Credit Card Transaction Fees

Credit Card Transaction Fees
A common and costly mistake when shopping for credit card processing services is to focus on a processor’s rate while paying little attention to transaction fees. The financial impact of this mistake is especially damaging for businesses with a low average sale amount. Continue reading

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Merchant Category Code: Reporting & Rates

Originally created in 2004 to streamline 1099 reporting, merchant category codes are now used for a number of different purposes. Of particular importance to businesses is a merchant category code’s impact on interchange fees charged by issuing banks

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What is a Monthly Minimum Fee

Monthly Minimum FeeA monthly minimum fee is one of the more confusing credit card processing fees because it’s not really a fee at all. A monthly minimum is more accurately described as a benchmark that may result in a fee, rather than as a fee by itself. Continue reading

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Basis Points – The Basis for Fees

Basis PointsThe term basis point is thrown around a lot in the credit card processing industry, but many sales people fail to realize that most people aren’t quite sure exactly what a basis point is, or what it means in terms of credit card processing fees. This article explains what a basis point is, how to calculate fees using basis points, and finally the role basis points play in credit card processing — specifically having to do with a processor’s markup. Continue reading

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PayPal Here Vs. Square

PayPal Here Vs. SquarePayPal Here has taken the mobile payments market by storm with a smartphone processing solution that in several ways gets the better of the current market leader, Square. Boasting live customer support, immediate funding and support for multiple payment channels including free check acceptance, it seems as though Square has some catching up to do despite the company’s rapid growth. Continue reading

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Intuit Credit Card Processing = Very Expensive!

PayPal HereIntuit is best known as the maker of the popular Quickbooks accounting software, and as the provider of the GoPayment mobile processing application. If the company’s credit card processing keeps going as it is, Intuit will also become know for exorbitant credit card processing charges and excessive downgrades. Continue reading

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PayPal Here iPhone, iPad & Droid Credit Card Processing

PayPal HereMicro merchants and businesses that need to accept credit card payments while on the go now have yet another smartphone credit card processing option. On March 16th PayPal launched PayPal Here, a service that allows iPhone and eventually Droid users to accept credit card payments through their mobile device. Continue reading

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Transaction Integrity Fee (TIF) Visa

Transaction Integrity FeeEffective April 13, 2012, Visa will begin charging a Transaction Integrity Fee (TIF) of $0.10 on transactions involving Visa debit and prepaid cards that do not meet CPS requirements. The Transaction Integrity Fee will not apply to Visa credit card transactions. Continue reading

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Fixed Acquirer Network Fee (FANF) Visa

Fixed Acquirer Network FeeThe price for admission is increasing on April 1st for any business that accepts Visa credit or debit cards. Visa’s new Fixed Acquirer Network Fee will increase costs across the board. Continue reading

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1.54% “Flat Wholesale Rate”

Q & A: 1.54% Wholesale RateI have a question about a specific company — [removed to protect the guilty]. They are saying the rate they can provide is 1.54% on qualified and mid-qualified cards (“flat wholesale rate”). The only other rate is “up to 4.61%” on non-qualified cards. Then they charge 3 cents per transaction and no basis points. Is this true and possible? Continue reading

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Are Credit Card Processing Fees Negotiable?

Credit Card Processing Fees NegotiableSome credit card processing fees are negotiable, and some aren’t. So, please put the spreadsheet aside for a moment and read this article before you call another processor to ask the fateful question, “What’s your rate?” Before you can negotiate credit card processing fees, you have to know which fees are flexible. Credit card processing is like any other industry in that there are fixed costs and markups. Fixed costs are those that a processor can’t change, and markups are open to discussion. Continue reading

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American Express Discount Rate & Merchant Account

American Express Merchant AccountAmerican Express operates on a closed loop network whereby it issues credit cards directly to cardholders and merchant accounts directly to businesses. A credit card processor that claims to offer lower American Express credit card processing fees than its competition is simply being misleading. American Express sets its own discount rates which are exactly the same for all credit card processors. Continue reading

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How to Read an Intuit Merchant Statement

Intuit Merchant StatementYou have to read between the lines to understanding how much you’re actually paying to process credit cards through Intuit. Tiered pricing, daily discount and excessive non-qualified surcharges make Intuit statements appear deceivingly simple. Continue reading

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Can I Reprogram My Credit Card Machine For Different Processors?

Reprogram Credit Card MachineSome credit card machines can be reprogrammed to work with virtually any credit card processor, while other machines will only work with a specific processor. Older credit card machines that don’t have the proper hardware and memory to support modern programs may not work with any processors at all. Continue reading

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(Evil) Tiered Pricing Merchant Account Services

Tiered Pricing Merchant AccountTiered merchant account pricing is currently the most common form of pricing for credit card processing services. Tiered pricing is opaque, expensive and is the vehicle for many of the hidden fees that plague the credit card processing industry. A more cost-effective, transparent alternative to tiered merchant account pricing is available to businesses that know enough to request it. Continue reading

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Reading A Credit Card Processing Statement

How to Read a Credit Card Processing StatementIt’s not enough to simply read a merchant processing statement; the real goal is to understand what you are reading, where your money is going, and to determine whether your business has competitive credit card processing fees. This article will lay the foundation that will allow you to understand your statements, and it will link to examples of statement analyses that will allow you to follow along as we dissect various statements. Continue reading

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Online Sales Tax Rules & Laws

Online Sales TaxAn online business does not currently have to pay sales tax in states where it does not have nexus. However, the topic of online sales tax is rapidly evolving as new laws emerge with the goal of allowing states to charge sales tax by standardizing laws and rates. Some states also have existing or emerging laws that expand the scope of nexus that dictates if sales tax can be collected. Continue reading

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Contract = Good, Termination Fee = Bad

Merchant Account ContractAll merchant accounts have contracts and terms; some merchant account contracts do not have early termination fees.
Business people and processing professionals alike often refer to this type of merchant account as not having a contract, or as having a month-to-month agreement. Both of these declarations are incorrect and create confusion regarding the true nature of merchant account agreements. Continue reading

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What is a Good Interchange Plus Rate?

Good interchange plus rateInterchange plus rates vary widely from one processor to the next. How competitive rates are will depend on your business’s processing profile and how you are gathering quotes. It’s also important to understand that interchange plus is a form of pricing; it’s not a single rate. The percentage portion of the processing markup (the “rate”) may not be, and often isn’t the most important fee in determining cost-effective credit card processing services. Continue reading

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[Case Study] Dukane Skin Care Saves Once, Twice…

Dukane Skin CareMy experience with has been amazingly positive every step of the way. It’s a quick and easy process that’s actually understandable. CardFellow made sure that my business secured the best rates possible, while also making sure that there were no unnecessary fees. Continue reading

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