and Accepting Credit Cards: Easy, Cheap and Necessary
Ecommerce and Accepting Credit Cards: Easy, Cheap and Necessary
Your online business needs to accept credit cards. That’s
true whether your business is the next ebay or you’re just
selling your old collectibles on ebay. You’re simply holding
your business back if you don’t accept the payment method
of choice of the internet.
Sadly, many people think they won’t qualify for a new merchant
account to accept credit cards, or that it will be too expensive
or complicated. That might have been true a few years ago, but not
Why Anyone Can Accept Credit Cards * Low cost. In the US, the cost
of accepting credit cards is around $10-$20/month in flat fees,
plus a small percentage of your sales, called a discount rate.
For an offline business, the discount rate is as low as 1.69% (lower
for debit cards). For an online business, discount rates are as
low as 2.19%. Yes, online businesses are considered riskier and
therefore are charged more. Still, 2.19% is much less than even
many offline businesses were paying just five years ago. Non-US
business will likely pay significantly more, but likely not more
than a few hundred dollars a month and maybe a 6% discount rate.
That's still a small price to pay to build a thriving online business.
* No upfront fees. There are now merchant account providers that
charge nothing upfront–no application fee, no deposit. (For
US businesses only.) * No minimum number of sales.
If you sell nothing in a given month, that's fine. Your account
won't be cancelled so long as you pay a small minimum fee in lieu
of transactions (usually around $10-$20/month). * Low credit threshold.
Believe it or not, qualifying for a merchant account to accept credit
card payments is much easier than qualifying for a credit card account.
Even people who have a bankruptcy on their credit report can get
a merchant account (though they'll be in a more expensive higher-risk
category). The credit check only takes a few minutes. Just give
the representative your Social Security number or EIN and you're
done. For non-US businesses, the credit check might be a little
more in-depth, but not impossibly so.
Why You Need to Accept Credit Cards
1. Prestige. Admit it: you can't be a real business if you don't
take credit cards. At least, that's how the average consumer or
entrepreneur sees it.
2. Trust. Accepting credit cards means your name, address, and
social security numbers are on file somewhere with a bank, so you're
a lot less likely to be a crook. It also means that your customers
can dispute the transaction if you don't put out the goods.
3. Sales. Online customers make the vast majority of their purchases
with a credit card. They are not going to change their ways for
4. Western Union isn't enough. Bank wires offer very little consumer
protection, so no one trusts them for paying online. Besides, most
people have never used it before, and again, they're not going to
change their ways for you.
5. PayPal isn't enough. Some people simply don't trust it. There
are entire websites devoted to horror stories with PayPal. Other
prospective customers worry about having to set up a PayPal account
to make payment.
Even a slight doubt is enough to send many visitors to the "back"
button. Don't leave room for doubt. Why Accepting Payments Online
* Easy-to-use gateway websites. With most merchant accounts, you
get a login on a website of a "gateway" which lets you
manage your entire account with up-to-the-minute information. It's
very similar to online banking.
* Technical support. Most merchant account providers offer telephone
and email technical support to help you figure out how to use your
account, including how to integrate it with your website. Tip: choose
a provider with 24/7/365 technical support over the phone–and
that doesn't charge an additional fee.
* Preconfigured shopping carts and web payment forms. You won't
have to do anything to your website if you opt to use a shopping
cart of payment form that's already been set up by your payment
processor. Just link to it from your website and you're done. Why
Applying to Accept Credit Cards Is Easy
* Online and telephone applications. You don't have to mail anything.
* Fast. You can apply for a merchant account to accept credit cards
in the morning and be taking payments in the afternoon.
* No contract. Some credit card merchant account providers do not
require an annual contract (for US businesses). The arrangement
is strictly month-to-month. Of course, there are still companies
that will try to lock you into a year-long contract, so be careful.
See how easy it is to take credit card payments? Don't wait any
longer. Apply for a credit card merchant gateway today. It's easy
to do, and your business needs it. Once you're taking credit card
payments, you won't be be just like a real business–you will
be a real business.
About the Author
Joel Walsh is owner
of the website UpMarketMerchant.com. Get more information about
online merchant credit card processing service: http://www.UpMarketMerchant.com