Far too many people get ripped off when setting up a merchant account for their online business. The biggest reason is that they don't understand their options and are intimidated by the whole process. Now, armed with the proper knowledge, you don't need to become a victim of this process.
You may be like me when I first decided my online business had grown big enough to justify a merchant account. Maybe you have enough sales where getting your own account makes a lot more sense than using a third party processor who charges outlandish rates. Maybe you should use both third party processors and your own merchant account... giving your customers more choices.
When I set up my first merchant account, I filled out the long, complicated application and submitted it with a several hundred dollar application fee. I had to fax a bunch of supporting documents to prove I was worthy of being considered for an account. Then I held my breath and waited for several weeks.
Finally, I got the news that I was approved and could now sign a long-term contract to allow them to charge me more high monthly fees that I didn't fully understand. The one that was the most mystical to me was the virtual terminal rental fee. This company also REQUIRED me to pay a steep fee to have my order form hosted on their secure server.
When I got my last merchant account, I filled out a simple online form, paid less than $100, and had the account activated within 24 hours. The money I paid covered setting up the merchant account, gateway, and virtual terminal. I could now process transactions from anywhere in the world and it was great!
If you've never used a virtual terminal before, let me explain. You can be on an airplane 40,000 feet above the earth. The person sitting next to you can ask what you do. You explain, and he's interested in getting your product. You can take his credit card information, connect to your virtual terminal using your laptop and the in-flight phone, and process the transaction while eating your in-flight meal.
It's great, and I've always enjoyed having access to all of the features of my merchant accounts. I just didn't appreciate the fact that they seemed to try to deliberately confuse you during the application process. They all used different terms making it nearly impossible to compare features and rates. It seemed that they didn't want you to fully understand the process or product.
Guess what... they probably didn't want you to understand because that allowed them to rip you off for more.
Here are the facts:
If you pay more than $100 to get set up with a merchant account, gateway, and virtual terminal you're paying too much.
The industry is very competitive so you should compare rates. If you're don't get a clear explanation of the features you're getting, go somewhere else.
When you pay those large application fees, most of that money is commission for the agent or reseller. So don't fall for that ploy!
They need you as much as you need their services. Many of the parties involved in the system make their money from the transaction and monthly fees you pay. These fees differ from company to company so you should compare. I suggest not paying more that 2.35% per transaction.
After getting ripped off, and feeling victimized by the industry for years, I decided to not take it any more. I cornered an industry insider and picked his brain. He's set up merchant accounts for both online and offline businesses for years. I got him on a conference call and had people call in and ask any question they wanted. He spilled the beans.
Even better, we recorded the entire conference call AND I want to give you a copy of the recording from that call. It's simple, you can grab the MP3 recording with my compliments at: http://therealsecrets.com/free-merchant-account-teleseminar.html
Armed with this powerful information, you'll be able to compare. You'll be able to make an intelligent decision instead of an expensive mistake. It will be impossible for you to get ripped off when getting a merchant account.
Knowledge is a very powerful business building weapon. Arm yourself today!
About The Author
Willie Crawford has been teaching others how to build an on-line business since late 1996. Frequently featured in radio, magazine and newspaper articles and interviews, Willie teaches the average guy what the top marketers are doing but seldom talking about. For example, Willie demonstrates the power of automated residual income through his system at: http://ProfitAutomation.Com Don't miss it!