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Help!! I think I need a new payment processor

Brittany Peirano's Profile

I am working with a payment processing company to process my clients’ payments online. This company, in all of my history working with payment processing companies, has by far the worst customer service I have ever encountered. I have only received one, and I mean one, report in the last six months! Being a CPA, I need an exact break down of where my money is going! Oh and forget fraud tools or charge back reporting capability, I don’t even think they know what that is! Please help I need a new provider!

Answers

Topic Expert
Anand Goel
Title: CEO
Company: Optimized Payments Consulting
(CEO, Optimized Payments Consulting) |

Brittany,

You should be receiving monthly merchant statement with all the data you need...typically 1-2 weeks in arrears. Most processors offer access to these statements online at no charge.

The largest 3 processors in the U.S. are First Data Merchant Services, Chase Paymentech, and Elavon. Depending on the specific profile and needs of your client, I could recommend a specific company. Feel free to send me an email at anandatoptimizedpmts [dot] com and I'd be happy to help.

Ron Bandyk
Title: Consultant
Company: BD Consulting & Development
(Consultant, BD Consulting & Development) |

Brittany

A few weeks ago, I saw one of the founders of a Chicago company called feefighters.com (www.feefighters.com) at a presentation sponsored by Crain's Chicago Business.

They are a newer company that helps companies find credit card payment processors. From what I can tell, they function like Lending Tree but for credit card processing services. While as the name might indicate, their primary purpose is to help people reduce the fees they pay for processing credit card payments, I would suspect reporting and other service related matters are also addressed. It might be worth at least checking them out.

Good luck!

Lawrence Lewandowski
Title: CFO, Controller, Director
Company: in-between
(CFO, Controller, Director, in-between) |

I agree with the earlier responder on the Chase Paymentech
facility. I have used it and it is painless and the reporting is excellent.

david waltz
Title: Assistant Treasurer
Company: Integrys Energy Group
(Assistant Treasurer, Integrys Energy Group) |

Your bank's treasury services relationship manager should be able to give you an overview of who major processors are (though they might offer the service themselves).

Cliff Gray
Title: CTO
Company: FroogaliT
(CTO, FroogaliT) |

Brittany:

The previous responses are all on target - I would especially check out Chase (their Orbital gateway is very good, as well as their customer support); FeeFighters is also a great resource for finding the right processor/acquirer relationship.

Remember to be specific with your candidate processors, on your operating environment, payment types, etc., so they can get you the best rates, that are appropriate for your business. I would also recommend that you work with a member bank (e.g., Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, etc.), rather than a second-tier ISO or agent bank - this will help ensure not only best-case rates, but better customer support, and more detailed monthly statement reporting.

Best of luck!

Salvatore Grasso
Title: CFO
Company: Diamond Equity Partners
(CFO, Diamond Equity Partners) |

There are various considerations, as noted in the previous responses. If you can find a company that bundles fraud management (with user-defined and dynamic criteria) with credit card processing, you will find a better economic solution as opposed to paying for a separate fraud management solution such as Authorize.net. I have investigated utilizing CC processor aggregators (bundlers who negotiate volume discounts with CC processors) that pass on a portion of the volume savings to customers.
Also, consider the requirements for a set aside or chargeback fund. This requirements will tie up cash for a long period of time.
Feel free to call 215-517-6000 x109 if you would like to discuss.

John West
Title: Director
Company: Expense Reduction Analysts
(Director, Expense Reduction Analysts) |

You're all going down the right path. The top three processors have 50% of the market. Most local banks just add a pass-through fee. There is more to it than just picking the right processor. There are complex fee structures with many options that are frequently changing and, like most services, the fees are negotiable.

Jane Casey
Title: VP & Treasurer
Company:
(VP & Treasurer, ) |

Agree with others' comments; also, remember the processor fees are small when compared to Visa's and MC's, so look for things like "mark up" to those fees; you should only pay the processor a per tx fee unless there's something unusual about the risk; pricing's downright Byzantine so you don't figure out what they're charging you; look closely at fraud prevention capabilities, especially if you deal with CNP txs; we recently moved one of our newly-acquired companies to our processor, ChasePaymentech, and they immediately alerted us to some "unusual" transactions that turned out to be fraudulent; also, be careful of affinity programs v.a.v. fraud; good luck

Topic Expert
Rick Bigelow
Title: C0O
Company: LSSM
(C0O, LSSM) |

I went throught this process last year and settled with BluePay. They are not as big as the others but they met the pricing and the service is good. Their webiste is easy to use and provides all the statements, breakdown security, compliance and notifications desired. Another option is Heartland. I almost went with them, but stuck with Bluepay. I can provide contacts for each company if desired. Email me here or contact me via phone 415-684-8981.

Rick

Christine Speedy
Title: Global Business Development
Company: CenPOS
(Global Business Development, CenPOS) |

It would be interesting to get an update on what direction you went Brittany.

Do not pick a payment processor based on just price because it doesn't take into account anything else. For example, what if Brittany provides corporate accounting, not consumer accounting services? What if they are on recurring at a fixed amount, but then they owe extra once a year for the tax return? The answers could direct her to a different payment processor, gateway, or both.

Even among the big three there are nuances that would drive a decision one way or the other because it can impact when you 'Qualify' for different interchange rates. Especially with new types of fees, companies need a holistic approach to managing costs. I've placed merchants with different processors and even different front end/back combinations with the same processor for that very reason- one size does not fit all.
Use a payments expert who has multiple options to help guide you in the right direction.

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