Paystack is a payment service provider that allows businesses in Africa to carry out transactions globally. It enables merchants to receive and send payments from around the globe.

One of the major problems in the finance sector in Africa is payment, especially international payment. 

In this article, we’ll look at Paystack, what it is and how it works. So, let’s jump right in!

What is Paystack?

What is Paystack?

Paystack is a payment channel that facilitates online and offline payments for merchants in Africa with customers across the globe. In other words, they help businesses in Africa get paid by anyone in any country in the world.

The company was founded in 2015 by Ezra Olubi and Shola Akinlade. The founders saw a huge problem with receiving payment in Nigeria and Africa and decided to bridge the gap. Now, Paystack provides seamless payment solutions to businesses in Africa, helping them expand.

Who do they cater to?

Paystack caters to startups and small and medium-sized businesses. 

Key Benefits of Using Paystack

These are the major benefits of using Paystack

With Paystack, you can use several payment channels, such as debit/credit cards, mobile wallets, bank accounts, QR codes, USSD, POS, Apple Pay and mobile money. These options create flexibility for businesses, new and old, to solve their payment challenges. 

Paystack caters to most businesses, both registered and unregistered. Whether your business is a startup or is established, you can use Paystack to solve your payment needs. 

  • Reports on Transactions

Paystack provides a detailed breakdown of all your successful and failed transactions. Even if you abandon a transaction halfway, you’ll get a report on the status of the transaction, including the date and time of initiation, parties involved, payment, channel used, etc.

  • Minute Transaction Fees

You only pay a small transaction fee for each transaction you carry out. There are no integration or maintenance fees. No hidden, ambiguous, unexplainable fees accrued at the month’s or week’s end.

  • High Transaction Success Rates

Paystack boasts high success rates with the transactions that have passed through its channels. Several high-brow merchants such as MTN, AXA Mansard, Taxify, and God is Good Motors (GIGM) trust Paystack and have recorded mostly successful transactions.

How Paystack Works

Let’s look at how Paystack provides payment solutions for businesses.


The first step to using Paystack is to sign up and complete the registration process. Here are the steps involved.

  • Visit the Paystack website and click on Create Free Account.
  • Fill in your details, such as your country, business name, full name, email address, phone number, etc. Click on Create Account when you’re done, and follow the prompt.
  • Integrate Paystack into your app or website with its APIs. At the point of account creation, you’ll need to indicate whether you’re a software developer or not to enable Paystack to know which tools to make available for you and which settings to sort out for you.
  • Set up the payment process that works for your brand.

Payment Flow

Here’s how payment works on Paystack

  • Payment Initiation

Here, the customer chooses a product or service they want to pay for and clicks through to the payment channel.

  • Payment request

Paystack generates a payment request with all the details of the impending transaction.

  • Payment Collection

Customers select their preferred payment channel, e.g. bank transfer, card, etc and make payment.

  • Confirmation

Paystack confirms that the transaction is complete and sends a notification to both the customer and the merchant.

Security and Compliance

Paystack encrypts all its transactions to ensure maximum security and prevent fraud. It also collects necessary information about certain kinds of businesses before authorizing them to accept payments via Paystack. 

Some businesses must be verified before they can access the payment services. These businesses are in the following categories:

  • Agricultural cooperatives
  • Financial institutions
  • Travel agencies
  • Airlines
  • Gaming businesses
  • Educational institutions
  • Medical institutions
  • Non-profit organisations
  • Automobile dealers

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What do I need to open a Paystack account?

A: Generally, all you need to open a Paystack account is a valid email address and phone number. However, if you’re opening a business account on Paystack, you must have registered your business, especially if it falls into the category of businesses that must be registered.

Q: Is Paystack Free to Use?

A: Paystack is completely free to use. It only charges a paltry fee on each transaction you make. Asides that, there are no subscription or setup fees.

Q: Is Paystack Better than PayPal?

A: Both Paystack and PayPal have their pros and cons. They’re two payment processing services that cater to similar yet different audiences. Hence, it’s best not to compare one o the other.


There you have it. Paystack is a payment solution for businesses in Africa. It allows merchants to receive payments from customers all around the globe. A business can either be registered or unregistered to use the service. However, some businesses must be registered before they can use the platform. Those kinds of businesses are outlined in this article.

We’ve discussed how Paystack works, including how to use it for your business. The first step is to sign up and follow the prompts.

Ensure you fill out the correct information when creating your account. Should you encounter any hassle, contact its customer support teams, and they’ll sort out the issue ASAP.