Whether your business is already accepting credit cards, or if you’re considering it, here are important money-saving tips you can use to get the most out of your electronic payment processing.
The first thing you should know is that there are a series of what are called interchange levels that affect the cost of a charge at every stage, depending on a number of factors—including the type of card presented, specific information contained in the transaction, and how and when the transaction is processed.
Here are a few tips on how you can prevent being assessed higher processing fees:
Swipe the card, key-entered transactions are charged at higher rates
Obtain a valid authorization from your Clover Station, terminal or register
Provide all original electronic authorization information at the time of settlement
Settle transactions daily
If you are key-entering often, clean your terminal’s magnetic-stripe reader
For card-not-present transactions, ask the customer for the card expiration date and include it in the authorization request
Use fraud prevention tools such as Address Verification Service
Reducing chargebacks is another way to save money. A chargeback is a reversal of a payment card transaction that usually occurs when a consumer file disputes with their bank or card provider.
Following these tips can help you reduce chargebacks:
Keep copies of your sales transactions and respond to retrieval requests by sending sales draft copies immediately
To avoid duplicate processing, reconcile your batches daily and ensure that the register/terminal totals match daily receipts
A timely sales slip submission, along with a written explanation of the validity of the charge, will be needed to try to reverse a chargeback when a customer denies making or authorizing a transaction
To be valid, the sales slip must include both a cardholder signature and the card account obtained directly from an imprint of the card itself or from electronically reading the magnetic stripe
Upon swiping a card, if the card number does not match the number embossed on the face of the card, ask for a different form of payment
Credits must be processed correctly and on time
Authorize all transactions, and accurately record the approval code on the sales slip
Never process a transaction on a card prior to, or after, the valid date
Sales transactions must not be processed prior to delivery of the product purchased. Proof of delivery, signed by the cardholder, should be obtained for every credit card transaction in which the merchandise or service is not delivered immediately at the point-of-sale
Ensure that your customers are aware of your return policy at the time of purchase. Stick to your policy. Display the policy at the point-of-sale and print it on your sales slips, directly above the cardholder signature
Preventing fraud is one more way you can keep costs down. Here are some telltale signs that can tip you off to potential fraud. Watch for customers who; purchase a large amount of merchandise without regard to size, style, color or price; don’t ask questions on major purchases; try to distract or rush you during the sale; make purchases and leave the store but then return to make additional purchases; make large purchases just after the business has opened or as it is closing and refuse free delivery for large items. It is also recommended that you keep your terminals up to date to avoid any compliance issues.