April 2012

Debit Card Merchant Accounts

Debit card merchant accounts are the answer for those merchants who experience too many chargebacks.

If you’ve been in business for any amount of time, but especially in recent times, you know the value – and the necessity – of being able to accept all sorts of payments from your customers. While you may understand the vital need for merchant accounts, and the hardware, software, and service needed to maintain it all, imagine being your patron for a moment. Let’s discuss a scenario where a debit card merchant account would be useful.

If you went to a store and saw something you liked, arrived at checkout, and saw a sign saying Sorry, But We Cannot Take Cards Now, and you have nothing but your favorite credit cards, what would you do? Aside from the inconvenience of looking for an ATM from which to withdraw cash, you might just walk away. Not only did you not get what you wanted, but the merchant lost the sale, too. This is where the quality and reliability of debit card merchant account providers comes into play. Let’s learn more about how debit card merchant accounts, in particular, are beneficial to merchants of all kinds, and how you can experience the advantages of a debit card merchant account firsthand.

In some scenarios, debit card merchant accounts are a necessity. Today, patrons are increasingly benefiting from the convenience offered by debit card transactions, and merchants enjoy their debit card merchant accounts; after all, they’re getting cash, so they needn’t worry about failed authorizations and other related issues. Wise debit card merchant account providers have also recognized the value of debit transactions, partnering with debit networks to manage such transactions, and provide debit card merchant accounts to successful merchants everywhere.

Debit and check debit cards function similarly to credit cards, but they’re issued by the cardholder’s bank or credit union, and they offer straightforward access to your consumers’ checking accounts. Frequently, ATM cards (typically thought of as just a way to acquire cash from an automated teller) also function just like debit cards, reducing the likelihood of a debit transaction experiencing any chargeback, because funds are withdrawn directly from your patrons’ checking accounts.

If you are currently already processing credit cards for your transactions, you will typically be able to integrate a PIN pad seamlessly into your point-of-sale (POS) terminal to accept debit immediately. With a debit card merchant account, you can save money when your customers use your PIN pad for all debit card transactions. Further, your customers will enjoy the convenience of being able to acquire cash back with their purchases.

The last – and perhaps the most important – benefit of operating with a debit card merchant account is that there are no chargeback fees ever, because chargebacks aren’t possible.

Credit Card Payment Processing Today

Running a business of your own can teach you a thing or two – or maybe that’s a huge understatement. In your experiences working hard to get your company off the ground and headed toward success, you’ve likely learned a few painful – and pleasant – lessons along the way. One thing you are probably quite certain of, however, is that without credit card payment processing, you’d be up the proverbial river without a metaphorical paddle.

Credit card payment processing enables businesses of all varieties to take credit, debit, and other forms of electronic payments from their patrons, opening up a world of options for the consumer, thereby creating more entrepreneurial opportunity for those who run businesses. From standard stationary credit card terminals to mobile smartphone processing, and from cashback convenience to Internet stores and the ecommerce solutions that power them, Vision Payment Solutions provides top-of-the-line credit card payment processing hardware, software, and customer support for merchants of nearly every industry.

When you’ve been in business long enough, you gradually begin to accrue the valuable experience needed to fully understand all the ins and outs of credit card payment processing – the payment structure, the daily routine, and the many benefits of saying yes to the customers who present you with their preferred form of payment. While you initially may have had some doubt about dealing with the hassle of credit card payment processing, it’s no surprise now that you wonder how you could have made your way in the business world without it.

Today, having been gradually tweaked and perfected over the years, credit card payment processing is the cornerstone of any successful enterprise – and with so many different options available, your company can quickly and easily find the perfect, custom-tailored credit card payment processing solution to fit the individual needs of your business, no matter your sales volume, average ticket, or type of goods and services provided.

When selecting credit card payment processing options, whether you’re brand new to the process or if you simply would like to renew your existing processing solution, it’s important to always exhibit caution and care. Vision Payment Solutions adheres to the strictest regulations regarding the safety of our merchants’ private, sensitive financial information, and protects their customers from the unnecessary and often discouraging possibility of credit card payment processing fraud, be it identity theft or any trouble related to the disclosure of card information.

If you haven’t yet secured a safe, reliable, and quality credit card payment processing partner yet in your quest for business glory, choose Vision Payment Solutions; we’ve got the brains, brawn, and tools you need to succeed.

All About Ecommerce Merchant Accounts

While a new concept to some, an ecommerce merchant account isn’t too difficult to understand, although there are many processes that are required to facilitate such payment processing online. Without an ecommerce merchant account, an online business owner would be unable to accept card payments from patrons. Let’s explore why ecommerce merchant accounts are important, and whether they fit you.

When you apply for an ecommerce merchant account, you’ll be asked to provide your average order amount, and your typical monthly amount expected to be processed. Additionally, you could be required to reserve a certain percentage, as insurance against fraud. Inform your ecommerce merchant account provider of changes.

As well as obtaining an ecommerce merchant account for processing online transactions, merchants also must have order forms on their sites, built by any competent web design firm. Further, you need processing software for managing exchanges between you and your ecommerce merchant account provider.

After you’ve established an ecommerce merchant account with a reputable provider, daily card sales are deposited into the account, minus service fees. Some organizations even perform merchant services, from customer support, billing, and authorization, to reporting and settlement.

There are fundamentally two kinds of card authorization, batching and real time. Batching, typically for merchants with less sales volume, is performed offline, manually. When consumers order via online forms, the forms are processed manually. Because fraud is more of an issue online, and because the little guys are less able to suffer fraud, they should consider batching payments before selecting real-time processing.

  • Online retailers must additionally consider fees involved with ecommerce merchant accounts, and decide which will work with them, and which will damage their business. Merchants should carefully assess whether such fees will nullify the profits they’ll gain. Some common fees involving ecommerce merchant accounts include:
  • Installation: These costs include equipment, software, start-up, and programming.
  • Discount Rate: The percentage of card sales that your provider charges for transaction settlements, determined by average order size. A larger order mandates a smaller discount rate, up to 3%.
  • Chargebacks: These are charged when disputes are settled favoring the cardholder. As well as losing the sale, you can lose up to $50.
  • Per-Transaction: The amount that your financial institution pays consumers’ financial intuitions for each settled transaction. So, if you’re selling many low-cost goods, it’s wisest to choose those ecommerce merchant account providers with the lowest rates.
  • Monthly Fees: These include minimum fees, statements, and excessive use.

While the service and fees of ecommerce merchant account providers vary, use caution when you apply, and consider the above issues during the entire process. With a little luck, you’ll be operating with an ecommerce merchant account in no time… and successfully, too!

The Fundamentals of Virtual Terminal Credit Cards Processing

Welcome to Vision Payment Solutions’ continuing blog series on payment processing and related industry topics! Today, we’ll be introducing readers to the basics of virtual terminal credit cards processing, and talking about many of the benefits involved.

If you know anything about your typical credit card terminal, then you are likely familiar with virtual terminal credit cards processing, as well. While the regular card terminal is used daily around the world in retail shops, malls, hotels, and more, the virtual terminal is a digital version – to be used online. Before we address the fundamental aspects of virtual terminal credit cards processing, let’s explore virtual transactions further, and examine some of its advantages.

  • As a merchant, having a virtual terminal can tap your largest possible demographic: customers across the globe. With the implementation of virtual terminal credit cards processing, your customers can easily access services or products you offer, and make payments online securely and reliably.
  • An additional benefit of virtual terminal credit cards processing is easily refunded money. Should you accept orders via phone or fax, you can manually key in your customers’ card information into the terminal, from anywhere. All you need is the correct login information.
  • The monthly fee for virtual terminal credit cards processing is relatively quite low.
  • With virtual terminal credit cards processing, your business is enabled to accept debit, credit, and gift cards.

Virtual terminal credit cards processing will expand your market share to a worldwide audience. Further, the processing system can easily be upgraded should your business expand. With the proper use of virtual terminals, you will likely experience a significant boost in revenue, as your customer base grows.

Additionally, virtual terminal credit cards processing and its requirements are inexpensive compared to some of the card terminals on the market today. Some companies offer leasing options for essential merchant services, as well, so be on the look out for that kind of setup for virtual terminal credit cards processing.

Further, the entire system is completely portable, and therefore, totally mobile, meaning you can accept payments any time, anywhere. All that’s needed is your buyer’s card information.

Virtual terminal credit cards processing enhances your service quality, and facilitates smoother, easier transactions, making both you and your customers happier than ever. As a result, your customer loyalty is improved, and – with a little luck – so are your profits. When you experience the notable benefits of virtual terminal credit cards processing in the real-world application of such technology, you’ll wonder how you ever did without it!

Credit Card Processing and Merchant Accounts for Beginners

It’s time again for our continuing blog series on payment-processing solutions, brought to you by Vision Payment Solutions, a leader in the financial services industry and a provider of the best credit card processing and merchant accounts on the market. In this issue, we’ll be introducing readers to credit card processing and merchant accounts, and discussing their nature, purpose, and advantages involved.

Merchant Accounts

Before we introduce card processing and the steps in a typical transaction, you should understand merchant accounts, and how credit card processing and merchant accounts are intertwined.

A merchant account is a specialized account – much like a checking or savings account – designed specifically to enable a business to accept credit cards; a merchant account is issued by a financial institution, like a bank or an ISO (Independent Sales Organization), which has the authority to declare an organization as a business ready to accept, process, and manage its customers’ electronic payments, including debit, credit, gift, and other types of cards.

So, in order to accept payment from your card-carrying clientele or customer base, you must first establish a merchant account; such is the relationship between credit card processing and merchant accounts.

Credit Card Processing: Step by Step

Credit card processing typically exhibits a similar pattern of execution, whether the payment is issued face-to-face, by phone, or online.  While certain credit card processing and merchant accounts’ specifics vary, the fundamentals involved rarely differ.

Card processing can be divided into two separate activities – authorization of the card, and payment settlement:

Authorization

1. A customer presents their credit card to purchase goods or services; their information is entered into a terminal, and submitted to the merchant’s payment processor.

2. The merchant’s processor then requests card authorization from the card issuer (Visa, MasterCard, etc.), who then responds with approval or decline to the merchant bank.

3. The merchant bank forwards this response to the merchant, and the transaction is processed if approved.

Clearing and Settlement

1. The transaction funds are deposited into the merchant bank, the merchant account is credited, and the credit card processor receives record of the transaction.

2. The processing system pays the merchant bank, debits the customer’s account, and forwards the transaction to the card issuer.

3. The issuer updates the customer’s account and bills him or her for payment.

4. Ideally, the customer receives their monthly card statement and “coughs it up,” so to speak, paying the card issuer the original transaction amount.

Blackberry Processing For Busy Merchants On The Go

Welcome back to Vision Payment Solutions’ blog series on payment processing and significant topics in the payment-processing industry. In today’s installment, we’ll be talking about one of our merchants’ very favorite ways of accepting their customers’ and clients’ credit card payments on the go: Blackberry processing.

Blackberry processing of credit and debit card payments is now simpler and easier than ever. With VPS, you know you’re getting the highest quality service and equipment at a reasonable cost, and with our Blackberry processing solution for you mobile merchants out there, the same holds true. Whether you’re working a tradeshow or a convention, or you’re a contractor who builds in more remote areas, Blackberry processing will enable your business to accept, process, and manage your clients’ and customers’ debit and credit transactions quickly, easily, and most importantly, securely.

If you’ve been a client of Vision Payment Solutions in the past, just signed on or renewed a contract with us, or planned on starting up a new mobile entrepreneurial endeavor soon, you can depend on VPS to provide the same quality service and support we have always provided our merchants, with our Blackberry processing solution.

In essence, Blackberry processing merely requires your customers’ credit card information, a credit card swiper add-on (depending on your customized solution), and a simple, intuitive Blackberry processing app that takes care of all the work for you. With Blackberry processing, you have the ability to accept payments anywhere there’s a connection to the Internet, and best of all, your customers will be extremely impressed with your mobile, sleek, and professional new method of taking their payments whenever and wherever needed; Blackberry processing provides an additional flair for professionalism and style.

Further, our Blackberry processing solution comes with all the best features of a Vision Payment Solutions processing contract: world-class customer service and support, affordable rates, and likely the most important feature, the security and peace of mind that comes with PCI compliance and top-of-the-line security – you know your customers’ sensitive information is protected from theft, fraud, or other intrusive activities.

If you would like to learn more about the hardware, software, and service involved in our Blackberry processing solution, you can call Vision Payment Solutions today at the number above to speak with a friendly representative, who can arrange the ideal, custom-tailored Blackberry processing solution for your individual business needs. Additionally, you can visit our mobile processing solutions page for more specific technical data on the Blackberry processing we provide.

Blackberry Processing For Busy Merchants On The Go

Welcome back to Vision Payment Solutions’ blog series on payment processing and significant topics in the payment-processing industry. In today’s installment, we’ll be talking about one of our merchants’ very favorite ways of accepting their customers’ and clients’ credit card payments on the go: Blackberry processing.

Blackberry processing of credit and debit card payments is now simpler and easier than ever. With VPS, you know you’re getting the highest quality service and equipment at a reasonable cost, and with our Blackberry processing solution for you mobile merchants out there, the same holds true. Whether you’re working a tradeshow or a convention, or you’re a contractor who builds in more remote areas, Blackberry processing will enable your business to accept, process, and manage your clients’ and customers’ debit and credit transactions quickly, easily, and most importantly, securely.

If you’ve been a client of Vision Payment Solutions in the past, just signed on or renewed a contract with us, or planned on starting up a new mobile entrepreneurial endeavor soon, you can depend on VPS to provide the same quality service and support we have always provided our merchants, with our Blackberry processing solution.

In essence, Blackberry processing merely requires your customers’ credit card information, a credit card swiper add-on (depending on your customized solution), and a simple, intuitive Blackberry processing app that takes care of all the work for you. With Blackberry processing, you have the ability to accept payments anywhere there’s a connection to the Internet, and best of all, your customers will be extremely impressed with your mobile, sleek, and professional new method of taking their payments whenever and wherever needed; Blackberry processing provides an additional flair for professionalism and style.

Further, our Blackberry processing solution comes with all the best features of a Vision Payment Solutions processing contract: world-class customer service and support, affordable rates, and likely the most important feature, the security and peace of mind that comes with PCI compliance and top-of-the-line security – you know your customers’ sensitive information is protected from theft, fraud, or other intrusive activities.

If you would like to learn more about the hardware, software, and service involved in our Blackberry processing solution, you can call Vision Payment Solutions today at the number above to speak with a friendly representative, who can arrange the ideal, custom-tailored Blackberry processing solution for your individual business needs. Additionally, you can visit our mobile processing solutions page for more specific technical data on the Blackberry processing we provide.

How Internet Merchant Accounts Enable Online Transactions

Have you ever wondered just how your customers’ funds end up in your Internet merchant account? Today, we’ll outline the Internet merchant account process, and how your transactions are approved, processed, and deposited into your Internet merchant account

An important distinction to make is the difference between a payment gateway account and an Internet merchant account; they differ in purpose, but work together to facilitate the process.

A payment gateway is an e-commerce service application that authorizes payments for both online and brick-and-mortar businesses, much like a traditional POS terminal found in most stores. Payment gateways protect credit card details by encrypting sensitive information, such as credit card numbers, to pass the data securely among customer, merchant, and payment processor.

An Internet merchant account is a type of merchant account especially formulated to manage online credit card processing. A notable difference between an Internet merchant account and a typical merchant account is the fees involved; understandably, the fees for an Internet merchant account are noticeably higher, due to the obviously higher risk of online payment. So what are some of the methods by which both Internet merchant accounts and payments gateways interact to provide comprehensive online payment-processing solutions to merchants and their customers everywhere? Let’s take a look at the inner workings of an Internet merchant account in action:

The first step is when a consumer orders a product from a merchant’s web store, preferably with a verified, secure connection.

Next, a shopping cart on the merchant’s site gathers and compiles the order to be transmitted to a payment-processing company.

Third, the shopping cart transmits this data to the payment gateway, which is part of the processing company. The credit card processor determines which company manages the customer’s credit card, and transmits a request to charge the card.

Fourth, the client’s card company validates his account, then acknowledges to the card processor that the amount requested is available can be transferred.

Fifth, the card processor tells the shopping cart program whether the transaction was successful or not. The processor transfers the funds to the Internet merchant account provider for deposition into the Internet merchant account.

Last, the internet merchant accounts collect the funds and make transfers to the merchant’s checking account; the credit card processing transaction is complete.

This is how an Internet merchant account fits into the entire process of transactions and credit card processing; it may have a lot of steps, but all this takes just seconds to complete, and having an Internet merchant account is the first step in establishing an online business.

Become A Blackberry Merchant Today!

Have you ever thought of becoming a Blackberry merchant? Would you love to be able to accept your customers’ credit card payments on your Blackberry? Do you need to swipe credit cards on your Blackberry when you work remotely or deliver a product or services? Do you sell goods at conventions or fairs? Then it’s time to become a Blackberry merchant now, with the help of Vision Payment Solutions. You can easily and quickly turn your Blackberry into a payment-processing solution with help of VPS, among the most reputable payment companies in the industry.

If you need the ability to accept your customers’ electronic payments at any time and place, and you have a business Blackberry, then it’s time to become a Blackberry merchant. Vision Payment Solutions will supply your business with all the needed equipment and technical support for transforming your Blackberry into a point-of-sale terminal, enabling your company to take credit card payments at any location or time of day.

When you make the choice to become a Blackberry merchant with VPS, you’ll enjoy low rates, quick and reliable payment processing, and a convenient, superior mobile processing solution for your business and your customers.

Blackberry merchants of all sizes, shapes, and niches have experienced firsthand the advantages of credit card processing on their Blackberry phones. Mobile card readers, designed specifically for your Blackberry phone, can make your transactions quick, easy, and secure; simply attach the card reader to your Blackberry, and swipe your customers’ credit cards.

Further, every Blackberry merchant’s transaction is securely encrypted and complies with all the most recent – and most essential – security standards, so there’s no need to worry about the exposure of sensitive financial data. And, best of all, should you decide to switch carriers, you simply re-install the card-processing application on your phone, and attach the reader for complete compatibility.

Increase the performance of your business by accepting payments from your customers on your Blackberry. Maximize your sales by taking payments 24/7, whether you’re in Brisbane or Albany. VPS’ Blackberry merchant solution enables your team to quickly process credit cards either by swiping your customer’s card or by manually keying in their information, to email receipts, and to display and analyze your sales stats in our user-friendly customer portal, customized to satisfy even our most discriminating Blackberry merchants!

If you would like to know more about becoming a Blackberry merchant, or about any of our other payment-processing solutions, contact Vision Payment Solutions today!

Credit Card Processing Systems 101

Everything that happens with credit card processing systems in order for your transactions to take place may only take a split second, but it’s important to know the basics of credit card processing systems – especially if you’re a merchant or business owner. Let’s run through the processes of credit card processing systems in more detail, from the perspective of the customer; this will help you to understand, as a merchant, what credit card processing systems do to facilitate the sales that power your business.

The first step in any credit card processing systems is the card swipe. You swipe your credit or debit card through the payment terminal, which communicates with the merchant bank to determine whether you have the funds necessary to cover the transaction. The merchant bank then contacts your card network for authorization of the purchase, which then contacts the credit card issuer to ensure the card’s validity. The card issuer returns an authorization code for the sale. The merchant’s bank then approves your purchase, issues you a receipt, and you’re out the door.

After this all happens, your credit card has only been authorized for the payment – but not technically charged. If you access your card history online right after a purchase, the payment likely hasn’t even been posted. Some card issuers have reporting systems that display authorized transactions but more than likely, you might not get the charge for several business days.

At the end of his business day, a merchant sends all his card transactions for that day to his bank, which then transmits that data to the proper payment network for official processing.

The credit card network informs each issuer of payments due. A card issuer typically retains an interchange fee, according to its agreement with the merchant. Card issuers divide the interchange fee amongst the credit card networks with whom they conduct business.

The credit card network then transmits payment to the merchant bank – while of course collecting its own fee – and deposits the funds from the customers’ credit card charges into the merchant’s account. These are the basic principles of credit card processing systems today; of course, as in any such technical process, credit card processing systems vary from network to network.

Have any questions about credit card processing systems? Would you like to arrange one of the best credit card processing systems programs around? Then call Vision Payment Solutions today. We can arrange the ideal, customized credit card processing systems for your company, and get your payment processing up and running in no time.