Choosing the Right Payment Processing Partner

There are more payment processing solutions and merchant service providers today than ever before, which is an excellent thing since business owners each have their payment preferences. Payment preferences differ across technologies, business types, and age groups, and it can be challenging for a business to find the right payment processing solution. If we consider the contracts, training costs, and software or equipment associated with changing payment service providers, you don’t want to make the wrong choice.

Therefore, one of the most important steps in choosing a business payment processing partner involves assessing your business goals to determine what types of payment options your business wants to offer. Let’s evaluate potential payment processing partners for new business owners who are getting started on offering their customers more payment options.

The Basics of Choosing the Right Payment Processing Partner

There are various ways of accepting credit card payments, including:

  • Credit and debit cards
  • Check
  • Cash
  • Bank/ACH payments
  • Contactless payment (e.g., Apple Pay or Google Pay)

When choosing your business’s payment processor, the first step is determining what types of payment your business wants to accept. The more types of payment you’re able to accept, the more customers you will be able to accommodate. It’s also critical that the point-of-sale (POS) system integrates with your payment processor because it enables you to keep track of payments and reports more easily. For example, if you are a restaurant owner, you need robust POS software to help you process payments simultaneously and keep track of each table’s payment status.

Can They Support My Business?

To find the right credit card processing partner, you need to start by looking internally – think about how your organization operates and where you would like to take it in the future. Do you run a brick-and-mortar shop or an eCommerce site? Do you plan to expand your brick-and-mortar business by starting an online store? Do you sell on-the-go? What is your industry? How much transaction volume do you expect to process? Answering these questions will help you determine whether your business is considered high risk. That can affect your choice of credit card processors as well as your rates.

Another factor to think about is how you are going to accept credit cards. Do your customers want to pay online, over the phone, via mobile, or in-store? If you’re selling goods and services on-the-go, you’ll have to think about equipment – will you need tools for mobile acceptance (card reader and mobile app), an integrated POS system, or a simple credit card terminal?

What Kind of Customer Service Will You Get?

To ensure the success of your business and have peace of mind, it’s essential to trust the customer service you will receive from your payments processing partner. As billions of in-store and online transactions are processed safely, quickly, and easily every day, payment processing is very reliable. But there is no such thing as a completely stable system, and there are times when you might experience unexpected interruptions. And in those moments, knowing that you can rely on your payment processor’s customer support will instill a sense of security and certainty. When looking for a credit card processing company, make sure they offer 24/7 access to technical support. Look for a company that has a team ready to help when you need them, as well as extensive instruction resources that are easy to understand.

How Much Will It Cost You?

Depending on the type of business you run, your total spend, and your transaction volume, payment processing companies offer a variety of cost and fee structures. First and foremost, there will be an interchange fee (fixed fee associated with transaction processing) where the card brand’s network sets rates.

Next, there may be flat credit card processing fees, monthly maintenance fees, incidental fees, per transaction fees, and other fees for regulatory compliance and equipment. Also, fee structures vary based on whether you are processing transactions online (card not present) or in-person (card present). Be sure to take your time to understand the total cost of credit card payment processing, and remember that choosing the least expensive services is not always the best choice in the long-term. When going for low-cost services, there are always risks and trade-offs that you should know about and factor into your decision.

Fraud Prevention and Security

Most payment processors provide fully-integrated fraud-fighting and data security solutions because they’re positioned to help defend your organization against fraud. For example, when accepting in-store payments, you’ll need the latest technologies for secure payment acceptance, such as NFC contactless technology (for mobile wallets) and EMV chip cards.

Prevention and detection services are a must for eCommerce websites because of the ever-increasing eCommerce fraudulent activities. Today, leading card processors function as a one-stop-shop to coordinate all the activities because eCommerce security is most often deployed in overlapping layers by multiple payment providers.

What Equipment Do You Need?

What equipment you will need depends on your customers’ payment preferences and your type of business. There is a combination of equipment that’s right for every business, from simple POS terminals to the modern in app-based payments.

Credit card terminals

These devices are easy to use, efficient, reliable, and familiar. They connect consumers and businesses to the payment networks that process credit and debit card transactions. They are also easy to maintain, inexpensive, and safe. But if you run a growing business, you may need more flexibility and options that these devices can offer.

Mobile payment acceptance

Since payments now take place everywhere, mobile payment acceptance is gaining momentum. This option makes sense for consumers who rely on their smartphones and is increasingly used both on-the-go and in-store. Most mobile systems can accept payments with just a smartphone. Mobile card readers are attached to smartphones to create a mobile POS, which allows you to accept payments anywhere.

Integrated POS systems

With payment software built into your POS terminal, you can take your payment acceptance to another level. These integrated POS systems combine your critical business operation software with the latest in payment acceptance. Such systems are used by millions of retail outlets, hotels, and restaurants worldwide and can fit every type of business. They are flexible enough to grow as quickly as your business, meaning that they work the way you do.

Ease of Use

To maximize the ease of use of your payment processing, you should look for an all-in-one payment processor and POS system. If there’s no need to acquire separate systems, then it will be even easier to keep all your transaction data in one place. There will be less room for errors, and you’ll have an easier time training your employees to use the system. In turn, that will lead to satisfied and happier customers.

Make the Right Decision

For today’s businesses, credit card processing is essential. But when it comes to the quality of value-added services they offer, credit card processing companies vary widely. Be sure to look to the long-term, even beyond credit or debit card acceptance. Will your credit card processing partner be able to support your business and help it grow? Be sure to check your credit card processing partner’s track record of providing services to organizations like yoursand the right one is the one that demonstrated the ability to grow.

Finding the right payment processing partner doesn’t have to be so challenging, and it won’t be if you do the right amount of research before making a choice. It’s up to you to choose the provider that best aligns with your current and future business goals. Your payment processor will be responsible for your business’ money influx, which is why it should be treated with the same regard as your employees.

These are all factors you must consider when choosing a payment technology and a payment processing partner. Once you choose the right payment solutions provider to work with, you will ensure that you’ll provide a top-notch customer experience that your customers will want to repeat.

POS solutions that Bonita Payments has to offer can be designed to fit your business needs and help your business grow. Whether you need portable payment methods or stationary POS terminals, we can work together to create a payment system that will support your business strategy. Feel free to contact us for more information.

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