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The Merchant Account Thread

omupasomupas subscriber Posts: 7
Hello Startupnation Community!
I`ve noticed through some of my posts regarding credit card processing that there may be some general questions revolving the acceptance of credit cards and merchant accounts.  I thought I`d start this thread so that there would be an organized place in the forum to ask questions, share experiences, etc with merchant accounts.
The more we can share, the more the community will benefit.  Everyone has their core competencies when it comes to their business.  For example, a web designer is an expert in their field and may have the resources for web hosting, shopping carts, etc.  I wouldn`t claim to be an expert in the field of web design but I am very competent in my own field (merchant services) just like everyone else here is very competent in their specific fields.
I`m fairly new to the community, but I can say that I`m extremely impressed with this forum and the caliber of individuals who make up the community.  Far too often these online forums are filled with nothing but spammers, but this community is very well organized and the information throughout is quite helpful.
With that said, please feel free to ask questions, share experiences, etc.  I think that this topic is very important because there have been many who have experienced bad service, have been a victim of misrepresentation, or are simply overpaying and don`t even realize it.
I look forward to the development of this thread.


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    rvdebbyrvdebby subscriber Posts: 11
    I am shopping for my gateway and I must admit I am nervous. This part of my business will have access to the MONEY!! Where do you go to verify this type of service, check the BBB like other companies?
    WaMu is now subbing out this part of business transactions to Trans 1st. I was not impressed by their rep. During the conversation the rate changed 3 times, I discovered there is a $10 fee for chargebacks that he didn`t bring up. He was trying to tell me that I really needed to accept AmEx, I don`t want AmEx, they are very expensive. Also somewhere in the conversation, he devulged-nope, didn`t volunteer, that you would be locked in to their program for 3 years. Kind of like the cell phone programs that make my blood pressure go up.
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    centralpaymentcorpcentralpaymentcorp subscriber Posts: 0
    I setup merchants to process credit cards for their business. There are many important things that you want to check out before signing anything! I could tell you all day that my company is the best, but then every rep out there is going to tell you that. First of all, I suggest you educate yourself on how merchant accounts work and what all is involved. Most merchants don`t understand the process and therefore, they end up paying way too much! I`m not sure if I can post a link here so I won`t. If interested, message me and I will mail you the link. It is not a link for me to sell you something or advertise my company. It is a VERY imformative blog that explains everything in detail. I used it when I was going through training and it goes into alot of detail. Yes, you want to check the BBB. They will log any complaints reported and how the companies have dealt with issues. If you speak with a rep that is changing the quoted fee every 5 min, you probably won`t want to deal with that company! Just shop around because it is YOUR business. Also, I will tell you that most fees are negotiable, so do some haggling. If they don`t like it, then check out another company. Good luck!
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    omupasomupas subscriber Posts: 7
    I can completely understand your feelings of being nervous about the gateway/merchant account portion of your business.  Rather than reiterate what I`ve written in a different thread here, you may want to read a thread I posted called, "Do Not Open A Merchant Account Until You Read This."  That thread can be found here ?TID=4393&PN=1
    As for your experience with the rep you have mentioned above, it is very typical, as you have read in my post I have just mentioned.  In the merchant services industry, it is typical for reps not to disclose most of the information.  Like you said above, there is information that is typically not "volunteered."  It is for this reason that my partners and I started our company, because we knew that there was a lot of opportunity in this business due to the fact that most businesses were being overcharged for the service.  Our margins on our accounts are much slimmer than other companies, but we feel that we will build our business through sheer volume of accounts rather than nickle and diming our clients.
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    AggieAggie subscriber Posts: 0
    Hello Oliver,
    I am a business advisor in the Pacific Northwest. I have a client that does merchant services for my other clients. I have known her for since 1999, and she is credible, and has a very high level of business integrity. Let me know if you would like more information about her business. It is a good idea to get several quotes, before you select a merchant services company, there are lots of options, and the leases can be for up to 5 years, which is a long commitment.
    good luck!
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    omupasomupas subscriber Posts: 7
    Thanks for your post and your resource.  I am in the business of providing merchant services for businesses.  I do appreciate your post, however, because you bring up some very good points.  I agree with your statement that it is a good idea to get several quotes.  There are a few reasons for this, first it is always good to do your due diligence to make sure you are getting the best deal for your business, also it is good to see who is actually working for your best interest.  What I mean by this, is who is leading with their best foot forward.  It`s always interesting to hear stories of business owners working with sales reps who do not disclose certain fees and then end up back pedaling.  And like you said, there are a lot of options.  There is no one cookie cutter solution for all businesses.  Lastly, you bring up leases.  In my opinion, with the options available today, there is no real reason for a business to lease equipment.  Especially a new business.  There is no need to get tied up in a 36-48 month non cancellable lease when equipment prices have dropped and there are also free terminal programs available.
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