One of the primary aspects of setting up an online store is figuring out the perfect payment processing solution. Sometimes payment solutions are far too expensive based on the number of products you are selling–or because of the price of those products. Sometimes you can't use a payment system because it doesn't support things like pre-payments or split payments.
Celery is an interesting alternative (more like an add-on) to the commonplace payment processors like Stripe (read our Stripe review) and PayPal (read our Paypal reviews). In this celery review, you'll learn about the features that make it stand out and understand exactly which type of businesses might benefit from Celery.
Celery Review: How Does It Compare?
If you take a look at a full comparison between PayPal, Stripe, and Celery, you actually start to realize just how limiting Stripe and PayPal are for merchants–especially those that run crowdfunding or pre-order campaigns.
For example, PayPal doesn't have a full ecommerce backend to connect directly with your online store and show you valuable statistics. You'll also find that Stripe and PayPal lack more niche payment features such as split payments, referrals, and retroactive order edits.
Now, many online stores don't need these unique features such as delayed payments or installments. However, features like these can come in handy for many organizations, so Celery is a breath of fresh air.
Celery Review: The Main Features
The main reason you would consider Celery to process your payments is if your company plans on completing a crowdfunding campaign or if you need to collect pre-orders for a new product. Combined with a product like Stripe, Celery expands upon the possibilities of your payment processor. So what are some of the other more unique features that make Celery so essential for these pre-orders? Let's take a look.
A High-conversion Checkout for Pre-orders
It's essential to have a high conversion checkout module during a crowdfunding campaign. Celery works to make that possible by offering a one-step checkout that collects the most important information including contact information and payment details. This means that you can collect shipping and other information later when it is absolutely necessary.
The checkout module is fully customizable and looks quite modern right out of the box. It includes smooth animations and beautiful fields and buttons so that your customers are never confused about how to make a pre-order. If you don't plan on using the default checkout, Celery offers a wide range of customization tools to upload your logo and brand the entire checkout.
Along with the many other advantages, the Celery checkout box works perfectly on both desktop and mobile devices. This way, you ensure that all customers are able to make payments to your organization regardless of which type of device they prefer.
Abandoned Cart Tools
One of my favorite parts about celery is the abandoned cart option. Recovering abandoned carts has become commonplace for ecommerce platforms. However, it's not quite as prevalent when talking about pre-orders and crowdfunding. Although this feature is currently in the beta stages, it seems to work rather well for automatically sending out emails to the customers that don't complete the checkout process.
Integrations with Any CMS or Website Builders
The Celery API integrates with a wide variety of business and marketing tools including Salesforce, Slack, and Google Analytics. Furthermore, Celery connects with all major content management systems, enabling you to create a crowdfunding platform on your current or new website.
For instance, you should have no problem integrating Celery with the likes of Shopify, Wix, Weebly, and WordPress.
Options to Charge Later
Most crowdfunding campaigns collect money up front because the whole point of it is to get capital to make brand-new products. However, you might already have the funds for a product and want to simply capture interest or demand prior to charging.
Celery includes an option to charge later or now, with settings for switching back and forth throughout the process. This type of payment system is rather popular with B2B transactions. Think about a lumber yard accepting an order from a contractor who might not want to pay for everything upfront.
Installments and Split Payments
The installments and split payments are also useful for B2B transactions, or any online store that's selling high quantity batches or expensive products. Celery makes it easy for the merchant to show customers that they have the option to pay for a product in installments. This is shown during the checkout process in a seamless manner that doesn't seem to affect the flow of the beautiful checkout box from Celery.
The split payments feature is also an incredible tool that you can't find in a normal payment processor like PayPal or Stripe. Sometimes companies are working with multiple credit cards or other payment options, especially when ordering large quantities of products.
Imagine how much you could increase your conversions just by adding that little bit of flexibility for your clients. It not only shows that you are willing to work with them on their payments, but it doesn't force you or them to have to talk through it over the phone.
Another impressive feature that comes with Celery involves referral marketing. You have the option to integrate with the referral marketing program, which awards people for recommending other customers to your company.
This can be quite advantageous when trying to collect prepayments or run a crowdfunding campaign. After all, a huge part of crowdfunding is word-of-mouth. If you get enough brand advocates talking about your company on a consistent basis, there is no telling how many people will contribute to your crowdfunding campaign.
Also, it's a great way to reward those people who are most excited about your company.
Celery Review: The Pricing
Many payment gateways require you to shell out money for setup or activation fees. Celery, on the other hand, has a completely free sign up and activation process.
Celery boasts a 2% transaction fee for every completed transaction that goes through your online store. There are no other charges from Celery.
This is all you have to worry about. You don't need a credit card to sign up for Celery. You don't get charged a dime until a transaction goes through your website.
A Big But – Celery isn't technically considered a comparable payment gateway like Stripe. Therefore, you still have to pair Celery with Stripe in order to have the functionality of the payment gateway and accept things like pre-orders and crowdfunding contributions.
Overall, you should expect to pay transaction fees for both Celery and Stripe.
Celery Review: Customer Support
The customer support from Celery is fairly comprehensive, including plenty of online resources such as a blog and FAQ. The blog seems to be helpful for learning about crowdfunding and what new features are coming in the future from Celery. You can also tap into the Crowdfunding 101 course from Celery. This is basically a large online e-book covering topics like validating your product idea, marketing your campaign, and getting your products designed by manufacturers.
As for the actual dedicated support from Celery, customers are able to tap into the online knowledgebase, with a huge collection of articles and tutorials covering everything from installing Celery on your website to setting up your shipping options.
Other than that, Celery provides an email address for you to contact the customer support team. You might also be able to reach out to the company through social media networks, but keep in mind there is no phone line or live chat module listed on the Celery website.
Should You Consider Celery to Accept Pre-Payments?
It's pretty clear who should consider Celery as a way to accept certain payments. Celery does not replace a payment gateway like Stripe or PayPal. In fact, it works hand-in-hand with Stripe so that you can sort of extend the functionality of your gateway.
The main point of Celery is to start accepting pre-sales for your products. This is rather common in the crowdfunding world.
Some of the other reasons you might sign up for Celery is if you wanted to offer delayed payments to your customers or even installments or split payments. We also like Celery because it provides an option for referrals as well as an ecommerce backend.
Celery is not going to save you any money to complete these tasks (considering its 2% transaction fee is on top of the Stripe transaction fee,) but you are technically just paying a premium for all of these extra features.
Essentially, what Celery has managed to do is allow companies to create crowdfunding and pre-order campaigns without having to go through Kickstarter. This means that you are immediately sending customers to your own website and not Kickstarter, which promotes itself most of the time. Furthermore, you won't have to pay the fees that come along with Kickstarter.
Celery Review: Any Questions?
Overall, Celery is a quality product that complements your payment gateway and streamlines all of your pre-orders and crowdfunding collections. If you have any questions about this Celery review or would like to share your thoughts and experiences, feel free to leave a note in the comments section below.