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Tag Archive: merchant 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 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 10, 2019

Confronting Chargebacks

Notice of Chargeback This notice is always disheartening for a merchant to receive. Your hard-earned profits are sucked out of your bank account with no opportunity to explain your side before the money is removed. If you take too long to respond, you could lose the dispute simply for not responding in time. If you fail to respond at all, it can be considered a black mark against your business. If you are new to accepting credit cards or have just been lucky enough to have never received one, here’s what a chargeback is: a claim levied against a merchant...Read more


April 3, 2019

Selecting a Credit Card Processor

In the world of plastic we live in, it’s necessary to accept credit and debit cards to succeed in business. Customers are used to using their cards in person, online, or by phone, so merchants who don’t accept a credit or debit card for payment are a turn-off to most consumers. In a sea of credit card processors, how do you find the right one for you? The most logical place to start is by asking your trade association whom they recommend, endorse, or partner with. Support a processor that supports your industry. Do your due diligence before signing on...Read more


January 23, 2019

Signatures: Do You Need Them Or Not?

Earlier this year the four major credit card brands–Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover–all made announcements that they would no longer require customers to sign for credit card transactions. The dollar amount didn’t matter anymore. You may remember that grocery stores stopped asking you sign for small purchases quite some time ago. But everywhere you use your card, from an airport parking lot to restaurants, you are still asked to sign the credit card slip, and you may wonder why. Here is some information about signatures. #1 – You Don’t Need a Signature The message was poorly delivered to merchants...Read more


December 12, 2018

Accepting Venmo in Your Business

There is no doubt that Venmo has become a popular way of moving money from one bank account to another. It can be particularly handy when one friend pays for something such as concert or movie tickets or a cab ride and you need to pay your share. People who don’t have a credit card but have money in the bank. Venmo is owned by PayPal, although PayPal didn’t launch the app: they acquired it in 2014. Originally Venmo could not be used to pay merchants; it was simply a friend-to-friend app. In 2016 Venmo began working with some merchants,...Read more


December 5, 2018

The Secret Service Cracks Down on Credit Card Skimmers

When you think about the Secret Service of the United States, you probably think of them as the security protectors of our president and other elected officials. You probably don’t associate them with being a defender of credit card fraud. Yet that is one of their additional functions. Specifically, the United States Secret Service went into high gear over the Thanksgiving weekend to target a specific kind of credit card thief: the skimmer. A skimmer is a device that is placed into legitimate credit card readers to capture the data of the card being used for a legitimate payment. The...Read more