3 Factors in Choosing an ECommerce Merchant Account
Selling your product online has exploded in recent years due to the convenience factor for your customers and the expanded opportunities for your business. Today’s ecommerce solutions work so well that many are unaware of the complexity of the systems. Being able to accept credit cards is not a simple task and this is where merchant account providers enter the scene. They provide the infrastructure required to allow you, the business owner, to accept electronic payment.
Along with a merchant account provider a middle man, known as a payment gateway, is required in order. The payment gateway over sees the transaction between customer and merchant by providing the necessary encryption to insure a secure transaction. This process handles the payment information from the customer to the merchant accounts and banks involved in the transaction.
So what are the characteristics of required from an eCommerce merchant account provider?
First and foremost they should have a good reputation. Proven integrity when dealing with such sensitive transactions is a must for everyone’s peace of mind. They should also provide proof of their full compliance to the regulatory rules affecting their business.
The second aspect to consider is the merchant account providers technical support. With the internet being open 24 hours a day, 24 hour technical support is a must whether it is on the phone or over the net. Qualified technicians should be available at anytime to troubleshoot problems and address them promptly. Poor tech support could result in loss of sales as well as your reputation.
The final consideration is cost. Along with the merchant account monthly fee there may well be other fees that will be assessed such as interchange fees, transaction fees, hosting fees, web site maintenance and design and other start up costs. Be sure your are comparing apples to apples when weighing one merchant account provider against another.
Although generally safe, being an online merchant is not without some risks. Probably the most frequent scam found online is fraud. Hackers may find a weak point in the system and steal customer information or otherwise cause havoc. Hackers are not the only ones to commit fraud though, some of it can be found from your customers. Whether it be claims of improper shipping or claiming that they never received the product or incorrect billing fraud is abundant in today’s world.
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