Credit card acceptance is an important necessity of any modern business venture. Which merchant services provider should you choose? I’ll review some important background information first. Then, go over recommendations for top merchant services providers.
Best Merchant Services Providers/Credit Card Processors
Below, find our favorite Merchant Services Providers/Credit Card Processors. They’re grouped into categories for easy reference.
Best Overall Providers
Chase Merchant Services is one of the top direct processors. It is an excellent choice for large businesses with high transaction volumes. They are also a good choice for businesses of all sizes that want to work with a well known traditional bank. Chase Bank also provides several good business Checking solutions, with nice sign-up bonuses.
Customers seem satisfied with the bank’s service. Its overall reputation is well above par.
Dharma Merchant Services is one of the most honest and ethical card processing companies. Its rates are competitive, and its customer service is top notch. They aren’t the cheapest provider in the industry. But, Dharma will give you great value overall. The company caters to mid- to large-sized businesses, restaurants, and nonprofit organizations.
It’s one of the best for businesses with average transactions of $20 or higher.
Intuit QuickBooks Payments is an excellent choice if you already use their other finance solutions. They’re a familiar name in accounting, invoice management, and automatic bookkeeping.
Helcim is known for their honesty, low costs, and good customer support. You also won’t be stuck in long-term contracts. This full-service provider has perhaps the most transparent sales practices in the industry. Rates, fees and terms are all disclosed online. Contracts feature month-to-month billing with no early termination fee. Customer support is available online or via phone and has excellent reviews.
Stripe is one of the best online processors. Its known for its single click payments and checkout design. Stripe ranks high versus its online payment peers for its simplicity and style. The processor offers everything that small to large merchants want. They focus on empowering online businesses by providing powerful tools for developers. Stripe processes payments for many big-name merchants. Included are Lyft, Blue Apron, Pinterest, TaskRabbit and more.
PayPal Here has to be mentioned due to being such a widely used household name. They are one of the best low volume processors (less than $10k/month in credit card sales) and is a pay-as-you-go, mobile merchant services provider. It has a countertop register option as well as a mobile card reader. By no means is it meant to replace a full point-of-sale system. But, PayPal Here does offer a set of features that cover the necessities you’ll want from a mobile system, and more. If you already use PayPal, then it’s easy to get started with all your information already gathered in one place.
Square is one of the best mobile credit card processors. It makes credit card payments accessible to the average Joe. They are good for startup businesses and feature same day deposits. It’s an affordable solution that offers a wide range of features to help growing businesses. Square is also a great solution if you’re very low volume.
Payline Data is sort of known for being a good choice for high-risk businesses. They offer interchange-plus pricing, month-to-month billing, and no ETF. These three features alone make Payline stand out from the crowd, but I’m not done yet. Toss in free equipment, take away gateway fees and add in low monthly account fees. Now we got what looks like a winner. The solid customer support you get with Payline is just the icing on the cake.
Fattmerchant is a great choice for growing businesses processing more than $10,000 per month. They offer both a unique and fair subscription pricing model and an honest business style that I dig. The provider’s claim to fame is its 0% markup pricing structure, which eliminates the percentage markup over interchange. Instead, you’ll pay a single monthly subscription fee, which makes your costs both more stable and predictable. Fattmerchant also comes with glowing reviews when it comes to customer satisfaction.
National Processing, a great option for large businesses, offers competitive rates and fees with high-quality service. Standard accounts don’t come with all the trimmings, but it gets the job done and done well. Other pluses include a month-to-month option for merchants who don’t need free hardware, low-cost ACH payment processing, and an inexpensive payment gateway.
More Top Providers Worth A Look
The best credit card processors above should cover the needs of most businesses. There are many more options available on the market. The ones below are also often mentioned when making comparisons.
Payment Depot has a lot going for it: month-to-month billing, predictable costs, and superb customer support. The company also makes it easy to upgrade to a higher-level subscription plan if your business outgrows the processing limits of your current plan.
Flagship Merchant Services is a merchant account provider that was acquired by iPayment in 2012. The company is one of the first providers to offer free account setup with no application fees. It’s also one of the first to offer month-to-month contracts with no early termination fees.
National Bankcard offers a lot to its customers: a POS system that is tailored to meet merchants’ needs, competitive pricing, free hardware and live customer service 24/7/365.
I recommend Shopify for eCommerce merchants looking for dependability, ease of use and elegance, especially for those who are on a tight budget and don’t need a ton of advanced functionality. Not totally convinced? Sign up for the 14-day free trial and take Shopify on a test drive.
PayHub features an integrated payments platform designed for eCommerce as its primary product. While its Virtual Hub and Flat Pricing Plan are all you need as an eCommerce-only merchant, traditional retailers will need more functional features. That means a full-blown merchant account with its sibling company, SignaPay.
If you’re looking for a credit card processor that offers a full-service merchant account, CDGcommerce is one of the best and affordable options for small- to mid-sized businesses. The provider does not charge gateway fees, PCI compliance fees or monthly minimums, so account maintenance fees will always be low and predictable. What’s more, equipment is provided for “free.” All you have to do is pay a reasonable annual insurance fee to maintain it.
I can’t recommend Braintree enough, especially for those that need developer tools and other advanced features beyond payment processing at no additional cost. Although not the cheapest rates in the industry, I think Braintree gives good services at a decent price. For an eCommerce or mobile merchant, you won’t find much better providers. Its products and services have a high degree of customizability which is attractive to Internet-based, tech-driven merchants.
Authorize.net features an advanced fraud detection suite (AFDS) which is included for free with your account. It’s made up of thirteen filters that you can customize to help flag and block seemingly fraudulent transactions. AFDS helps to prevent fraud-related inventory loss and reduces chargeback incidents.
If you like what Authorize.net has to offer, I recommend you go through one of its resellers instead of directly through the company. The majority of resellers will waive the $49 account set up fee and have discounted monthly fees as well as processing rates.
Doesn’t it seem like paper receipts should be a thing of the past? Not only is it wasteful, but paper also degrades. Storing, organizing and retrieving paper documents is a pain. What’s more, receipt paper is potentially toxic to humans and the environment because it’s coated in BPA. Going paperless is undoubtedly the way of the future.
If you’re looking to get organized and increase efficiency, PayJunction is the way to go. You’ll reduce risk, widen customer payment options, and eliminate the need for a traditional credit card terminal with its paperless system, all while saving with competitive rates and with the help of exceptional customer service. PayJunction helps you streamline your business processes to keep you, your staff and your customers happy.
As you might guess, Amazon Pay sits at the top of this category. With this service, customers can complete purchases, make donations and set up recurring payments, by making payments through their Amazon account. Like PayPal, customers won’t have to leave your website to complete a payment.
Whether you’re a fundraiser who uses GoFundMe and needs a way to accept credit cards, or you need to collect payment from conference attendees via Constant Contact, WePay can help you do just that. The company offers payment facilitating capabilities that you can embed inside these platforms. WePay also provides self-branded payment solutions within each software platform, also known as “white label” payments.
In summary, there’s no one best credit card processor that will fit the needs of all businesses. For our recommendations, I gathered the best choices for various businesses categories. Then, narrowed them down more.
Hopefully, this guide is a good starting point in your search. Your business needs will likely change, and so may your choice of processor.
|OFFER LINK||OFFER||OUR REVIEW|
|Chase Total Business Checking®||$300 Cash||Review|
|Chase Premier Plus Checking℠||$300 Cash||Review|
|Chase Total Checking®||$200 Cash||Review|
|Bank of America Checking||$100 Cash||Review|
|TD Bank Beyond Checking||$300 Cash||Review|
|HSBC Premier Checking||$450 Cash||Review|
|HSBC Premier Checking||Up To $600||Review|
|HSBC Advance Checking||$200 Cash||Review|
|HSBC Advance Checking||Up To $240||Review|
|You Invest℠ by J.P. Morgan||Up To $725||Review|
|Ally Invest||Up To $3,500||Review|
|Betterment||1 Year Free||Review|