At the end of the year, merchants wonder why they didn’t make some changes last year. Especially when busy, systems seem to let them down.
There are problems keeping staff attentive and engaged through the end of the year and into the next. Business operations failures, from vehicles and equipment to phones and credit processing, success threatens them without top merchant services.
Here are 5 things to look for in merchant services:
As the Small Business Administration says, “The convenience of using credit cards generally increases the likelihood of consumer ‘impulse purchases,’ which ultimately contributes to an increase in a business’s average sale. Customers are more likely to make these purchases if they have access to credit or their available bank account funds.”
Absent dependable and accurate credit card processing, businesses suffer. So, what should you look for when shopping for a provider?
Make sure you know what you have to start with. You should review the details of your current contract for the promises made and delivered as well as those the provider failed to do.
Before you can move from one merchant service provider to another, you must know what it might cost to drop the one you have. If your business involves liquor, private clubs, or other adult activities, particularly in Texas, make sure to run your contract past your Texas sexually oriented business fee lawyer.
According to Jeff Marcous, President of Dharma Merchant Services, top merchant services serve the merchant and community; “Business isn’t just about the bottom line, happy merchants make for a happy workplace. By cultivating a culture of commerce with compassion, we benefit our community of customers and partners as well as our employees.”
Your business needs your attention, and that means you need real-time, real-life, 24/7 access to customer support. Whether it is a hardware or software issue, you need to know you can reach someone to solve your problem asap.
A merchant system centers on the hardware and software that makes it happen. You need to know what obligations you have to your current contract and what equipment you need to move. It’s to your advantage to have some familiarity with the vocabulary and technology, but it depends on your asking the right questions.
If you’re shopping for a new provider, the price is certainly important. Pricing should not be the only decider, but you must know all the direct and indirect costs, the clear and the hidden ones. Ask for models, and have the rep run samples of runs.
You can expect monthly charges, low but with a minimum requirement even where you have a low volume. Typical commissions paid on each credit card deal run 2% to 4%, but they can run higher or lower. If you do the math, that adds up.
In addition to the commission, there will be a constant transaction fee per event regardless of the size of the tab. And, there will be sizable chargebacks when a customer wants to use the card for a refund.
According to Cost Helper Small Business, “Rates are usually higher for a new, less established business or those with poor credit, and lower for established companies with good records.”
And, you have to expect and negotiate costs for terminals, scanners, and other point-of-sale hardware.
It’s your decision!
You can’t do business without merchant transactions. And, there are many providers willing and eager to sign you on because merchant services can be lucrative.
The shopping research and accountability are all yours. Ir can be a tough decision because it needs research and diligence. It takes business savvy and good advice. But, a regular review of your current and future merchant services should start soon.
Author’s Bio: Michael F. Carroll
Mike Carroll is a freelance contributor to OutreachMama and Youth Noise NJ who helps businesses find their audience online through research, content copy, and white papers. He frequently writes about management, marketing, and sales with customized outreach for digital marketing channels and outreach plans depending on the industry and competition.