When many people compare credit card merchant accounts, they often only look at the fees they’ll be charged per transaction. However, there is much more to finding the best-priced merchant processing services than that. In fact, there are other charges and fees involved that can actually turn the most affordable provider into one of the most expensive. If you’re looking for a processing provider, here are a few of the things you’ll need to consider.
Set Up And Termination Fees
These might not sound too serious to start with, but some of those bargain basement credit card merchant accounts can ding you heavily when stopping or starting your merchant processing services. Be sure to discover how much these charges are when starting your comparison. Also, be sure to identify exactly what is and isn’t covered by these fees.
When it comes to cancelling your service, find out what’s involved in the process and if there is a termination fee. There also might be time limitations associated with cancellation, so make certain you know those limitations. Most people forget to find out about these things and only discover the information after the fact.
Fees For Equipment, Supplies, And Summaries
One of the biggest fees associated with credit card merchant accounts is the terminal itself. You need to also find out if the merchant processing services company requires you to purchase the equipment, who pays for repairs? If you can, look for providers who offer free terminals and equipment.
You’ll find this is cheaper and a lot less hassle. Paper supplies, end of the day reports, and statements can also add up and become a significant expense. Find out who pays for what as well as how much it will ultimately cost you.
Contracts And Company Dealings
Many times, when a business has a bad experience with a merchant processing service provider, it has nothing to do with actual costs. Instead, it has to do with their direct dealings with the provider. One of the first things you’ll want to inquire about is the level of customer service you’ll have available to you with credit card merchant accounts. Having 24/7 customer support can be very important when a breakdown is directly affecting your sales.
You also want to be very careful when signing a contract. Make sure you know all of the particulars such as what you’re responsible for, what the provider is responsible for, and how long the contract will last. Also, make sure that all of the amounts match your agreement and don’t be afraid to check out the provider with services like the Better Business Bureau to ensure everything will go smoothly.
Choosing a merchant processing services provider isn’t necessarily difficult, but it does require a fair bit of research. However, just remember that the time you put in before signing up for one of the credit card merchant accounts on offer, the less trouble and the less it will cost you well into the future.
By Julian Bush