Blue Dog was named to Inc.5000 fastest growing companies in 2017.
As a processing company, BlueDog offers all the basic services you’d expect to take payments: credit and debit card processing in store, online, or by mobile device; a gift card program, check acceptance, and merchant cash advances. You can also take EBT cards, fleet cards (such as WEX and Voyager), and purchasing or corporate cards. THe company can also support pay-at-the-pump gas stations.
While BlueDog offers processing to a variety of businesses, it has a lot of clients in the industries of new car dealerships, home improvement businesses, and firearms dealers.
The company provided CardFellow with this description of the benefits of choosing BlueDog:
Since the day BlueDog opened its doors, it had one goal; be the Best Friend to Your Business. Now 8 years later this is what we strive to do each and every day. With over 20+ years in the payments business, our CEO and team know how to make payments run in all business types.
We find or build solutions from state of the art gateways, to acquiring our own invoicing platform to insure our customers have the right solutions needed to making getting paid as easy and smooth as possible.
In addition, we created some value added products that can only be found at BlueDog such as the BlueDog Giveback program (donating to philanthropies that our customers care about), BlueDog Store (a marketplace and directory for BlueDog customers) and BlueDog Treat Card (closed loop gift card solution where BlueDog helps drive customers to its customers) and Invoices123, a platform for businesses of all sizes to get paid fast and efficiently through digital invoices.
Blue Dog lets you take all major credit and debit cards, as well as Apple Pay and other contactless payments. The company also boasts next day funding for all payment types provided your transactions are batched by the cutoff time. (Typically between 8pm and 10pm depending on the platform you're using.) BlueDog utilizes monthly discounting, meaning they'll take the total processing fees owed once per month instead of every day.
You can take credit cards in traditional store environments, online with an ecommerce website, or using your smartphone with the mobile option.
BlueDog also offers an online chargeback management portal (called The Kennel) where you can view details of chargebacks in real time in order to respond promptly.
While BlueDog does not require you to carry data breach protection, such protection is available for an additional fee of $5.95/month.
BlueDog explicitly supports firearms dealers and offers the same transparent pass-through pricing model for firearm clients. The company enables payment acceptance for firearms in-person, through mail or phone order, and online. The company can process for storefront dealers, home-based FFLs, gun shows, and can accept Class III/NFA (suppressor) sales.
Furthermore, BlueDog does not require firearms dealers to have been in business for any length of time, confirming to CardFellow that it can set up new dealers with credit card processing and in most cases won't even need to impose restrictions such as rolling reserves.
Taking payments online? Blue Dog offers a gateway that includes a secure shopping cart, custom payment integrations, and a payment page builder so you can set up your site for easy ecommerce transactions.
BlueDog can set you up with Authorize.Net, NMI, or TSYS gateways, ensuring compatibility with a wide range of ecommerce solutions and shopping carts.
Some customers still prefer to pay with checks. Accept them easily with Blue Dog’s check conversion option that turns paper checks into an electronic transaction, or stick with traditional paper check acceptance and depositing.
If you’re interested in taking advantage of the popularity of gift cards, BlueDog offers a gift card solution to provide cards to sell. Since many customers like to purchase gift cards for a variety of occasions, they’re a great way to boost sales.
BlueDog's program has a low minimum order quantity (100 cards) and the cards are customizable. (A setup fee for custom cards may apply. Setup fees range up to $149.)
Cards cost $0.55 - $0.95 per card depending on the number ordered. You can choose between a monthly fee program or a per-transaction fee program. The monthly fee programs run between $9.99 - $19.99 while the per-transaction fee program would cost you 10 cents per gift card transaction. You can work with BlueDog to determine which program is the right fit for your business.
BlueDog also offers loyalty programs in either punchard-style or points-based systems. It offers the ability to tailor a program to your needs and provides your customers with a portal to check on their loyalty rewards. A monthly fee applies.
Like a lot of processing companies, Blue Dog offers a merchant cash advance option, which gives you access to working capital that can be used for almost any business expense. Merchant cash advances are different from small business loans though, and may come with higher costs.
BlueDog's MCA requires you to be in business for at least one year, process a minimum of $5,000 per month in credit card sales, and have a minimum credit score of 600. You can apply for amounts ranging from $5,000 - $250,000.
Blue Dog offers its own point of sale system, the BlueDog POS. It’s a tablet-based solution that offers features beyond simple payment processing, like inventory management, an employee time clock, and gift card processing. The POS is pictured as a bundle with a tablet and stand, card reader, receipt printer, and cash drawer.
Aside from the BlueDog POS, the company also praises Clover and the Poynt systems, referencing the usefulness of those systems' customization through apps. For basic countertop terminals, BlueDog prefers Dejavoo terminals due to their ease of use and upgrade capabilities.
BlueDog offers SwipeSimple headphone jack card readers for mobile credit card processing, praising them as an easy to use and field-tested option.
The company primarily sells equipment or offers it for free, telling CardFellow that those options apply to 90% of its clients. The other 10% lease credit card machines through BlueDog's leasing partners First Data Global Leasing or Executec.
BlueDog doesn’t publish specifics about its pricing, but confirmed to CardFellow that it offers interchange plus pricing, cash discount programs, and subscription-style pricing.
Need to see exact costs? Just because there isn’t any pricing published on BlueDog’s site doesn’t mean you can’t get that info right from this profile. You can use our one-click “request a quote” option at the top of this screen to get a fully-disclosed quote from BlueDog right here at CardFellow. You can review the quote in private, and compare it with quotes from any other company that you’d like.
Note, you’ll need to be signed in to use the quote request tool. If you don’t have an account yet, it’s free and fast, so head over to the signup form to start comparing quotes.
BlueDog has what it calls a 3-year good faith processing agreement. If everything you were told by BlueDog is true, honest, and accurate, you agree to process with the company for 3 years. If something isn’t as promised you can cancel with 30-days notice and no eartly termination fee.
Otherwise the company imposes a cancellation fee from $250 to $495 depending on the platform and products.
Most of BlueDog's sales agents are regular employees of BlueDog, though the company does use some contracted sales agents. (Contractors account for less than 10% of BlueDog's sales force and are given the same training as internal employees.)
Bluedog has amassed quite a few positive reviews around the web in a very short time. It has over 200 mostly positive reviews with Google and 400 with TrustPilot.
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Posted by Heidi Lusson on Nov 05, 2021
I was a customer of Blue Dog, then they were bought out by another company, Fortis. I was not informed that Fortis does not deal with small business owners that don't have enough money to make them happy. In a 2 month span fortis took 98% of my credit card income in fees! Never deal with these people!
Posted by Primed Ammunition on Jan 28, 2021
William was awesome to work with! The 50 minutes I spent on the phone with him flew by! He's very friendly, sociable, and informed. He's definitely is the type of person you want setting the first impression when you decide to use a company's services for the first time. I'm excited to use BlueDog for my business.
Posted by Lewis on Aug 16, 2017
Great company for the small business owners.
Posted by Tom S on Oct 01, 2016
I switched to Blue Dog from Square and while I was a bit unsure if it would be better it turned out to be a good move. The process of getting set up was a bit longer and required more information than when I signed up with Square, but in the end my overall fees were a lot lower with Blue Dog.