Criya uses Stripe to add flexible payments to its business platform for solo pros

Criya helps solopreneurs turn their side hustles into thriving small businesses using its all-in-one platform. Coaches, creators, and creatives can use Criya to easily create and sell online services, sessions, ebooks, and more. Criya’s platform provides prebuilt solutions to help solopreneurs launch their business, find new customers, manage scheduling, communicate with users, and send invoices. After proving its concept during Y Combinator W22, Criya needed a partner to power payments, invoicing, and subscriptions, so it turned to Stripe.

Products used

    Connect
    Billing
    Invoicing
North America
Startup

Challenge

There are many choices for SaaS tools aimed at launching and managing small businesses. Yet few cater specifically to the needs and workflows of solopreneurs like interior designers and consultants looking to create a web presence, sell online classes and content, and manage their customer bookings—all in one place. Criya gives this growing market—about 42 million strong in 2021—a platform built specifically for solopreneur businesses. To round out its services, however, it needed a payment platform to help its customers monetize their digital content and services.

“Payments is the backbone of what we’re providing, so we had to get it right,” explained Deboshree Dutta, founder and CEO of Criya. “As a startup, we couldn’t build everything ourselves so we needed payments infrastructure expertise to handle the back-end while we focused on building a friendly solution for our customers.”

The Criya platform needed flexibility for its customers to choose from a variety of payment methods and pricing structures. Speed was critical, too, for both the back-end payments integration and getting payments functionality out to customers as quickly as possible.

Solution

Criya wanted to lean into simplicity and ease of use so solopreneurs could set up their business and quickly monetize their craft. But it was also critical to offer the flexibility to set prices for various services, request payments, track how their businesses were doing, and have confidence in the entire payments process.

“We needed a payments provider that had a reputation of trust and expertise to assure our customers, and Stripe was the obvious choice,” said Dutta. “Stripe’s solution instantly supported all the use cases we wanted to offer, from creating invoices and accepting payments to selling memberships and more.”

The flexibility of Stripe Connect helped Criya easily integrate payments into its software platform, design funds routing, align on a payments monetization strategy, and layer on subscription packages and invoicing capabilities for its customers. Stripe APIs provided a breadth of payments products Criya could use to build a comprehensive platform out of the box, no matter how its customers wanted to structure their businesses and payments.

Results

Criya is a young startup, but it’s using Stripe to offer a comprehensive, compelling set of business services designed exclusively for solopreneurs. Its small team quickly integrated payments while allowing Stripe to handle the back-end processing, cover critical regulatory and compliance obligations such as Know Your Customer (KYC), and offer built-in support for Criya’s global growth aspirations.

Just one week to integrate Stripe’s payments APIs into Criya’s platform

With just less than a dozen members on its team, Criya can’t spend months building or integrating one component of its complete business-in-a-box platform. Stripe Connect enabled the team to have a complete, flexible payments solution integrated in just one week.

Dutta said, “With Stripe’s APIs, all of the tools and products already existed. We didn’t have to reinvent the wheel, it was just up to us to pick and choose what worked best for our customers.”

Financial expertise, trust, and flexibility without adding financial experts

Stripe gave Criya the confidence to quickly move forward with an element as critical and complex as payments, but without needing in-house financial infrastructure expertise. The team trusted Stripe and quickly got to work.

“I’m not an expert in the intricacies of global payments, but I can convey my confidence to our customers that Stripe are the experts in the industry,” said Dutta.

Scalable to support eventual plans for global growth

Criya is growing quickly in the US and already has goals for expansion. When it’s ready, it will rely on Stripe to reach more customers worldwide with support for 135+ currencies and local payment methods.

Dutta said, “It was important that we chose a payments provider that could support our growth into international markets. I know that Stripe will have our back when we’re ready to expand globally.”

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