Shopping Around: Merchant Account Comparisons

As times change, all sorts of new technologies and practices emerge, no matter your industry or field of interest, and the more we grow, the more choices we must make everyday. One of the harder kinds of choices out there is finding the right service for your business; after all, your business is your livelihood, and as such, any entity contracted to service your company should perform admirable, efficient, and generally worthwhile service.

Even more difficult within these types of choices are those that make you select a service that impacts how your patrons pay you: your merchant account. This is why it’s necessary to implement sensible and practical merchant account comparisons when you’re perusing the web for merchant accounts and payment processing services. So, when you’re out there doing your own merchant account comparison among a few seemingly suitable prospective providers, take some of these factors into consideration:


To avoid delay and worry, assess your prospective providers’ application processes in your merchant account comparison. Of course, those service providers with the shortest application processing wait times and those with the least expensive application fees seem most appealing, but weigh this against the other factors, as well, and ask yourself if it’s worth it.

Pricing Structure

In your merchant account comparison, you’ll typically find that most merchant service providers charge for initial set-up and processing, while other fees may vary. Consider your business model and its needs when assessing monthly fees, chargebacks, per-transaction fees, and others in your merchant account comparison.


A vital aspect of a worthwhile merchant account comparison is the providers’ reputations. All industries have both bad apples and good guys, and merchant services are no exception. For your merchant account comparison, read reviews online and ask around for advice.


In your merchant account comparison, you’ll need to compare whatever restrictions your prospective providers might incur on your merchant account – such as limits on your monthly sales volume or limits on the types of products and services you can provide. Many merchant account companies choose not to work with certain industries, due to inherently problematic risks involved.

Contract Terms & Conditions

Contract terms are very important in your merchant account comparison, because some of them may mandate that you stay with them for a given period of time. If, however, you prefer the flexibility of being able to jump ship without some absurdly expensive termination fee, choose the prospective provider that’s more relaxed about the length of time for which you’ll contract. Further, within your merchant account comparison process, read all the fine print. This is where a lot can go wrong – or right – and you might not know about it until it happens.