There’s no shortage of problems when you’re running a business. Not being able to process your customer’s credit cards can cost you so many sales that you’re driven out of business. Almost no one carries checks or more than a modest amount of cash. Many people rely on using their debit or credit cards to pay for their purchases.
If you’re like many business owners, you anticipated no problem when you decided to solve this problem by becoming able to accept your customers’ credit cards. This is when you learned your business was considered “risky.” It’s possible that you were turned down by several credit card processors.
You’re not alone. There are a number of high risk credit card processing providers that understand this problem and know how to handle it.
What Makes Your Business High Risk?
There’s no exact definition. A high-risk business is simply one the banks and card processors have decided not to do business with. It could be because the merchant has poor credit or it could simply be that the business is in an industry the bankers don’t want to associate with. That’s very subjective and can vary greatly from one bank, credit card processor, or individual to another.
Some so-called high-risk businesses include some dating services, natural health and vitamin sites, and businesses offering loan modification and credit repair services. Rather surprisingly, many travel and weight loss sites have encountered problems. Multi-level-marketing sites have also been considered high risk by card processors. Your business could have nothing to do with any of the above and still find itself labeled high risk.
The bottom line is, almost any business can be considered high risk. In the past, this category has included, among many others, airlines, Amazon and Yahoo stores, brokers of all types, modeling agencies, real estate companies, and anything to do with guns, knives, or other weapons.
If one processor turns you down, try another. After a couple or three tries with the traditional processors, consider high risk credit card processing.
Finding a High-Risk Credit Card Processor
Ok, so you’ve decided “I need high risk card processing.” Now you need to know how to find high risk credit card processing.
You don’t want to:
- Go overseas. There are foreign credit card processors that would be willing to underwrite your transactions, but this is a risky choice. Overseas processors may not be regulated or have any form of governmental oversight. This option could be putting your business in jeopardy.
- Pay high rates. There are many merchant processors who will be happy to do the job for you, but it’s a bit like borrowing money from a loan shark. You’ll be paying a ruinous rate for the service.
Read the Contract
Reading the contract will help you separate the processors you definitely don’t want to do business with. You will probably discover that the lion’s share of the contracts you review are not acceptable. The unethical credit card processors understand you’re desperate because you’re losing one sale after another with every day that passes. Don’t let desperation cloud your judgment. It’s easy to do.
- Look for termination fees—they may be outrageous.
- Do they want you to give them a rolling reserve? This means they can hold back up to 10% in a non-interest-bearing account until they decide it’s no longer necessary. How much do they want to hold back and for how long? Unfortunately, most of the high-risk card processors will want to hold something back. They worry that suddenly most of your customers will want a charge-back, you’re running some kind of scam, or have some other concern.
As is true with many businesses, customer service or the lack of same is what separates the great businesses from those you don’t ever want to deal with again.
- 24 Hour support. Your online store is open 24/7 and you need your credit card processor to have support available 24/7. When a problem occurs, it must be resolved as quickly as possible or the sale has been lost forever.
- The credit card processor must have a technical team available to take care of issues that arise.
- Live customer support—actual people—should be available via phone, email, or live chat. These personnel should be well trained and educated so they understand the importance of quick problem resolution and have the tools to get the transaction back on track.
There may be a blog available, so you can take a look at past problems and how they were handled.
Will High Risk Card Processing Work for Your Business?
Does high risk credit card processing work? Yes, it can work very well and is currently doing so for countless business and organizations. One company that offers good service is Allied Wallet. They are currently the trusted credit card processor for thousands of merchants in many different industries.
Allied Wallet offers a number of valuable services that your business has undoubtedly been searching for.
- Secure transactions. Allied Wallet is a PCI-DSS Level 1 Compliant internet payment service provider. This means that everyone—both you and your customers—will benefit from safe, secure transactions.
- Multiple currencies. Allied Wallet processes transactions in 164 different currencies. While it’s doubtful you’d ever need to have transactions processed in that many countries/currencies, any international transactions you have will be processed safely and correctly.
- One billion dollars. Allied Wallet has processed more than 1 billion dollars in transactions. They have the experience you need.
Allied Wallet offers the services and support you need. They will take the fear out of high risk credit card processing and let you get back to running your business.