Payment processing and Online Merchant Accounts
Payment processing online or online merchant accounts allows your customers the convenience of being able to shop from the comfort of their own home. Setting up your online store however, can be quite an involved task.
In order to accept credit card payments, you will need a merchant account. Online Merchant Accounts are bank accounts that are designed specifically to accept payments from credit cards. You can obtain merchant accounts from either a bank or a third party provider.
Going to your bank for a online merchant account has the advantage of strengthening your business relationship with them. Unfortunately, banks charge higher fees than third party merchant account providers – making them the clear choice for most businesses. If your business is considered to be in a high risk industry (such as pharmacy, adult or MLM) banks will almost never provide you with a merchant account. As such, a third party provider is often the preferred choice for most online businesses.
Integrated Payment Processing – Most third party merchant account providers also offer full payment processing and payment gateway features, meaning no integration headaches.
Lower rates – Due to relationships with multiple banks, along with higher competition, third party providers have much lower rates than banks.
High Risk Services – Some third party providers are able to accommodate high risk merchants due to being able to spread the risk among a number of banks. Note that high risk merchants will be subject to higher rates in order to offset the risk for the provider.