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Credit Card Processing Buyer's Guide - Negotiating With Providers

Credit Card Processing Buyer's Guide - Negotiating With Providers

Published: 03/28/2011

» Merchant Services
»» Credit Card Processing


Negotiating With Providers

If you do not expect to charge more than a few thousand dollars of electronic payments each month, focus on lowering the set‐up and monthly fees from the providers you're negotiating with.



Also, when asked to estimate your monthly sales, be conservative. You may be asked to keep a percentage (or even a full month's estimated order total) in an account to cover fraud.



For larger credit card volumes, reducing per‐transaction costs is a higher priority. A particularly good area to focus on is the merchant provider's discount rate. Since your average sales ticket helps to determine your discount rate, you should be more aggressive in estimating your average sales ticket. It can also be helpful to learn what average ticket sizes you need to qualify for even lower discount rates.



Some pitfalls to avoid: be wary of long‐term leases with early termination fees – if you are unhappy with your provider, you should be able to switch. Also watch for a tactic borrowed from the consumer credit card industry: low introductory rates that bump up after a few months. While all merchant providers will reserve the right to raise prices (MasterCard and Visa often change the rates they charge the providers), you should not go with one that signs you up for an increase.