When you’re starting an online business, everything can seem strange. There are lots of areas you’re unfamiliar with, and you don’t know which digital tools are essential and which ones are optional. Once you have your web domain secured, there are a few other elements that are crucial. You need an online shop and a way for customers to pay you.
Your virtual storefront needs an online shopping cart. That’s where your customers will place the items they want to buy. Once the cart is full, your customers will proceed to the check-out screen and pay for their goods or services. Online, payment is usually done using a credit card or debit card. The process is facilitated by a merchant processor.
Secure transactions to prevent card fraud
There are several payment processors on the market, so it can be hard deciding which one to use. As you shop around for a merchant processor, there are several factors to consider. These include security, cost, ease of use, and additional features.
Some websites come with a shopping cart built in, but if yours doesn’t, pick a merchant processor with its own shopping cart. The cart should be compatible with your web design and layout, and it should ideally be a free tool.
If your shopping cart was not provided by your merchant account provider, then the cart needs to be integrated with your card processing system. The system itself needs a security protocol that protects your customers from identity theft and card fraud. This type of security has several components. Look for a secure merchant site, one that has an ‘s’ in its url; that is, it should start with “https” NOT an “http.”
Minimal charges to increase profit margins
The merchant processor should be encrypted with high-grade security for every transaction. PCL QIR compliance adds an extra level of customer safety, though it’s not mandatory. If your business has a pay-on-delivery service, you need portable card readers.
Look for a service that offers free electronic card readers, or a card-reading app for tablets and mobile phones. If these tools are free, it saves you a lot of money and makes life easier for your delivery personnel. Cutting costs on equipment and devices can widen your profit margin.
It also helps to find a merchant that can enable faster transactions. If a customer is making a purchase and experiences delays, they may worry about theft or fraud. They are likely to cancel the transaction. And receiving your payment quickly makes it available to help improve your cash flow and grow your business. Check for instant verification and, ideally, bank clearance of 24 to 72 hours.
For more information on the best merchant account service for your online business, or to sign up for a merchant account, please call (888) 924-2743 or go to Charge.com.