There are a lot of steps to setting up a business. From seemingly small tasks, such as selecting the name of your business, to bigger jobs like registering and licensing your business, ordering inventory, and of course, finding customers, the early days of business ownership can be a challenging feat. When the time comes for a new business to begin accepting credit card or debit payments, many new business owners feel overwhelmed while trying to navigate this process. The good news though is that with the right payment processing company, setting up your business to accept these payments can be done with very little difficulty and in a matter of just a couple of days.
Obtaining a Merchant Account
Whether or not you open a merchant account depends solely on your preferences. Many small and midsize businesses prefer to use a third-party processor, such as Square or PayPal, to accept credit cards and process recurring payments. However, it’s important to note that while these types of processors appear to charge minimal fees per transaction, they can be more expensive overall than a traditional merchant account if you’re processing a high volume of transactions.
When you’re ready to open a merchant account, it’s best to look for a payment processing company that offers competitive rates and merchant accounts that include features that protect your business’s bottom line. Features to watch for include fraud prevention and chargeback protection. Also be sure to conduct due diligence to ensure the payment processing company has a solid reputation in the industry.
What You Need to Get Started
What you’ll need to set yourself up to accept credit card payments varies a bit depending on the type of business you’re operating. If you own a brick-and-mortar business, you’ll require a proper point-of-sale system that includes software to track sales and payments, as well as a card reader to accept debit and credit cards. If your business is of a smaller-scale, you may also be able to use a virtual payment terminal, which allows you to type credit card numbers into your smartphone or computer to process the payment. Depending on the nature of your business, a virtual terminal may be a more convenient option than a wired terminal.
If you’re accepting payments strictly for an online business, you need to have a website that displays the products or services you’re selling, tracks sales and accept payments. To do this successfully, your website will need to be equipped with a shopping cart, as well as a payment gateway, which securely processes payments.
What to Look for In a Payment Processing Company
When you are ready to open a merchant account for your business, it’s important to find a company that’s trusted and has a solid reputation. Look for one that’s been in the industry for quite some time and has the capability to handle high volumes of payments — even if your business isn’t quite there yet. This is the best way to ensure you have minimal downtime and don’t need to shop around for a different processing company if business picks up.
It’s best to consider your budget when searching for a company, too. If you’re just getting started and don’t have a lot of money to spend on it, it’s absolutely vital that you do the math and consider what is better for your business in the long run.
There are a few other features you may want to consider looking into, as well. This includes:
- Round-the-clock merchant support
- Fraud prevention software
- Chargeback protection
- The ability to accept payments from multiple sources (ACH, pinless debit/credit, e-check)
- Flexible payment solutions such as virtual terminals, mobile payment processing and e-commerce
Other questions to ask payment processing companies include how quickly you’ll receive payouts to your account, what cards you’ll be able to accept, and whether or not they serve businesses within your industry, as many payment processors don’t deal with industries that are associated with higher risks.
How to Apply for a Payment Processing Account
When you’re ready to apply for a merchant account with a company such as PayDiverse, take a moment to ensure that you’ve got all the necessary documentation and information that will be requested from you. In most cases, payment companies will ask for enough information to conduct a thorough credit check on you, the owner of the company, as well as the business if it has a long enough history. Additionally, you’ll require proof of business ownership and any necessary licenses, as well as detailed information about what and how much your business sells.
With PayDiverse, you can complete your application entirely online and in most cases, we’re able to notify you of approval and get you started within just a few days.
Diverse Payment Processing is Smart Processing
Fill out our free and quick merchant account application and let us match you with many banks that want your business.