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How Does Free Credit Card Processing Work, and What's the Catch?

How Does Free Credit Card Processing Work, and What's the Catch?

How Does Free Credit Card Processing Work, and What's the Catch?

Smaller companies looking for credit card processors will probably find vendors offering no-fee or low-fee processing. Doesn't that sound attractive? There is no upfront cost. Some don't even charge for terminals, and there's no annoying monthly fee.

It is really attractive. However, the old adage "nothing ever comes for free" is undoubtedly running through your mind, and it's worth thinking, "What's the catch?"

Commercial firms cannot exist solely for the purpose of providing excellent service. Each payment processing solution provider must cover its own costs, and profit must be generated in some way. So, how can you take credit card payments without any credit card charges?

Let's break down the notion of no-fee processing, how it works, and where the catch might be.

What is the definition of free credit card processing?

The foregoing all addresses the free credit card processing message that many firms are advertising to lure financially conservative company owners.

This solution is not new at all. Instead, it's a marketing update on a product that most credit card processors already offer: credit card surcharges.

It doesn't have the same ring as "free," but credit card surcharging allows retailers to pay credit card processing fees to customers. 

Instead of paying the interchange cost on the business account, the premium is charged to the consumer who uses their credit card.

Processing is often free for the firm, but there are additional costs to consider, such as terminal fees, monthly service fees, and PCI compliance fees.

Surcharge vs No-fee Credit Card Processing

Essentially the same thing, free credit card processing can be viewed as a marketable bundle that capitalizes on the surcharge processing option that all suppliers previously had.

Surcharging can potentially be set up with any regular CPU. However, there will be certain setup activities that you will need to complete. 

Your processor will reconfigure the terminal so that the overload appears as a separate line item in the invoicing application. 

They will also ensure that this addition specifically applies to credit card transactions.

Businesses will then be responsible for notifying credit card companies—Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover—of the change and for securing signs informing your company's customers.

Credit card processors with no fees take this notion a step further. They handle everything including setup, programming the POS system, contacting credit card companies, and filling out all the tough paperwork. The only thing left for businesses is to hang their signage in the store.

Credit card processing costs and surcharges are disclosed

The essential requirements are that customers must be aware that you are adding surcharge charges, and that they appear as a separate item on their receipts. MasterCard and Visa both have signage requirements for retailers. 

It should be installed at all main entrances and check-out places. Customers will be notified via entry signs that your business charges a surcharge, and a sales sign will state how much each transaction costs.

Similar restrictions also apply to e-commerce enterprises and their virtual terminals. Customers should be informed that surcharge costs apply when using a credit card for online payment on a website that includes credit card brands.

Red Flags of No-fee Payment Processors

There are some unscrupulous no-fee payment processors on the market, but not all of them are. They seem like the most attractive on the surface, but if it sounds too good to be true, you're probably dealing with a shady source.

Final call

There are many ways to reduce credit card processing costs. This may be a no-fee credit card solution, such as a Stax surcharge, or it may be looking for the cheapest rates with a standard processor. 

Consider both options, and no matter what you choose, NoFeePro has you covered. To meet all your payment processing needs, we provide transparent, fair, regulatory, and legally compliant solutions.

Also read: 5 Reasons Why You Should Not Use A Debit Card

Also read: Citi Prestige Credit Card Review



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