What do I Need to Know Before Opening a Merchant Account?

Modern business has a slightly different approach than its traditional cousin. The guiding principle remains constant: you sell goods and services, preferably for profit. But the mode of payment has shifted a little. In addition to cash and kind, consumers can now pay using checks, credit cards, and debit cards. And cards need more processing than cash.

While you can still receive payment in person, there are times when you need to accept them remotely. More and more payments are accepted online, and this needs an extra step. Merchant accounts are online platforms that process credit and debit cards. They can also receive checks, and consolidate cash payments in the same space as other payment options.

Opening a merchant count is easy. Once you’ve identified a service provider, you simply go to their website and follow their instructions to open an account. Some merchant processors will let you start receiving payments immediately while others have a verification period. Picking the right firm may be a challenge, but there are a few things to look out for.

Tips for choosing a merchant processor

With all business decisions, the price has to be right. Pick a few popular merchant account providers and compare their rates. You can find them using a search engine, or you can find out what your business friends are using. Once you have a shortlist, look carefully through the pricing terms in case there are any hidden charges.  Also, Keep an eye out for any bonus features. Some merchant processors will give you free application and offer additional services at no cost, which saves you money.

Security is another key factor. With card fraud on the rise, you want a merchant processor that has high levels of encryption. If they are compliant with PCI, that’s a good thing because it assures superior safety standards for customer data.

Support American business

Merchant processing is a web-based business, even though it can combine offline and online payment systems. It receives cash, cards, and checks, both in person and remotely. Online processing can be based anywhere, but it’s helpful for US businesses to use a local provider because it avoids losses in translation and gives you a cultural common ground.

American processors also offer other benefits like clarity on tax systems, easier access in case of problems, and familiarity. Look for referrals and testimonials from businesses that are already using the merchant processor. You should also check their policy on customer care and tech support. A good processor will grant you free unlimited access, 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

For more information or to sign up for a merchant account, please call (888)924-2743 or go to Charge.com.

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