GaragePay: PayPal – The Way It Should Be

These days, you’d be hard-pressed to find any business, freelancer or consumer who doesn’t have a PayPal account, and for good reason – it’s quick, easy, and universally used. Considering its success, however, the PayPal website is still awkward to use –

If you leave it for more than a second, it would seem, it logs itself out, and you have to waste time logging back in again. Once you’re in, it’s not all that intuitive, and you have to navigate countless dropdown menus to do anything. In short, the PayPal site is a pain.

GaragePay can take away all of that pain. It’s a PayPal client for Mac, meaning you never have to use that pesky site ever again, and instead can handle all of your transactions from the comfort of a native app.

Getting Started

GaragePay is available on the Mac App Store for $24.99 USD. Installing it from there is ridiculously easy (click “Buy”, and there it is), but if you want to go the more traditional DMG-based route, that’s just as easy, and also gives you an opportunity to try it out before purchase.

To do so, simply download the DMG (a mere 3.28MB), open up the installer, and drag the app into the Applications shortcut provided. Even the installation window looks great – You just know (or at least hope) it’s going to be a good app.

Installing GaragePay

Installing GaragePay

Setting up your PayPal account is pretty straightforward – Just enter your account e-mail and API details. Be warned though – For personal accounts, only certain countries have API features. If you have a Premier or Business account, you’ll be fine, but check that you can get your API details before forking out $25.

Interface

GaragePay Interface

The GaragePay Interface

Considering that GaragePay is essentially PayPal with a different skin (albeit with a few extra features), the interface is essential to make the user satisfied. Luckily, it excels in this field. The folks at iwascoding clearly spent an awful lot of time on the design, and it pays off.

Everything is laid out for all to see – your transactions, different accounts, smart folders, and further details about the transaction when selected. Couple this with beautiful, colourful icons, and you just cannot go wrong.

The aim for all Mac interface designers is to create an app which feels like something Apple would make. This definitely does. It doesn’t try to blow you away with eye candy, but you know exactly what you’re doing at all times.

Making Transactions

Sending Money

Sending Money

Sending money is very easy with GaragePay – Just hit that big “Send Money” button, and you’ll be greeted with a Mail-like window where you enter the receiver, a subject, the amount, and a message.

GaragePay will even calculate the fee you’ll be paying as you type. If you’ve ever used Mail.app before, this will be second nature to you, and even if you haven’t, it’s not rocket science.

Refunding Money

Refunding Money

Unfortunately, you may sometimes get an unsatisfied client, or something similar, and you may have to refund them. This is just as easy, and can be done by selecting a transaction, and hitting refund. You can choose to refund the full amount, or just part of it, and attach a memo to your refund.

Organising Transactions

You can view all of your transactions in the main window, where you’ll quickly see the payer and receiver, the items (if a purchase was made), the date, and the amount. If you only want to see your outgoing transactions, just hit the “Outgoing” tab.

By clicking on a transaction, you see even more details about it, such as the fee paid, the transaction status, and details about the payer/receiver, if such information is available.

To further catalog your transactions and make them easier to find in future, a notes section is provided for you to insert any further details you wish.

Smart Folders

Smart Folders

One of the most useful features in GaragePay that isn’t in PayPal is the ability to create Smart Folders. These work much the same as Smart Folders in Finder, or Smart Playlists in iTunes – Create a folder and apply a criterion to it.

This can be a great way of organising transactions without having to manually sort them, and a life-saving feature if you deal with hundreds of transactions on a regular basis.

Exporting as a CSV

Exporting as a CSV

Exporting as a CSV

If you need to add some PayPal transaction details to your spreadsheet, but there are far too many to enter manually, then GaragePay has just the thing for you – The ability to export a list of transactions as a CSV file.

CSV files will open in just about any database app, so it’s perfect for transferring data without any conversion issues. To export as a CSV, select the folder or list of transactions you wish to export, and hit the big “CSV Export” button.

You will be asked which transaction fields you wish to include, and a number of other options, including what to separate the values with. A comma is the default option (CSV does stand for Comma Seperated Values, after all), but in some languages, the comma is used for the decimal separator, and so a semi-colon is used.

Conclusion

If you’re unsatisfied with the PayPal website (and I don’t blame you), then certainly give GaragePay a try – It is by far the best PayPal solution for Mac, and you will know exactly how to use it straight away.

It probably won’t change your life, but it’ll make it a good bit easier. The only real criticism I can offer is that the API isn’t supported in all countries, but that’s an problem with PayPal, and not with GaragePay.

If you use PayPal daily, it’s well worth the $25. For the occasional user, it may be a little much, but it’s nevertheless an excellent app with great care put into its development.


Summary

GaragePay lets you download, view, search and archive all your PayPal transactions without having to log into the PayPal website. It handles incoming as well as outgoing money transfers.

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  • http://www.yummygum.nl Leon

    This app looks really promising. You had my attention at ‘the PayPal site is a pain’. Will definitely check this out. Nice complete review!

  • http://vanessamacleod.com Vanessa MacLeod Design

    I had no idea that such apps even existed. Being able to handle paypal transactions locally would be a huge plus! I will definitely try out the free trial.

  • Fred

    Is this app secure? It is possible to lock the app?
    I imagine having garagepay installed on a stolen laptop, what would happen?

  • Paul

    I’m also suspicious of the security of this application and how “secure” it really is… And I definitely all into the occasional user of PayPal, so $25 is steep to me for such an app.

  • http://drewjoh.com Drew

    That was my first thought also: How secure is this?

    Some thing’s I would like to see:
    1) Virtual Terminal functionality
    2) Reference Transaction functionality

  • http://www.damnsemicolon.com Skye

    This looks very promising. I am also concerned about the security.

    The PayPal website is horrendous. Slow, timeouts, log outs, bad requests.

    • http://www.hammyhavoc.com Hammy Havoc

      I wish that the PayPal website was as great as the iPhone application. I really love that. GaragePay is pretty good, as with GarageSale and GarageBuy.

  • http://www.cmnddsgn.com Luke

    I like the idea of IWASCODING’s applications, but one thing bugs me and stops me from buying.

    This should be integrated into 1 app along with GarageBuy and GarageSell, they should also get new names.

  • http://www.pingvps.com PingVPS.com

    “It’s a PayPal client for Mac, meaning you never have to use that pesky site ever again”

    As far as that quote goes, yes for transactions you won’t need to visit Paypal again, but for anything admin based you certainly will need to keep that pesky URL in your bookmarks.

    It’s a great app, but it isn’t going to cut the painful experience of PayPal.com from your lives any time soon.

  • Sebastiaan

    Does this software takeover when making payments from eBay ? Most of the payments i do are when i win or buy something from eBay and the checkout is (in case of a paypal checkout) quite easy as it is.

    I’ve tried GarageBuy before, but if GaragePay is a reliable/stable as GarageBuy i’d say stay far, far, FAAAAAAR away from it.

  • Eric

    Considering the way Paypal treats their customers, I’m thinking of dropping it altogether. And if that means I have to give up BillMeLater too, so be it.

  • gigi

    So I take it that NO answer to the multiple security questions means it could in fact compromise my PAYPAL security. That is a big deal. Can the manufacturer please give us some straight facts here?

  • http://www.putler.com/ Nirav Mehta

    I wanted to use GaragePay for my business, but it did not do all that I wanted it to. It also did not seem to use PayPal APIs and I was not too happy putting my username and password into it.

    So I built Putler. Putler does beautiful analytics of your PayPal data plus a lot more. Sales, Refunds, Subscriptions, Products, Mass Payments, Charting, Comparison, Multiple Currencies, Multiple Accounts – it does all of that with absolute security. (Uses PayPal API info and not your PayPal login/pass, plus everything goes over HTTPS)

    We do have a free version available, so I invite everyone to try that out.

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