Austin is a small city with a giant reputation for fun times and good food. While it is home to just over 930,000 fine folks, around 17million tourists stop by each year to stroll through its immense parks and splash about in its sparkling lakes and public pools. They tour the colossal State Capitol, and take pictures at the historic Governor’s Mansion. They get their jollies watching Esther’s Follies, learn all about the history Texas at the Bullock Museum, and coo over the cute animals at the Austin Zoo. They explore the beautiful grounds of the Zilker Botanical Garden, and even take the kids to do some tinkering at the Thinkery. The tourism injects millions and millions of dollars into local coffers, and a lot of it can go into the bank accounts of the city’s hardworking merchants – provided that they can accept credit cards. Some cannot, and this means they can lose out on a lot of that terrific tourism revenue to businesses that can.
There are many reasons why businesses lack the ability to accept credit cards – online or even in-store. One of the most common has to do with credit card processing companies that will not grant the businesses the merchant accounts they need to offer their customers card services. The processors can declare that the merchants’ line of work is high risk, and either refuse to open an online merchant account for them, or give them an account with some heavy stipulations attached. The processing fees may be excessive, for example, and the merchant account may not even be private. The merchants will wind up running their credit card payments through the processors’ own accounts, and have to wait for the funds to be sent to them by the processor – which could take a while.
All of the aforementioned can stop merchants from accepting credit cards, and in a city where tourism is a big part of the economy, that can be disastrous for business. Most tourists no longer carry cash or checks with them. Instead, they pay with plastic for security reasons, and do not give their patronage to merchants that do not offer credit card services. This means that Austin merchants without credit card terminals are missing out on the chance to grow their businesses, and unfortunate tourists are missing out on a lot of great things – everything from boots to barbecue.
Fortunately, Charge.com is a credit card processor that assists all kinds of different ventures – both low and high risk – in getting viable merchant accounts quickly with an application process that takes no time at all and is completely free. Once a business has received approval, it can begin payment processing within 24-48 hours, and deposits happen in real-time. Charge.com also has some of the lowest rates in the merchant processing business. Customers pay as little as 0.25% for processing, and just $0.15 for each transaction – which is sweet, sweet music to the ears of many merchants in the Live Music Capital of the World.