When you launch a new business, you can usually get away with accepting cash and checks. You might even consider accepting PayPal or Apple Pay if you sell products and services online.
Eventually, though, you’ll want to begin processing credit cards; and for that, you’ll need a merchant account.
But choosing the right merchant account provider isn’t always easy. There are lots of competing offers. What’s more, each provider structures its fees differently, making apple-to-apple comparisons much harder.
However, it’s possible to simplify your search by asking the right types of questions — both of yourself and of each candidate.
What to Consider Before Choosing a Merchant Account Provider
Before moving forward, you should determine if credit card processing is truly essential for your business. In most cases, the answer will be “yes.” However, it helps to measure the potential benefits against the potential costs. For that, you’ll need to do a quick tally of your projected sales volume every month.
Your merchant account provider will also want to know these numbers, so it helps to have this information close at hand.
If you decide that processing credit cards makes sense for your business, you’re ready to begin connecting with potential merchant account candidates.
Questions You Should Ask Each Merchant Account Provider
Below are some of the most important questions you should ask:
- Do you work with other businesses like mine? This is crucial since a provider that specializes in e-commerce might not be what you’re looking for if you run a brick-and-mortar store. The reverse is also true.
- What steps do you take to safeguard payment data? PCI compliance is the bare minimum you should expect. Yet, some merchant accounts come with additional fraud protection features.
- What is the shortest contract length you offer? Some providers allow you to work month to month. Others lock you into multi-year agreements.
- Can you list all fees, penalties and charges — in plain speak? Merchant account providers often use confusing rate structures to hide their markup.
Even after receiving satisfactory answers to the above questions, you might still struggle with your decision. If this happens, consider choosing whichever merchant account provider has the shortest contract and/or no early termination fees.
Alternatively, you could test how accessible the merchant account provider’s customer service really is. Call, as if you were already a client, and see how long it takes to connect with a live person.
Why So Many Businesses Choose BluePay Merchant Accounts
Used by over 53,000 companies to process $15 billion in annual transactions, BluePay is a leader in secure payment processing.
In addition to merchant accounts, we specialize in payment technology including an omnichannel payment gateway, virtual terminal, compatibility with payment terminals and POS systems, and integration with over 460 software platforms.
Additional benefits of our merchant services include:
- PCI-compliant data security
- Advanced fraud management tools
- Industry-specific support
- Flexible contracts and transparent pricing
- Award-winning 24/7 customer support by phone and email