Owning a business requires you to make daily decisions that will affect you, your employees and your customers. Some actions may seem small and insignificant, but they can all add up and become very important to the future of your business. One great example is the selection of a merchant services company.
Since most of the people who know all about the credit-card processing industry are the ones already working in the industry, business owners may not understand that not every credit card processing provider is the same—they don’t offer the same products, features, or pricing. As a result, this decision may take time to make, but in the end, it will be worth it.
Whether you’re interested in getting a merchant account for your new business or canceling your current merchant account and finding a better option, here is what you should look for in a merchant services company:
1. Accepts All Major Credit and Debit Cards
Although you’re a business owner, you’re also a consumer, so you know how frustrating it can be when you use your credit card to make a purchase and wait forever for the terminal to authorize your card. Keep this in mind when you are shopping for a merchant services company because you don’t want your customers to be similarly inconvenienced if it can be avoided.
2. Compatible with All Payment Devices and Methods
Being compatible with all the different payment devices and systems, including terminals, gateways, POS software systems and mobile devices, as well as various payment methods, such as chip-and-signature, card swiping, ApplePay, and eCommerce, is important. This compatibility further ensures that consumers will not encounter any issues when they buy something at your place of business, whether in-store or online, and that helps your overall customer-satisfaction rate.
3. Creates Customized Cost-Savings Solutions
Business owners know more than anyone else how vital good customer service is. It can make or break them no matter how great their products are. Be sure you look for a merchant services company that sees you as a valuable customer, not just another client. You want them to take a real interest in your business and develop a solution that will increase your payment-processing efficiency, improve your customers’ overall checkout experience, and save you money.
4. Up Front About Costs
Nothing is more aggravating than receiving a bill that contains costs that you know nothing about. Oftentimes, business owners feel this way every month when they get their credit-card processing statement. Not only are the rates and fees confusing, but sometimes there are hidden merchant fees included on the bill that you wouldn’t spot unless you knew where to look. Don’t let your merchant services provider mislead you about all the fees they charge.
5. Works with Reliable Processing Platform and Funding Bank
Okay, you might not have any idea about what a processing platform or a funding bank even is, so let’s start there. To put it simply, a merchant services company works with the processing platform and the funding bank to complete a card transaction successfully. Top-tier processing platforms and banks allow merchants to tailor their processing experience to suit their business and industry and receive funds next day. If any one of these three elements of merchant services isn’t up to par, then the payment-processing experience at your place of business will not be as organized and effective as it could—and should—be.
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