Merchant Accounts : Reviews and Expectations
The primary costs to a merchant of merchant accounts are discount rate and transactions fees. The merchant account provider has a lot of latitude in the pricing structure.
Three tier pricing of Merchant Accounts is one of the most common pricing schemes. Using 3 tiers pricing, the merchant account provider groups the transactions into 3 groups (tiers) and assigns a rate to each tier. The three tiers are qualified, mid-qualified and non-qualified rates.
A qualified rate is the lowest tier. It is what a merchant is charged when processing a consumer credit card in a way that has been defined as standard by the merchant account provider. The qualified rates is what is usually quoted by merchant account salespeople. A mid-qualified rate is what the merchant is charged if processing a transaction outside of standard parameters. A mid-qualified rate may apply to rewards or corporate cards, which can comprise up to 40% of the cards used for purchases. The Merchant Accounts, of course, has no control over what card a consumer uses.
Although many business owners use the terms, "return" and "chargeback" interchangeably, they do not have the same meaning. A merchant return is simply a means to repay a customer who decides not to keep a product or retain a service. Often, when a return is initiated, a merchant may credit the customer's account on the same credit card that was used initially at the time of the transaction. Store credit may also be an option when a customer requests a return.
The business practice of a return is between the merchant and the customer, and does involve any third party, such as the merchant account provider, it's acquiring back, or the cardholding associations.
In contrast, a chargeback typically involves third parties. Here, the customer does not announce dissatisfaction with the product / service (or bewilderment in even receiving the charge) to the merchant, but rather to the card-issuing bank. The merchant is eventually notified and can try to "win back" the funds that were taken away as a result of the chargeback.
Consequently, many merchants don't realize that if their chargeback ratio is 1-2%, their credit card processing account may be closed. Surprisingly, even refunds are calculated in this ratio, although their assigned "weight" is less than actual chargebacks. (I don't know the formula but I'm guessing that 5-10 refunds equal one chargeback.)
Ethical and fair-minded business owners, especially those who run businesses with solid past credit card processing records, need not worry too much about the possibility of a closed merchant account. As time elapses, the relationship between the merchant account provider and business owner develop and a great sense of trust between both entities develop.
Of course, the objective of any business owner must be to eliminate or reduce the frequency of refunds and chargebacks - both of which can hinder a business's growth. Indeed, refunds vs. chargebacks is a losing game for any merchant.
Merchant Accounts : Reviews and What to look for in a Merchant Account ?
Do you have to say no to every customer who wishes to purchase your product / service because he / she presents you with a credit card? How many customers have you lost so far for not being able to accept credit payments? And, how much has your business suffered because your customers did not have a payment option that best suited them?
Owning a business brings every businessman a new challenge every day; increasing sales, raking in profits, minimizing losses, looking after every employee, satisfying your customers and the list just goes on.
Did you know that you could boost business sales by accepting credit cards payments? If you lost two credit card customers out of every ten customers, you lose 20 credit card customers in every hundred; and if you keep weighing the loses, you will realize that your business would have done much better if you were able to accept payments?
How Do You Accept Card Payments?
Credit and debit cards are becoming increasingly popular. Customers prefer to opt for the convenience, flexibility and security that plastic money offers them over carrying bundles of cash around. Also, if as a business owner, you were to weigh your losses stemming from non-acceptance of credit card, you will find the significant difference alarming. Accepting credit card payments, therefore, not only benefits your customers who are being offered convenience with the option to pay the way they want, but it also benefits your business since you do not lose out on sales.
So the next time your shoppers bring out their Visa, MasterCard, AMEX or Discover, you won't have to say no to them. Accept all major credit, debit and gift cards with a merchant account and watch your sales touch the skies.
- Accept Credit Card Payments Services
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