Stripe Elements make it easy to collect a customer's credit card information securely, but what happens after that? You still need to use Stripe's Node.js API to actually accept a payment from a user. In this tutorial, you'll learn how to build a basic full stack checkout flow with Stripe and Node.js.

Stripe Client

Stripe Elements automatically creates a secure credit card form for you by creating an iframe on your page and a JavaScript API to interact with the credit card form. This tutorial will use Vue, but here's a guide to setting up Stripe Elements with React.

Below is a simple Stripe Elements checkout form using Vue. When you submit the form, it creates a payment token from the card and prints it to the console. Try entering in the Stripe test card 4242 4242 4242 4242 with any CVV, expiration date, and zip code to see it in action.

Below is the code for the above form. The key thing to note is that, when the component is mounted, the below code creates a Stripe card element, and then uses that Stripe element to pull a secure token representing the credit card information when the user submits the form.

const stripe = Stripe('pk_test_CY6HxyQkOolO1B3h43MvkJE5');

new Vue({
  methods: {
    submit: async function(ev) {
      ev.preventDefault();

      const res = await stripe.createToken(this._card);
      console.log('Payment token is ', res.token.id);
    }
  },
  template: `
    <form @submit="submit($event)">
      <div class="stripe-form-input">
        <div ref="stripe">
        </div>
      </div>
      <button type="submit">Submit</button>
    </form>
  `,
  mounted: function() {
    this._card = stripe.elements().create('card');
    this._card.mount(this.$refs.stripe);
  }
}).$mount('#stripe-example-1');

This form collects credit card information, but doesn't do anything with it. In order to actually charge the customer, you need to call the stripe.confirmCardPayment() function, which requires you to create a secret on the server side.

Creating a Server Side Secret

In order to charge the customer, you need to create a payment intent on the server side, and send the payment intent's secret to the client. This ensures that the customer can't change what you expect them to pay. Below is an Express app that sends back a secret for a $2 charge.

'use strict';

const express = require('express');
// Set your stripe private key here
const stripe = require('stripe')(process.env.STRIPE_PRIVATE_KEY);

const app = express();
app.use(express.static('./public'));

app.get('/stripeSecret', function(req, res, next) {
  const amount = 2 * 100;
  const currency = 'usd';

  stripe.paymentIntents.create({ amount, currency }).
    then(intent => res.json({ secret: intent['client_secret'] })).
    catch(next);
});

app.use(function(err, req, res, next) {
  res.status(err.status || 500).json({ message: err.message });
});

app.listen(3000);

In order to get the Stripe secret, your Vue payment form needs to make a request to the /stripeSecret endpoint in the mounted() hook.

// ...
data: () => ({ secret: null }),
mounted: async function() {
  this._card = stripe.elements()..create('card');
  this._card.mount(this.$refs.stripe);
  this.secret = await axios.get('/stripeSecret').
    then(res => res.data.secret);
}
// ...

Once you get the secret and the user entered in their credit card information, you can make a request to stripe.confirmCardPayment() as shown below.

submit: async function(ev) {
  ev.preventDefault();
  const res = await stripe.confirmCardPayment(this.secret, {
    payment_method: { card: this._card }
  });
  console.log('Payment result is', res);
}

Below is the complete Vue component that integrates with the Stripe secret endpoint.

new Vue({
  data: () => ({ secret: null }),
  methods: {
    submit: async function(ev) {
      ev.preventDefault();
      const res = await stripe.confirmCardPayment(this.secret, {
        payment_method: { card: this._card }
      });
      console.log('Payment result is', res);
    }
  },
  template: `
    <form @submit="submit($event)">
      <div class="stripe-form-input">
        <div ref="stripe"></div>
      </div>
      <button type="submit">Submit</button>
    </form>
  `,
  mounted: async function() {
    this._card = stripe.elements()..create('card');
    this._card.mount(this.$refs.stripe);
    this.secret = await axios.get('/stripeSecret').
      then(res => res.data.secret);
  }
}).$mount('#stripe-example-1');

Moving On

Stripe's APIs are very developer friendly, and building a checkout flow is straightforward. You need a little bit of help from the server side, but with that you can collect payments directly on your site, without redirecting users out to PayPal.

Found a typo or error? Open up a pull request! This post is available as markdown on Github
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