Payment Solutions For Every Business
The e-cigarette industry is worth more than $3.5 billion and is rapidly increasing due to the increased popularity of e-juices, hookahs, and vaping. Ex-smokers have found e-cigarettes to be a healthier alternative to traditional tobacco-containing cigarettes. Vaping also is attractive to those who have never smoked a traditional cigarette. According to the National Center for Health Statistics’ National Health Interview Survey released in October 2015, 3.2% who have never smoke cigarettes have tried an electronic cigarette.
There is no doubt that this industry is smoking hot, and entrepreneurs are taking advantage of it. However, banks don’t make it easy for new businesses and smaller businesses in the e-cig industry to get credit card transactions processed. Traditional financial institutions deem electronic cigarette and related businesses high risk, making it very difficult for them to get fair, cost-effective payment solutions. This is where Maverick BankCard comes in. We’ve been processing since retail vape & e-cig shops for many years. Maverick has seen the industry go through changes firsthand for 10+ years.
Specializing in high-risk merchant accounts for businesses, such as brick-and-mortar e-cigarette, vaping, smoking accessory shops, and online e-cigarettes, Maverick customizes payment processing solutions for all types and sizes of companies. We offer answers to the most commonly asked questions about obtaining and successfully maintaining an e-cig merchant account. To start your electronic cigarette merchant account process, apply today.
Frequently asked questions about e-cig merchant accounts
- What to anticipate with an e-cig merchant account?
- The differences between an e-cigarette merchant account and a lower risk merchant account?
- Do I have to worry about chargebacks?
- What are e-cig related-industry types and categories?
- What is Mastercard registration? Why is it required for card-absent nicotine and tobacco sales?
- Is an age checker required and if so, what age verification service is needed?
- What are chargebacks and are they common in the e-cig industry?
- What are the vape merchant account requirements?
- What to expect during an e-cig merchant account application and review?
- Why would a business need an electronic cigarette merchant account?
- How do different vape and smoking products impact merchant services?
Why a business needs an e-cig merchant account
Merchant accounts give your business the ability to accept card payments from customers. Plain and simple, any business that wants to accept credit or debit cards, needs a merchant account.
Now I’m sure you’re wondering, why not just use my bank’s processing services?
Businesses that sell electronic cigarettes, vaporizers, hookahs, and other related accessories need e-cig merchant accounts because traditional banks will not approve of them. Due to ongoing regulatory changes and “reputational” risk, banks won’t approve accounts for these high-risk electronic cigarette merchant accounts. E-cig merchants that want to accept credit cards need a high-risk credit card processor, such as Maverick BankCard. For online businesses, it is even more difficult due to age verification restrictions and when a product such as nicotine is sold, it becomes even more scrutinized.
Why is an e-cig merchant account high risk?
Merchant service providers usually consider e-cig and vape businesses high risk because they’re government regulated, relatively new and have a reputational risk. Many banks won’t approve e-cig accounts because of the ongoing regulatory changing or reputation. Because of that, it can be hard to get a merchant account, or one that’s competitive at least. We offer a solution.
Maverick BankCard provides high-risk merchant accounts for the e-cig industry. Dedicated to a high-quality of customer service, Maverick works with businesses to get them the customized payment solution they need. E-cigarette merchant accounts can get approved in as little as 24 hours. Maverick is a full-service provider, so you get to deal directly with the processor, meaning the decision maker – Maverick does everything in-house from underwriting to risk management and customer support.
Electronic Cigarette merchant account Types
Wholesalers – Processing for the largest wholesale merchants in the e-cig and vape space has made Maverick a truly valuable payment processor for wholesalers. We help wholesalers in need of processing large ticket transactions coupled with fraud prevention tools and a reliable provider.
Retail – By working with not only some of the first but also biggest brick & mortar e-cig and vape shops, Maverick has gained knowledge in the market. Being able to integrate with all major countertop terminals, mobile & tablet applications, and point-of-sale systems, we truly assist with taking merchants to the next level.
eCommerce – With regulatory and banking scrutiny due to age verification requirements combined with pushback due to e-juice containing higher risk ingredients such as nicotine, card-not-present transactions have made it especially difficult for eCommerce e-cig and vape merchants. All of our services, from our merchant account to payment gateway, are e-cig, e-juice, hardware/mod, and vape-friendly, which can assure reliable and secure processing. With seamless integration with shopping carts, including Shopify, BigCommerce, 3dCart, WordPress, and WooCommerce, our gateway compatibility allows for quick and easy synchronization.
What to expect during an e-cig merchant account application review
Payment processors take on a certain level of risk by providing merchant accounts for businesses. Every dollar transacted through their system could be charged back, potentially leaving them responsible for the funds. When assessing the risk associated with new accounts, the card processor’s underwriter will look at the possibility of chargebacks, as well as the legitimacy of the business (they don’t want to give someone with fraudulent intentions the ability to debit credit cards).
E-cig merchants will need to prove to an underwriter that they are running a responsible, legitimate business. It is an underwriter’s job to assess any potential risk. Ultimately, the underwriter accepts or declines an application based on the perceived risk they assess. Merchants can prove they are operating legally by giving underwriters valid disclosures and restrictions (application) that help support the businesses’ claims.
When underwriters review an application from a vaping, electronic cigarette, or smoking accessory business, they will take the necessary step to ensure that merchants are following applicable laws. For example, they will look at your site to make sure that none of the products are being directly marketed for marijuana or other illegal substances.
When reviewing the application, underwriters will look at a merchant’s credit scores, credit card processing history, bank statements, and its website. Underwriters want a clear picture of the services or products provided by the merchant. Strikes against a merchant include a negative bank account balance, history of high chargeback rates, poor credit, or other negative factors. When checking the business’ website when there are eCommerce sales, underwriting wants to make sure there are trusted privacy and refund policies, as well as a secure socket layer (SSL) in addition to other requirements, such as terms, contact info, product info, and more. When a merchant selling products with age restrictions, such as nicotine e-juice, processes in a card-absent environment, there are other eCommerce requirements such as age verification.
The easiest way to get approved is to be prepared. Before an application goes before an underwriter, a merchant should have money in the bank, proper documents, working website (if eCommerce), and have an exemplary credit history for example. Merchants want the underwriter to see they are running a trusted, legitimate business. Taking these steps make a merchant more likely to get approved for an account without any limits, such as caps on higher processing volume or a reserve.
E-cig merchant account application requirements
Any e-cig business that wants a merchant account can begin today. To get started, simply fill out Maverick’s merchant service online form. To swiftly move the process along, businesses should have the below items ready to hand over to processors and underwriters:
- A valid, government-issued ID, such as a driver’s license
- Recent bank statement for the business
- A bank letter or a pre-printed voided check
- Recent processing statements, if applicable
- Proof of inventory if card-absent and fulfillment is handled in-house
Even though approvals are not guaranteed, Maverick does guarantee a streamlined application process. Vape and e-cig merchant service accounts can receive approvals within 24 to 48 hours.
E-cig and related-industry categories
Merchant Category Codes (MCC) are similar Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) codes for merchant processing and are four-digit numerical codes assigned by the U.S. government to business establishments to identify the primary business of the establishment. These codes aim to identify the primary purpose of businesses. Each and every company will have a primary MCC code. This number indicates a company’s primary line of business. What determines a company’s primary SIC code is the code definition that generates the highest revenue for that company at a specific location in the past year.
Businesses that sell products and services related to E-cigarettes, e-juices, vaping, and smoking accessories often exclusively fall into the 5993: (Tobacco/Cigar Stores and Stands) MCC code.
Visit the United States Department of Labor to view a complete SIC list.
Smoke away the competition with an electronic cigarette merchant account from Maverick BankCard.
We’ll help you find the right merchant account for your e-cig business.
We can get your e-cig store accepting credit cards in as little as 24 hours!
Maverick Bank Card loves to say Yes!
Our team can easily find you an account that is convenient and efficient for your e-cig business. With processing times as short as 24 hours and applicant-friendly policies, Maverick BankCard is the processing solution your e-cig shop is looking for.
- No application fees
- Competitive rates
- Direct processor
- 24/7/365 support
- Unmatched technology
- Secure and cutting-edge terminals, point-of-sale systems, and payment gateways
Customer Review: Brian W, Owner of O Vape
These guys are great to work with. Extremely responsive and quick to answer and handle any questions or concerns that come up. Great rates and easy to contact!