More than ever, websites are seeking out revenue opportunities. And for services that provide value, customers are willing to pay. However, if creating an e-commerce system is too much distraction for your development team, try to get yourself in on the Chargify beta.
The Chargify API is the core of their service, which handles billing and subscription services (details at our Chargify API profile). Lead developer Michael Klett explained how it works in an interview with ZDNet:
Customers start out on a merchant's website that's integrated with Chargify. They'll enter their credit card data there to purchase an item. The merchant passes that data to us over SSL. We'd verify that and run that information against the merchant's own payment gateway.
Chargify's API accepts method calls using HTTP, and returns responses as JSON or XML. It helps merchants keep the purchase flow on their own sites and let Chargify do the processing.
Though Chargify doesn't itself charge anything until you reach 50 customers, you'll need a merchant account. These involve monthly and sometimes setup fees. Currently Chargify only supports Authorize.net.
The need for a merchant account may keep hobbyist developers using the Paypal API, where fees are only incurred when a purchase is made.
For more on Chargify's services, watch their video (embedded below).