Understanding How Merchant Services Can Improve Your Business
The only thing that is certain in today’s business climate is that
changes are inevitable. Whether those changes come from customers,
vendors, or the nature of the business itself—and whether they are
positive or negative changes—you need to be able to react quickly in
order to maintain, let alone improve, your business.
Merchant services providers will do better than help you maintain
your business income. Such a service can help improve your business by
ensuring that—especially where customer payments are concerned—you can
turn on that proverbial dime whenever change looms. Your customers will
be happier when you are proactive instead of reactive, and a reliable
merchant services provider can help you reach that point.
Some recent changes that your business may already have taken
advantage of involve an expansion of the type of credit cards accepted
by your business, quick refund or credit processing
for your customers, taking online orders or producing customer reward
programs—thereby building customer loyalty. If you haven’t taken
advantage of these and other proactive changes, then you might want to
consult a merchant services provider to find out how such service
offerings could improve your business.
One quick way to begin providing benefits to your customers is to
ask a merchant services provider to set up a point of sales (POS)
system for your business. A modern POS system will process customer
credit or debit card payments, as well as checks, faster than most older
payment systems can. After all, there is more to processing customer
credit card payments than simply reading a customer credit card with a
The credit card number must be verified by the credit card
company before payment will be released to the business. With real-time
verification of credit or debit cards, you know immediately that your
customer has presented you with a valid card, thereby expediting their
payment process. Getting them out the door and on their way is something
any customer can appreciate. And you are likely to get your payment
from the credit card faster, too.
This same POS system can be programmed to process customer
refunds in real-time as well. When a customer knows that he or she can
trust a business to credit their accounts as quickly as it charged them,
that customer is more likely to work with that business in the future.
This is yet another way to attract customers, thereby improving your
More and more customers are starting to order goods and services
online every day. A merchant services provider can set up an online
order and payment service for your business. This benefits you by
allowing your customers to shop with you at any time of the day or
night—whether your physical business is open or closed. The more time
your goods and services are available for purchase, the happier your
customers will be…and the better your business will be.
Securing your customers’ data is another way to improve your
business. If a customer trusts that their credit card or banking
information is safe in your hands, then that customer will be more
likely to return to your business. Merchant services providers can
provide you with point of sales systems that protect customer data from
any type of incursion or theft, ensuring that your business is PCI
(Payment Card Industry) compliant. POS systems should include both
software and hardware, and a reputable merchant services provider will make sure that yours are up to date at all times.
Providing your customers with some type of rewards program is
another way to keep them happy and coming back for more. A merchant
services provider can design a rewards program that is unique to your
type of business. Perhaps you own a hotel and you want to offer your
customers a free night’s stay for every three nights they book with you.
Or perhaps you own a restaurant and you want to offer your loyal
customers a free meal for every ten meals that they purchase. There
really are few restrictions on what can be done to design a loyalty
program, and a good merchant services provider should be creative in
coming up with something suitable for you.
Keeping prices down is one of the most common sense ways to get
customers coming back to your business. And a great way to keep prices
down is by contracting with a merchant services provider that offers
lower fees to you. Overpriced merchant account solutions or out of date
technology adds to your bottom line expenses and, most likely, you’ll
pass those expenses on to your customers. New technology might be
expensive in the short term, but in the long run it will help you to
provide your customers with more efficient services.
In these ways
and many more, merchant services can improve your business and get those
customers coming back to you time and again.