watch out for the hidden charges like annual fees, monthly minimums, and statement fees. these can add up and vary widely from company to company.
Most merchant service providers charge statement fees of $10 a month or less. The other two charges are mostly a non-issue. Almost any business that is actually doing business will reach their monthly minimum, and it`s easy to find a merchant account provider that doesn`t charge annual fees. Most of them don`t.
Be very careful when you look at the
contracts. IMO, sometimes these places are just a step away from
organized crime. One processor I looked at required a $200
cancellation fee forever.
A $200 cancellation fee charged no matter how long you have had your account is indeed a bad practice. However there is some justification for a cancellation fee. A merchant`s application has to be handled by several people in the merchant account provider`s business. The expense it takes to get a merchant on board and processing credit cards isn`t recovered for a long time.
Another thing to watch for is the Free Terminal offer. Often times, you get really bad terms from these providers. And, if you cancel, they will want the terminal back "in original condition" or they will just debit your account for whatever they say the terminal was worth.
However, ScrapBizKim is definitely correct in that you need to read your contract carefully. Merchant accounts are a sales oriented industry and there does seem to be a lot of disreputable `service` providers out there.
MerchantProf2/27/2009 5:04 PM
Payment services with absolute integrity, and respect for merchants.
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