Circle APIs
Payments API

Understanding the Power of Circle Payments API

Team Circle Team Circle August 4, 2020

One of the most powerful features of Circle’s platform is our Payments API, which enables businesses to seamlessly integrate a range of fiat currency payment methods that automatically settle in USD Coin (USDC)

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Discover how the Circle Payments API can transform the way internet businesses can make and accept global payments. 

Circle Payments API: A Doorway to Digital Dollars

The Circle Payments API allows businesses to accept payments via traditional payment methods such as debit/credit cards, bank accounts, and wire transfers while settling the funds in the digital dollar stablecoin, USDC. 

“At the foundation of all this is the Circle Business Account. Businesses will be provided necessary tools to solve a wide range of problems that exist in payments and commerce on the internet.”
—Jeremy Allaire, Circle CEO

With the Circle Payments API, you can:

  • Accept card payments for goods or services on your commerce app or website
  • Build a credit and debit card on-ramp for your crypto exchange
  • Take card deposits for your savings, lending, investing or peer-to-peer payments product
  • Send mass payouts to sellers, freelancers, or any service providers around the world via wire transfers

The Payments API enables businesses to integrate fiat currency payment methods that automatically convert to and settle in USDC. As a result, companies that do not easily have access to traditional banking relationships can bank using digital dollars in an easy and hassle-free manner.

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Benefits of the Circle Payments API for Businesses

Circle Business Account holders enjoy several benefits, but adding the Payments API on top of your account is a definite standout. 

The API allows businesses to accept funds in digital dollars without mandating that end users purchase, store, and pay with USDC. Instead, the payment process for end users remains the same — using traditional fiat currency payment methods — while businesses utilizing the Payments API settle their funds in USDC. 

For digital asset exchanges & brokers, decentralized apps (DApps), and other blockchain-based platforms, the Payments API is especially impactful. 

Many blockchain ventures use cryptocurrency as the main transaction vehicle throughout their business operations. They often incentivize customers to pay using a digital currency, but the user experience can be cumbersome and time-consuming for those who are used to paying with credit or debit cards. Using the Circle Payments API, blockchain platforms can accept fiat currency payments that automatically settle in digital dollars, allowing for seamless integration and usage on the platform. 

Payments API Use Cases

While the Circle Payments API’s primary function is very straightforward, there are myriad ways it can be used to improve payment processing for internet businesses. The most notable include: 

  • Accepting Credit & Debit Card Payments
  • Global Payment Processing
  • On-Ramp for Crypto Exchanges and Financial Applications
  • Mass Payouts

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Accepting Card Payments

The Payments API is currently available in 150+ countries and enables businesses to accept card payments in whichever global currency the consumer chooses. Internet businesses worldwide can now settle payments in USDC and enjoy the benefits that come with the digital dollar stablecoin such as near-instant global transfers, cheaper transaction fees, and easily integrated into other blockchain applications, all while bypassing the need to have a traditional fiat bank account. Learn more here.

Global Payment Processing

Circle plans to roll out support for wire (US domestic and international) and ACH (US domestic) transfers soon. Bank account ACH and wire transfers will support inbound and outbound flows, meaning businesses using the Circle Payments API can accept payments from and send payouts to bank accounts around the world while centering the activity around their Business Account USDC balance. Learn more here.

On-Ramp for Crypto Exchanges and Financial Applications

One of the main pain points for crypto applications is onboarding users all the way to funding their accounts. The Circle Payments API provides an easy fiat on-ramp for cryptocurrency exchanges and financial applications, allowing developers to build seamless user experiences and target huge addressable markets. End users can be much more easily onboarded and retained when they deposit funds using fiat currency that settles in USDC. Learn more here.

Mass Payouts

The Circle Payments API’s ‘Payout’ feature empowers businesses to make mass payments directly to the bank accounts of third parties, such as suppliers, contracts, and remote staff. Making payments in USDC is a fantastic way to achieve fast and cheap transfers (and businesses can achieve that with Circle’s Wallets API), but sometimes the recipients don’t want to deal with the complexity of crypto assets. The Payments API allows businesses to initiate a payout from their Circle Business Account USDC balance all the way to a bank account in 80+ countries without the need for local banking relationships. Learn more here.

 

Circle Payments API: How to Set It Up in 5 Minutes

Ease-of-use is critical for payment applications in the digital age. Therefore, Circle has made the Payments API integration process simple and straightforward. Developers will find that accepting the first card payment will take no longer than five minutes. 

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The steps are as follows: 

  1. Get an API Key
    After opening a Business Account with Circle, navigate to the settings, and generate a new API key for the sandbox environment - it only takes a few seconds. 
  2. Install the sample application
    Generate a sample web application, and enter the API key created in step 1 on the settings tab in the top right corner. 
  3. Accept your first card payment
    On the sample application, click on the Charge Flow button under the "Example UI implementation" section. Type in one of the test card numbers and add billing information before clicking the “Make Payment” button. 
  4. Check the status of your card payment 
    If you want to check the status of the payment, make an API call using the ‘get payment endpoint.’ 

 

For more details on how to set up the Payments API, click here. To start accepting fiat currency payments that settle in USDC, sign up for a Circle Business Account today. 

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