How Do I Get Started Accepting Credit Cards?

Whether you’ve just set up or you want to modernize your small business, accepting credit card payments can play a major role in your business’s sustainability and growth.

According to a 2017-18 study conducted by the American Banking Association, there are more than 300 million credit card holders in the US. Additionally, a 2016 Gallup poll survey reports that “most Americans foresee the death of cash payments in their lifetime.” Keeping these numbers in mind, it’s important to meet customer expectations and offer easier, safer, modern, and more convenient payment options, both in-store and online.

Perceived Risks

Cash and check transactions are steadily declining, and yet many small business owners haven’t made the transition to accepting card payments yet. Many of the aspects that were of concern to small business owners have been addressed by the credit card industry, and accepting credit cards is now widely considered to be safer than accepting cash and checks–which have far higher risks of theft and nonpayment, respectively.

Getting Started

Follow a methodical step by step process to ensure that you select the best option for your unique needs, preferences and budget.

  • Know and understand the terminology used.
  • Do a thorough needs analysis of your business and its requirements.
  • Decide what, where, how you plan to market your services or products.
  • Understand and obtain the required equipment for in-store transactions and software for e-commerce applications.
  • Brick-n-mortar businesses typically need POS terminals or other physical equipment.
  • If you accept smartphone/tablet/on-the-go payments, you need mobile card readers or smartphone apps.
  • If you need training/support for your staff on use of equipment, security protocols, request these from your service provider.
  • Make your choices based on your growth plan so that the transitions are more seamless when you expand.

For more information on what you need to know to start accepting credit cards, or to sign up for a merchant account, please call (888) 924-2743 or go to

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