PayScape Overall Rating
Last Updated: January 27, 2014
PayScape Advisors (payscapeadvisors.com) is a merchant services provider headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia. The company is a reseller of First American Payment Systems contracts. According to a company representative, PayScape was founded in 2004. PayScape offers the usual range of financial services including credit card processing, debit card acceptance, merchant cash advances, gift card programs, payment gateways, equipment sales & leasing, and ATM services. PayScape is a registered ISO/MSP of Fifth Third Bank, Cincinnati, Ohio.
PayScape Sales & Marketing Tactics | B-
PayScape appears to primarily utilize telemarketing and email campaigns to market its services. As of this update, it is unclear whether PayScape employs independent sales agents, but the company does appear to have outside sales teams at numerous offices across the country. Generally speaking, in-house sales teams receive higher compensation and more training than independently contracted agents, resulting in fewer merchant complaints. In the case of PayScape, the company’s sales team appears to receive more complaints than is typical of an in-house staff. Multiple complainants cite nondisclosure of contract terms, misrepresentation of rates, and agent unavailability (sometimes due to the agent no longer being employed with PayScape without the merchant’s knowledge). To its credit, the company does not appear to engage in any deceptive advertising strategies in its official marketing materials.
PayScape Costs & Contract Terms | C-
According to a company representative, the standard PayScape contract is a three-year agreement that, if not cancelled after the final 90 days but before the final 30 days of the initial term, will renew for a one-year term. The contract also includes a cancellation fee of $495 ($595 total if the merchant signs up for Secur-Chex check conversion) and an annual PCI compliance fee of $124.75. Both of these fees are higher than the industry average, and many merchants report receiving less competitive transaction rates than they were initially promised. Many complainants also report surprise upon being notified of the high cancellation fee, which indicates that it isn’t typically mentioned at the point of signing. A company representative also stated that merchants may choose between an annual fee or monthly minimum fees depending on a merchant’s size. Merchants are advised to read their contracts carefully and to keep in mind that many contract terms are often negotiable.
PayScape Complaints & Service | B-
We were able to locate roughly 18 negative PayScape reviews on this website and other consumer protection websites. Some of these complaints seem to have been posted by competitors; these have been disregarded for the purposes of our review. Common themes among legitimate complainants include nondisclosure of contract terms, difficulty reaching a representative, hidden fees, and difficulty cancelling service. Approximately half of these reviews received a response or rebuttal from a company representative, and in a handful of these cases, merchants returned to explain that they were satisfied with the company’s reaction. Although this is an encouraging sign, it is our belief that a proactive and available customer service team will address these complaints effectively before they are taken public. In addition, it appears as though most of these complaints were filed in the last 12-24 months. The consistency of these complaints inclines us to award PayScape a “B-” in this category.
PayScape BBB Report | B+ (CPO Adjusted)
As of this update, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) is giving PayScape an “A” rating based on only ten complaints filed within the last 36 months. Of the total complaints, six are regarding problems with products or services, two with billing and collection disputes, and two with advertising or sales issues. Nine of these complaints have been resolved with the assistance of the BBB, and one has not been resolved to the merchant’s satisfaction despite what the BBB deems a good-faith effort by PayScape. Given these figures, we have adjusted the BBB’s rating to a “B+.” For more on why we adjust BBB ratings, please see our Rating Criteria.
According to our rating system, PayScape Advisors rates as a slightly above average merchant account provider. The company has received a fairly consistent pattern of reviews complaining about undesirable and undisclosed contract terms, but PayScape’s responses to these complaints and improvement in its BBB rating have raised its overall score.
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