Ditching the “chicken & the egg”

Announcing guest checkout, Dwolla price, & new POS integrations

We’ll be unveiling more stuff at the meetup tonight, exclusively for the community. Hope you can join us and tomorrow.

As of today

• You no longer need a Dwolla account to checkout online
• We have 20 amazing launch partners
• We are introducing Dwolla Price, a discount for paying with Dwolla
• We have new POS integrations and payment flows

Eliminating ourselves from transactions, a bit

Dwolla’s mission in life isn’t that complicated: it’s to create the ideal exchange. And we have some basic beliefs about how it should be done. Unfortunately, many of the processes and structures needed to create this experience aren’t possible with current networks (e.g. fraud, accessibility, and costs).  That’s why we created Dwolla.

Today, however, is about addressing one of our own shortcomings: the “chicken or the egg” dilemma. This metaphor is meant to explain the difficulty in establishing a mutual connection between two parties in order to transact inside a network. For example, merchants that accept American Express are dependent on whether or not their customers hold an American Express card, and vice versa. Likewise, Dwolla merchants have been dependent on whether or not their customers have a Dwolla account to pay with Dwolla. This “members-only” mentality contains and limits the payment experience, but has been a hallmark of the electronic payment industry for sometime. For the last year, we’ve been hard at work improving Dwolla in order to open our network and set it free.

You no longer need a Dwolla account to checkout online.

Now, with Dwolla’s new guest checkout integration option, anyone can use Dwolla to make a one-time payment from his or her financial institution to an online merchant or marketplace.

What does this mean?

Traditional wisdom in the payments space says, “you get a customer’s data, monetize it, tax it, and never ever – under any circumstances – share it [unless someone pays handsomely].” We feel like that kind of sucks, and we knowit doesn’t need to be as unfair, expensive, or insecure as many would like us to believe. Bottom-line, in our system, this “secret handshake” mentality has become a pain point for our business trying to sell something and a consumer wanting to acquire something. Our job is to find and remove those pain points that get in the way, even if it’s us.

For consumers For merchants
• No need for a pre-existing Dwolla account
• Free to pay: no hidden fees or costs
• Cardless and checkless
• Safer than writing checks
• Safe and secure Dwolla network technologies
• Save money with Dwolla price (with participating merchants)
• Privacy conscious (we do not sell your data!)
• Increased profit margins and savings over credit cards
• Flat 25 cent fee for transactions over $10, under $10 is free
• Easy to add Dwolla as another payment method
• Fluid offsite checkout experience
• Automatic PCI compliance
• Free tracking and reporting
• Additional API documentation and features

Seriously, what does this mean?

You can now shop at these amazing companies without a Dwolla account.

ZooZ enables mobile developers to quickly integrate payments in their apps. Our SDK offers a truly universal mobile checkout that is fast, secure and easy to use. User details are stored in a PCI compliant cloud environment and shared across supporting apps to enable higher conversion rates.
WebHostingBuzz is a leading provider of web hosting services to over 250,000 websites from small to large; operating multiple globally diverse datacenters. Whether you are an individual, a small business or a larger corporation, we can provide web hosting that meets your demands.
Tortoise & Blonde is the eyewear company your mother warned you about.  All of their styles start at $97 complete with Rx lenses.  Go ahead, get your lenses dirty!
We help retailers multiply revenues with a turn key multi-channel ecommerce solution that enables them to sell across eBay, Amazon, Google Shopping, their own storefront, and more.
Startup Threads is a merchandising service for startups. We want to make it easy for you to get the merchandise you need, so you can focus on the rest of your business. Let us know what ways we can serve you and we’ll do the work to make it happen.
Seconds is a payment system allowing you to complete transactions via the desktop web, mobile web or text message. It shouldn’t matter what method or device you use, the payment experience is as quick, simple and intuitive as sending a text message.  Try it today by participating in GIVENATION and giving to the Hurricane Sandy relief effort.
Reddit Donate is a simple button that connects the nation’s most progressive nonprofits with the front page of the world wide web.
With PayTap’s Shared Payment Platform anyone can post a bill or item online and split the payment amongst family and friends. PayTap is shared payments, fast, secure and direct.
Muzooka is a social music streaming app that brings Artists the world’s top Producers and Music Lovers together in one space.
Small Farm Central provides technology solutions to farmers across the US and Canada, including farmer-centric websites and a specialized solution for Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farms. This “Member Assembler” technology handles sign-up and the back office for this subscription-based farming model and gets farmers back into the fields instead of spending all day in the office.
Path.To is a platform that connects top Tech and Designer talent with jobs that they will love.
As a brand new exciting payment experience, HouseTab brings a Social Mobile Payment System that enables members to skip credit cards and load cash directly from their smartphones to use for payments with member merchants. Check-in, and get real merchant-driven discounts right away, not just badges! Send drinks and other goodies to other Regulars … whether across the room..,  across town, or..,  across the country!
Gombler application allows the user to create a match for a specific amount of money (real or play) and compete against other users who accept your stakes and match conditions. All you need to do is create an account, download the program, add real or play money to your account and defeat all challengers!
Givr is a platform built to make mobile giving simple and easy for nonprofits and donors.
FreeAgent is an award-winning online accounting system specifically designed for freelancers and small businesses. Used by more than 25,000 customers worldwide, it lets you send invoices, track time and expenses, analyse bank statements and build real-time accounts, all done simply with no confusing accounting jargon.
Eborhood.com is turning heads as it’s the newest and best way to trade goods and services online with no set fees – and it’s Dwolla’s new best friend.  It’s a safe, online environment that focuses on protecting consumer while allowing the most flexible way to buy, sell and trade stuff online.
Dash turns any vehicle into a ‘smart car’. A hardware/software utility like Nest for home, our goal is to make the road smarter, safer and more affordable for drivers. Come join us for the ride at www.dash.by.
Casual Corp is a social product studio passionate about building startups and streamlining the entrepreneurial process.
Angelwish helps you grant wishes to children in need with chronic illnesses in the most impactful way possible. Grant a wish and we’ll give it to the parent to give to their child.
ActiField’s flexible e-commerce platform helps organizations who sell tickets and accept registrations for their events and activities better understand and interact with customers to build stronger relationships.
SupplyHog lets contractors obtain the building materials they need without all the hassle of finding the best price, and we ship directly to your job site.

So what does it do?

Guest checkout adds Dwolla’s payment engine to traditional bank-issued transactions, allowing the same level of security, safety, and innovation regular Dwolla users enjoy.

How does it work?

1. Customers checking out as a guest are routed to Dwolla’s offsite gateway
2. Fill out basic personal information and verify phone
3. Use Dwolla to connect to your financial institution
4. Review shopping cart
5. Pay

*Flow, process, and methods change from integration to integration. See our screenshots of integrations.

Introducing the Dwolla price

The Dwolla price is a great way for merchants and developers to encourage customers to use Dwolla by passing some of the savings back to the customer when they pay with Dwolla. It’s simple. Discount your price by half of what you saved in credit card fees. If your product sells for $100 and your credit card processing fee would have been 3% (or $3), then the Dwolla Price would be $98.75. That’s $100 – ½ of ($3 – the 25¢ Dwolla fee). Visit http://dwolla.com/dwollaprice for more information.

Bonus: POS Integrations and new mobile payment flow

Nicely hidden as “request” in the API documentation, we’ve had this sucker in the hands of point-of-sale integration partners for almost a month now. The new endpoint allows the point-of-sale, not Dwolla’s app or mobile wallet partner,  to initiate a payment and send the customer a push notification on their phone to authorize the payment. This eliminates the need for a Dwolla user to a.) proactively open the app b.) select the merchant c.) type in the payment amount. All you’ll need to do is authorize the payment with your credentials.

Change is a new cash register app for the iPad aimed at making the lives of independent business owners easier. Ideal for coffee shops, bars, and quick-serve restaurants, Change is all about building connections between people.
The simplest way to make smarter business decisions, ShopKeep® POS is the affordable, complete platform for running a shop from an iPad with real-time reporting on the web. Backed by the industry’s best customer care, the ShopKeep POS iPad app rings sales, processes credit cards and mobile payments, prints receipts, and prints orders remotely to the kitchen. Manage inventory, employees, and customers and view ClearInsight® reports from any web browser.

  • DarkMagess

    Guys. You have just implemented… all the things I’ve thought Dwolla was missing.

  • http://twitter.com/johnfein John Fein

    Awesome – very exciting. Guest checkout is huge and I especially like the POS integration. Very cool.

  • Patrick

    HouseTab is excited to be partnering with Dwolla on the adventure of bringing “Cash” to the mobile experience! This will be the least expensive way for people to move money with technology. That ATM machine you’re looking for…? It’s in your hand!! Thank you to Alex, Jordan, Nicole and the rest of the masterminds working hard at Dwolla! And lets not leave out Ben! Thanks to all!

    • http://twitter.com/myhousetab HouseTab

      I can’t agree more with the Captain, here. Thank you, thank you! – Rob B.

    • CaityJones

      We’re very happy to have HouseTab as a partner in the launch :)

  • Nathan Jackson

    Thanks, Dwolla, from Gombler. We can bearly contain our excitement.

    • CaityJones

      I like what you did there :) Thanks for being a partner!

  • http://www.facebook.com/dailyharold Harold Martin

    Awesome news. Not being nit picky but the logos for all those company logos are showing full size on this post. But awesome work everyone!

  • http://www.facebook.com/charise.flynn Charise Flynn

    Wow- just bought new glasses on tortoiseandblonde.com and made a donation on http://www.getseconds.com in less than 5 minutes total:) Very slick experience!

    • MikO

      This looks to be spam. tort&blonde doesnt use dwolla for payments and getseconds doesnt even function

  • http://www.facebook.com/maggiehagan Maggie Hagan

    What do you mean by authorize the payment with your “credentials?” What credentials are needed?

    • CaityJones

      The credentials needed would be your PIN number.

  • Wayne Reavill

    WebHostingBuzz is completely in love with what you guys are doing over at Dwolla, and happy to be a partner in this launch. Our hosting clients should love the ease of payment, not to mention the Dwolla Price!

    • CaityJones

      Thanks for the kind words Wayne, we’re happy to have you as a partner!

  • Philip

    Thanks Dwolla. Let the cash flow!

  • proksoup

    For hub pages too maybe later?

    • CaityJones

      Received hub page feedback from a few people – definitely something we’re looking in to!

      • fmesco

        +1 for the guest checkout for hub pages!

    • http://twitter.com/trolleypubNC Trolley Pub Raleigh

      yes PLEASE

    • http://www.facebook.com/karbanovich Anton Karbanovich

      +1 here!

    • http://www.facebook.com/erth64net Gregg Berkholtz

      +1 for hub pages and recurring payments

    • Dell Mercant

      POS sounds great—– Guest checkout is huge and I especially like the POS integration.


  • Fletch

    I am an online merchant considering adding Dwolla as a payment choice on my site. This guest feature makes that more appealing. Does anyone know what the turnaround is for settlement of Dwolla payments?

  • JRomeo

    When will dwolla allow me to do ACH debits and ACH credits?

    • CaityJones

      Dwolla does use the ACH system to move money between bank accounts and Dwolla accounts (debiting and crediting). If this doesn’t help answer your question, could you give me some clarification? Thanks, JRomeo!

      • JRomeo

        Sure, I’ll clarify. I want to give my customers the ability to sign an authorization form saying I may bill their checking account directly (ACH Debit), either 1 time or recurring, and then have those funds deposited into my checking account (or Dwolla account) as an ACH Credit.

        • CaityJones

          Gotcha! I really like where you’re going with this – stay tuned as we release some more updates/features that I think you’re really going to like :)

          • JRomeo

            You’ve made me optimistic by the part of your sentence where you say “updates/features that I think you’re really going to like…” Is there a timeframe? if no timeframe then I’ll check back monthly.

          • CaityJones

            Can’t confirm a timeframe as of yet, but it’s something we’re diving into.

    • Avi

      Dwolla is all about ACH. Isn’t this what “guest” mode is for — so that the user doesn’t even need to create a dwolla account (for 1 time purchases)

      • CaityJones

        Correct. By simply initiating a payment through guest checkout, you are bypassing the Dwolla account setup process, and the 1-2 days it takes to verify and attach your bank account with your Dwolla account.

      • JRomeo

        please read my discussion with CaityJones below, and you’ll see what i’m referring to, specifically.

  • Kieran Mullen

    So when are you going to be as alternate payment provider on Amazon or ebay?

    • CaityJones

      We would love to be used on their platforms! However, no dates as to when those partnerships would be implemented.

  • Beau Riche

    Wondering if you will be adding the guest checkout to recurring payments as well? That is what I am looking for.

    • http://twitter.com/RobertZangrilli Robert Zangrilli

      I’m in the same boat

      • CaityJones

        Not in the near future, but definitely something we’ll probably work in down the line.

  • http://twitter.com/trolleypubNC Trolley Pub Raleigh

    Just what we were waiting for!

  • http://gege.re/ Jason Gegere

    The brand logos are so huge!

  • LKS

    how does this help me as a merchant not on this list? unless this can be included on my hub page or directly on your website- the information above is pretty useless to me as a start up. how embarrassing to send my customers this info only to have them tell me its not true. how about clear communication guys? i shouldn’t have to get to end of this post only to find this service is limited to the websites listed here or require some developer mojo hojo to include on my website.

    • CaityJones

      Hi LKS,

      Any Dwolla merchant can include guest checkout on their site, not just the companies above. This is a feature that many companies have asked for for a really long time, and we’re excited to have built it and opened it up to everyone! If you are a Dwolla merchant, and you have an online store, you can most definitely integrate the Dwolla guest checkout option through our off-site gateway, a popular way merchants already use Dwolla on their site. While it does take some development work, we try to keep it simple and walk you through the process here, with examples: http://developers.dwolla.com/dev/docs/gateway

      If you run into trouble, we have a great development team that can help you out. You can reach them at developers@dwolla.com, or even in our online forum where someone may have already received help on the problem you’ve run in to: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/tagged/dwolla

      Dwolla’s API was built for developers and businesses alike to build on and be utilized, in order to save people money – especially small businesses!

  • http://www.facebook.com/karbanovich Anton Karbanovich

    I have just implement the Dwolla gues payment on my website and one thing i have noticed that the guest checkout is only available on the payment less then $1000… as soon as you try to pay $1001 then it asks you for the memeber login only as an option… am i missing something or is it really a setting?

    • CaityJones

      That is a current setting for the guest checkout feature, as the customer has not been fully verified in the Dwolla system.

      • dee

        that sucks! Can’t you make the limit higher? this puts major crimp in my efforts.

      • stephanie

        Hi, has the $1k Max for guest checkouts increased since you responded to this?

        • CaityJones

          Hi Stephanie — the limit has not changed.

  • http://www.facebook.com/owen.sechrist Owen Sechrist

    Is there somewhere I can see exactly how this checkout works? I tried going to StartupThreads and went the whole way through checkout until I got to the normal fields to enter credit card information, no Dwolla anywhere on the site or checkout process that I can see. I’d buy some glasses from Tortoise & Blonde but as I don’t wear glasses $97 is a little steep just to see how this actually looks/works from the user side. If you have this enabled on your store and sell a product for $20 and under please post a link.

  • CodeXomby

    POS sounds great, but what if the person has forgotten their cell phone, or does not have a Dwolla account (and would have to check out as a guest). How does the POS experience work with guest checkout, and is/will this be a viable alternative to NEEDING a merchant account with a credit processing company at all.

    To not have to deal with the fee structure of a merchant account, and use dwolla for 100% of our sales processing… this would be gold.

  • Harish

    I am unable to find one working example. I tried the sites above and they dont have the integrations. Reddit does but it hands when you try to checkout as a guest. This is a great product and I would love to see it in action. Please share a working link?

  • http://www.facebook.com/michael.clarke.71868964 Michael Clarke

    Mobile Website builder: very usefull post, I am using mobile converters.

Financial institutions play an important role in the Dwolla network.

Dwolla, Inc. is an agent of Veridian Credit Union and Compass Bank and all funds associated with your account in the Dwolla network are held in pooled accounts at Veridian Credit Union and Compass Bank. These funds are not eligible for individual insurance, including FDIC insurance and may not be eligible for share insurance by the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund. Dwolla, Inc. is the operator of a software platform that communicates user instructions for funds transfers to Veridian Credit Union and Compass Bank.