What to Know Before Getting Started
Bad business credit or poor personal credit scores can be enough of a headache for business owners without the added roadblock of getting rejected for a merchant account due to their credit problems. The unfortunate truth, though, is that many major merchant services providers are hesitant to take on merchants with bad credit, often perceiving them to be too high of a risk for chargebacks and fraud. Credit problems can make starting or running a business very difficult for merchants who don’t know how to get a merchant account due to bad credit.
The good news is that some credit card processors specialize in bad credit merchant services, which means that they’re willing to take on merchants with low credit scores under certain conditions. In these cases, bad credit merchant accounts are more or less treated as high risk merchant accounts, meaning they may be subject to higher processing fees or more stringent cash reserve policies. Although this may seem like a “last resort” situation for merchants, the truth is that some merchants may benefit from working with processors who are accustomed to supplying merchant services for businesses with low credit scores.
We have compiled a list of the top bad credit merchant account providers below. Most of these providers offer poor credit merchant accounts as an extension of their high risk merchant account programs. As always, the best way to secure competitive rates for your business is to contact a few of the companies below and compare quotes and services.
Advertising Disclosure: Our unbiased articles are supported in part by helping you find highly reviewed merchant accounts. You can learn more here.
Why We Chose These Merchant Account Providers
eMerchantBroker.com is a Los Angeles-based e-commerce merchant provider that specializes in high risk processing services, including businesses with poor credit. The company’s services include an online payment gateway, ACH processing, merchant cash advance, and a chargeback dispute resolution system that helps merchants challenge chargebacks in a timely and effective manner. The company advertises that it is able to place merchants with poor credit histories, prior bankruptcies, and tax liens out on their businesses.
eMerchantBroker offers custom pricing for each merchant and enjoys a clean complaint record across all third-party review sites. The company currently maintains an “A” rating on CardPaymentOptions.com and an “A+” with the BBB.
Based in Woodland Hills, California, PaymentCloud is a merchant account provider that specializes in serving high risk business types. The company’s products and services include point-of-sale solutions, mobile phone swipers, an online payment gateway and virtual terminal, EMV-compatible terminals, and merchant cash advances. PaymentCloud is a good option for merchants who have poor credit scores.
PaymentCloud provides a dedicated account rep to all new merchants for the life of the account. The company has not received any negative complaints on consumer forums, and it customizes its pricing according to each merchant’s business type and processing history. The BBB does not maintain a profile for PaymentCloud at this time, but CPO gives the company an “A.”
Host Merchant Services
Host Merchant Services has received only positive feedback on public forums, with most reviewers singling out the company’s customer service for praise. Host offers interchange-plus pricing with no early termination fees to all of its merchants, meaning that users will enjoy the most transparent pricing model and can cancel service without penalty. The BBB gives Host an “A+” rating, and CPO also gives the company an “A+.”
The company provides a customized pricing option for its bad credit merchant accounts, which means that the terms of each contract will depend on the merchant’s specific business type, size, and time in business. However, Payline regularly receives positive reviews regarding its pricing and customer service. Our review of Payline Data awards the company an overall rating of “A+,” while the BBB gives Payline a score of “A” due to two complaints having been filed in the last three years.
Secondary Merchant Account Options
Durango Merchant Services
Based in Durango, Colorado, Durango Merchant Services offers traditional credit card processing and high risk payment processing for businesses with bad credit. The company, which was founded in 1999, provides credit and debit payments, e-commerce solutions, payment gateways, offshore banking partnerships, and eCheck processing services to high risk merchants, TMF businesses, and merchants with low credit scores.
Durango customizes its pricing for bad credit merchants depending on each merchant’s business type and processing history. The company regularly receives positive feedback regarding its sales and support staff and does not have any recent public complaints in the usual consumer protection forums. Our review of Durango Merchant Services awards the company an “A+” rating at this time, and the BBB is currently granting the company an “A+” grade.
Based in Scottsdale, Arizona, Vantage Payments is a merchant account provider that can provide both domestic and offshore merchant accounts for high risk merchant types including merchants with poor credit. The company’s products and services include remote deposit capture, European direct debit, call center services, multi-currency support, web design, and SEO assistance. Vantage Payments currently has a clean complaint record across all review websites, which is an impressive feat for a company specializing in offshore merchant accounts. Our review of Vantage gives the company an “A” rating at this time, while the BBB gives Vantage an “A+.”
Based in Kansas City, Missouri, BankCard Central is a general payment processor that is also able to serve high risk merchant types. The company’s products and services include a secure online payment gateway, recurring billing, customer validation, check acceptance, merchant cash advance, web hosting, SSL certification, and web marketing tools. The company advertises that it is able to assist businesses with “less than good” credit.
BankCard Central has a very low complaint volume relative to its merchant portfolio and time in business. The company currently has an “A” rating with CardPaymentOptions.com and an “A+” rating with the BBB.
If your business offers bad credit merchant services, please leave a comment in the comment section below or contact us through our contact page in order to get listed in this article.