At One Payment, we love helping merchants find the best ways to run their business on a day-to-day basis. In this article, we will provide you with tips on what to look for in a payment processor contract!

The Basics

So, you want to accept credit cards? Great! Before you sign the first contract you see, there’s a little bit of background on processors that you need to know. Before you can even process a credit card, you’ll have to enter into a contract with a processor. These contracts are not the simplest things in the world, as you will be taking on a great deal of financial liability.

What to Look for

Before you get started, know that there are approximately 250 companies that offer processing services in the United States. Each typical processing agreement is 25,000 words, so be aware that this decision will take a lot of time and research on your part!

When you’re looking at a contract, it’s easy to become overwhelmed, but pick a few things to focus on for a starting point. First, security must be at the forefront of your decision. If the potential processing company isn’t PCI compliant, keep looking. Without compliance, you run a huge risk in the event of a fraudulent transaction.

It’s not uncommon for processing firms to have their own rules and guidelines, but make sure that you’re not agreeing to pay for services that you have no intention of using. You could easily end up paying way more for services that you don’t need, which would be a poor decision to make for your business.

EMV compliance should be at the top of your list as well. When you’re reading over potential contracts, you must inquire as to EMV compliance requirements.

Check Your Security!

Another huge talking point needs to be what happens in the event of a data security breach. Will this company help you, or will you be left on your own? Phrases such as “immediate notification” or “notification within 48 hours of an incident” should catch your attention, as you must look at what is practical given the situation.

While the list goes on and on, if you keep these main points at the top of your list, you’ll be well on your way to negotiating a great contract in no time!