Whether you are just starting an enterprise business that sells physical or digital goods online or you are looking to extend the reach of your brick and mortar business and start taking payment online, you need to open a merchant account. Without the right information, choosing a merchant account provider can be quite challenging, and making the wrong choice can have serious consequences on your enterprise business down the lane. Here are some important considerations to help you choose the best merchant account for your business.
- Consider your specific needs: Start by considering the present and future needs of your enterprise business. You need a service provider that can offer the type of payment processing you require seamlessly. Also, if you have plans to diversify or expand in the future, consider a provider that can grow with you.
- Investigate customer service and support capabilities:This is an essential point you cannot afford to overlook with your merchant account provider. What are the technical capabilities of the service provider? Do they have self-service options to solve basic issues? Is there a toll-free number to call? These are some of the questions you need answers to
- Check the rates: merchant account providers charge the different interchange rates. In the first place, you want a provider whose rate is not too high for you. You also want a transparent system with no hidden charges. Beware of service providers that advertise rates that are dramatically lower than what others charge. Be sure to compare the advertised rate and choose a pricing system that works best for your needs.
As far as the pricing plan goes, there are three main pricing structures to consider. The flat-rate pricing system is recommended if you have a small enterprise business that is just starting to grow. But as your business blossoms, you should consider switching to a tiered payment plan or an interchange-plus pricing system. The interchange-plus plan is considered the most transparent of the three pricing structures.
- Research: Do your due diligence and by researching your merchant account provider before making your choice. Check the Better Business Bureau report of such a company and read reviews online. If there are too many complaints about the service provider, don’t expect yours to be any different. It is best to get direct recommendations from businesses that currently use the service. You should also check the contracts you are signing up to before you agree. Some providers include clauses in the contract that make it difficult to terminate the contract before the term expires. This means you may be stuck with a terrible service provider or be forced to pay a high fee for terminating the agreement.
- Check to ensure that the monthly processing volume is not capped: some merchant account providers put a cap on how much payments can be processed within a month. In this case, you may have to pay extra fees if the monthly processing volume is exceeded. Be sure the account provider you are choosing does not have a limit over the transaction volume and even if they do, check to see if is within a reasonable range of your sales volume.