Staying with what you know is always easier than making a change. This is especially true when it comes to your merchant services provider. Your current provider may be providing you with everything you need, but it’s difficult to know this if you don’t know what to look for. Not realizing the limitations of your current provider can cause missed opportunities for your business. Below is a list of 10 things to look for when determining if you need a new merchant service provider.

10. No around-the-clock help desk
Problems do not only occur between the hours selling merchant services of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Do your merchants have access to a help desk if they encounter a problem in the middle of the night? Without 24/7 assistance, your clients can miss out on important sales opportunities.

9. Access to various terminals and software is limited
How many payment and terminal options does your current provider offer? Bringing in more merchants is directly tied to the variety of options you provide. Make sure your provider appeals to all types of merchants and their various needs.

8. You are receiving a lot of complaints about monthly statements
This is a clear sign that your provider is sending out unclear statements. Confused merchants can quickly turn into unsatisfied merchants. Make sure that every fee and cost is thoroughly explained to your merchants in their monthly statement.

7. Training of new employees is tedious and time consuming
A fast turn-around for new employee training is key for a revenue generating company. Outdated legacy systems are often a source of slow turn-around. Another sign that you need to change to a new merchant service provider is that you’re frustrated with the use of “green screens” and complex billing codes.

6. PCI compliance fees are high
There is a PCI program that is easy to use and completely free. If your merchants are being charged large PCI compliance fees this is something you need to look into.

5. Online reports are difficult to understand and unclear
Access to information such as your income, expenses and profits should be simple to gather at the bank, branch and merchant level, and it should be easy to understand. Processing costs are another areas that should be straightforward and easy to get. If these areas are not clear you could be missing out on opportunities to increase your fee income.

4. Lengthy response times
It is a poor business practice to keep your customers waiting. You wouldn’t do it to your merchant, so you should not accept it from your provider. The confidence you have in the accuracy of your provider’s answers is also something to keep in mind.

3. High prices are turning away larger merchants
A merchant service provider should be making sure that their prices are competitive with the current market. Large merchants will be searching for the best value for their dollar. If your prices are too high this will not be you.

2. You don’t offer next day funding
A make-or-break point for many merchants is whether they will receive next day funding. If your merchant service provider does not offer this, you need to upgrade. If they do, you need to make sure that cut-off times are ideal for your merchants. Remember that later cut-off times will be more convenient for most merchants. Also make sure you don’t have to create an account with a different bank. Restrictions such as this can frustrate merchants to the point of leaving.

1. Your provider is not a true payment processor
If your service provider outsources its back-end services, you can almost guarantee that your costs are being driven up. More flexibility and reduced costs are attainable if you deal directly with a processor and eliminate the middleman.


Categories: Business