Credit Card Processing Blog

As many consumers struggle to understand what it is, Bitcoin is slowly emerging as a serious force in the financial industry. Regulators are scrambling to pass laws to prevent the technology from spiraling out of control and merchants are wondering if they should consider accepting cryptocurrencies as a form of payment. While there may currently not be a substantial benefit to accepting Bitcoin as a payment, the number of users is slowly growing, especially in emerging markets. For e-commerce businesses, it may be time to consider adding Bitcoin as an accepted payment method. Since this means asking your payment processing providers to add it, providers can no longer afford to ignore this emerging currency. Bitcoin Defined Created in 2009, Bitcoin uses technology to transfer funds from one consumer to another. No bank acts as an intermediary, allowing one person to send funds to another person directly. Members of the Bitcoin community are allowed to exchange Bitcoins with other members of the community without fees. The definition of cryptocurrencies as legal tender is still under debate, however. The IRS has chosen… Read more

The weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas bring credit cards out, as shoppers rush to get presents under the tree in time for the Holidays. As the Christmas decorations go back into storage and shoppers rush to stores to return items, however, merchants see a spike in chargebacks. For a variety of reasons, post-Christmas chargebacks are a growing problem. Chargebacks are a serious problem for any customer-facing business. Merchants are required to pay the fee even if the merchant is found to have done everything correctly. But most often, a chargeback case is ruled in the customer’s favor, leaving the merchant with all fees, as well as the merchandise the customer was allowed to keep. Over time, these expenses can add up, severely hurting a business’s profitability. For that reason, it’s important that a merchant does anything it can to reduce chargeback risk. Reasons for Chargebacks To protect cardholders, banks have made it easy to file a chargeback dispute. Unfortunately, this means all too often a customer will file a chargeback before contacting the business to allow it to resolve the… Read more

Credit card transaction fees are an unavoidable cost of doing business. Placing limits on the type of cards your business will accept can actually hurt you, since most customers will choose to shop somewhere else if their favorite cards aren’t accepted. This is especially true in an era of decreasing cash usage. If frequenting your establishment means an extra trip to an ATM or not earning points toward a reward, customers are likely to choose the competition. Some cards go beyond simply charging a slightly higher fee for swipes, though. Premium cards, available primarily to high-end customers with big bank accounts, lure elite members in with promises of higher credit limits and perks, like exclusive access to airport lounges. The Visa Black Card, Citi Executive Aadvantage World Elite Mastercard, and the Discover Premium Plus all give their high-dollar cardholders the VIP treatment. But for a standard business, the fees for accepting these cards can be a bit tough to take. Growing in Popularity Recent attempts by credit card companies to increase the prevalence of these cards have ignited a wave… Read more

Successful businesses place top priority on customer service, always striving to offer the best experience possible for every patron. For retailers, this commitment often focuses on the cash register, where employees have the chance to directly interact with each customer. A good experience could bring referrals and return visits, while a bad visit could result in reputation damage, both online and around town. One aspect of customer service that tends to impress customers most is the ease of each transaction. While hospitable service is vital, a long, slow-moving line can scare people off even more than unfriendly service. By making payments as easy as possible, businesses can keep checkout lines at a minimum and create a painless payment experience that makes customers look forward to shopping with them. Enter Contactless Payments Thanks to the emergence of Near Field Communication (NFC) in smartphones, contactless payment technology is beginning to make its way to the consumer market. More than 40 merchants now accept Apple Pay and the company is working to add to that number. But the technology has been around for… Read more

Customers have grown accustomed to being asked, “debit or credit?” when swiping cards at the register. For the many consumers who have cards that work as either, this question seems to only differentiate between entering a PIN number or signing a name. However, there are some benefits to using credit that merchants should know about in case customers ask. The Death of Annual Fees Some customers have good reason to avoid credit cards. Unless a cardholder has the discipline to pay off the full balance every month, a balance can quickly add up, with monthly interest added on to that amount. With a debit card, funds are withdrawn directly from the consumer’s bank account, with no balance or interest. For customers who effectively manage that debt, however, there are many features a credit card provides that a debit cannot. Since many credit cards now charge no annual fees to consumers, this means a credit cardholder can regularly use a card with zero fees. Fraud Liability They may seem identical, but as CNN pointed out during the Target breach, consumer protection… Read more