The Safest way to Use Stripe to Sell Watches Online.

If you are like me, who likes to buy and sell watches online, you might be aware of the Stripe Payment gateway. You might wonder about the risks associated with Stripe Payment. This guide will help you minimize the many risks associated with Stripe.

Let’s see the steps that you can take to minimize the potential risks.

About Stripe

Stripe was founded in 2010 with headquarters in San Francisco. The company primarily offers payment processing software and application programming interfaces for e-commerce websites and mobile applications. The current valuation of the business in 2020 is $36Billion

Know the buyer

Knowing the buyer is one of the most critical steps you should take. If you know who the buyer is, you will less likely get scammed by that person. What I mean by that is, you should connect with the buyer on social media, have a phone conversation and even ask for references. If you feel that the buyer is hiding something, it’s better to move on and not proceed with the sale.

Using Stripe Radar: 0-99

It is a machine learning system that is flexible and responsive and continuously learns from past and current customers of the Stripe. The risk is divided into 3 categories. The higher the number, the higher the risk.

High risk (75-99)

When Stripe marked the payment as high risk, it is automatically blocked by default.

Elevated risk (50+)

There is an increased chance of being fraudulent, and it’s advised to pay greater attention to these transactions.

Normal risk (0-50)

Learn more about Stripe Radar

If the payments have regular risk evaluation, it has fewer characteristics to be fraudulent; however, even average risk can become fraudulent, and you need to make sure that you know who you deal with.

According to, “When a business using Stripe sees a card for the first time, there’s an 80% chance that we’ve seen the card elsewhere on the Stripe network in the past.” That’s how they are able to see the patterns.

Stripe Fees

The standard processing fee for Stripe is 2.9% +.$.30 per each transaction in the USA. For international cards or transactions the there is an additional 1% fee.

Ship to a verified address

When you ship to a verified billing address which matches the shipping address, that’s the safest way of knowing, you are most likely shipping to the right person.

Suppose you ever see that the shipping address is different from the cards’ billing address (Billing address is in Hawaii, shipping to New York). In that case, you should pay closer attention to the seller.

Another trick scammers use is that they ask you to change the shipping address or  get you torush to ship as fast as you can. That’s why it is good to ship with FedEx or UPS to return the sender package. You get more control over the package before it gets into the wrong hands.

Speaking of shipping, you should always ship with a company that allows you to reroute your package, especially when it comes to luxury pieces. The companies below are the ones that are highly recommended to use.

  • UPS
  • FedEx
  • DHL

Here is a great blog post on “How to ship watches fast and safe.

Check the IP address.

Stripe is good at showing the location as well as on what device the transaction took place.

You can also use in case the Stripe map location does not work properly, which has happened to me in the past.

Ask for an ID

It is not uncommon that people do ask you for your id when you shop in retail stores. The same implies when you shop online, especially when someone spends $10,000 for a used Rolex watch. People who are serious and do not have anything to hide will be more than happy to show the id to match the shipping address and, in many cases, the billing address.

Processing time

Wait for at least 48hrs before you ship the watch. Just let the purchaser know that you will ship in two days. The reason being, that if the person stole the credit card, the actual owner might find out, so you are giving them enough time to cancel the payment if that is the case, and you will not get screwed.

Now that you know how Stripe works, it’s time to learn how to use is when you are selling watches.

How to set up Stripe?

You will need to have an account with Stripe. Here are two potential scenarios. You might have to open an account link to Value Your Watch or open a regular account with Stripe.

Whichever approach you choose, you just need to follow the instruction. The registration is free.

How to get paid

If the watch sale is your first transaction on Stripe, it typically takes seven days to get paid after the first successful payment is received (“Estimated future payouts”). After more transactions, the payout is much faster, generally in two days.

How to send the invoice

Before you can send an Invoice, you will need to create a payment or create an invoice. Either approach will work.

The fees for the invoice are the same as mentioned in the fee structure. Just fill out the form and send the invoice to the buyer.

How risky is to accept credit card when selling watches?

Using a Credit card can be risky, especially when people can do a chargeback. However, Stripe seems like the best choice when it comes to using cards when selling watches online.

PayPal is well known for siting with buyers, and they have 180 days to create a dispute. On the other hand, Stripe goes by the book to see if the transaction was legit or not. Yes, someone can steal a credit card, and you want to make sure you get protected against chargebacks. That’s why it is so important to know who the buyer is.

If you don’t feel comfortable accepting Credit Cards, you can always escrow service to sell your watches at our marketplace.


Stripe is a trendy processing software which is getting only better with the technology. Because Stripe is easy to use and has the standard 2.9% + $.30 per transaction fee, it is very popular among many online retail stores and watches marketplaces on the internet.


Honza Hroch
Value Your Watch
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