How to Get a High-Risk Merchant Account
If you have a business that has been designated a high-risk business for merchant services, it can be somewhat more difficult to obtain payment processing services. Unfortunately, when doing business in today’s local and global marketplace you’re missing out on a huge piece of the pie by being unable to process credit cards. The good news is that you can get the credit card processing capabilities your business needs—if you know where to look.
Securing a Payment Processor is Harder for High-Risk Business Owners
Harder. But not impossible. Some providers, like Square, PayPal, banks, and the majority of tier one merchant services providers explicitly prohibit high-risk businesses. Even if you are approved initially, they will likely terminate your account quickly afterward.
You may also face greater scrutiny as a high-risk business. This means you may have to spend extra time in the application process, face strict limits on things like the number of transactions allowed each month, and may even be subjected to higher fees.
Working with payment processing partners that specialize in high-risk business needs is your best way to go. Especially if you’re working with an organization that has a reputation for excellence, fairness, and transparency.
Watch for These Things When Choosing a High Risk Merchant Account Services Provider
The temptation may be to turn to overseas processors who have more lenient requirements. However, that could be devastating to your business as they also have less government oversight and may not be regulated at all. These are the things you need to be on the lookout for when seeking a payment processor for your high-risk business:
Be wary of higher fees. While you should expect some higher fees, be aware of how high the fees are and compare your options before deciding.
Hidden Fees. Many underhanded payment processors hide things in the contract, such as outrageous termination fees, reserves that will cripple cash flow for your business, and offer little, if any, customer support. So be sure to read your contract.
Customer Support. You want to work with a provider that offers live support, 24/7, where you can talk to an actual person whenever problems arise with your payment processing equipment or if you have need of technical assistance.
Coming Clean with a Potential Payment Processing Partner
It can be difficult to come clean about your status as a high-risk merchant account. It feels like a scarlet letter attached to your business. However, honesty is the best policy. Be upfront and honest with your potential partner about your situation, your business, and what products you sell. If you’re in one of the high-risk industries and need credit card processing for vape shops, for example, be honest! You earn goodwill with your processor and you find out from the start if they can work with you—saving you both time and energy.
Then, if they aren’t able to work with you, you can move on to locate one who can. Eventually you will find the perfect partnership for your business needs. It’s like buying shoes. It’s better to shop around for the perfect fit than to find out after the fact that the fit cramps your style, limits your opportunities, and costs far more than it’s worth.
Contact Zenti today to learn more about the wide range of merchant products and services we offer to help you with all your payment processing needs on a month-to-month basis with no long-term commitments. It’s time to take your business into the future, regardless of a high risk designation. Let us work with you to come up with a plan that works for you while offering transparent billing practices that are easy to understand.