Your Guide to Researching Credit Card Processing Providers
Choosing a credit card processing company to accept card payments is an important decision. While the right company can help your business grow, the wrong one can create one headache after another. Since you don’t want to base this decision solely on what a company has on their own site, we have some great tips about how to do your research:
A Few Minutes Can Mean Big Savings and a Better Experience
Although it may seem too simple to be effective. Using a search engine such as Google, Bing, Yahoo, while researching credit card processing providers with the name of the processing company you’re considering is actually a very useful tactic.
The reason this research strategy works so well is because search engines give a nice mix of information in a single location. From reviews on blogs to customer discussions in forums or even professional reviews, you can read real experiences from actual customers and people that review the industry. Some of the sites where you can expect to find especially useful information include RipoffReport.com, ComplaintsBoard.com or the BBB.com site. A great way to get to the point is to search the company name with the word “reviews” or even better “complaints” after the name. While some of these sites may appear as a result of just one or two disgruntled customers, if you discover that there are a significant number of negative reviews, or complaints on a few sites, it should raise a red flag about that provider.
One other tip is when you type a credit card processor’s name into a search engine, see what other searches are automatically suggested. If you notice a specific issue, just click the phrase to easily see what comes up about it.
The Devil is In the Details
The reason you owe it to yourself and your business to take some time to research via search engines is because the credit card processing industry is filled with a lot of selling practices that are fairly deceptive. Whether it’s sales reps promising more than their company can actually deliver or a company website that doesn’t paint a full picture, reading others’ experiences will help you avoid these costly pitfalls. How long a company’s been in business as opposed to how many complaints they have. Is there a termed contract, if so why, what’s the benefit to you? Also, pay special attention to “Free Terminal” ads. Find out about what that requires.
Keep in mind that if you’re already working with a company, it’s still worth your time to research them. Not only can this help you uncover information that may lead to you deciding to make a switch, on the other hand you may also find out about a great feature or offer that you would have otherwise missed at your current provider.
Getting Those Details
If you find a company you’re interested in, one of the first things they’ll ask you for is a current statement from your existing provider. This is good practice for all, as they might show you how to avoid fees that aren’t necessary due to the way your running transactions, or fees they don’t have. It doesn’t mean they won’t have other fees you’re not currently paying. Don’t accept just some vague proposal on how much they can save you. I see this time and time again, you get a paragraph on how much money they can save you, and a couple of line items on rates, and transaction fees, and maybe monthly account fee. They can save you on rates, but what about all the other fees? Ask for a line item comparison, not just some vague or convoluted information. Rates, transaction cost, provider fees, account fee as well as PCI compliance an non-compliance cost. Get a detailed comparison to the line item cost you currently have as opposed to what they’ll offer.
A Few Minutes Can be an Eye Opener
Researching credit card processing providers takes just a few minutes of time and can lead to wealth of information, and possibly to huge savings and better customer service.