A merchant service provider (MSP) is an individual or company that processes credit card and electronic check transactions for business customers. Merchant service providers offer various processing and payment solutions and must be approved to provide services by each specific credit card brand.
Each merchant service provider offers a different package of services for different costs, so when choosing between them, it is important to take into account the following factors:
The main services that you will need.
As a general rule, what is most important for small businesses are good customer service and competitive rates. Ensure that the MSP has convenient customer support hours and can routinely answer your questions thoroughly so you don’t have to worry about transaction glitches when you’re operating on a tight deadline.
The software integration tools that are required for your company’s accounting program.
Some MSPs are able to integrate with different accounting platforms while others can only support one or two specific software applications, so before signing with a merchant service provider make sure they have the capabilities necessary to integrate with your system.
The payment and processing gateways are available to you with each MSP plan.
Payment gateways are integral to any e-commerce business that needs to take customer payments online, and there is a range of different options depending on the merchant service provider. It’s best to ask as many questions as possible to ensure you are choosing the best one for your business.
The setup fees, monthly service fees, and other hidden fees are involved with each plan.
Always make sure to read through all of the fine print associated with an MSP’s terms and conditions before signing any contracts or agreements because some plans charge excessively high setup fees, monthly fees, and other hidden charges that can become too expensive for your business to maintain.