Credit Card Processing: Do’s & Don’ts  

As a business owner, you likely have a lot of red tape to contend with: hidden fees exist around every corner. In order to appeal to the current trends of consumer spending, it’s imperative to accept credit card transactions. The future of credit card security is here with facial recognition and fingerprints. Further updates are on the horizon. Unfortunately for your business, credit card processing companies have their fair share of fees, some or many of which might seem unaffordable to you, especially if you are a recent startup or a small business. Below are some ways you can work with, rather than against, a credit card processing business in order to move into the future.

Do Your Research

A ton of credit card companies are on the market, vying for your time and attention. You can have your pick. The options may seem overwhelming, but if you comparison shop and narrow down your list of what you want in a credit card company, then you can look for companies that adhere to those qualities. For example, Paypal is a leader in ecommerce credit card processing, presenting no contracts or termination fees to your business. Additionally, Square is popular amongst restaurants and retailers for its ease of use, flat rate per transaction, and same-day fund availability. Square also pairs well with mobile credit card readers, so merchants can sell their wares on the go.

Do Check Out Social Media

Look into the companies’ social media. How many followers do particular credit card processing companies have and what are these followers saying about their experiences? Furthermore, are the companies offering any promotions for new partnerships or brand-new businesses? The Better Business Bureau is another valuable tool to find out more about the merits, or warnings, of potential collaborations with select companies.

Do Make a List

Consider the characteristics you need in the credit card services you want to offer your customers and, therefore, what you need from the credit card company you select. Some criteria you might add to the list includes cost, pricing transparency, cancelation fees, contracts, mobile options, customer service, fraud detection, and equipment leasing vs. purchasing fees. Realize that no company is going to provide a perfect credit card processing business model, so it’s a good idea to prioritize your list. Consult your business accountant and make sure to create a clear line item for what your business can and cannot realistically spend based on the frequency of your customers’ use of credit cards.

Do Know the Law

As a business owner, you can legally pass on the percentage or other fees per credit card transaction to your consumers. If you are clear about the reason for the additional fee, consumers can choose to continue to pay with credit card or pay with debit or cash. In essence, their behavior can dictate to credit card companies how much they are willing to pay for the convenience of using their credit card.

Do Know What Type of Business You Are

Labels exist to help people and businesses understand each other. However, people and businesses have characteristics outside the prescribed labels. You know the particulars and unique details of your company and what you can and cannot handle. For example, if you are a new business that does mostly small transactions, you may be different than the new business across the street that deals with mostly higher transaction amounts. In your case, it might be beneficial to consider imposing minimum amounts for credit card transactions.

Don’t Accept Everything at Face Value

If several credit card companies pique your interest based on what their webpages state, then the next step is to determine their areas, if any, of flexibility. Contact the companies and discuss your needs to see what fees they are and are not willing to negotiate.

Don’t Make a Hasty Decision

It might seem like you have to make an immediate decision about the credit card processing company. However, your customers, if you are transparent, will be patient, knowing that you want to select the credit card company that best serves your business, which will ultimately best serve their needs, too.

Key Takeaway

The ecommerce credit card processing era is underway and here to stay, albeit with more changes and updates along the way. Your business needs to keep up with the trends and stay abreast of the needs and desires of your customers, a.k.a. credit card users, while keeping in mind the almighty dollar. Balancing budgetary needs with credit card convenience for your customer base is at the heart of your mission, regardless of what you sell.

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