WooCommerce and PayFast team up to boost South African eCommerce

Written by Joel on September 9, 2013 Blog.


Good morning, South Africa! This morning, we’ve got some exciting news for you all. It is with great excitement that we announce a new partnership with PayFast. Together, WooThemes and PayFast now bring you a free PayFast integration for your WooCommerce-powered store.

PayFast is one of several payment gateway options which allows WooCommerce-powered store owners to transact in South African rand. Since our WooCommerce PayFast integration launched, it has quickly become a leading option for South African-based WooCommerce store owners. We are extremely thrilled to make WooCommerce an even more affordable solution for South African entrepreneurs and business owners interested in entering the eCommerce space. As a proudly South African business, we could not be more excited.

Here are some things you should probably know about PayFast.

  • PayFast was founded in 2007 by Jonathan Smit and Andy Higgins (then-director of bidorbuy).
  • Their goal is to be an eCommerce enabler, helping businesses, individuals and charities accept online payment in a variety of ways.
  • They offer credit card payments, Instant EFT (for those who don’t have credit cards) and other voucher payment methods.
  • They have hundreds of thousands of registered users (making checkout a tad faster and more likely since they’re already familiar with the brand)
  • Some bigger/more famous clients are bidorbuy, Takealot, Runway Sale, Curves, Associated Magazines, MedicAlert, NicSocks and League of Beers.
  • No monthly/account fees, only per successful transaction
  • Recently dropped rates to 3.9% on credit cards, 2.0% on Instant EFT

WooThemes is committed to our community of users by working to make incredible products, by providing top notch personal support and by continuing to work closely with our partners to bring incredible offers, such as this, to your inbox.

Download Now

PayFast Payment Gateway

Take payments on your WooCommerce store via PayFast (redirect method).

WooCommerce can now say, with great pride, that we are the first eCommerce platform in South Africa where you can get started selling today in South African Rands for FREE. Now that is pretty exciting.

Tell us about your South African-based eCommerce website or your experience with PayFast. Leave us a comment below.


18 Responses

  1. kylevorster
    September 9, 2013 at 11:03 am #

    This is awesome!! Thanks guys 🙂

  2. Maryke Van Rensburg
    September 9, 2013 at 11:07 am #

    I think PayFast is the best South African Payment Gateway. Well done PayFast and WooCommerce for adding this payment gateway as a free extension. From now on, my clients will get WooCommerce for their eCommerce solution. (I was just waiting for this!)

  3. Alex
    September 9, 2013 at 11:28 am #

    How does this change anything?

    We have been using Payfast for a year – I wish it wasn’t a redirect and that users are forced to create an account. The recover password feature is basically broken.

    If it was easier I’d be with a more integrated solution for full checkout on our site.

    • Joel Bronkowski
      September 9, 2013 at 11:34 am #

      Hey Alex,

      This changes things for all new eCommerce sites in SA, they will be able to save R800 on their startup costs. Thanks for the feedback.

  4. JC Clarke
    September 9, 2013 at 11:32 am #

    And yet another sad partnership disguised as a wonderful feature… woothemes, the hero.

    • Mark Forrester
      September 9, 2013 at 11:49 am #

      I find it hard to see any context, or anything constructive, in your comment JC?

  5. DeonTerblanche
    September 9, 2013 at 11:33 am #

    I love WooCommerce and use PayFast. It works brilliantly together. The fact that PayFast only takes a percentage of each payments works for me and I think they are very affordable.

    Something that PayFast could bring in, however, is the ability to accept repeating, regular payments and instalments. For instance, recurring membership payments or the ability to split large payments into two or more instalments.

    • Werner van Rooyen
      September 9, 2013 at 4:45 pm #

      Hey Deon,

      Werner (from PayFast) here. Thanks for the kudos (and suggestions)! Recurring billing is on the to-do list for development over the next few months. At the moment, there are a couple of interim solutions you can use, such as sending out a monthly payment invoice (with WHMCS or WP-Invoice) which the customer can pay (or decline) each month. Not ideal, I agree, but it might help a bit?

      We’ll be sure to keep everyone in the loop once it is ready (but we’re talking “months” not “weeks” here). Thanks again for the feedback, appreciated!

      • JBagley
        September 9, 2013 at 5:36 pm #

        Hey Werner, recurring billing via Payfast would be awesome and I am definitely looking forward to having you launch this. The current options in SA are really limited.

        Another question regarding Payfast – have you ever considered allowing users to pay without having to create an account?

        • werner.payfast
          September 9, 2013 at 8:24 pm #

          Hey Jason,

          This is actually a more important thing for us at the moment, removing the account creation. We’re investigating removing that requirement, but we’re also not talking about “weeks” here, but rather “months”. The main reason why it is in place is that it helps with fraud detection/prevention, something that is very important to us (and also our sellers).

          We’ll be sure to make a big announcement if we get done right, without compromising anyone’s financial security.

          Thanks so much for the questions!

      • Courtenay Farquharson
        October 4, 2013 at 2:12 am #

        Hi Werner,

        Great to know about the recurring billing. We desperately need this for our business. I’d be happy to be on the list of test sites, get an early access program and do custom integration into our magento platform to get this working.

        Please let me know

  6. Nic
    September 9, 2013 at 12:31 pm #

    Good things guys, great partnership solidified.

    Would love to see Payfast tie into Woocommerce subscription plugin to allow for recurring subscription billing.

    Any chance this will happen soon?

    • Gerhard Potgieter
      September 9, 2013 at 12:57 pm #

      Hey Nic,

      Unfortunately PayFast does not support recurring payments at present, however as soon as they add support for it we will be sure to integrate the extension with subscriptions.

  7. Ebrahim-Khalil Hassen
    September 9, 2013 at 4:58 pm #

    Thanks. Will add this to my “hack box”. Would like to second Nic’s suggestion on recurring payments.

    • Ebrahim-Khalil Hassen
      September 10, 2013 at 10:51 am #

      One question before I use this offer. Who is responsible for updating the plugin?

  8. chrismine
    September 19, 2013 at 3:41 pm #

    And not too long ago I paid $49 for the plugin……

  9. Ben
    September 19, 2013 at 4:29 pm #

    Hey Werner,

    Can I safely say that PayFast will work perfectly with Namibian Dollars as we are pegged with Rand?

  10. Shingi
    October 2, 2013 at 9:16 am #

    Can i use this platform in Zimbabwe.

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