When it comes to credit card processing companies, you have many options available for your business. With this in mind, shouldn’t you have a great working relationship with the company that plays such an important role in your business? Make no mistake, as with many industries out there, there is plenty of competition. Finding the right processing company may take time. Below are a few tips for a better relationship with your credit card processing company.
1. First, does your credit card processing company come with a number of hidden costs you didn’t know where there? It can be a shock to your bottom line when you see all of those fees you weren’t really prepared for. If so, don’t let such fees go unchallenged. Simply ignoring the problem will make you an unsatisfied customer while letting the processing company increase their bottom line with your profits. Be sure to speak with a representative so they can show you were these fees were represented on your contract.
2. Occasionally, and by “occasionally” we mean often, credit card procession companies will raise their fees on each swipe. Before such rate hikes, contact the processing company and ask what the hikes are going to be and when they will take effect. Don’t fall victim to the fine print found on your bills and other correspondents the company sends to you. If you know what the increases will be and when they will occur, you can properly plan and raise your rates accordingly.
3. Always remember, you are the customer. Regardless if you are a small business just starting out, or a well-established box store pushing out millions in revenue; everyone deserves to be treated fairly. Don’t allow yourself and your business to be pushed around by well-known card processing companies or banks. If you don’t like the way you are being treated, give the company’s customer retention center (when available) a phone call and see if anything changes.
Perhaps the best advice you can take from this is to not be afraid to challenge credit card processing companies. If you feel you are paying too much, or if you do not like the way rates fluctuate every month, start shopping around. A general rule in business is that if you feel something is amiss, you are almost always correct. There are plenty of other companies who would love, and possibly fight for, your business.
Any business owner who takes credit cards for provided goods and services know what a pain it is. Once you pay all of the fees of the credit card processing company, your bottom line gets smaller and smaller. Also, all business owners know if customers are not happy with your provided product, they will likely not be back. With this in mind, why do business owners continue to be mistreated by poor quality credit card processors? Business owners ARE the customer. They work for you, you pay them, you have a choice! Below are three signs you are using the wrong credit card processing service.
1. With the recent credit card security breaches at a few national chains, a good quality credit card processor will help you manage security. They can keep you up to date on the latest practices which will protect your customers. Make no mistake, if a small business has a security breach like we’ve seen in the past, there is no recovering.
2. Is your credit card processors rate going up, but the service remains the same? As a business owner you know when to raise prices on your goods and services, usually when your supplier raises their rates. You also know how much you can raise, or lower, prices in order to turn a profit. Processors also know these tricks. If your processor starts raising rates, and you are still getting the same ho-hum service, start looking around.
3. Do you keep getting hit with hidden fees from your processor? Sure, one would expect to pay the company what they are due, but hidden fees are the worst. Make sure you review any and all statements you receive from your processing company. Compare and contrast previous month’s statements. Due diligence can often times be a pain in the neck, but no one is looking after your bottom line except for you.
There are dozens of credit card processing companies out there. If you are a business owner, don’t be complacent with yours just because you have always used their services. Be proactive; start doing internet searches on the company, see what their current rates are, see if there are any complaints filed against them. Sometimes the difference between knowing, and being perpetually ripped off, is an internet search away.
Being a company’s business card holder can be a hassle. Dealing with co-workers, shipping problems, vendors, and contractors means dealing with all types of problems and personalities. One way to avoid some of these pitfalls is to only purchase from quality vendors. Below are a three ways to spot potential vendor problems which may arise.
1. Depending on your company’s needs, purchase products and services only from reputable companies. This may sound a bit obvious, but you may be surprised by the problems which occur when business card holders ignore this golden rule. Conduct thorough research on service contractors to the best of your ability. If you do not have a pre-existing account with a service contractor, and you are only using them as a onetime service provider, be sure to pay them upon services rendered. If they insist on being paid up-front you may want to tread lightly.
2. In regards to purchasing products from retailers, especially large purchases, conduct research on the retailers company account purchase policies and return policies. Having a complete understanding of these policies will aid in future purchases.
3. Lastly, and as already mentioned, be sure to find out a stores return policy. Not all return policies are built the same. Some stores have a seemingly open ended, no questions asked, return policy. Other stores can be sticklers for their rules. Always remember when using a credit card, if you are unhappy with a purchase and the retailer will not give you a refund, you can file a dispute under federal law. The purchase must be over $50 and you must submit evidence you tried to resolve the issue with the store or service provider. Contact your credit card company for further details.
Being a business card holder requires your supervisor to place a lot of trust onto you. Expand that trust with smart purchases that will get you noticed. Also, and if you are able to save your employer some money with your purchases due to you knowledge, you may endear yourself with your boss and finally score that corner office you’ve been wanting.
Any business owner who accepts credit cards probably does business with a credit card processing company. This much needed middle man is there to aid business owners with billing procedures. It is important to know the business owner is the customer of the processing company and not the other way around. If a business owner is unhappy with a processing company, they should start planning an exit strategy in order to protect their bottom line. Below are three reasons a business owner may want to start considering taking their credit card processing business someplace else.
1. Credit card processing companies must be paid for what they do, there is no disputing this. Be cautious when rates start to rise for no explainable reason. The contract a business owner and processing company agree too has a section on rate inflation. Processing companies may have to raise their rates in order to keep pace with the issuing credit card companies. When rate hikes start to appear for no other reason than to increase the processing companies profit, a business owner should start considering how much they are willing to pay.
2. Business owners should be scrutinizing every bill they receive, especially from their credit card processing company. These companies are notorious for adding hidden fees, surprise fees, standard fees; you name it, they’ll add it onto your bill. These fees appear with a standard annotation on the billing statement such as: “assessment fee”. As soon as a business owner sees such a fee, they should call the processing company for an explanation. If the explanation is not to your liking, realize this is probably only the beginning of these so called “assessment fees”.
3. Lastly, business owners should always be on the lookout they are being charged the proper transaction rate per card swipe. There are multiple types of transaction rates per the different ways a credit card transaction can take place. The most common rates are: swiped rate, keyed-in rate, surcharged rate, etc. Of course each rate fee is different than the other so make sure you are being charged the proper fee. If the credit card processing seems to continually miss-charge you, it might not be a coincidence.
One of the most important things to remember when dealing with a credit card processing company is that you are customer. If they are continuously making mistakes, or not living up to their end of their contract, cut ties with them. There are plenty of other processing companies which will take your business.
The credit card industry is multi-billion dollar web of banks, merchants, customers, and credit card processing companies. One of these entities, the card processing company, is a somewhat powerful force to be reckoned with. Processing companies are a necessary middle man between the merchant and the banks. Without them, credit card transactions may not run as smoothly as a swipe of a card. On the other hand, the swipe of a card and purchase of a product could cost less. Below are four things a person should know about a credit card processing company.
1. As stated, the credit card processing company is the middle man between a merchant and a bank. Every transaction made by the swipe of a card the processor makes sure the merchant gets their money and the bank adjusts the customer’s credit card balance. Per each swipe, the processing company gets a small cut of each transaction.
2. As with any agreement a business owner enter into a contract must be agreed upon and signed by the merchant and processing company.
3. A credit card processing company typically charges a flat rate, and a percentage rate, per each transaction. A flat rate may be in the neighborhood of $0.30 per transaction. A percentage rate, on average, is around 2.00% per transaction. So, if you spend $100 at a store, not including tax, the merchant has to pay $2.30 to the processing company. If the business is web based, and accepts credit cards, the processing company charges around 2.5% per each transaction. You could imagine how these transactions add up for a processing company pretty quickly.
4. There are multiple processing companies which compete for merchants business. Some companies may offer lower rates while some may offer lower penalty rates or other fees. Yes, penalties can be imposed by credit processing companies. For instance, if a merchant does not meet their agreed upon monthly revenue total the processing company may add it on as a fee or penalty to make up the remainder.
When dealing with credit card payments there is a lot that goes into ensuring all parties are paid and happy. As more and more people use credit cards, more and more credit card processing companies are sure to arise. Knowing a little be about them may help you understand why that roll of paper towels costs $5.00.
Credit card processing has come a long way since the carbon paper swiping transactions twenty years ago. Today almost every business has a computer on hand to swipe every type of credit card and debit card known to man. The act of paying with a card is so common; many people no longer carry cash in their wallets. Due to these factors, utilizing a credit card processing company is a must for almost every business out there. For such a common business relationship, you would think we would be better at dealing with credit card processing companies and avoiding the pitfalls we find ourselves in. Below are three common mistakes business owners make when using their credit card processing company.
1. A major mistake business owners make with their credit card processing company is not reading the terms and conditions of their contract. Sure, you may have glanced over other terms and conditions regarding your business before, but this should not be one of them. Be on the lookout for any red flags in the contract. Check for upfront fees, penalties, hidden fees, and the like. Credit cards are designed for ease of use, but the multi-billion dollar business behind these cards is cut throat. This is also true for credit card processing companies. If they can find a way to squeeze one more dollar out of you, they will. If you do not understand any part of the terms and conditions, contact a representative to walk you through it. If the terms and conditions are still unclear, contact a third party professional.
2. Be on the lookout for rate fluctuations. Most reputable companies will not spring a new rate on you overnight. This is precisely why reading the terms and conditions are so important. There is nothing more frustrating than paying 1.5% a swipe one day, only to be paying 2.5% the next. If you notice a rate hike which was not in the terms and conditions, contact the company immediately to find out what is going on.
3. Be very vigilant when assessing any additional fees or penalties coming from the company. Again, if the additional expenses are not in the terms and conditions, find out what is going on quickly. For example, say you expanded you product line onto an ecommerce site. There may be steeper rates when dealing with an ecommerce ‘swipe’ versus a brick and mortar ‘swipe,’ be sure to conduct your research carefully and consider if an expansion such as this will affect your profit margin.
Utilizing a credit card processor is simply a necessity in this day and age. Not falling prey to a predatory company is key in stabilizing your bottom line.
There are many laws and regulations to help consumers. Sometimes it seems like merchants are left defenseless. There are ways that a merchant can protect themselves against chargeback fraud. Chargeback is when the customer pays for a good such as over the internet and claims that it was never delivered. The customer wants their money back. To protect themselves, credit card processing merchants must take step so they do not get hit with fraudulent charges.
The order size can put a merchant on the lookout for chargeback fraud. If a customer orders a much larger quantity of the product then normal order this can be a sign. If many customers order ten items and then the merchant gets an order for one hundred items this may be a sign of fraud. They need to verify the order information before shipping anything out.
If the billing address and the shipping address of the customers order do match up this can be a sign for possible chargeback fraud. While this is not true are all cases the business should take some time to verify the information before sending out the order.
There are many shipping companies that require the customer to sign for the package when they are delivered. This service may cost a couple of dollars more per delivery but the customer cannot dispute they go their package if they signed for it. This could save the company a lot of time and trouble in the long run.
Customers may not recognize the name of the company when they get their credit call bill. The name, address, phone, number, and other relevant information the business should have put on the credit card statement. This will help the customer remembered what they ordered and where they ordered it from.
When in doubt the business needs to verify the address they are shipping to. This can be done through an address verification service. The zip code should at least match the one provided by the customer. They should also verify the zip code on the credit card used with the issuing bank. These are just some of the things a business can do to protect itself against chargeback fraud.
There is nothing better for a business than being able to offer customers the option to pay for products and services with a credit or debit card. This is something that has always been true and is something that will more than likely never change. The wonderful thing about credit card processing is the way that it has evolved into what it is today.
Credit card processing has always been a fantastic opportunity for any business, but it has become a luxury that is all about convenience and opportunity. No matter what the specific need of the business, there isn’t a credit card processing option out there that wouldn’t make it that much better for any business owner. One of the biggest areas, that has experienced the most growth, is the area of mobile credit card processing.
When the smartphone came onto the scene, it brought with it an incredible number of different opportunities. This is because of something called a smartphone application. All this did was give merchant service providers yet another avenue to take advantage of where credit card processing is concerned, and this is the moment that mobile credit card processing became a reality.
Now accepting credit cards can be accomplished from nearly any mobile device. What this means is that a business is no longer limited to accepting credit cards only when they are near a processing terminal of some kind. As long as there is a compatible device, with a cell or data connection nearby, than credit and debit card charges can be processed whenever the need should arise.
That is about as convenient as credit card processing has ever been, but don’t be surprised if merchant service providers come up with a few more tricks before the year is over.
Credit card processing isn’t just for merchants and sales anymore. Service providers can also benefit from accepting credit card payments from clients. Among those that can benefit from these transactions are lawyers, medical practitioners and home security companies.
When it comes to lawyers and their finances, special attention must be paid to rules of professional conduct as well as to general financial principles. But many legal fields may be able to benefit from credit card processing, including personal injury attorneys in Miami and nearby towns and cities. Not all legal fees can easily be handled through credit card processing. However, a good business banker will be able to guide them through the process to meet all professional guidelines and help the business.
By accepting credit cards, medical practitioners can provide more than health care to their patients. They can provide the security of knowing that good care is merely a swipe of a credit card away. Accepting credit cards can speed up the registration process, help patients keep track of medical expenses and reduce the time the office staff wastes trying to find change. Without having to worry about having cash on hand when making an sick visit appointment, patients can simply make the appointment knowing that payment can be made quickly when they arrive with a sick child or being under the weather themselves. Also, by accept credit card payments, the medical practitioners’ office staff can reduce the time spent on collections and concentrate on caring for their patients.
Home Security Companies
Home security companies are there to protect their clients. They can further protect their clients by offering a simple way to make payments particularly for any monthly maintenance fees. The credit card procession company will keep your money and records safe while the home security company keeps their clients safe. ADT Miami home security companies have enjoyed the same piece of mind that they offer their clients.
No matter the size of the law firm, medical practitioner, or the home security company there is a benefit for each of them. Once major reason to begin credit card procession for the office is that more and more clients are actively seeking out service providers that accept various forms of payment including accepting credit cards. By accepting credit cards, businesses can give themselves an edge in this competitive world. Accepting credit cards enables a service provider to provide more efficient service to their clients and streamline the financial processes of their office. A win-win for everyone.
Business owners work hard to make a profit, but often before profit is made bills must be paid and costs accumulate through the various services business owners must use to service their customers. One of the most expensive services can be credit card processing; but there are ways you can save money on credit card processing fees and still offer your customers quick payment options that will keep them coming back to you again and again.
Five Steps to Saving Money on Credit Card Processing
While most of the fees charged by credit card processors are upfront, there are backend fees and additional charges that can accumulate as time goes on. But there are steps you can take to ensure these fees don’t cost you the profits you make, especially when getting started as a small business owner.
Visa and MasterCard are the most widely accepted credit cards across the United States for a reason: they work with processors and business owners alike to offer discounts and compatibility with various business systems. As hard as other cards try, it often doesn’t work out for businesses to accept them due to the extra processing fees many merchants charge to process them. Encourage your customers to use their Visa/MasterCard over other forms of payment and save yourself money in the long run.
Debit Cards can Benefit you and the Customer
Debit card processing fees are often cheaper than credit cards, especially for larger items. They’re also less likely to be fraudulent as the money comes directly from the customer’s bank account. In addition to these benefits to you, using a debit card saves the customer by not accruing debt that they eventually need to pay off. This is a win/win for both parties.
While it is convenient and may seem wise to “bundle” your business services through a bank, they often charge more for processing credit card transactions than many merchants do. In fact, many banks end up outsourcing these transactions to merchant processors than mark up the service to you. Save yourself money by hiring your own third-party credit card processor to handle these transactions and leave payroll, savings, and checking transactions to the banks.
With new advances in technologies, many merchants can accept credit card payments wirelessly or on handheld terminals. This makes selling product or services at trade and craft shows easier for the business and customer alike, and can translate into more sales overall through these venues and online payments as well.
While customer loyalty is something you want to encourage, it’s typical for customers to shop around for the best deals. Make sure you are doing the same with your processing company. Merchants tend to offer local services and be very competitive compared to nationwide processors, but it’s always beneficial to compare rates every now and again to ensure you are getting the best deal from your processor or see if it’s time to switch.
Business owners must be savvy to both encourage customers to buy, and in order to make a profit when starting out in the small-business world. Do your research on how to save money both on credit card processing and other services you use and that profit will come sooner than you think.