCard have no problem processing USD payments using this account, even though we’re a Canadian business. American Express is the only one that doesn’t seem to have a handle on this.

    Oh, and the real issue is still that Google fails to mention the restriction until you’re in the middle of signing up :)

  • Judith

    Having a US Tax ID number won’t help you much either.

    I have a Tax ID number, a legally formed American Corporation with all proper documentation, I pay taxes in both US and Canada, Florida and Ontario and have superlative business credit references in the US and still can’t get a merchant account because I do not have a Social Security Number.

    You will also have difficulty with merchant account provides understanding their own policies. Authorize.net sales supervisors say you can do it but their underwriting department will tell you no a day later. They’re not the only ones that have done that…it’s pretty much the standard.

    Better to set your company up in Canada and get a merchant provider there who will handle US $ without a crushing service fee structure.

    Good luck..


  • edncda

    I’m glad I found this blog . As so many other posters have noted, the ethnocentricity(?) of companies like Google has to be experienced to be believed.
    You’d think after 2 or 3 years, they could have the courtesy to flash a popup before you even start based on the location of your IP address. For instance, Amazon.com seems to use this method to advise that Canadians must register at amazon.ca instead.
    I have a US based bank account and a US mailing address and would have wasted even more time trying to use those facilities to find a way around this impasse. So I appreciate finding out that it’s hopeless without a SSN. Good luck to all. And good riddance to Google, Paypal – and most of all, eBay.

  • http://www.bus7.com bus seven

    to bad it’s unavailable for canadian businesses. Is there a problem with CRA or the market is too small for google?

  • sumdayiwillc

    *sigh* I wish I had found your blog before I wasted my time trying to sign up for google checkout.
    I just wanted to offer an alternative to paypal.
    Thanks for the info

  • http://www.n2news.com jim malfoy

    Can’t believe that google checkout isn’t available for canadians. Such a HUGE market and they aren’t even trying to tap into it. Doesn’t make sense AT ALL. Also, I agree with the skype comment too. Why on earth would Skype not be available for Canada yet?

    Doesn’t make any sense what so ever to me. If you interested in FTA (free to air) and need to get all the latest FTA keys, FTA Files, and software for FTA Receivers check us out:

  • http://www.n2news.com FTA keys

    Sorry i meant skype in, not skype because that is available to canadians but the skype in feature isn’t.


  • http://NA carl

    i totally agree. The last days I have been looking around for a ecommerce service. Is there one in Canada you recommand?


  • http://www.sexystore.com Sandra

    We have been waiting for months and asked Google Canada to give us a date when they will be considering deploying Google checkout to Canada, but no response.

    Our sexy lingerie website http://www.sexystore.com has lots of customers asking for this service, and we were highly interested in having it. Patience, that’s all we can do!

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#aaron Aaron Adams

    Now there’s incidental marketing if ever I’ve seen it. :)

  • http://www.church-software-store.com Charles

    Hey finally found another great group of gripers about services not allowed to Canadians! LIke Microsoft Business Accounting Live [something like that] I was all excited because they offer it FREE for a limited time!!! So eagerly salivating as I filled out all the info and then in the CHOICE BOX, ONLY THE U.S. WAS OFFERED!
    Why don’t they tell us?
    Howevery some of you may be interested in signing up for a free shopping cart service which uses PayPal [EVEN US CANUCKS] and Google Checkout [of course not for Canucks]. It is an easy way to set up ecommerce. http://www.mercantec.com
    Applied to be affiliate but waiting for answer.
    Could you PLEASE mention CHARLES@CPEDLEY.COM if you sign up?

  • http://testbeforeyoubuy.info Fredrick

    Why don’t you guys use AlertPay?

    Now, since AlertPay is based in Canada may be there are some thing non-Canadians should know otherwise Canadian online merchants would have all jumped aboard, right?

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#aaron Aaron Adams

    Developing the integration piece with a new gateway is expensive, so we do it based on customer demand. No demand, no integration. If people ask for it enough, it’ll happen… but since Google Checkout doesn’t even bring many requests now that it’s no longer free, it’s hard to justify any current additions to the lineup.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/global-payment-info Chairman

    I agree , Googlecheckout should come to Canada and its amazing that it has not !

    I use Moneybookers and Egold and talk about them on my site

    Still it would be great if we had Googlecheckout up here too !

  • Sean

    seriously, eh? sucks to work the web from Canada on many, many levels.

    You Suck Google!!! ..take your .ca and get the fuck out if you’re not going to provide service to Canada.

  • http://madebychad.com Chad Wagner

    Ok, lot’s of people digressed here in this post and the comments.

    Bottom line… Google offers 2% credit card processing + $0.20 (USD) per transaction. For anybody out there like be doing <$10,000 in credit card processing, that is a killer rate! No setup fee, just verify your bank account, login to freshbooks and enter your…. oh wait, 2 years of complaining about google and still no integration.

    Stop complaining, even if 50 people wanted it (50 x assume $15/mo for freshbooks), then 1 month of their fees paid to freshbooks would pay the $750 for like the 10 hours it would take to integrate it with at least the 1-time processors (not the recurring, fine, that is a good start at least). Seriously, it’s an XML post/return or use http forms, either way…. want me to do it? God, stop whining…. you guys know I pay a service fee to Washington Mutual each time you ding my MasterCard for my monthly Freshbooks Fee? Get a US bank account, address, phone, and a desk at a shared office and then incorporate as a an international company… then you can deal with US businesses from your US based operations and Canadian/world from your Canadian base… it all ends up in the same place. You’re a big enough company now after a few years of being around.

    Actually, better yet, I am seriously SHOCKED that you require any choice of a gateway/etc… can’t you offer payment processing for all of your customers for a fee? Wouldn’t you make money AND commissions on the service fees charged by the payment gateway? Then offer monthly ACH for your customers to receive their (whatever) 95% of the payment, you keep 5%??? Then there is none of this headache for us… We come to you for a billing and time management solution, and you push one of the key elements off to us again, when we came to you so we didn’t have to deal with billing, merchant accounts, paperwork with payment processors, etc.

    Don’t delete my comment guys, this is a legit point I feel. Your company is big now, and with a small team supporting it, you can afford to begin expanding your service offerings at a more rapid rate than when you first started up. Come on!

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#levi Levi Cooperman

    Hi Chad,

    All really great points. All I can say is, it is coming!

    We actually now have a US based company and getting stuff processed through there is just a matter of time.

    Google checkout is on our roadmap and I know it has taken a long time, but it is lower on our priorities at the moment.

    I’m really sorry about those international fees, please send me a note to levi at freshbooks about that and we will do something for you there. The banks just recently started doing that and I have a conversation going about that over on our forum: http://forum.freshbooks.com/viewtopic.php?id=2762

    Offering our own payment processing is a whole other story. At the moment, the gateways we are integrated with are doing a great job of serving small businesses. PayPal might be disliked by quite a few, but it helps a heck of a lot of small businesses accept online payment and boost their cash flow quickly and easily. Google is a relatively new player, but it sounds like they are providing a good service.

    Thanks for the comments…and I would never think of deleting your comments…unless of course you made fun of the Toronto Raptors 😉 You should know that some comments get stuck in our spam filter and we always try to find them and release them.

  • http://madebychad.com Chad Wagner

    Thanks for the quick reply, I didn’t expect you to delete it, I just wanted to ask that if the thought crossed anyone’s mind they might reconsider. I appreciate the thoughtful response :)

    I’ll drop a note with the fee, it’s only 30 something cents but took me a while to figure out what was incurring the charge on my account.

    With payment processing, I require my clients to pay the service charge, so I just wish there was a way that if they chose authorize.net or paypal, the correct fees would be added to the invoice so that I don’t have to pass it off onto the next invoice. I like checks, hate fees, and for my clients paying by credit cards, I want the service fee to be “official”, not me telling them… “Look, I am not gonna eat the 3% because you don’t have money in your account to send a check.” Know what I mean? Just a little awkward, and google checkout has such low fees (2.2% + $0.20) vs paypal. I just took a $3000 payment on paypal and it cost $90 to process, whereas google checkout is $60. Both the client and I would be happier with a service saving us $30/month. Ya know?


  • David

    Canada needs to quit whining! There is NOTHING stopping anyone in Canada from making a Google Checkout equivalent. I mean, I can’t get CBC down in SoCal–and *I* don’t whine about that!!

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  • http://www.plunderhere.com/shop.php?user_id=101058 Angela

    I think you are right David. We need to get our own service going or encourage and promote Canadian payment services like Alertpay :


    I also use Moneybookers which is based in the U.K


    Google Checkout now deserves the garbage bin just like PayPal.

  • http://www.canadaright.com ted

    canada is sucks must place I ever live in
    sucks to canadian citizen ship when we do not have right to be happy here

  • Georgie Boy

    you guys are all wrong about your reasons for lack of CC processors. it has nothing to do with our laws , nothing to do with intergration ,,

    it’s all about the cost of doing business in Canada

    it just isn’t worth it , all these people complaining about no google and stuff are little tiny sellers , anyone doing real business can get a merchant account in 5 minutes.. google doesn’t need the huge headaches and overhead to service canada when the pay off is peanuts..

    once you do business in canada you open yourself up to a whole bunch of crap like reaching your new customers,, supporting them ,, legal issues , a whole possibility of getting sued in Canada.

    its just not worth their time , notice the only thing working with canada is paypal and they say you agree not to sue them anywhere but instead use arbitration in California.

    too much hassle , not enough paper , if there was a huge demand for cc in canada you would see companies like alert pay take off and go through the roof

  • http://www.bestofadulttoys.com/ anon

    I disagree with the comments that Google Checkout is not offered to Canadians due to size of market. Although Canada’s population is small(roughly the same as the state of California); it’s online market is estimated at aprox. 28,000,000+ internet users (85%+ population online penetration.) Online retail sales in Canada has had double digit growth year after year and I’d be daft as a business owner to ignore or under-estimate the growing power of the Canadian market. If Canadian busines were peanuts to Google, then why offer other services such as Google Adwords, and the dedicated search engine Google.ca etc. Google.ca is #57 on the Global list of top websites (based on traffic). If there’s money to be made, Google is already all over it, or trying to be. I can’t offer knowledge as to why Google doesn’t currently offer checkout to Canadians, but I have no doubt that they are currently working on it, or that they will be in future. I suspect it is simply the logistics of dealing with the CRA that’s holding Google back. Just recently eBay was ordered by the Federal Court to disclose sellers information to the CRA (to source tax evaders): http://www.michaelgeist.ca/content/view/2262/125/ Perhaps, Google is avoiding or working around similar complications / privacy issues?

  • Tim

    Wow! There was me thinking of moving to Canada… Not until I can do business there methinks…

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  • http://livingsky.net Bob

    Sorry guys, Paypal does serve people in Canada, we have had a merchant account for at least a year. Not sure what you guys are talking about. Wanted to use Google Checkout, since it’s donations feature is better, but will stick with Paypal, since Google doesn’t want the business, and Paypal’s setup was fairly easy.

  • http://www.naturesperfectfood.com ryan

    Its not Google or paypals fault. Moneris is a vicous blood sucking Piece of @#$#@ that does not want to lose its energy illegal sucking hold of its monopoly. A great many years ago people that hate working and competition. We will call them accountants,lawyers, and bankers all got together and said we can make alot of money if we control a couple of brands under one umbrella. That umbrella i moneris. They are the equvalent of te NAZI party. They are ruthless and beyond evil. WAKE UP CANADA. Lets Get rid of the monopolies.

  • http://greenspotantiques.com vince jelenic

    google checkout not in canada?
    that’s the least of worries.

    Went to Elavon, had apps all filled out, ready to order, stopped dead in tracks.

    When they found we sold ONLINE, they said NO.
    As a category “furniture” is not accepted for online sales, period. AS A CATEGORY it is considered “high risk”.

    Hell, we sell antiques, have been doing so for many years, had merchant accounts.

    Our solution, simple, our customers can pay with credit card through paypal gateway. Said goodbye to the banks’ cc processors, got rid of the card readers, and switched to using Paypal online form combined with smartswipe card reader.

    We no longer have leases, hidden charges, account fees, upgrades, security audits, or any of the other crap that moneris, monex, elavon, internetsecure and the others demand.

    I’d love to see google checkout arrive here, just for option.

    Should paypal cut off here? simple solution, cash, or cheque (or certified cheque in mail).. We are lucky, combined B&M and online sales. If ONLINE takes a dive due to the crap surrounding payments in Canada, well, we can always fall back on b&M store… worth a thought, diversify online, but also diversify offline, both with sales and payments, that’s the future.

    Reminds me of Mad Max survival type of society, but that seems where we’re headed.

    “TRUST NO ONE” — sheesh, kinda sucks.

  • http://paycanada.com/ haris8

    As a ‘POS Expert’ and a ‘Merchant Account Services’ leader in the business and technology industry, PayCanada delivers a wealth of innovative solutions for a safe bank transaction with your merchant account each and every time.