Online credit and processing/merchant accounts (1 Viewer)

Dre

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I am setting up a small business, and I set up a website through godaddy (total cheapskate here). But I want to accept credit cards. They have their own merchant account, which could be the simplest thing to do; but I would rather keep my options open. Does anyone know if I can use other merchant accounts on their site (they also have some "quick shopping cart" but since they are trying to peddle their own service, they are not clear on how to let outside merchant accounts in). Finally, do I have to have a separate bank account, or does a merchant account take care of that too? I came across Chase Paymentech (I use Chase for my personal banking), and I'm not sure exactly what this is, other than that it is related to Online shopping.

Anyway, thanks for reading this (and any of my other sorry requests). If you've had good experience with a merchant account , please let me know. I don't know what to expect for sales...I would need $500/day of sales (by the 6 month or so) at least to keep the company solvent. Of course, it could be $0 in sales and a total bust, too.
 

buzd

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Yes you need your own bank account to receive the funds. The merchant account processes the cards and sends you your money (and deducts your fees). Depending on the type of business, different vendors will have different rates and different appropriateness.

My advice: Get away from godaddy, either to a local provider (reseller/consultant) that has experience with a vendor and online shopping, or look at other bigger vendors (I would start with rackspace).

I have a merchant vendor that I've been quite happy with, but I have zero idea whether they would be appropriate for your situation.
 
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Thanks bro
 

crosswatt

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I have no complaints with Chase Paymentech. Are you going to be inputing the data, or are you wanting a point of sale type service?
 

jumpingoff

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We use a company called Shift4 as our payment gateway and are happy with them. They integrate with pretty much every banking network.

Credit Card Payment Gateway - Fast, Reliable, and Secure Credit, Debit, Check, and Gift Card Processing with Tokenization | Shift4


Again, don't know if it's a fit for you or what your exact requirements are but it's another option. We use them because they integrate with our web host, and our gift card provider.

Keep in mind that usually a payment gateway is another middle man that forwards the online CC info to your payment processor (let's say Chase/Paymentech or First Data) who then takes over with getting the authorization taken care of and getting the money into your bank account.

I'm sure godaddy is attempting to be that middle man for you with their all in one setup.
 
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Dre

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I have no complaints with Chase Paymentech. Are you going to be inputing the data, or are you wanting a point of sale type service?
I'm new to this, so I'm not sure I know the terms. The customer would pay online via credit/debit. That is it. I wouldn't have a credit card swiper. When you say input the data, does that mean I would need to send the credit card info in myself? I promise I have looked this stuff up online, but the more I see, the more confused I become. I sound like a successful businessman-to-be, huh? :)
 
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We use a company called Shift4 as our payment gateway and are happy with them. They integrate with pretty much every banking network.

Credit Card Payment Gateway - Fast, Reliable, and Secure Credit, Debit, Check, and Gift Card Processing with Tokenization | Shift4


Again, don't know if it's a fit for you or what your exact requirements are but it's another option. We use them because they integrate with our web host, and our gift card provider.

Keep in mind that usually a payment gateway is another middle man that forwards the online CC info to your payment processor (let's say Chase/Paymentech or First Data) who then takes over with getting the authorization taken care of and getting the money into your bank account.

I'm sure godaddy is attempting to be that middle man for you with their all in one setup.
So is this the equivalent of that "quick shopping cart" I mentioned on godaddy. Do you still need a merchant account and a bank account if you have this?
 
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Yes you need your own bank account to receive the funds. The merchant account processes the cards and sends you your money (and deducts your fees). Depending on the type of business, different vendors will have different rates and different appropriateness.

My advice: Get away from godaddy, either to a local provider (reseller/consultant) that has experience with a vendor and online shopping, or look at other bigger vendors (I would start with rackspace).

I have a merchant vendor that I've been quite happy with, but I have zero idea whether they would be appropriate for your situation.
I'm doing my best to avoid godaddy (only because of your suggestion). I'm trying to avoid doing my usual which would be the safe thing by going everything w Godaddy.
 

jumpingoff

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So is this the equivalent of that "quick shopping cart" I mentioned on godaddy. Do you still need a merchant account and a bank account if you have this?
Yes, you still need a merchant acct and bank acct. In order for a customer's CC info to get to the mercant processor securely, you either use a physical terminal to swipe the card (this is done in-store, at a booth, or any other physical location) OR use a payment gateway for online/e-commerce transactions. Your merchant acct providor can usually also provide a payment gateway service or you can use a third party service. I would not engage in any sort of manual entry of credit card info for online sales as this gets you into the PCI compliance issues. These are security rules set by Visa, Master Card, etc. on how CC data is to be securely/safely handled and protected. They are a huge pain in the *** and they are always changing because fraud has become such an issue. Unless you are taking expensive measures to encrypt and physically protect customer credit card data, it is safer and cheaper to leave that to the payment gateway service. That is part of what you are paying them for. You do not want to store any CC info on your computer or other equipment. In theory, MC, Visa, etc. could audit you and when they find you don't comply to PCI standards they will ban you from accepting credit cards.
 
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Yes, you still need a merchant acct and bank acct. In order for a customer's CC info to get to the mercant processor securely, you either use a physical terminal to swipe the card (this is done in-store, at a booth, or any other physical location) OR use a payment gateway for online/e-commerce transactions. Your merchant acct providor can usually also provide a payment gateway service or you can use a third party service. I would not engage in any sort of manual entry of credit card info for online sales as this gets you into the PCI compliance issues. These are security rules set by Visa, Master Card, etc. on how CC data is to be securely/safely handled and protected. They are a huge pain in the *** and they are always changing because fraud has become such an issue. Unless you are taking expensive measures to encrypt and physically protect customer credit card data, it is safer and cheaper to leave that to the payment gateway service. That is part of what you are paying them for. You do not want to store any CC info on your computer or other equipment. In theory, MC, Visa, etc. could audit you and when they find you don't comply to PCI standards they will ban you from accepting credit cards.
Thanks so much for answering! That was very helpful
 

crosswatt

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I'm new to this, so I'm not sure I know the terms. The customer would pay online via credit/debit. That is it. I wouldn't have a credit card swiper. When you say input the data, does that mean I would need to send the credit card info in myself? I promise I have looked this stuff up online, but the more I see, the more confused I become. I sound like a successful businessman-to-be, huh? :)
Actually, yes. Having the willingness to ask questions that you don't know the answer to is vital to avoiding mistakes. You are on your way to at least making an honest go. And Jumpingoff has some good info in his posts.
 
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Thanks, despite my rocky past here, I do love how much people are willing to help. I appreciate it!
 

jumpingoff

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Also, be sure to compare the rates between multiple processors. This is the per transaction fee/percentage that they charge for their service. You should be able to do some negotiating on the rates but even if you can't you will probably get different rate offers from different processors and have some options. Then you can play them off of one another. The merchant processing business is quite competitive as we receive weekly calls from one company or another wanting our business. They will entice you with free terminals, best rates, etc. etc. Use this to your advantage and negotiate your rates down. This stuff adds up.

And for everyone's knowledge, if you accept credit cards at your business, debit is cheaper than credit with regards to the processing fees. Part of the reason why more points/miles are offered to the consumer on the credit side is so that they will run the card as credit and the business has to pay the higher fee. We always ask to run as debit if possible and this is also why most big box retailers credit card machines will default to debit when you swipe your card at the register. For a small business the difference in these fees can be several hundred to several thousand dollars a year. For the big box stores it adds up to millions a year.
 

buzd

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Thanks, despite my rocky past here, I do love how much people are willing to help. I appreciate it!
For the reasons crosswatt and jumpingoff listed, I would get a (local, or not) web designer/consultant who is familiar with whatever technology y'all choose (godaddy or not) to go with. Much like your accountant/attorney (other thread) having this person/company with you through the creative/build process will be invaluable in troubleshooting whatever problems will invariably come up. Just having someone that knows how to speak the language WRT electronic shopping carts and such will be make them worthwhile.
 

FranklinSaint

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I'm a web developer by trade and my favorite one (for myself and clients) is Stripe. In their own words: "You don’t need a merchant account or gateway. Stripe handles everything, including storing cards, subscriptions, and direct payouts to your bank account."
There are a few easy ways to set it up, and I've been using it since November with no issues so far.
 

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