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Using the right online payment processor to process credit and debit cards online diversifies a merchant’s ability to collect payments for a number of reasons such as charitable donations, membership fees, and of course, retail sales.  Additionally, payment processors save you a considerable amount of time while increasing your revenue stream.  Conversely, choosing the wrong one can cause customer confusion, cost you additional fees, and result in waiting forever to speak with a customer service rep or tech support.

holograms of people talking on a tabletIf you are a small business owner who is searching for the right online payment processor for your company website, you need to consider the following factors:

Approval Rating – The percentage of online payment processor applications that are approved is attributed to the approval rating the merchant receives.  The higher the rating is, the higher the percentage of approval will be.

Funding Time – Be wary of online payment processor services that offer “guaranteed” or “instant” set-up.  Not only is that false advertising, it could mean a lengthier holding time for your funds.

Key Features – Online payment forms, swipers, terminal options, and virtual terminals are some of the features that you might want to consider.  Just be aware that you will need more functionality than just a payment processing gateway.  Other features include mobile apps for processing sales on-the-go, recurring billing set-up, reporting cash flow, and storing customer payment information.

Length Of Set-Up Time – Depending on the payment processor company you deal with and the type of business you own, you could be set up within 24 to 48 hours.  Other companies may take a few weeks.

Start-Up And Cancellation Costs – Online payment processor services typically charge a fee for setting up a business with credit card processing.  However, some companies will negotiate these fees so don’t be afraid to ask them for a lower fee.  You should also inquire about being locked in to a contract and if there is a fee for canceling your account.

Transaction Fees – When evaluating payment processors, one of the first factors you need to think about is what you are going to be charged in transaction fees.  Even though it may be a lower, more appealing rate, there could be additional fees that you need to know about.

Ultimately, the choice of the right online payment processor for your business comes down to the way in which it addresses and fits your company’s needs.  Be sure to research your options so you can make a well-informed decision.

Posted in online payment processing on Dec 07, 2013