If you are looking for merchant services or credit card processing services, you may feel overwhelmed by your options or by the fact that you don’t know what to look for. What makes one merchant service provider better than another? In today’s blog, we at East Village Merchant Process Services will hopefully shed some light on this subject, giving you a better understanding of the subject and the information you need to make the most suitable decision for your business. If you are in need of credit card processing, accounts receivable solutions, revenue cycle management, or other merchant processing services, give us a call today!
What Are Merchant Services?
The label merchant services is a broad umbrella term that describes the hardware, software, relationships, and services needed for business to process credit card payments. There are many different types of entities that are able to provide these services. These are oftentimes referred to as merchant account providers, credit card processors, acquirers, or simply processors. When you work with these entities, you will more than likely be offered the opportunity to accept card transactions via a payment card reader or point-of-sale system.
Benefits of Working With a Merchant Service Provider
- Reduce costs—working with a trusted, reputable merchant service provider can significantly reduce the costs of credit card processing. Good processors are able to match you with the best possible plan, ensuring maximum efficiency.
- Optimize operations—when you outsource a service with which you have no experience to a provider whose entire goal is to perfect this service, you will almost always guarantee improved efficiency. This is certainly true with merchant processing.
- Limit fraud and risks—maintaining a database of information, account numbers, and more comes with an enormous responsibility. Transferring this responsibility to an organization who has extensive experience preventing breaches and mitigating risks can be paramount to your business and peace of mind.
- Gain a committed partner—as a small business owner trying to grow your business, there are few things as valuable as a trusted partner you know you can rely on. This is exactly what you can get with a good, experienced merchant account provider. In fact, many top-notch processors (East Village Merchant Process Services included) will offer their clients U.S.-based customer support 24hours a day, 7 days a week.
To read more about these benefits, check out this recent blog on the benefits of outsourcing your credit card processing.
Questions to Ask Prospective Credit Card Processors
Some processors are notorious for charging excessive fees and markups. For this reason, it is imperative to do your homework, research competitions, and ask the right questions. To get you headed in the right direction, here are some questions to ask during your search:
- What type of monthly fees do you charge? What is the average amount for the average merchant?
- Do you have interchange fees, monthly statement fees, PCI-compliance fees, batch fees, set-up fees, monthly minimum fees, or early termination fees? What is the average cost of these fees?
- How long do you hold deposits?
- How long after a transaction will funds be added to your account?
- How much does it cost for the point-of-sale hardware and what does this entail? Also, what is the buyout cost for hardware and card processing contracts?
- What is customer service like? On average, how long does it take to respond? Do you offer 24/7 support?
The bottom line is that, when it comes to selecting a credit card processor, there is no simple, one-size-fits-all solution. To find the best processor for you and the unique needs of your business, you must do your homework. Like with all big financial decisions, the best and most confident decision will likely only come after you have carefully considered all of your options. When looking, keep this advice in mind.
One place you can start is with us! Give us a call today to learn more about our competitive card processing service. After you send us your current merchant processing statement, we will review your average monthly volume, transactions, card-type usage, and then provide you with a free analysis and written quote, disclosing all fees and money-saving opportunities.
In addition to credit card processing, we also offer small business funding solutions, including medical financing, SBA loans, franchise financing, invoicing financing, consumer term loans, and more!