Here is a list of critical questions when it comes to picking a credit card processor/merchant services company with Cloud Retailer (or any solution for that matter).
1. If a transaction occurs at the POS, how long before you can call the processor and they can see it?
Many companies are only resellers for another company - for example, Wells Fargo can resell many payments processing services. The problem is that in these cases it can often turn out that when you call, they can't tell you much about your transactions for 24+ hours since the data has to transfer from the REAL processor to their computers. As a result, you may have a problem with a transaction and nobody there that can tell you what's going on. We strongly... strongly urge you to stay away from these types of situations. Ask if they will be able to see and make modifications to transactions that have recently gone through your system (within 5 minutes or less).
2. Be sure to carefully look at the details of your merchant services agreement. A reputable merchant services company will not require hidden fees (eg: statement fees, online access fees, etc.), requirement payment for early termination, or lock you in to a contract.
3. Are they compatible with PAX payment terminals and can you use "Point to Point Encryption" with no additional fee?
Here are the payment processing services we are compatible with:
- North American Bancard (NAB) - will allow P2PE with no cost. RITE Preferred processor - talk to one of our sales or billing team members for more information on other benefits of choosing NAB!
- TSYS - will allow P2PE with no cost
- Heartland Payment Systems - will allow P2PE with no cost
- First Data - will allow P2PE BUT with additional cost.
We DO NOT allow mixing of "front ends" and "back ends" - for example; using TSYS as a payment processing front end for WorldPay. This is not supported and has been known to create issues for the retailer.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: If I'm changing from one processor to another can I reuse the equipment?
- Do you own the hardware? If it was provided to the merchant as a part of their credit card processing agreement, they may not own the device.
- You will likely need to send the units somewhere to have them re-encrypted for debit AND/OR for general security. This can take days or weeks depending on the processor and shipping times. On this basis, many processors will "trade" your device for an encrypted unit so you don't have downtime.
- You will need whoever has control of the terminal on "BroadPOS" to release the unit so that the new processor can take control over it and reprogram it. All passwords and configuration are controlled by the existing processor. Very often, as they do not like to lose the business, the old processor can be a challenge to deal with during this process. This is why, here again, we'd encourage people to work with a processor that will swap the terminals out.
- First Data, specifically, often wants us to control the payment terminals and configure them.
Q: What is the cost to switch?
A: If the payment processor can manage the change on their own, nothing. If they cannot - meaning
a) You'd like or need us to oversee the redeployment OR
b) They attempt it and there are follow up issues or questions
The cost is $90 per payment terminal to switch. We often see payment processors willing to cover this cost to earn your business. Note that this does not include potential increased monthly costs as well as hardware costs. We strongly recommend adding up these costs before switching. For example, if you have two payment terminals, the re-programming cost would be $180. You may also have hardware costs for new payment terminals of $250 to $600 per terminal, encryption fees of $30 to $40 per terminal, and a potential increase of $15 or more per terminal per month from RITE depending on which company you are using for processing/merchant services. Are you saving enough to cover these costs?
We have significant experience and a solid process that enables us to swap processors efficiently and with low risk to the merchant (AKA: you'll make sure you get your money).
First Data has higher management overhead for our team and therefore, there is an ongoing cost of $15 per month per payment terminal for us to support the First Data Integration ongoing.
The payment terminals themselves should be provided by the payment processor - as they have direct access to the companies required to encrypt the devices. Some processors charge a price for the terminals, rent them, etc.
If you would like attempt a swap of a payment terminal yourself here are instructions on how to do so:
Q: What platform do you process with through First Data
A: Rapid Connect via Nashville. TIDs need to be registered with Datawire.
Q: What model payment terminals do you support?
If after considering all of the above, you are changing your processor
There is some technical work we will have to schedule with you for your Card Defender credit card integration to switch your processing - what we refer to as a "VAR change". To get started, work with your new processor to complete this form and one of our team will work with you to schedule: