Previously, this review noted the confusing relationship between Ironwood and a company called ElitePay Global; it appeared that Ironwood was merely a new name for ElitePay. However, Ironwood contacted CardFellow to clarify the relationship, and also details it on the official Ironwood website. As described, Ironwood purchased ElitePay Global without knowing of that company’s negative reputation and history in the industry.
With confirmation that Ironwood is a separate entity, let’s go over Ironwood’s current services and then take a look at Ironwood reviews from customers.
As a full-featured payments provider, Ironwood offers the ability to accept credit and debit cards in person, with a smartphone or tablet, or online.
You can also use the online gateway to accept payments securely over the phone by turning your existing computer into a “virtual terminal.”
Ironwood offers card processing so that you can accept major credit cards, including MasterCard, Visa, Discover, and American Express. You can also accept debit cards on a number of major networks, increasing flexibility of payment options for your customers. You can accept payments with a traditional countertop credit card machine or a full-featured POS system that provides additional options like inventory management, detailed reporting, employee timeclock functions, and more.
For taking payments on the go, Ironwood offers the SwipeSimple headphone jack reader. Compatible with Anroid, Apple, and Blackberry devices, it allows you to accept payments using a smartphone or tablet. Customers can sign for purchases or even add tips right on your device, and you can email or text receipts.
Mobile processing is recommended for businesses that accept payments outside of traditional store environments, such as contractors, artists, landscapers, delivery businesses, and businesses that sell goods and services at tradeshows or fairs.
For accepting payments online, Ironwood offers the popular Authorize.Net gateway. You’ll be able to accept one-time and recurring payments securely, as well as create “buy” buttons for your site and sync with QuickBooks. You can take advantage of anti-fraud tools like Card Verification Code (CVV) and 3D Secure technology such as Verified by Visa.
You can also take payments over the phone and enter card details into a secure form. This “virtual terminal” method lets you take cards without requiring special equipment. Ironwood also references Magtek USB readers which can be connected to your computer if your customers are present with their cards.
Related Article: Using Verified by Visa.
We’re happy to see that Ironwood Payments has discontinued its practice of leasing equipment. Instead, you have the option of purchasing machines outright (either with a one-time full payment, or three installment payments) or renting equipment.
Ironwood offers countertop terminals from major brands, including Ingenico, Verifone, and SwipeSimple. Specific features vary by model, and may include EMV chip card capabilities, backlit LCD screens, and more.
For full POS systems, the company offers ShopKeep. Retailers and restaurants that need multiple POS stations can choose from pre-made bundles.
ShopKeep offers the following video about its system:
Additionally, Ironwood offers the Poynt smart terminal, a “future proof” dual-screen machine that accepts multiple payment methods, including traditional magnetic stripe cards, EMV chip cards, and contactless payments like Apple Pay.
Ironwood publishes the costs for each machine on its website, bringing transparency to the pricing. Costs for purchase (either one payment or three installment payments) and the monthly rental fee are both listed so you can choose the option that suits your budget.
Ironwood Payments does not publish rates or fees on their website, but does reference both interchange plus and tiered pricing models. Ironwood clarified with CardFellow that it typically quotes using interchange plus, but offers tiered pricing for businesses that ask for it. At CardFellow, we suggest not using tiered pricing.
You can request a fully-disclosed quote from Ironwood right here through CardFellow. Just log in to your account to get started and see how Ironwood’s costs stack up to other processors of your choice.
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Ironwood Payments offers what it calls the Ironclad Lifetime Guarantee for all businesses. The guarantee is to ensure customer satisfaction, and allows you to cancel your merchant account at any time with termination fees waived.
The Ironclad guarantee applies to equipment purchases and rentals as well. For rental equipment, Ironwood will coordinate with you to pick up the machine. For purchased equipment, you have the choice of keeping it or returning it for reimbursement.
Note that some restrictions do apply. For example, equipment rentals must be in good condition and you must be current on your rental payments. Additionally, you must notify Ironwood in writing of your intent to cancel, and provide the company with an opportunity to address issues.
In the past, this section included information on both Ironwood reviews and ElitePay Global reviews, as it was not clear if the companies were operating as separate entities. In 2017, Ironwood confirmed that it is its own company. In the interest of fairness, we’re only including information in this section that refers to Ironwood Payments specifically, and not to ElitePay Global.
That said, there isn’t a ton of information available about Ironwood Payments specifically. What we did turn up is the Ironwood Financial (Ironwood Payments’ parent company) profile at the Better Business Bureau.
On the BBB’s website, Ironwood has been accredited with the BBB and boasts an A- rating. There are 5 positive reviews and 7 negative reviews, along with 48 customer complaints, in the profile.
The positive reviews praise the company for helping save business money, and for helpful customer service and professionalism. One reviewer mentioned that the initial experience with Ironwood wasn’t great, but the customer service rep went above and beyond to help resolve the customer’s issue.
The negative reviews complain that Ironwood uses deceptive sales practices and will tell you they’ll save you money but savings won’t materialize. Some reviewers state that they were charged cancellation fees despite contracts saying there was no cancellation fee.
The complaints largely echo the negative reviews, with customers complaining that Ironwood deducted money from bank accounts unauthorized and going back on verbal agreements. Ironwood responds to the customer complaints, providing additional information to clarify the situations.
While Ironwood does not place certified quotes in CardFellow's marketplace at this time, the company has an active representative available to answer questions and place quotes at your request.
We were also pleased to find that Ironwood recently extended great customer service to one of our clients, even though that particular client was leaving Ironwood for a processor in CardFellow's marketplace.
When the business owner was told of a problem reprogramming his credit card machine, he reached out to Ironwood for assistance unlocking the terminal. Ironwood tech support was able to help the business owner diagnose and solve the problem, enabling the business to take their terminal to their new processor rather than having to purchase another machine.
In an industry where some processors make it difficult to switch companies, it's great to see that Ironwood worked with the business owner to ensure a smooth transition.
Have you used Ironwood Payments at your business? What was your experience? Leave a review!
Unlike general web reviews, verified reviews are posted by businesses that have chosen the processor's quote through CardFellow's marketplace, and CardFellow has confirmed with the processor that the business is using its service. Businesses can update verified reviews at any time to ensure the review accurately reflects the processor's performance over time.
Unlike verified reviews which are validated by CardFellow, web reviews can be submitted by anyone viewing this profile. While we validate these reviews as best we can, CardFellow does not verify that a reviewer is using or has used a processor's service.
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Posted by Jeff Aranas on Aug 29, 2017
I used Ironwood Payments over a year ago, although we could not use their processing system due to our current POS system. I was able to terminate my lease with them with no penalty, but I was also in a equipment lease agreement with Northern Leasing that was almost impossible to get out of. IronWood helped me out with this issue and was able to get me back all my fees. It took over a year but they worked hard to make sure that I was happy. Thanks, Ironwood, especially Jon Turner and David Farr.
Posted by Frances K on Aug 09, 2017
I have been with Ironwood Payment systems for 1 year. Kris has given us great customer service. She is helpful, honest and follows through with what she tells you she is going to do. She has been very helpful in solving any problems that I have encountered.
Posted by Mike on Aug 08, 2017
Ironwood and Northern Leasing systems are nothing more than thieves and should be locked up. Very deceptive, high pressure, lied to us. We have lost a ton of money to these thieves. Smooth talkers said we would increase our profits. LIARS!! Fees, interest rate, leasing cost etc. Avoid them at all cost!! they are a -5 star in my book
Posted by PRICE RITE TRANSMISSION AND AUTO on Jun 05, 2017
IRONWOOD PAYMENTS GREAT CREDIT CARD PROCESSING COMPANY. OUTSTANDING CUSTOMER SERVICE. REALLY APPRECIATE THE NO CONTRACT PROGRAM. THIS COMPANY STANDS BEHIND THERE PRODUCT. ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS. VERY REFRESHING TOO PAY LOWER RATES WITH NO HIDDEN FEES. THEY ARE AN ASSET TO MY COMPANY !
Posted by CardFellow on Mar 27, 2017
As a followup to our review from March of 2016, we're bumping up Ironwood Payments to 3 stars due to its efforts to clean up previous issues. The company no longer leases equipment, and is attempting to be more transparent with pricing and services. We'll keep an eye on how Ironwood continues to change over the next year, and update the profile and star rating as appropriate.
Posted by CardFellow on Mar 22, 2016
We’ve seen a pattern from Elitepay Global of equipment leasing, high-pressure sales tactics, and opaque pricing and terms.
Posted by Katie on Jan 21, 2016
These crooks, and Northern Leasing Systems, should be locked up. They flat out lie and put enormous pressure on you so they can make a deal. Do NOT EVER use Elite Pay Global or Northern Leasing Systems! Very deceptive and huge processing fees, expensive leases and tons of miscellaneous fees!