Credit card processors represent some of the most efficient ways to perform everyday transactions while ensuring security and reliability. Utilized by countless businesses around the world, these payment processors provide a host of unique features, for which you can learn more on this site. Therefore, it makes sense to appreciate what to look for when selecting the most appropriate services.
So, what exactly does this concept entail? Essentially, these are intermediary firms that accept credit card payments. In some ways, payment processors can be thought of as “middlemen” between the merchant and the customer. This enables transactions to be performed safely and transparently. Furthermore, accepting payments online will normally dictate that a reliable merchant is present. There are many different processing firms to choose from and each of these is associated with its own unique set of attributes. Still, it pays to examine this subject in slightly more detail.
The steps associated with credit card payments are rather straightforward. First, the merchant (seller) will send their previously approved authorizations to the payment processor. The processor then relays these details to the relevant credit card company. Then, this company forwards the data to the bank associated with the credit card. Finally, the bank will send the funds to one or more merchant accounts. This is how the balance is ultimately settled. Note that a type of commission levied by the bank known as an “interchange fee” may be included.
First and foremost, every business should possess the ability to handle credit card payments. This will enable your organization to connect with a wide range of customers. Additionally, many individuals prefer these types of payments as opposed to other methods such as banks or wire transfers. So, might credit card processors represent the next logical step?
Most experts would agree that any business accepting payments online should employ a credit card processor. This is even more relevant for enterprises that deal with bulk transactions or may be obligated to manage multiple merchant accounts. Simply stated, processors can help to take the “guesswork” out of the equation while ensuring higher levels of overall customer satisfaction.
So, what should a business look for when examining potential credit card processors? Perhaps most importantly, it is wise to examine the interchange fees that apply. Standard fees for online transactions are 3%. Note that these rates are normally attached to each transaction as opposed to a bulk order. It, therefore, makes sense to find a firm that charges amenable rates that will not negatively impact your profit margin.
Secondly, most processing firms will charge a business an additional fee if a monthly minimum balance is not maintained. Ranging from between €10 and €25 (depending on the institution), these may also affect your overall return on investment (ROI).
There may also be instances when the processor will levy a charge for sending a written statement of all credit card payments to a physical address. If possible, opt for an electronic statement; most of these are free to receive and just as comprehensive.
It is finally prudent to search for a company that provides superior levels of customer service. For example, you should always be able to speak with a support representative in the event of a problem. This is also the hallmark of a processing firm that cares for its merchants. Take a look online to determine what current and previous businesses have had to say about their experiences.
Thankfully, there are many payment processors to choose from. The only issue is that some are rated better than others. Let us therefore briefly list the top five to consider in 2023 as well as some of their primary features.
Stax is considered to be the best card processor due to its ability to handle bulk transactions. Furthermore, Stax offers monthly fees starting at only €99 (or the equivalent currency). This may be ideal for startup businesses and those that are governed by tight budgets.
PayPal has also made our list due to its sheer familiarity. One impressive aspect of this processor is that PayPal does not charge any monthly fees to those who open up a merchant account. PayPal can likewise be easily integrated into an existing website. This is important for those who are not familiar with HTML coding.
Those who deal with international customers could instead choose Stripe. Recognized in 47 countries, Stripe is a highly customizable processing platform and it prioritizes the needs of online merchant accounts.
Square is yet another platform that makes accepting payments online easy. Offering free point-of-sale (POS) software and no early termination fees, Square is great for those who require a “no-frills” payment processor.
Finally, the payment processor Helcim boasts an all-inclusive POS system alongside transparent pricing packages. While somewhat more expensive than those mentioned above, Helcim is still an option to consider for up-and-coming businesses.
It is now clear to appreciate the benefits that processing merchants can provide. Businesses will enjoy superior levels of transparency while ensuring that the needs of their customers are addressed. Furthermore, cashless payments have now become commonplace. This is why processing services represent the digital wave of the future. Of course, feel free to perform additional research if you wish to learn more about your options.