Phone Swipe Overall Rating
Phone Swipe Overview
Phone Swipe (phoneswipe.com) is a mobile processing service provided by North American Bancard. Phone Swipe used to be primarily marketed through Phone Swipe.com, but it seems that Phone Swipe has relaunched as a general mobile payments review website. Created in 2007, Phone Swipe allows merchants and individuals to accept credit and debit card payments via their Android, Apple, or Blackberry phone, using a small card reading device. Phone Swipe also offers referral programs, tax and tip calculation, and more. Phone Swipe is a registered ISO/MSP for HSBC Bank USA, National Association, in Buffalo, New York, and is located at 111 North Harbor Blvd. #2, Fullerton, California 92832.
Phone Swipe Sales & Marketing Tactics | B+
Phone Swipe appears to primarily market its service through its website and online promotion. At this time, the company does not appear to employ independent sales agents. We are currently able to locate a handful of Phone Swipe reviews that describe nondisclosure of fees by the company’s sales team. The Phone Swipe website advertises a swiped transaction fee of 2.70% and a keyed transaction fee of 3.49% plus $0.19, and there are no merchant complaints online that challenge these rate quotes, although vaguely described “hidden fees” have been mentioned in complaints.
The Phone Swipe website advertises a free terminal placement program for merchants who process over $10,000 per month. This $10,000 minimum is only described in the fine print of the page, and there is no mention anywhere of the additional costs listed in this full version of the company’s terminal placement agreement. The full agreement mentions that merchants whose monthly volume falls below $10,000 will be subject to monthly fees, which range from $19 to $99, and all merchants in the program will be charged an annual software license fee of $79. Failure to mention this information on the company’s website, which includes prominently placed signup forms, seems to be a slightly misleading sales tactic.
Phone Swipe Costs & Contract Terms | B
Phone Swipe offers a service that is similar to Square and other smartphone-compatible processors. The company advertises no long-term service agreements, early termination fees, PCI Compliance fees, or minimum monthly fees, but we have seen complaints alleging that the company actually does charge monthly minimum fees and an early termination fee. All swiped transactions are processed at 2.69%, and all card-not-present transactions are processed at 3.49% plus $0.19. Merchants should determine which type of transaction they are more likely to require when deciding whether to use Phone Swipe.
The majority of the complaints filed against Phone Swipe appear to be the product of the company’s fraud prevention policies. Like Square, Phone Swipe reserves the right to withhold merchant funds at its discretion to establish a cash reserve. Some merchants report surprise upon learning that a large portion of their payments have been withheld without notification, and they further express difficulty resolving the issue in a timely fashion through Phone Swipe’s customer service department. The Phone Swipe website claims that it differentiates itself from Square by having an automated underwriting process (as opposed to Square’s lack of underwriting), but the service still seems to be plagued by the same complaints.
Phone Swipe Complaints & Service | B
We are currently able to locate over 10 Phone Swipe complaints on this and other consumer protection websites, some of which accuse the service of being a ripoff or a scam. Common complaints include delayed or withheld funds, poor customer service, undisclosed fees, and problems with the app itself related to a software update. The two most common complaints of delayed payment and poor customer service tend to be mentioned in the same complaints, as merchants report great difficulty reaching representatives and having their funds delivered to them in a timely fashion. The company’s website offers a dedicated phone support number and email address, and these lines appear to be serviced by North American Bancard.
Phone Swipe BBB Report | A- (CPO Adjusted)
As of this update, Phone Swipe is not an accredited business with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). The company holds a “C+” rating and has had three complaints filed against it in the last 36 months. All three were filed in relation to problems with the company’s product or service, and all but one have been resolved to the complainant’s satisfaction. The BBB cites a lack of sufficient background information on Phone Swipe as the primary factor lowering its score. Given the company’s low complaint total and performance in other categories of this review, we have adjusted the BBB’s rating to an “A-.”
Due mostly to its affiliation with North American Bancard, Phone Swipe rates as an average merchant services provider according to our rating system. The company’s credit card processing service is showing a low complaint total at this time, and it appears that the most persistent issues are the company’s cash reserve policy and its customer service apparatus.
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