Whats Your Rate?

This is often the first question a business owner will ask. We find there are two main reasons for this:

A) There is a “cut to the chase” mentality when dealing with merchant services. Business owners are fed up with sales people wasting their time.

B) Savings through better rates is the pitch of almost every sales rep in this industry.

Both of these above sentiments are completely justified — they are the unfortunate byproduct of the way large processing institutions treat merchants.

Let’s be candid with ourselves for a moment…do you really grasp processing rates? I mean, really understand them? We consistently find the majority of businesses are asking a question to which they will not understand the answer. The fault here is not in the question, but the nature of the industry – processors train merchants to ask this question, making it some sort of bench mark for value.

The problem with this question is, every sales rep will give a different answer. Rest assured, the answer will be as appealing as humanly possible. This answer can also mean many different things.

To the left are the pricing details for Quickbooks. This is their standard pricing for every merchant, regardless of business type. Again, take note that the advertised “rate” does not truly apply to all transactions. In fact, if you have a “Non-Qualifying” transaction (Qualifying/Non is determined at their sole discretion), you will pay over twice the advertised rate.

Not some, but most processors operate off programs similar to this – they are money makers. For this reason, leading with, “what’s your rate,” can often be counter intuitive in this industry.

Advice: Don’t talk rate until you find a processor you trust. No matter how “good” the rate, if they aren’t trustworthy, the rate won’t stick. Once you have found a potentially honorable processing partner, have them explain their costs.