Knowing what type of equipment or software solution you need to accept credit card payments for your goods or services can be quite confusing. That is why choosing the right merchant account service provider is vital. In the right hands, you will be taken through the various card processing options so that you can find the option that suits you best. The type of business you run and your customer base are important factors when choosing a the best credit card machine for a small business.
As a small business owner your main focus is on sales and marketing, so you need a card payment system that works for you and compliments your business. You cannot afford to be hampered by any unnecessary distractions.
What Credit Card Machines are Available?
These three card payment options are available to you:
- Electronic keypad terminal
This option is best suited to walk-in businesses that offer sales or services to customers face-to-face. If you run your business from a shop or studio, you will get an electronic key-pad terminal that allows you to swipe or dip your customer’s credit cards. All transactions are immediately approved or declined, and these transactions are known as “card-present” payments.
- Integrated software for online retailers
If your business sells goods online, then in order to accept credit cards, you’ll need software that can be added to your website. Customers placing orders online will automatically be taken to a screen where they type in their card details for processing through a secure payment gateway. Transactions are immediately approved or declined. You won’t have any direct involvement in the payment process, and card payments can be processed 24/7/ 365. Approved orders will pop up on your desktop for processing. You can also process payments for telephone orders using virtual terminal software. These transactions are known as “card-not-present” payments.
- Mobile payments
If you are a merchant who sells your goods by traveling to different venues, or if you provide services at your customers’ home or workplace, then you can accept card payments via your mobile phone or tablet using software and an optional small card-reader that plugs into your phone or tablet. Card payments can then be processed face-to-face and you can see immediately whether they are approved or declined. These transactions are also referred to as card-present payments. Dedicated wireless mobile terminals are also available, but most merchants prefer the convenience of a solution they can use on the smartphone or tablet that they were already going carry with them regardless.
And what will it cost me?
Prices vary, but some payment providers will provide you with a terminal or software without charging you anything at all above the costs of your merchant account. A good merchant account provider will also provide training on how to use your software or equipment, and provide 24/7/365 technical support to assist you.
For more information on help choosing the best credit card processing machine for your small business, or to sign up for a merchant account, please call (888) 924-2743 or go to Charge.com.