As a business owner, dealing with credit card processing can be challenging, especially when you decide to search for a new credit card processor.

When you start your search, you want to understand how the industry works so you don’t choose the wrong provider for the wrong reasons.

Credit card processing agents aren’t all experts, and some will intentionally deceive you to win your business.

Here are 5 of the top myths of merchant services you’ll likely hear from agents in the payments industry:

“We Lower Your Price By Being A Direct Processor”

90% of the fees you pay every month aren’t controlled by the payment processors, they are set by Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express. The only fee your provider has control over is the profit they earn from transaction, percentage, and monthly fees. These fees vary from provider to provider and being a direct processor doesn’t mean less fees are passed to you as a business owner. In fact, many direct processing agents are employees and have less control over the proposals they design for their business customers.

“We Negotiate Better Rates From Visa & MasterCard”

No processor gets special rates or discounts from Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express. The 90% of your bill that is set by Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express doesn’t vary from provider to provider. All payment processors are required to pay the same fees to the banks that issue credit & debit cards. These fees are referred to as Interchange.

“We Have The Best Payment Security”

The strongest security standards are currently referred to as P2PE, a form of encryption that encrypts your transactions when your credit or debit card is swiped, keyed, or dipped. You can determine if your current company provides PCI-Validated solutions on the PCI Security Standard Council’s website.

“We Do Your PCI Compliance For You”

PCI Compliance consists of 12 requirements that include your annual questionnaire, network testing, and a security awareness program to name a few. Unless the processor has taken on the responsibility of educating your entire staff on payment security guidelines, configuring your network, scanning the network, updating all the passwords for your office technology, and keeping an updated diagram of your network, they aren’t doing your PCI for you. The best way to reduce these PCI burdens is to use a PCI-Validated P2PE solution as previously mentioned.

“We Will Let You Process Payments For 0%”

Due to a legislation passed in 2013, you now have the right, in most states, to add a fee to credit card transactions. If you are an education or government institution, you can add a fee to a debit or a credit card. While this can get you 0% if you’re an education or government agency, it’s technically illegal for a business in any other category. It also doesn’t address the potential loss of business or negative sentiment you may experience when to add a 4% fee to your customers’ purchase.

How We Help

Northwest Advisory Group is a merchant service provider that helps businesses eliminate the stress related to managing payment processing. We accomplish that by understanding the needs of our clients and recommending payment solutions that help them reduce costs, save time, and increase revenue.

If you’re interested in learning more about the myths of merchant services, let’s start a conversation.