For the first time in Australia, PayPal has topped the list of preferred online payment methods, according to a recent Nielsen consumer report. 

The research showed that in the second half of 2007, 31 per cent of online shoppers preferred using PayPal over Visa or MasterCard. PayPal users also felt more secure about their transactions when compared with non-PayPal users, who expressed a higher level of concern about the security of their online transactions.

“With PayPal, customers have the same choices as they do over the counter – they can fund their PayPal account with their credit card, pay from a bank account or use a stored balance,” said Andrew Pipolo, managing director for PayPal in Australia.

“The key difference is that PayPal cuts out the middleman, so you never have to share your personal information, no matter whether you are buying or selling online.”

Although commonly associated as a payment method on eBay, the success of PayPal and growth in e-commerce has now seen the number of other merchants offering PayPal increase to more than 8500 in Australia alone, including online retailers Rebel Sport, Deals Direct, Roses Only, Trading Post and Harris Technology.