What to look for when choosing a merchant services provider
This guide will help you when choosing a new merchant services provider. Nowadays it is so important to ensure that your service provider can meet your requirements. A lot of providers have hidden fees or provide a reduced quality of service to support low, introductory card processing fees. As they say: there is no such thing as a free lunch!
Who holds your money and how quickly will you receive it
One of the most important questions to ask your provider is who holds your funds. Be sure that your provider is using a financial institution that you know, ensuring your money is safe. A lot of providers cannot pay funds into your account on the next working day. Some providers even take up to 5 working days to settle funds, so be sure to check how quickly you will receive your money.
Cost is a crucial factor in choosing your new provider so pay close attention to the terms and conditions you are agreeing to. Many providers offer low, introductory, card processing rates but hide or inflate fees elsewhere. This means you end up paying a lot more than you think. Look for a provider that offers transparent, simple to understand pricing. Some common hidden fees include:
- Statement fees
- Authorisation fees
- Monthly minimum fees
- Premium helpdesk numbers
- Broadband/digital connectivity fees
- Technical support fees
- Paper roll supply contracts
- Insurance products
It is important to check that your provider can support your business needs and does not charge extra for telephone or technical support. Check with your provider that they can provide 7 day support, a freephone helpdesk (including from mobile phones) and if they have offices in Ireland. A lot of providers have a virtual address (for post only) but no physical presence in the market. This means you will have no one to support you should you need someone on site or pay a significant premium for an on-site engineer visit.
As your business grows and your requirements change, make sure that your provider can support you with a range of card terminals, online payments and the ability to take payments over the phone. It is also important to check that your provider can support additional payment functionally including:
- Contactless payments
- Apple Pay (NFC)
- Gratuity (Tips)
- Cash back
Did you know:
- A number of providers sign their customers into supply contracts for paper rolls. Be very careful when signing up with these providers as very quickly you will end up spending more on paper rolls per month than on terminal rentals and merchant service fees.
- Contactless payment is now one of the fastest growing payment methods in Ireland. Make sure your chosen provider can support contactless payments.
PaymentPlus is proud to provide the most transparent pricing in the market and local service being an Irish company. We work with Barclaycard, one of the worlds leading payment providers, who have a transparent fee structure and work with their customers to make sure that their services exceed expectations. Contact us should you have any questions for us: firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re happy to help!
Choosing the right card terminal
It is very important to choose the right card terminal to suit your business needs. PaymentPlus has the latest range of card terminals to make sure you get the perfect terminal to meet your requirements. Our range of terminals is made up of the following terminal types:
Our countertop terminal is perfect for environments in which your customers pay at the point of sale or sales counter. Our countertop terminals are fast and support broadband and standard telephone lines. Our countertop terminals have colour screens as standard and support contactless and mobile (NFC) card payment options.
Our portable terminals are ideal for environments when you need to bring the terminal to your customer. Our portable terminals use the latest, secure Bluetooth technology allowing you use the terminal within your premises. . Our countertop terminals are fast and support broadband and standard telephone line. Our portable terminals have colour screens, support contactless and mobile (NFC) payments as standard.
Our mobile terminals allow you accept payments anywhere you can get a mobile phone signal. Our terminals support the O2 and Meteor networks. Our mobile terminals are ideal for businesses that need to take payments on the go or for environments that don’t have broadband or telephone connections. Our mobile terminals have colour screens, support contactless and mobile (NFC) payments as standard.
Did you know:
- All our terminals have fast printers to provide merchant and customer receipts
- All our terminals have colour screens and backlit buttons, making them easier to use in low light environments
- Our contactless terminals support mobile (NFC/ApplePay) payments and high value mobile payments
- Our terminals are backed up by free helpdesk and warranty services
- We recommend for any card transaction that a refund is processed to the original card only and remember:
- The last four digits of the card number will always be on the customers card payment receipt to check.
- If the original card has expired you can still refund back to the original and the consumer must contact their card issuer to receive their funds.
- If the cardholder has received a replacement card check that the new start date is after the original sale date and ask for ID.
- Never give cash or cheque for a card transaction.
- When taking card payments over the phone, it is very important to:
- Get the full card number, expiry date and Card Security Code (3 digit code on back of card).
- Never allow a customer pickup the goods in person after paying over the phone. If the cardholder arrives in person refund the original card transaction and process it by Chip and PIN only.
- For unusually large transactions, hold shipment until you have satisfied yourself the cardholder is genuine. Check address, social media, etc. It can also be a good idea to call the person back the next morning and see do they remember what they ordered. Fraudsters usually make many orders so don’t always remember what they ordered.
- Taking card payments online:
- Make sure your fraud tools are up to date and contact your gateway provider to ensure all available fraud filters are in place.
- We recommend using 3D Secure to validate cardholders. 3D Secure protects online retailers from fraud.
- For non Chip and PIN cards we always recommend asking for ID. Non Chip and PIN cards are still common in many parts of the world but any European card will be Chip and PIN enabled so be very suspicious of any Domestic or EU card that falls back to signature. All cards have security features such as holograms which should be checked.
- Ensure staff read the terminal screen prompts when processing any transaction and ensure all transactions are APPROVED before handing over goods. This is particularly important for contactless transactions as every 3-5 transactions require the cardholder to enter their PIN for security and sometimes staff do not read the screen prompts and presume the transaction was approved.
- Remember you can always contact our authorisation line for help should you be suspicious of any card transaction - 1800656644 option 2.