Payments and social media have had a rocky relationship. Many companies that have tried to blend the two have failed or been forced to change their business model. Gumroad Inc., a startup founded by a 20-year-old veteran of Pinterest, says it gets it right.

"Selling stuff is far too difficult, as every other piece of being a merchant gets easier," says Sahil Lavingia, designer, founder and CEO of Gumroad.

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