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By some estimates consumers use credit/debit cards to make more than 80% of their purchases.

Top 3 Reasons to Accept Credit Cards:Credit Card

  • Service to your customers – allows them to easily pay for products and services
  • Professional – Makes your company look more official
  • Quicker Payments – you get paid quicker than having to wait for someone to cut a check and mail

The good news is that accepting credit cards is easier than ever, and can be done from any smartphone or website.

There are three ways you can accept credit cards, at point of sale (POS), through a mobile application or through an online payment terminal.


Point of Sale

credit terminal small businessIf you are going to accept credit cards directly at your cash register, at the point of sale (POS) you must have a merchant account.  You can set this up with either a large national level provider or with a local bank or other local provider.

Whether you go national or local, your chosen credit card processor will get you both the hardware and the software you need to take credit cards.

The big three national processors that you may want to look into are, National Bankcard, Merchant Warehouse and Flagship Merchant Services.  National services will offer you a host of choices and options that may make them attractive.  They will also have 24/7 customer support.  Their fees are fixed and rigid however, ranging from 1.6% to 2.2% on average.

Choosing a local bank or other provider will give you face-to-face time with your provider, more hands on applications and flexible rates.  They may or may not, however, have 24/7 customer support.


Mobile Swipe Applications

The Mobile Swipe Application is the latest technology.  It allows you to accept credit cards through your mobile device such as your iPhone, iPad or Android.  This technology gives you mobility, allowing you to acceptcredit cards while you are travelling, say at a fair or trade show.

There are any number of companies now competing for your business with mobile swipe applications.  Here are some options.


Authorize.net

Authorize.net offers great customer support, a Free Mobile App, Verified Merchant Seal and a Free Virtual Terminal.

authorize_payment_processing

 


Flint

flint_card_scan

  • No need for a card reader, cellphone camera is used
  • No start-up costs, cancellation fees or long term contracts
  • 1.95% for debit and 2.95% Credit(Visa and Mastercard Only)
  • Fully encrypted feds for your customers security

 


 

intuit accept credit cards small businessInuit

The makers of great accounting software offer:

  • Free card reader
  • No start-up, long term or cancelation fees
  • Fees of 1.7% for swipes and 2.7% for keyed in transactions
  • Fully encrypted feds for your customers security
  • Integrates directly with their software

 


Online Payment Services

If your business is all or even partly online you can use a service dedicated to internet payments.  You can choose between PayPal, Google Checkout and Amazon.  You can get the software to set these services up at their respective web sites.

PayPal started online payment processing.  PayPal charges 2.2% to 2.9% and $0.30 per transaction.  They charge less to non-profits. They also charge 1% for international transactions and a 2.5% currency conversion fee.  They offer 24/7/365 phone support.

Google Checkout offers email support only.  They charge 1.9% to 2.9% plus $0.30 per transaction and 1% extra for international transactions.

Amazon Payments charges 1.9% to 2.9% plus $0.30 per transaction and 1% for international transactions.  They also offer 24/7/365 phone support.