What is a Merchant Account?
A merchant account is a business cheque account which has been enabled by the bank to accept credit cards. The bank will assess the requirements of the client and provide the appropriate credit card facility. A merchant, or establishment number is allocated to the client and is linked to the business cheque account, thus forming a merchant credit card facility or merchant account.
Can I process credit cards without having the card present?
If your modus operandi dictates that your customers will not be physically present when making a payment to you by credit card, your bank will get you to sign an addendum to the main merchant credit card contract to cover mail order or internet transactions. The bank will then put you in touch with an approved payment gateway provider who will then provide you with the software necessary to process credit cards online.
What about credit card fraud?
Credit cards are notoriously vulnerable to fraud, and this is particularly true when the cardholder is not present. However the bank has put a number of fraud-reducing measures in place. For instance, every credit card transaction needs a positive authorization before the transaction can be processed. Some banks insist that the cardholder register a PIN online which they then uses every time they purchases online.
PayGate Payment Gateway has introduced a number of fraud protection features to their range of card processing products and has succeeded in keeping fraud down to acceptable levels.
What are the requirements to becoming an internet merchant?
The qualifying criteria for a merchant credit card facility differ from bank to bank and the list of requirements is longer when a mail order or internet facility is required. On request PayGate will send you the list of bank requirements to work through and a template of a business plan which simply needs completion. Having been in the payment gateway industry for the past 12 years, PayGate’s help desk is able to offer good advice and assistance in the setup process.
What are the costs involved?
Your bank will charge you a setting-up fee and a percentage of your credit card turnover for your merchant credit card facility. Retail outlets are charged a monthly rental for their credit card terminal. Online merchants will pay a monthly fee to the payment gateway they choose and either a fee per transaction or a small percentage of the value of the transaction.
PayGate’s Payment Gateway is good value for money as their payment solutions comes with many helpful additional features.
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