What Is a WooCommerce High Risk Payment Gateway and How to Get It

What Is a WooCommerce High Risk Payment Gateway and How to Get It

WooCommerce is one of the most popular, if not THE most popular, ecommerce plugins for WordPress. WooCommerce can handle almost any size ecommerce store and is simple to install, customize, and use. With this being said, not only does it meet the online shopping needs of many merchants of all sizes, but it also attracts high risk merchants.

What Is a WooCommerce High Risk Payment Gateway

A high risk payment gateway is a payment solution for merchants who offer high risk products or services through the WooCommerce store. In other words, high risk payment gateway enables merchants to accept payments from the customers.

While WooCommerce has multiple payment gateways on its extensions store, most cannot accept high risk payments. Therefore, it is essential to understand what a WooCommerce High Risk Payment Gateway is and why you need it.

Note: Learn more about payment gateways in our article What Is a Payment Gateway?

Why Would You Need a High Risk Payment Gateway for WooCommerce

WooCommerce High Risk Payment Gateway  

Here are the main reasons why a merchant should consider using high risk payment gateway for WooCommerce store:

Suppose you're a merchant with products or services such as supplements or travel services. In that case, some payment processors will consider these as high risk and will not provide you with payment processing.

Suppose you have received many chargebacks in a short period. In that case, This can mainly occur to smaller merchants that sell smaller volumes of products. If they even receive two or three chargebacks, they can be considered high risk.

If you provide a service that can lead to fraud. Suppose there is a possibility of fraud occurring with your business. In that case, this is a huge reason for many merchants to opt for a high risk payment gateway for their WooCommerce store.

Note: Find out what important factors you need to take into consideration when choosing a payment gateway.

What Requirements Do You Need for a WooCommerce High Risk Payment Gateway

Although each payment processor has a different set of high risk merchant account and merchant services requirements, the whole process has some common steps.

The merchant's first step is to obtain a high risk merchant account and high risk merchant services from the payment provider of their choice. Although most payment providers do not support high risk businesses, there are specialized high risk payment providers – such as CCBill. They can mitigate risks and safely handle transactions for all involved parties (merchant, customer, bank, payment provider).

The second step for the merchant is to get an appropriate payment extension for their WooCommerce store. If you look at the WooCommerce Extensions Store for payment gateways, you will see that most of them are not high risk payment gateways. So, where do you find WooCommerce extensions for high risk payments? The answer is simple – ask your high risk payment provider. For example, CCBill has a WooCommerce plugin hosted at the official WordPress plugin directory.

The third step is to configure the plugin for WooCommerce high risk payment gateway and perform test transactions without spending actual money. You can obtain instructions for that from your high risk payment provider.

What to Do if Your Request for Merchant Account is Declined

Merchant Account Declined  

Imagine you are a new business or ecommerce owner. You applied for a merchant account at the payment provider, but you get declined. You are probably going to wonder why this happened. The truth is that many merchants might not even realize that their business is high risk. There are also payment processors that initially agree to take payments for a high risk product or industry, but if the processing or banking rules change, you are left looking for a new payment processor.

Merchants must always keep in mind that payment processors can change their rules and criteria. Therefore, it is essential to know your high risk payment processors. Always keep an eye out on the industry changes, and if yours just might be added to the high risk one, or if you know it is borderline, even more so.


Now that you know what a WooCommerce high risk payment gateway is, you can better identify if your ecommerce needs one. If so, you can use the guidelines in this blog to get started on the right foot with your high risk payment processing.