Smart Card Payment... the SMART choice

Our company believes that we are the smart choice when choosing a credit card processor. We pride ourselves in offering more information to assist you in making smarter decisions. We have decided to list some of the most frequently asked questions dealing with merchant accounts and credit card payment processing to make your experience a little easier. If you have a question that is not listed below, please feel free to contact us and we would be happy to answer any additional questions.

What is a merchant account?

A merchant account is an account at a financial institution that allows you to accept credit cards as a form of payment for products or services that you provide as a business.

How long does it take to get set up with credit card processing?

The turnaround time can vary from company to company, however it can take as little as 24 hours to two weeks. Very high volume and International merchant accounts seem to take the longest. Companies that allow you to fax applications can usually have you up and running in a few days. One other factor may be the number of applications the bank is reviewing for approval.

What is a discount rate?

Discount rates are basically a percentage that is taken from the charge that is being processed. For example, if your discount rate is 2.35% and you have an order for $100, the discount rate being deducted would be $2.35.

How long does it take for the funds to be placed into my business checking account?

The typical time period is 2 to 3 business days.

Why are rates higher for Internet, Mail and Telephone Order transactions?

A face-to-face transaction where the credit card is swiped is considered to be a low risk transaction by bank standards. Since the risk is lower, discount rates are much lower because it is less likely that the transaction will end in fraud or a chargeback.

Can I use someone else's merchant account to run my transactions?

No, this practice is known as “credit card laundering”. It is against the Visa and Mastercard agreement. Using someone else's merchant account to process your credit card transactions can lead to heavy fines. In addition, you'll also put that merchant's credit card processing account in jeopardy of being terminated.

What kinds of credit card processing solutions do I choose from?

There are a wide range of solutions for all types of businesses. Swipe terminals for retail merchants; real-time processing for Internet sites; PC software for mail order/phone order and Internet businesses; seasonal and mobile merchants; and virtual terminals for Internet, mail and telephone order businesses. Each have their own pros and cons, ask your sales representative which is best for your business.

What is a chargeback?

A chargeback is basically a transaction that is reversed. In other words, rather than adding money to your account the money is deducted from your account. In most cases chargebacks occur when a card is double-charged, credit card is expired, bank error, and customer disputes.

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