4th December 2009
The value in accepting credit cards is certainly there. Any business
whether small or large can benefit from accepting cards. The first
part in accepting credit cards is obtaining a merchant card account.
There are many reasons for wanting to accept credit cards. One of the
most valuable reasons continues to be the growth potential. All
businesses can benefit significantly from taking credit cards because
it widens the consumer base for their products.
It is very important to evaluate many different companies as each one
will provide varying differences within the accounts. Many businesses
can obtain a merchant account through their own bank. It is important
that your business talks directly with the clearing house that will
provide the account as you do not want to incur extra charges.
According to the status of your account your business will be required
to pay a discount rate per transaction. There will be transaction fees
as well. The discount rate and fees will vary according to the type of
sale that the transaction encompasses. Some fees that your business
may expect to incur are:
• Application Fee
• Programming Software Fee
• Statement Fee
• Minimum Monthly Transaction Fee
• Chargeback Fee
• Voice/Address Verification Fees
• Transaction Fee
Another important aspect regarding your merchant card account depends
largely on what type of business you have. Terminals will be needed
for any type of transaction; however the terminal and accompanying
software will vary depending on what type of business you are running.
The three main types are store-front (person to person), wireless (via
telephone/mail), and virtual (internet).
Some other things that all businesses should look for when setting up
merchant accounts are checking out the bank that will issue the
merchant credit card account, what clearinghouse is the bank using (if
you have not identified this already), what hardware/software gateways
are needed, do I need a merchant credit card broker (not necessary but
helpful) and maybe most importantly, the security.
After you have determined those things there are a few other questions
that you may want to ask to better solidifying your understanding of
the merchant card account. Such as, does the company offer 24 hour
customer service? If not, then when is it available? How long will it
take for funds to become available to my business? Does the company
have a warranty on the equipment? How long does it last, what does it
cover? What types of cards are supported? What type of security is
When looking at which company to choose it is vital that the business
remembers three things. The service provided when accepting credit and
debit cards, especially with PDQ machines, should be safe, priced right and simple to use! The rest
of the options will vary depending on what type of business the service
is intended for.
A merchant card account can be great for your business because it will
stimulate growth and whether you set up a traditional, offshore, high
risk, or third-party account it is vital to know your options and be
fully aware of what the business needs to be successful.