Internet Merchant Accounts, Essential to My Online Business?
Do I really need an Internet Merchant Account?
If you want to do business online, first of all you will need a web hosting company. A web business normally includes product catalogs, a shopping cart, and payment processing. Unlike other ecommerce needs, payment processing is normally not included with ecommerce web hosting. You will need to use the services of a credit card processing company to provide you with an Internet merchant account that allows buyers to use their credit cards to pay online for the goods or services you are offering.
I already have a Retail Account, isn’t that enough?
More and more people are using their credit cards online so this means an extra source of revenue for retail businesses already established. An Internet merchant account is a financial tool specially design to process transactions on the Internet. Even if you have other types of processing solutions, your online shop requires one of these to take credit cards on your web site. In short: If you want to sell on the Internet and compete for the online market, your will need to accept credit cards. To accept credit cards, you need to get an Internet merchant account.
How do Internet Merchant Accounts work?
Once an online business owner (also known as an Internet merchant or web merchant) signs up with a provider (Internet credit card processor), it collects the credit or debit card details through an online payment form which is typically hosted on the processor’s secure servers. This form sends data over to the processor’s payment gateway (credit card processing software) so it will send back a “success” or “decline” message. Funds are taken from a cardholder’s bank account and deposited in the merchant account and then wired to the merchant’s business bank account. In other words, Internet merchant accounts are like safety boxes where the credit card processor keeps the money it gets from credit card companies before deducting its processing fees and sending the payment to the corresponding online merchant.
How do I choose the right Internet Merchant Account Provider?
There are three key factors to consider when looking for the right ecommerce processing company:
1) Solid experience: The needs for online businesses are different from others. These are consider high risk accounts because the cardholder is not present in front of the seller. You want a provider that has the experience to help you deal with possible fraud and help you run your ecommerce business successfully.
2) Expert support: A knowledgeable & easily accessible technical staff, able to promptly resolve minor and major problems, can make the difference between making sales or losing valuable online clients.
3) Top customer service: You need processing experts who are courteous and prompt in dealing with your own questions and concerns.
Are Internet Merchant Accounts expensive?
Because the risk involved is higher than face-to-face transactions, these have higher rates than retail accounts. Fortunately, because of increased competition in the past years, many fees and costs have been significantly reduced. Now is the best time to get an affordable merchant account for your online business.