Category: Merchant Business Tips

June 12, 2019

What is an Effective Rate?

You may have heard the term “Effective Rate” when it comes to processing credit cards. An effective rate is the percentage of sales you pay for credit card processing. This rate is determined by dividing your total credit card processing fees into the total dollar amount of all transactions submitted in a month. As you know there are many fees charged to merchants for accepting credit cards. Those include interchange fees, statement fees, transaction fees, and other incidental fees. All of these fees can quickly gobble up your profit. It’s difficult to forecast what your actual costs will be from...Read more

June 5, 2019

5 Tips for Successfully Accepting Credit Cards

Accepting credit cards today has become a little more complex that the original method merchants used when they were first issued. Long gone are the flatbed credit card imprinters and trips to the bank to turn in the credit card draft. Today, we have many transaction types including card-present, card-not-present, mobile payments, digital wallets, and shopping cart payments. As both retail customers and business customers are using credit cards for almost every single purchase, merchants have been forced to swallow more and more fees as the cost of doing business. Most merchants just lie down and let the MasterCard and...Read more

May 29, 2019

What is a Risk Hold?

Have you ever had your credit card deposit placed on a Risk Hold? We understand the frustration you feel when this happens. A Risk Hold is common for new merchants and can also occur when you have a very large or questionable transaction. Risk Holds are implemented by the funding bank, but your credit card processor may be able to help get the money released sooner by acting on your behalf. A risk hold is a fairly a routine procedure that many merchants experience in their first few weeks of processing. It can create fear and uncertainty, but you will...Read more

May 15, 2019

Reduce Transaction Fees on B2B Sales

If you do a lot of Business-to-Business transactions, you might be drowning in the high costs of accepting Corporate, Purchasing, and Business cards. These cards have the highest “interchange” rates compared to all other non-international card types. The rewards business customers earn are actually paid by you–the money for those reward points redemption has to come from somewhere. Merchants can reduce the cost of doing business with other businesses in several ways. We will share some tips with you that will even allow you to eliminate fees in some cases. 1. Using Level 3 Processing Can Slash Costs by over...Read more

May 8, 2019

Mobile Wallets Take Center Stage

Mobile wallets are apps on your phone that store payment information from credit or debit cards that allow you to use your device to make purchases. While Americans have been slow to embrace the mobile wallet, people are becoming more comfortable with the concept of making purchases without the need to carry a plastic credit card. Many customers are now expecting the convenience of paying by phone. Rather than calling a business to supply your credit card over the phone, today pay by phone means holding your phone close to a contactless reader and instantly completing a transaction. Why You...Read more

May 1, 2019

Accepting Credit Cards: Which Method is Right for You?

Accepting credit cards in a cashless society is a must. The many methods of accepting credit cards make merchants wonder which method is best for their business. As a merchant, you can accept credit and debit cards in many different ways including website shopping carts or traditional counter terminals that might offer contactless payments. There are Point-of-Sale (POS) systems, specialized industry software, and, of course, cell phone payments. The biggest challenge is understanding how payments work, the types of hardware available, and how to obtain them. Behind The Scenes Credit card processing likely seems like a foreign subject to most...Read more

April 18, 2019

Where Do My Fees Go?

Many merchants incorrectly believe that all the fees they pay go to their credit card processor. If that were the case, there would probably be a lot more credit card processors out there today! The truth is, your processor keeps a very tiny portion of the transactions. It’s important to have a clear understanding of how those fees work, what they do for you, and how you can avoid additional fees. Here’s how fees are calculated for most merchant accounts. The transaction begins the moment your customer swipes, taps, keys, or inserts their credit or debit card to pay you...Read more

March 6, 2019

Staying on Top of New Payment Technologies

With big brand names like Sears, Toys ‘R’ Us, and Payless Shoe Source turning the lights off for good, now is the time for retail businesses to wake up and take note: times are changing. Companies like Macy’s, J.C. Penney, and Victoria’s Secret are all in deep trouble. The brick and mortar stores of America are clearly down trending, and the number one reason for the decline is the convenience of shopping from home. Whether we have become a lazy society or smarter shoppers is debatable. One thing that is not debatable is that we have become a cashless society,...Read more

February 20, 2019

Valentine’s Day: Did You Cash In or Cash Out?

Last week we observed Valentine’s Day. Perhaps you celebrated because your business is doing well. Maybe you celebrated because you had someone to shower with candy and flowers. Either way, a lot of money changes hands on this 600-year-old novelty holiday. Americans spent a whopping $30 billion dollars celebrating the day of love. The biggest benefactors of Valentine’s Day are merchants. Many of these merchants are in specific industries that Chosen Payments services. This includes restaurants, bars, jewelry stores, limo services, hotels, and pet supply companies. You read that right: 3% of Americans by Valentine’s gifts for their pets. Of...Read more

February 19, 2019

Accepting Checks Using ACH

One of oldest forms of payments is the paper check. For years merchants have accepted paper-based checks and hand carried them to the bank to deposit into their bank accounts with fingers crossed that the check wouldn’t bounce. The use of Automated Clearing House payments, or ACH for short, has improved cash flow by drastically shortening the time it takes for the money to show up in your bank account. Benefits of Using ACH Using ACH gives an edge of convenience for you and your customers.  Payments are quickly processed without the need for an actual paper check. Merchants receive...Read more