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Questions to ask when shopping for a Merchant Account

You should know what questions to ask when you are shopping for a merchant account. Educating yourself regarding the different rates and fees involved with a merchant account is the best way to ensure that you receive the best rates and terms for your particular business. Each business is unique and might have its own particular payment acceptance profile.


  • Service Related answers
  • Blank sheet to compare rates and fees

Rate and Fee Specific Questions

  1. What is your qualified credit card processing rate?
  2. What is your debit card processing rate (swiped as credit)?
  3. What is your mid qualified rate?
  4. What is your non-qualified rate?
  5. What is the per-transaction fee?
  6. What is your batch fee?
  7. What is your monthly statement fee?
  8. What is your monthly minimum?
  9. Is there a contract?
  10. What is the termination fee?
  11. Is there an application fee?
  12. Is there a setup fee?
  13. Is there a programming fee?
  14. Is there an annual fee?
  15. What are the chargeback fees?
  16. How long until funds reach my bank account?

Terrminal Specific

  1. Do you offer a free terminal?
  2. Is there a lease, or monthly fee, for the terminal?
  3. What happens if the terminal breaks? Do you offer a replacement policy?

If Wireless

  1. What is the monthly wireless fee?
  2. Is there a wireless setup fee?
  3. Is there an additional fee per transaction since it is wireless?

If Internet

  1. Is there a gateway fee?
  2. Is there an addional fee per transaction since it is Internet based?

Debit Transactions

  1. What is the debit network access fee?
  2. Is there an addional fee per transaction for pin debit cards?

Service of your Account

  1. Do you offer supplies at a discount or for free?
  2. Do you offer a toll free support line 24/7/365?

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