Credit Card Processing for Retail Stores
When looking for the best credit card processing for retail stores, business owners need to be aware of the common pitfalls of standard credit card processing companies. Traditional credit card processing companies leech small retail stores, gas stations, restaurants and other establishments dry by charging exorbitant processing fees tacked on to interchange fees, statement fees, and countless other fees – some of which are “hidden” and can surprise you at the end of the month. Wouldn’t it be great if there was some way that you could do reliable credit card processing and not worry about all these sundry costs? Using Payment Depot as your payment processor is one way where you not only pay less when accepting credit card payments, but avoid companies that make card processing expensive for you. Give us a call to learn how switching your payment processor can simplify credit card processing fees for your company with a lower monthly fee.
Simplifying Retail Credit Card Processing Costs
Retail stores face a bulk of electronic transactions every day and as the number of transactions increases, so do the chances of fraud. The most common problem that retailers have with the credit card processing company they choose is hidden costs in terms and conditions. This document is the most neglected but also the most important thing when selecting the right credit card processor. Before signing the contract, not many retail owners spend time reading about their payment process transaction fees, and later they realize that their costs are rising as their business scales. Not to mention that there may also be lengthy contracts and early termination fees. Be sure to check your merchant account contract and determine if it includes an early termination fee. Fraud is also extremely common in the retail business and it is the job of the payment processing company to ensure a risk-free environment.
Retail Credit Card Processing Services
Credit card processing fees are overwhelmingly the biggest complaint that retailers have with their credit card processing companies because these credit card fees come directly out of there profits. Finding a credit card processing company that offers lower processing fees is a simple solution to this problem, but until recently credit card processing companies did not offer this option.
Payment Depot and parent company Stax have created innovative solutions to this problem with flat rate pricing – something previously unheard of in the credit card payment processing industry. For a monthly fee you can eliminate the costly processing fees that are often associated with credit card processing service.
Finding the Right Credit Card Processing
The debit card and credit card processing companies for retail stores should offer terminals that are PCI compliant and POS terminals that securely process credit card and debit card payments easily and come with optional PIN pad. Apart from that, they should offer faster checkout, eliminate unnecessary expenses, reduce costs, increase productivity by integrating payment information into enterprise application, and effortlessly handle many transactions every month without any hiccups. Not just this, but because of the retail environment, any duplicate transactions should be prevented and common problems with credit card processing should be successfully avoided.
Benefits of Payment Depot for Retail Stores
- Pay Less – We understand that as a retail store, you are sick of the hidden costs that are piled on to your bills. Thus, with this service, you only need to pay the cost that credit processors pay directly to the major credit card companies (Discover, Amex, MasterCard, Visa et al) for processing transactions, plus a simple monthly subscription fee. This type of payment is called interchange plus pricing. Payment Depot’s processing fees are as low as 10 cents per transaction. Most retail credit card processors charge a percentage-based markup on every transaction (for instance, 3% plus these interchange fees), which eats away at your hard-earned profits. If you compare Payment Depot’s payment processing plans with all the others, you’ll like what you see.
- Up to 40% Savings – By eliminating statement fees, PCI fees, IRS fees, and countless others, many retailers are able to save up to 40% of their costs by choosing Payment Depot for their credit card processing solutions.
- Number of Plans – Depending on your business requirements, you can choose a plan that suits you. The Basic plan offers 25 cents per transaction, the Most Popular plan offers costs 15 cents per transaction, and the Best Value plan offers 10 cents per transaction. The yearly and monthly costs vary according to the chosen plan, but interchange fees and the up-charge on an interchange fee can make a big impact on your bottom line.
How Smart Processing Helped an Art Supplies Retailer
Peggy Gomez opened the doors to Gomez Art Supply in 2003, situating the enterprise near her alma mater, the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, Nebraska. In the years since she’s learned a lot about capturing and keeping customers who are mostly artists and architects, professionals and students alike, by selling brushes, paper, wet media, dry media, adhesives, photo supplies and printmaking materials.
An artist herself – she received the 2010 Alumni Achievement in Art award from the Hixson-Lied College of Fine and Performing Arts at UNL – Gomez also has the business savvy to succeed in a competitive environment. This includes knowing how to stock student-grade and professional-grade products in every category, and how to manage merchant services-related costs that help her keep pricing competitive.
Credit Card Processing for Small Business
Accepting all major credit cards is non-negotiable for Gomez. She recognizes that she must accept credit cards to compete with other vendors and online retailers. “Credit card processing is a necessary evil,” she says, pointing out that 90% of her customers use debit or credit card payments for purchases that average about $35 each but range from 20-cents to $200. “Payment Depot is a choice I am happy with. When I switched to Payment Depot I was unhappy with my last processor, which is why I have switched every time.” In her search for the best credit card processor, Gomez had tried working with five different credit card processing companies prior to Payment Depot.
“I like that there is no long-term contract with Payment Depot,” she adds. “The fees and processing rates are the best I have found in a credit card processor.”
Monthly Subscription Payment Processing vs Traditional Credit Card Processing Companies
Those lower processing fees matter to bricks-and-mortar retailers like Gomez. “Our biggest competitor is online,” she says. “A small bricks-and-mortar business like mine cannot compete price-wise.” She mentions that some retailers use price-promotion tactics that are possible only through discounts and couponing, when in fact they typically set prices up to 40% over MSRP to make up the difference.
Instead, she provides the advice and service levels only an artist might be able to offer – and by managing her cost structure at the back of the house through things like a smarter merchant account and by finding the best credit card processor “Payment Depot has saved me money,” she points out.
Modern Payment Processing in an On-Demand World
Technological advances are driving shopper expectations at record speeds, and this includes payment experiences. Consumers today expect a variety of credit card payment options, including in person payments for in person sales, virtual terminal options. How you take in person payments and online payments can dramatically impact your bottom line.
Depending on your merchant services provider, you may have access to a variety of credit card processing options.
Card Present Payments
When you swipe and tap credit cards and accept contactless payments through a cloud-based credit card terminal, you are using card present payments. These often come with lower fees than card not present card transactions.
In-person transactions are great for in person sales. These forms of payment usually use a POS credit card terminal or a mobile credit card reader.
Card Not Present Transactions
A virtual terminal is a web-based application that allows credit card processing on computers, tablets, or phones and often includes keyed payments on a virtual terminal. This is ideal for delivery services or businesses who take orders over the phone. However, most disputes, delays, and fraud occur in Card Not Present environments, so merchant account providers usually charge higher credit card processing fees for these virtual terminal credit card transactions. Be sure to review your merchant contract to ensure there is transparent pricing.
Online transactions are another way to implement card processing for online payments. For an ecommerce retailer, otherwise known as an online store, online transactions are vital. These online payments are considered Card Not Present (CNP) transaction types.
Text 2 Pay is an additional Card Not Present form of payment processing where customers can pay invoices directly from a mobile device, plus 2-way communication with service provider through a message center.
Digital invoices are one-time invoices or recurring payments and can be scheduled with auto-reminders. Recurring payments are a great way to process credit cards with minimal disruption – which helps you increase sales and get paid faster.
The important thing to remember is that you need to be able to take payments in the format that your customers want. Ask your merchant account provider which of these methods you currently have access to and then determine who is the best credit card processor for you.
Card Not Present vs Contactless Payment Processing
Contactless refers to the absence of physical contact between the credit card (or smartphone) and the POS terminal. The ease of use comes from customers not being required to swipe their card or enter a PIN.
Most banks now offer contactless “tap to pay” payment for debit and credit cards. Mobile wallets like Apple Pay and Google Pay are considered contactless, but they are also considered card present transactions, since the customer and their “wallet” are at the POS for the payment processing. Contactless payment methods allow consumers to store their credit card information on their smartphones conveniently. They can pay by taping their phone near a compatible card reader at the store.
In today’s world, most retailers must accept credit card payments to be successful. One way businesses can recoup some of these high credit card processing fees is to use a surcharging program that legally charges customers for using major credit cards that cost more than debit payments.
4 Noteworthy Technologies Making Waves in the Retail Space
Consumers expect options and information at their fingertips; they expect personalized service, frictionless experiences and will reward brands and retailers that not only surprise and delight, but that deliver services that helps them unlock time back in their ever-connected, overbooked lives. They expect retailers to accept credit cards and handle these credit card transactions (and subsequently returns) with ease. From endless aisle experiences via augmented reality to voice and facial recognition, there are a wave of technologies that are being integrated to enhance the in-store retail experience.
1. Virtual Try-on that Drives Engagement and Return Purchases in Beauty
For a consumer, purchasing a new beauty product can be a challenging choice.
There is always a hesitation about how new colors will look, will it be a skin tone match, will it go well with other shades, and beyond.
At the new Covergirl Times Square flagship location, the brand integrated augmented reality glam stations, powered by Holition to answer these very challenges in the industry.
In-store customers can virtually try on products ranging from lipstick to eyeshadow to mascara, and share their makeovers with friends for outside council. Customers can then send themselves an email of all the products they “virtually tested” with shoppable buttons enabling them to seamlessly purchase items of interest.
This in-store capability is not only driving dwell times but also giving the brand invaluable data about in-store purchase intent which has otherwise been one of the most challenging points of data collection in a physical store environment.
2. Streamlining Q&A and Personalization with the Human Side of Retail’s “Voice”
The most recent iterations of virtual assistants are changing how people engage and interact with businesses. There’s a growing number of consumers using voice technology to shop, pay bills, bank online or send money, and we are seeing an increasing usage of voice technology to initiate payments for goods or services.
Voice technology not only allows for increased fluidity, it also lessens friction by providing associates access to information on-demand. While voice is mainly applied to more basic tasks within shopping, for example: “Alexa, add lollipops to my shopping list”, the artificial intelligence surrounding voice capture will lead to game changing innovations in personalized shopping experiences.
3. From Watching Your Product Interaction to Knowing Your Smile
Computer Vision, AI and Machine Learning go hand in hand when it comes to revolutionizing retail experiences. From frictionless checkouts, to stores that “know your name”, retailers are blurring the lines between online and offline retail.
Amazon Go continues to push the envelope in what’s possible in cashier-less shopping and has ignited a wave of companies developing automated, human-free, brick-and-mortar retail environments.
However, automation doesn’t need to mean the loss of humanization. With camera vision, retailers can now also recognize and identify a customer in seconds allowing them to implement personalized loyalty plans.
For example, gourmet candy retailer Lolli & Pops uses facial recognition to identify their VIP customers as they walk into the store. Via camera vision store associates can then deliver a personalized shopping experience by scouring the customers’ purchasing history and preferences and getting real time information.
4. Payments in an On-demand World
As we continue to see the development of faster checkouts and location-based personalized marketing offers, the adoption of mobile payments continues to grow. But there is also a perfect storm brewing of a multitude of factors they will further drive adoption in the coming years.
As banks continue to invest in innovation and offer more advanced mobile payment capabilities like pay-on-demand (ie Zelle with Chase), consumers’ trust in banks will drive more in-store usage of mobile payments. And, with the proliferation of on-demand services like Lyft, Glamsquad and order-ahead apps like those offered by Starbucks and Bobby’s Burger Palace, consumers are also getting more accustomed to frictionless, and efficient mobile payment capabilities. Biometric sign in’s are helping answer security hesitations.
Contactless payments are also evolving with the development of NFC enabled smartphones and the digitization of bank cards. So consumers paying using their smartphone (via Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay etc), are finding confidence with the additional authentication via fingerprint or other biometric verification methods, lowering the risk of fraud.
Studies show that mobile payment users, on average, spend approximately twice as much through all digital channels than those not using mobile payments, according to a recent report from Bain & Co – making it a worthwhile investment for retailers and brands to integrate into their in-store offerings.
Physical and digital convergence is just truly beginning. Technology will drive customer behaviors and expectations, leading to the continued progress of connected store experiences.
Payment Depot has no contracts, transparent pricing, and does not charge you for cancelling. These attributes make us an ideal partner for retail stores. For credit card processing rates that are affordable, versatile, and free from sneaky hidden charges, request a quote today.