10 Things To Consider When Choosing a Credit Card Processor: Part 1

There are many credit card processing companies from which you can choose.  These points will ensure you make the right decision.

10 things to consider when choosing a Credit Card Processor:

In this day and age, checks are nearly obsolete and cash is a rarity.

1. Having a Merchant Account is critical – In this day and age, checks are nearly obsolete and cash is a rarity. Most everyone carries multiple credit cards and or have them loaded on their smart phone.  The assumption that cash and check payments are safer and cheaper will end up costing merchants a lot in the long run. With today’s PCI/DSS  Security Standards combined with EMV Chip Card Technologies, merchants and cardholders are now significantly insured and much of their risk has been mitigated. Also cardholders like to earn rewards on their purchases and statistically consumers make larger purchases and additional purchases using credit cards versus cash or check . Merchants that don’t accept credit cards and debit cards could very well lose a sale to a competitor who does and or have a much lower sales volume as a result. Having a Merchant Account to Accept Credit Cards is imperative for any business.

2.  Understand All Costs Involved– Many Credit Card Processing companies will only disclose part of the story. Business owners need to be aware of all potential recurring, monthly, annual, per transaction, and penalty fees that apply to a merchant account.  These include but are not limited to Statement Fees, Access Fees, Wireless Fees, Transaction Fees, PCI Compliance Program Fees, IRS Administration Fees, Regulatory Fees, Annual Fees, Batch Fees, Over Limit Fees, Chargeback Fees, Retrieval Fees, Downgrade Fees, Service and Support Fees and many others.  All of these things can add up and affect the overall percentage charged.  Merchants need to get the big picture and understand the bottom line, and will only truly get this by dealing with a reputable Merchant Service Provider  who comes highly recommended, provides full disclosure, and engages in superior service and support after the sale. Merchants need to perform adequate research and background investigation on the credit card processing companies from who they receive quotes and must ensure that they receive,  not only the application, but the extensive terms and conditions to which they are bound by signing the application.

Failure to process a chip based credit card or debit card through a chip reader is now an automatic loss to the merchant in a chargeback dispute.

3. Chargebacks– Unfortunately chargebacks and Retrievals are an inevitable part of accepting credit cards. They can become a very costly expense of credit card processing not only from the fee standpoint which are assessed on a per item basis but from lost revenue from sales that are rejected after mediation.   Cardholders are empowered to dispute charges after the fact if they feel product or service is sub-par. This very fact is another reason why many consumers choose to pay with credit cards versus cash and check; it keeps merchants honest. Unfortunately regardless product or service quality, there will be circumstances where merchants encounter chargebacks. Business owners need to ensure their merchant service provider offers through education for handling chargebacks, provides real time monitoring so notifications are sent out right away, and has a highly qualified risk management department which can analyze fraudulent transactions preemptively to stop chargebacks before they have a chance to occur. Processing credit cards through EMV Chip Card capable Credit Card Machines or other Payment Processing Devices is absolutely critical. Failure to process a chip based credit card or debit card through a chip reader is now an automatic loss to the merchant in a chargeback dispute. In fact, many card issuers are currently initiating chargebacks on behalf of their cardholders knowing  that this will be an automatic win. A merchant service provider should be PCI/DSS Compliant and EMV Certified on many platforms so they are capable of providing Secure EMV Chip Card Processing through multiple device types and software integrations which give flexibility and protection to their merchants across the board.

Stay tune for Part 2 and 3, coming up soon!

At 1st National Payment Solutions, we pride ourselves on helping our customers navigate the complicated world of processing and doing so with honesty, integrity, and character.  If you would like to see why thousands of businesses have chosen 1NPS for their processing, please reach out to us at sales@1nps.com or call us at 1-866-964-1622 for a no cost, no obligation statement review!