How To Accept Credit Cards
Anyone who is planning on starting a new business needs to learn how to accept credit cards. It's now more common for a customer to use a debit or credit card than cash. If you don't accept credit cards it could cause your business to miss out on valuable sales.
- Find a merchant services company. The most involved part of learning how to accept credit cards is choosing a merchant services provider to work with. There are so many that it can be overwhelming. Narrow your list down to three or four and compare their packages.
- Decide what type of merchant service solution you need. There are several different types of ways to accept credit cards, including online terminals, swiping terminals (common for retail stores), and even cell phone merchant accounts that allow you to accept credit cards by typing in the number over a phone when you're on the road.
- Apply for an account. Filling out an application to accept credit cards is similar to what is asked when you open a new bank account. You need to provide your social security number and basic information about the owner so that the service can run a credit check.
- Buy the equipment you need to accept credit cards. If you're signing up for a merchant account to accept credit cards in a brick and mortar store, you have to order a credit card swiping machine that prints receipts. In some cases you may also need a manual credit card swiper and a plate that contains information about your merchant account. Wait for your equipment to arrive in the mail, program the terminal according to the merchant services provider's instructions, and then connect the machine to a phone line to start accepting credit cards.