- Is there a secure solution to accept credit cards through my website?
PaymentStars offers two different processing solutions for Internet merchants: InternetSecure™ and Converge.
InternetSecure is a payment gateway application that integrates with your existing website. It provides real-time processing for all major credit cards directly from your site’s shopping cart. InternetSecure is PCI-DSS compliant and offers secure transaction processing through the Elavon network. Other security features include tokenization to protect the information of repeat customers, support for card security codes and support for the MasterCard SecureCode and Verified by Visa plugins to protect your business from online fraud and losses due to chargebacks.
Converge turns any web-enabled PC into a payment terminal, allowing businesses to use their existing PCs and telephone or Internet connections for payment processing. Converge supports face-to-face, mail and phone transactions, as well as internet sales. Because it is a hosted solution, it eliminates many of the typical concerns about data security. The hosting provider (Elavon) is responsible for protecting your data and ensuring compliance with the most current security standards and industry regulations
- Can I process cards on the road?
Yes, for companies that need to do business on the go, PaymentStars offers Converge Mobile, complete payment processing software that turns mobile devices into portable payment terminals. Converge Mobile runs on many popular smartphones and tablets and supports telephone and mail order sales as well as face-to-face retail transactions. No card or payment information is stored your mobile device; transaction data is immediately encrypted and sent to PaymentStars’ secure hosted environment.
- What’s the benefit of accepting PIN debit cards?
There are a number of reasons for merchants to accept debit cards, particularly for PIN debit transactions. One is that customers expect to have a choice of payment options. And, increasingly, their preferred choice is debit cards. Today, a higher percentage of consumers own debit cards than credit cards. Debit cards also offer cost benefits. There is no risk of chargebacks and processing fees are lower than for credit cards, particularly now that the Durbin Amendment has capped Interchange fees on cards from issuers with $10 billion or more in assets.
- I’m a small merchant; is accepting credit cards right for me?
Credit cards can be cost-effective for even the smallest businesses. PaymentStars’ Clear & Simple program is designed specifically to meet the needs of “micro-merchants”—businesses who process less than $25,000 in transactions annually. It makes accepting credit cards (and other types of electronic payment) easy and affordable. There are no application fees, no statement or reporting fees, no PCI compliance fees, no monthly minimums and no cancellation fees. Just low, easy-to-understand rates and the same best-in-class technology and customer service that all PaymentStars’ customers enjoy.
- How can I make all types of payments more efficient?
Payment processing efficiency highly depends on who you choose to partner with. Low rates are important, but they aren’t everything. In fact, selecting a partner based on rates alone could actually increase your overall processing costs. You need a partner like PaymentStars, one that can handle all of your payment processing needs, not just credit cards, and provide any needed software or hardware. Having one source for all of your processing simplifies support and administration. Other important considerations are service and experience. PaymentStars’ payment processing includes time and money-saving features like support for recurring and installment payments, consolidated statements, and no delays in funding American Express and Discover transactions. We also offer some of the most powerful reporting tools in the industry. These tools not only reduce account management overhead, but help you monitor internal processes and eliminate unnecessary downgrade fees—which can have a big impact on your processing costs.
Finally, PaymentStars has experience working with all types of businesses, as well as nonprofit organizations and government entities. We understand the different requirements of different industries and how to set your company up to get the best possible Interchange rates. We also have the expertise to help you integrate payment processing software with your existing CRM, POS, business management or back office accounting systems.
- How can I avoid credit card processing solicitations?
When it comes to credit card processing, it matters who you partner with. And making the choice by just comparing rates can cost you money in the long run. You also need to think about things like service, security and reliability. Can the merchant service provider (MSP) handle all of your payment processing, or just credit cards? Having one source for processing credit and debit cards, checks, gift cards and other forms of payment simplifies account management and oversight. What about response times for approvals and overall network uptime? Processing delays or network interruptions can mean lines of impatient customers at your sales counter. And if you do have a problem, does the MSP have the technical resources and expertise to get it resolved quickly and efficiently? Then there is security. Is your prospective partner PCI-DSS compliant? After all, you are going to trust them with your transaction data and your customers’ card information. Can they help you become PCI certified if you aren’t already?
So when choosing a processing partner, look for someone that offers more than just great rates. Look for someone that can provide great rates and a complete payment solution that will lower your overall processing costs—someone like PaymentStars.
- How can I better control my costs?
A recent federal law, the Durbin Amendment, has capped Interchange fees for many debit card transactions. The amendment caps fees for both PIN and signature debit transactions involving cards from issuers with $10 billion or more in assets. Cards from issuers with less than $10 billion in assets, cards issued in connection with certain government-administered payment programs, cards that access bona fide trust accounts and some re-loadable prepaid cards are exempt from cap, as are ATM transactions and three-party networks. Despite the exceptions, the Durbin Amendment will lower costs for most merchants. It also contains other important provisions, including giving merchants the ability to offer discounts for any form of payment and to set a $10 minimum limit on credit card transactions.
PaymentStars’ web-based reporting and analysis tools, MerchantConnect and MerchantConnect Premium, can also help lower your costs. MerchantConnect simplifies account management tasks, saving you time and labor. It also provides complete transaction reporting and helps you analyze chargebacks and other business metrics that can affect your overall payment processing costs. MerchantConnect Premium is designed for larger, multi-location businesses. It provides the same reporting and analysis capabilities as MerchantConnect, plus additional tools for larger companies who need to track multiple physical locations or business units.
- What is SRS?
SRS stands for Settlement Reconciliation Service. It is a one-time fee to cover the additional costs associated with new IRS reporting requirements for 2011.
A new mandate requires that, beginning with the 1099K forms sent in January 2012, every processor and sponsor bank report must merchant transaction volumes by tax ID (TIN) number. The stated purpose is to close a potential loop hole by allowing the IRS to compare merchant tax returns with volumes reported by their processor. In accordance with the reporting requirements, merchants will be charged an SRS for each TIN registered to them. This means that those who have multiple locations with individual TINs will be charged a separate SRS fee for each location.
The new IRS reporting requirements apply to every processor, which means that every processor will have to decide how to package or pass on those costs to their merchant base. According to a market survey, PaymentStars’ SRS fee is among the lowest in the industry. In addition, PaymentStars has designed our SRS reporting so that it not only meets the government requirements, but provides merchants with additional information about our business.
- What is PCI Compliance?
The major card companies established a Payment Card Industry Council (PCI) that is responsible for setting Data Security Standards (DSS) for the industry. These standards are commonly referred to as PCI-DSS. Every business that accepts credit cards must be PCI-DSS compliant. This requirement is not simply a rule of the card companies; it is supported by various state laws. Businesses who suffer a card data breach and who cannot prove they were PCI-DSS compliant may be subject to thousands or even millions of dollars in fines. PaymentStars makes the compliance process easy. Our PCI Compliance Program provides education about the PCI-DSS requirements, assistance in meeting them and certification by an accredited Qualified Security Assessor (QSA). It also provides financial protection in the event of a breach—up to up to $100,000 per incident for merchants who are certified as fully PCI-DSS compliant.
- Can I get my money faster?
PaymentStars typically funds MasterCard® and Visa transactions in about 48 hours. Businesses using our OnePoint service enjoy the same fast turnaround for American Express and Discover. If you need even faster deposits, PaymentStars offers next day funding. With this optional service, deposits will be at your bank and available for posting within 24 hours.
- What are the merchant’s expenses?
The merchant pays for the ATM, shipping, and installation, including phone and power, and processor setup of the ATM. Monthly charges absorbed by the merchant include a telephone line, maintenance and supplies, and money for the ATM.
- What happens when the merchant’s machine does not work?
ATM Express usually knows this before the merchant does and dispatches someone to fix the problem.
- What happens when someone does not get enough money?
This is extremely rare, but if this does happen, the customer should call ATM Express or their bank. The toll free phone number is on the ATM surcharge sticker.
- When does the merchant get their money back?
ATM Express deposits the merchant’s money, including the surcharge, into the merchant’s account via the Federal Reserve within 24 hours. For example, at 3:30 PM a customer takes $50 from the ATM. At 8:00 AM the next business day, when the bank opens, the $50 plus the surcharge are deposited into the merchant’s account.
- How much is the surcharge and who gets it?
The average surcharge is $3.00 to $5.00 and fluctuates slightly depending on location. Usually the owner of the ATM gets the total surcharge.
- Who keeps the ATM stocked with cash?
The merchant monitors and stocks the ATM.
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