With only a few days left till Christmas, Kenyans have been caught up in a spending frenzy. Malls and supermarkets are packed daily with people trying to get in on last minute discount deals. What a lot of people don’t realise is that online shops are also aware of the big spending done during the festive season and are also offering great deals during this time.
There has been a steady increase in the number of websites in Kenya that allow online transactions and financial institutions that offer online banking services. However most people have been wary about online shopping and transactions in general because they fear having their bank account information stolen by third parties with online fraud being the biggest hindrance to many.
Easing Kenyans into the world of online shopping is Paypal, the online financial transaction broker that allows people to make payments and buy goods and services online.
What is Paypal?
Founded in 1998, PayPal is the largest online transaction processor in the world and is available in 203 countries, including Kenya. It acts as the middleman as a payment buffer between sellers and buyers. Paypal is extremely safe and secure and is one of the most commonly used features in online transactions. An estimated 90% of eBay sellers choose PayPal as their trusted method of choice for taking payments. One of the main reasons why people prefer using it is the fact that it is accepted on multiple platforms and once you’re registered and verified, you can buy items and make payments without having to enter your credit card details each time.
How does PayPal work?
Your PayPal account is much like any savings account, except PayPal was designed specifically for online transactions.
Before you can start using PayPal, the first thing you need to do is open a PayPal account. You do not need special technology or a business license to send and receive money through PayPal. All you need is a valid email address and a valid credit card or bank account.
Simply go to the Paypal Kenya website and register your account by clicking on “sign up” then entering your details. You may want to consider starting with a Personal account, because this way you have no fees associated with sending or receiving money.
You can then ignore the part of entering your credit card and proceed to use PayPal services. If you do this, your account will have a send/withdrawal limit. You will not be able to send more than $500 if you don’t link a Kenyan credit or debit (ATM card). But if you would like to make your registration and verification smooth and without send/withdrawal limits, you need to have a working credit or debit card that has online access.
What are the benefits?
One of the best reasons for using PayPal is that it is free to sign up and use. There are no annual membership fees, no processing fees nor any service charges.
After you have confirmed your account details you are now ready to use your PayPal account. PayPal ensures that your credit card information stays secure by only requiring you to fill it in once. After the initial input your personal information is stored safely and you don’t have to worry about being hacked. It is good to note that PayPal doesn’t allow browsers to save your password, so in case your laptop is stolen no third parties will be able to access your PayPal account.
Using PayPal ensures that the best services are provided by the users. If there is any complaint that arises due a person’s transaction they will receive a bad reputation from PayPal and nobody wants that; therefore it ensures they do their part well and deliver easy payments.
Another benefit of using Paypal is that you can set up multiple bank accounts, debit and credit cards to fund your PayPal account. This makes it extremely flexible because you are spared the embarrassment of running out of money and being unable to complete a transaction. If you run out of money in one account, PayPal will simply deduct from the other linked accounts in the order that you would prefer.
PayPal isn’t only good for online shopping, there are other services that are offered such as instant money transfer. Moneygrams and wire transfers such as Western Union have been the usual mode of money transfer for years but with the advent of Paypal more and more people are making the change and moving towards Paypal. Whether you need to send money to a relative abroad or make a donation to a charity organization, you can do this instantly with a click of a mouse and without any pesky surcharges.
If you have never opened a PayPal account, go ahead and create one today. Its simple, fast and worth your while.