Setting Up a Merchant Account

What Is A Merchant Account?

A merchant account is a bank account that permits a business to accept credit and debit cards as payment for products and services. They act as a contract between the business owner and the bank with rules and regulations about how products and services are sold and paid for. Generally, it can be used for accepting payments through an e-commerce website.

How Does A Merchant Account Work?

Today, the majority of payments by credit or debit cards are processed with an electronic device called a credit card terminal that allows merchants to swipe cards through a slot that reads all necessary information from the card’s magnetic strip. More advanced terminals can verify checks, accept gift cards and allow businesses to manually key-in card numbers and expiration dates. Credit card terminals transfer information to merchant banks or a third-party processor via phone or the Internet. These terminals offer cheaper processing rates and help to decrease credit card theft, in addition to being the most efficient and easiest method to process credit cards.

Advantages Of A Merchant Account?

  • Lower rates and fees
  • Simplifies accounting and reduces errors & theft by not having large amounts of cash
  • Lends legitimacy to a company
  • No need to have a third-party account
  • More flexibility with customer management
  • Absence of a Merchant Account can limit and restrict business sales
  • Able to accept multi-currency payments

What Equipment Will I Need?

Check Readers

Using a check reader can take the risk out of accepting checks by converting them into an electronic transaction.

Pin Pads

These devices can be attached to a table or wireless machine enabling customers to enter a PIN number for a check or debit card.

Wireless Terminal

A wireless credit card terminal enables mobile merchants to swipe customer payment cards wherever the transaction occurs. It allows the merchant to receive card-present rates instead of keyed rates and can eliminate the risks associated with taking checks. It also offers customer’s some relief knowing that the merchant isn’t writing down and storing their credit card number and expiration date to enter after the sales transaction.

IP Terminal

A lower cost terminal that has the ability to process over an IP connection and supports additional equipment like pinpads, smart card readers, or check scanners.

POS Integration

Point of sale software packages are the operating systems and applications that turns your POS hardware into a usable Point of Sale System. Depending on the size and industry of your business, there is a Point of Sale Software package designed to fit specific needs.