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Merchant Accounts
   
When you start looking for a Merchant Account, many people get input from their local banker. However, you should be aware that there are over 45,000 banks in the US and less than 1% of them are able to actually process credit card transactions themselves. Most contract with a third party to do it. Then the bank becomes a middleman passing on additional cost to the merchant. Here are some more facts & figures you need to know about banks:

Banks decline more Merchant Account applications for credit card processing than Merchant Account Providers. In addition, the application process is usually much less intensive with a full service Merchant Account Provider.

Banks are in the banking business, Merchant Account Providers are in the credit and ATM/debit card processing business.

Banks outsource credit card processing and focus on lending and deposits.

Banks often have conservative pricing with higher transaction rates & fees because the Merchant Account business is an ancillary service. Merchant Account Providers have to offer competitive pricing because this is the only business they are in.

Banks are less likely to risk chargebacks and fraud. Because banks typically farm out their credit card business if there is any additional maintenance like administrative costs from chargebacks, you are in greater danger of losing your Merchant Account. Merchant Account Providers are much better prepared to take on risk through loss prevention and chargeback departments.

Should you be interested in accepting credit cards over the internet you will find there is a greater likelihood most bankers will have no idea about shopping cart rates, secure gateways, and internet credit card processing fees - particularly when something goes wrong. Due to the conservative nature of banks, they are many times unable to place high-risk merchants and/or start-up companies with merchant accounts. Full service Merchant Account Providers do this every day. Since this is their main business, they have the operations in place that cater to small & medium start-up companies who need Merchant Accounts, higher risk or not.

ABOUT THIS GUIDE
About the Author
A Word About Our Membership Community
Frank Merchant knows how to get the best price
The Internet Marketplace
   
UNDERSTANDING IT ALL
What are the advantages (and disadvantages) of accepting credit cards for your business?
6 Benefits of Accepting Credit Cards
Disadvantages of Accepting Credit and Debit Cards
Who are the players? How does the money get in your bank account?
Credit Card Transactions Step By Step
Should I go visit my banker for my merchant account?
How can I tell if I will get good customer service?
Be on the Lookout for Deceptive Sales Practices
How to Avoid Your Money Being Held By Your Non-Cash Transaction Processing Company
Banking Terms You Need To Know
Benefits of Debit as a Payment Option
What You Need To Know About Leasing a Credit Card Terminal
Fraud Protection 101
Cardholder Security: Avoid Monthly Fees, Fines, and Penalties What Is PCI Compliance (PCI DSS)?
   
THE PROCESSES
Four Key Components to Conduct eCommerce Successfully: What They Are, and How They Work
Web Site
Your Merchant Account
Secure Payment Gateway / Payment Transaction Software
Shopping Cart and Catalog
Should I use a third party processor like PayPal?
   
ANALYZING IT ALL
Quick Summary of Costs
Detailed Summary of Setup Fees, Recurring Fees, and Risk Estimate
Total Risk Estimate (TRE)
Total Risk Estimate Worksheet (Low-Medium-High)
   
THE DETAILS
Are you being stung with "Non-Qual" fees for keyed orders?
Have You Ever Felt Betrayed By Your Credit Card Processing Company?
Your Customers' Credit Card Numbers at Risk
Visa: Heartland, RBS WorldPay no longer PCI compliant
PayPal
Marketing 101: Gift and Loyalty Smart Card Technology Ensures Customer Loyalty
Check Warranty and Check Acceptance Policies
How Can I Prevent Credit Card Fraud?
Identity Theft
Merchant Account Comparison Worksheet
Glossary
 
Credit Card Terminal
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