Best Merchant Accounts for Consultants

Here is the illustration of two business consultants engaged in a discussion in a modern office setting.

Consultants Need Agile Payment Processing

As a consultant, your job is to help organizations reach their potential. Increasing efficiency and adopting better business practices is essential, but it's also key to minimize operating costs and eliminate wasteful programs. These same principles apply when it comes to choosing a merchant account. You'll want to look for time-saving services like billing automation, client management, and online marketing tools, and you'll want to avoid providers that lock you into long-term agreements, hide their fees, and provide inadequate customer service. But how to tell which providers are best for you?

The following list of best merchant accounts for consultants should help you narrow your search for a payment processor. The companies on this list offer invoicing tools, accounting integration, mobile payment apps, virtual terminals, and other features that make it easier for you to get paid. More importantly, though, they are also known to provide low-commitment contracts with transparent pricing and quality customer service. To find the right provider for your consulting business, be sure to research each processor's products and features and compare pricing and terms.

How to Select the Best Consultant Credit Card Processor

Below are some general considerations that someone running a consulting business in the USA should consider when selecting a credit card processor.

Credit Card Processing Fees and Rates

Look for a credit card processor that offers competitive rates and fees. The fees charged by credit card processors typically include a percentage of each transaction, a per-transaction fee, and sometimes a monthly fee. Some processors may also charge additional fees for things like chargebacks or PCI compliance.

Security and Compliance

Make sure that the credit card processor you choose is compliant with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) and takes security seriously. PCI compliance helps protect your clients' credit card information and reduces your liability in the event of a data breach.

Integration with Other Software

Consider whether the credit card processor integrates with any other software you use for your consulting business, such as invoicing or accounting software. Integration can help streamline your payment processing and reduce manual data entry.

Excellent Customer Support

Look for a credit card processor that offers reliable customer support, including phone, email, and chat support. This is important in case you encounter any issues or have questions about your account.

Reputation and Reviews

Research the credit card processor's reputation and read reviews from other consulting businesses and our review on this website. Simply search for the processor in the search bar at that top of this page. Look for processors with a solid reputation for providing reliable payment processing services and good customer support.

Payment Processing Options

Make sure the credit card processor offers payment processing options that suit your consulting business needs. For example, some processors may offer virtual terminal services, which allow you to process credit card payments over the phone or via email.

Merchant Account Contract Terms

Be sure to read and understand the credit card processor's contract terms, including any cancellation fees, processing limits, or other terms that may impact your business.

It's important to evaluate your own business needs and priorities when choosing credit card processing for your consulting business. Do some research, compare rates and features, and check out our recommendations below.

Best Merchant Services for Consultants

helcim logo

#1 Helcim

Top Rated for Consultant Credit Card Processing

Helcim is a merchant account provider headquartered in Alberta, Canada, and Seattle, Washington. The company provides merchant services and credit card processing to both U.S. and Canadian businesses. Helcim offers traditional payment processing equipment as well as a feature suite called “Helcim Commerce,” which is intended to serve as an all-in-one business management solution for merchants across all of their sales channels.

Helcim: The Top Credit Card Processing Service for Consultants

As a consultant, accepting credit card payments from your clients is crucial to keep your business running smoothly. However, finding the right credit card processing service can be a daunting task, especially when there are so many options available. If you're looking for a reliable and efficient credit card processing service, then Helcim is the perfect choice for you.

Secure Payment Processing

Helcim ensures that your clients' payments are processed securely and efficiently. Helcim is PCI compliant, which means that it meets the security standards set by the Payment Card Industry. Additionally, Helcim uses end-to-end encryption to protect your clients' sensitive data, such as credit card numbers and personal information, from being compromised.

Customizable Payment Solutions

Helcim understands that every business has unique needs, and therefore, it offers customizable payment solutions. As a consultant, you can customize your payment processing to suit your business requirements. You can choose from a range of payment options, including online payments, mobile payments, and invoicing. Helcim also allows you to customize the look and feel of your payment page to match your brand.

Transparent Pricing

Helcim offers transparent pricing with no hidden fees. As a consultant, you need to keep track of your expenses, and with Helcim, you can do that easily. Helcim's pricing is simple and easy to understand, with no monthly fees or cancellation fees. You only pay for what you use, which means that you can save money on unnecessary charges.

Helcim is the top credit card processing service for consultants. Its secure payment processing, customizable payment solutions, and transparent pricing make it the perfect choice for business owners who sell consulting services and need to accept credit card payments from customers. With Helcim, you can rest assured that your clients' payments are safe and that you have the flexibility to customize your payment processing to suit your business needs.

Host Merchant Services logo

Host Merchant Services

Top Rated for Consultant Merchant Services

Host Merchant Services is a Newark, Delaware-based merchant account provider that is well-suited for independent consultants and consulting firms. The company's products and services include point-of-sale solutions for contractors, online marketing tools, mobile credit card processing, an online payment gateway and virtual terminal, and merchant cash advance. Host Merchant Services specializes in e-commerce businesses and provides a free website and business-class email address to interested merchants. Host is an ideal option for consultants who would like to build a strong web presence at a reasonable cost.

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+.”

Why Host Merchant Services is a Great Choice for Consultant Payment Processing

Consulting services are highly sought after, and accepting credit card payments is crucial for businesses to stay competitive. As a business owner offering consulting services, you need a payment processing service that is reliable, efficient, and cost-effective. Host Merchant Services is an excellent option for consultant payment processing, providing businesses with a comprehensive payment processing solution that meets all their needs.

No Hidden Fees

One of the main reasons why Host Merchant Services is a great choice for consultant payment processing is its transparent pricing structure. With Host Merchant Services, you can expect straightforward pricing without hidden fees, making it easier to budget and plan for your payment processing expenses. This level of transparency is especially crucial for small businesses, where every dollar counts.

Excellent Customer Support

Another reason why Host Merchant Services is a good option for consultant payment processing is its excellent customer support. As a consultant, you need to focus on providing top-quality services to your clients, and the last thing you want to worry about is payment processing issues. Host Merchant Services has a dedicated support team that is available 24/7 to answer any questions or concerns you may have. This level of support gives you peace of mind, knowing that you can always rely on someone to help you if an issue arises.

Flexible and Versatile Payment Solutions

Host Merchant Services offers a wide range of payment processing options that are tailored to the needs of small businesses. As a consultant, you may need to accept payments online, over the phone, or in-person. Host Merchant Services has all the tools you need to accept payments from your clients in the way that is most convenient for them. This flexibility and versatility make Host Merchant Services an excellent choice for businesses of all sizes.

Host Merchant Services is a reliable, efficient, and cost-effective payment processing solution for businesses offering consulting services. With transparent pricing, excellent customer support, and a wide range of payment processing options, Host Merchant Services can help you streamline your payment processing and focus on providing high-quality consulting services to your clients.

For more information, visit the Host Merchant Services website or call (888) 727-4538.

PaymentCloud Logo


Top Pick for Consultant Merchant Services

Based in Woodland Hills, California, PaymentCloud is a merchant account provider that specializes in serving standard to 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. This allows merchants to charge online or to bill for recurring services with invoices that detail the services they provide. For those reasons, PaymentCloud is a good option for consultants.

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.”

Why PaymentCloud is an Ideal Credit Card Processing Service for Consultants

If you are a consultant, you need a reliable credit card processing service that can handle your unique needs. PaymentCloud is the perfect solution for consultants who want to accept credit card payments from their clients. PaymentCloud offers a range of features and benefits that make it the ideal choice for consultant payment processing.

Specializes in High-Risk Merchant Accounts

One of the main benefits of PaymentCloud is that it specializes in high-risk merchant accounts. As a consultant, you may be considered high-risk because of the nature of your business. However, PaymentCloud understands the unique needs of consultants and offers customized solutions that cater to your specific needs. This means you can accept credit card payments from your clients without worrying about the risk of chargebacks or fraud.

User-Friendly Interface

Another great feature of PaymentCloud is its user-friendly interface. The platform is easy to navigate, even if you are not tech-savvy. This means you can quickly set up your account and start accepting credit card payments from your clients. PaymentCloud also offers excellent customer support to help you navigate any issues you may encounter along the way.

Affordable Pricing Plans

PaymentCloud also offers competitive pricing and transparent fees. As a consultant, you want to keep your expenses low while maximizing your profits. PaymentCloud offers affordable pricing plans with no hidden fees or long-term contracts. This means you can accept credit card payments from your clients without worrying about additional costs eating into your profits.

PaymentCloud is the best credit card processing service for consultant payment processing. With its high-risk merchant account specialization, user-friendly interface, excellent customer support, and transparent pricing, PaymentCloud is the perfect solution for consultants who want to accept credit card payments from their clients. Sign up today and start accepting credit card payments with ease.

For more information, visit the PaymentCloud website or call (888) 506-7859.

cdg commerce logo

CDG Commerce

Highly Rated Credit Card Processing Service for Consultants

Located in Chesapeake, Virginia, CDG Commerce is another reliable option for consulting firms of all sizes and types. CDG has been privately owned since 1998 and offers a proprietary online payment gateway (as well as a discount on Authorize.Net's payment gateway), a virtual terminal, QuickBooks integration, mobile phone processing, sales reporting, security breach protection, and vulnerability scanning. CDG Commerce is ideal for organizations that require a simple, low-cost, fully integrated processing solution across all payment channels.

CDG Commerce only charges a low, fixed fee per transaction and offers competitive contractual terms, including no annual fees, monthly minimums, or termination fees. CDG also offers next-day funding to most business types. CDG has earned an “A+” rating in our review as well as an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau.

Why CDG Commerce is a Top Choice for Consultant Payment Processing

As a small business owner offering consulting services, it is essential to have a reliable payment processing system to accept credit card payments from clients. CDG Commerce is a payment processing company that specializes in providing payment solutions for small businesses. Here are a few reasons why CDG Commerce is an excellent option for consultant payment processing.

Competitive Rates

CDG Commerce offers some of the most competitive rates in the payment processing industry. As a small business owner, you want to maximize your profits, and CDG Commerce's low transaction fees and interchange plus pricing model can help you do just that. With CDG Commerce, you can accept all major credit cards, including Visa, Mastercard, and American Express, at a cost-effective rate.

Customizable Payment Solutions

Every business has unique payment processing needs, and CDG Commerce understands that. They offer customizable payment solutions to fit your business's specific needs. Whether you need a point-of-sale system, an online payment gateway, or a virtual terminal, CDG Commerce has a solution that can work for you.

Security and Fraud Prevention

Security is a top concern for businesses that accept credit card payments, and CDG Commerce takes this seriously. They use advanced security measures, such as PCI-compliant technology, to protect your business and your clients' sensitive information. They also offer fraud prevention tools to help you detect and prevent fraudulent transactions.

Excellent Customer Support

CDG Commerce is known for its excellent customer support. Their team of payment experts is available 24/7 to answer your questions and help you with any payment processing issues you may encounter. With CDG Commerce, you can have peace of mind knowing that you have a reliable payment processing partner that has your back.

CDG Commerce is an excellent option for consultant payment processing. With competitive rates, customizable payment solutions, advanced security measures, and excellent customer support, CDG Commerce can help your business thrive.

For more information, see the CDG Commerce website or call (888) 393-1079.

Additional Options

National Processing Company Logo

National Processing

National Processing offers several small business processing options and can assist consultants in finding the right mobile POS or virtual terminal for their needs. The company offers two pricing options: one an interchange-plus program or a “zero-fee” program, both of which offer competitively priced rates.

National Processing has a clean reputation with just one complaint filed in the last three years, which is not concerning in nature. Our independent review finds National Processing to be a solid option for most consultants.

National Processing: An Excellent Credit Card Processing Service for Consultants

National Processing is a credit card processing service that offers payment processing solutions to small businesses, including those that sell consulting services. They provide secure and efficient payment processing services that can help businesses accept credit card payments from clients seamlessly.

User-Friendly Payment Processing Solutions

National Processing has designed their payment processing solutions to cater to the specific needs of small businesses, including consulting businesses. Their payment processing services include mobile payment processing and online payment processing, among others. Their system is user-friendly and straightforward, allowing businesses to accept payments from clients with ease.

Competitive Pricing Model

National Processing offers competitive pricing, making their payment processing services an affordable option for small businesses. By using their payment processing services, businesses can focus on their core operations while leaving payment processing to National Processing.

National Processing is a reliable option for businesses that need to accept credit card payments from clients. Their payment processing solutions are tailored to the needs of small businesses, and their commitment to providing excellent customer service ensures that businesses can rely on their services to facilitate their payment processing needs.

For more information, see the National Processing website or call (385) 777-1235.

Shopify Logo
Shopify Logo


Shopify is primarily known as an e-commerce platform for online merchants, but the company also offers a point-of-sale software solution for iPad and iPhone. The Shopify POS app can accept cards via a headphone jack card swiper, or a $129 EMV reader and includes features like inventory syncing with a web store, emailed receipts, automatic tax calculations, basic email marketing, and in-store refunds. This flexibility makes Shopify an excellent option for consultants.

The Shopify payment service can also be paired with a Shopify online store, which comes with numerous customization options. Shopify POS is a great fit for consultants who would like to accept payments on-site using their phones as well as through online billing. Shopify has an “A+” rating with the BBB, and we give it an “A+” rating as well.

Why Shopify is a Great Payment Processing Option for Consultants

For small business owners selling consulting services, accepting credit card payments is essential for success. Shopify is a top payment processing option that can help these business owners streamline their payment processes and grow their business. Here are a few reasons why Shopify is a great choice for consultants:

Seamless Integration with Your Website

Shopify's payment processing solution integrates seamlessly with your website, making it easy for customers to pay for your consulting services without ever leaving your site. This helps improve the customer experience and increase conversions, as customers are more likely to complete a purchase if the payment process is quick and straightforward.

Secure Payment Processing

As a consultant, you're likely dealing with sensitive information, such as client data and payment information. Shopify takes payment security seriously and offers top-notch security features, including PCI compliance, fraud detection, and chargeback prevention. This means that your clients' payment information is protected, and you can rest easy knowing that your payment processing is secure.

Flexible Payment Options

Shopify offers a wide range of payment options, including credit cards, PayPal, Apple Pay, and more. This flexibility allows you to cater to your clients' payment preferences, making it more likely that they will complete a purchase. Additionally, Shopify offers competitive rates, with no hidden fees or long-term contracts, making it an affordable payment processing option for consultants.

If you're a consultant looking for a reliable and secure payment processing option, Shopify is a great choice. With its seamless website integration, top-notch security features, and flexible payment options, you can rest assured that your payment processing needs are taken care of, so you can focus on growing your consulting business.

For more information, visit the Shopify website or call (888) 746-7439.

Frequently Asked Questions: Consultants Credit Card Processing

What is a merchant account?

A merchant account is a type of bank account that allows businesses to accept payments in multiple ways, typically debit or credit cards. It acts as an intermediary, holding funds from card transactions until they are transferred into the business's bank account.

Why do consultants need a merchant account?

Consultants, like other professionals, often require flexibility in accepting payments for their services. A merchant account allows them to accept a variety of payment options, such as credit and debit cards or mobile payments, making it easier for their clients to pay for services.

What should consultants consider when choosing a merchant account?

Consultants should consider factors such as the fee structure (transaction fees, monthly fees, setup fees), the types of payments accepted, the ease of use and integration with existing systems, customer service, and the reputability of the provider.

How can a consultant find the best merchant accounts for their needs?

They can start by identifying their specific needs (such as the volume of transactions, types of payments they want to accept, etc.) and then researching different providers. Comparison websites can be useful for this. It's also beneficial to read reviews and get recommendations from other consultants in their industry.

Are there any specific merchant accounts recommended for consultants?

The best merchant account for consultants will depend on their specific needs. Some popular choices among professionals include Square, PayPal, Stripe, and, but the ideal option can vary based on factors like the size of the business, transaction volume, and specific industry requirements.

Are there any costs associated with setting up a merchant account?

Yes, often there are costs associated with setting up a merchant account. These can include a setup fee, transaction fees, monthly service fees, and potential equipment costs. However, these costs can vary greatly depending on the provider, so it's important to thoroughly review and understand the fee structure before choosing a merchant account.

How secure are merchant accounts?

Security is a top priority for merchant account providers. They typically use a variety of methods to protect transaction data, such as encryption and tokenization. However, the level of security can vary between providers, so it's important to research and choose a provider that offers robust security measures.

Can I use a merchant account to accept payments from overseas?

Yes, most merchant accounts allow for international transactions. However, it's important to note that there may be additional fees or exchange rates applied to these transactions. Always check the specifics with your chosen provider.

Can I integrate a merchant account with my existing accounting or CRM software?

Most merchant account providers offer integrations with popular business software. However, it's important to check with the provider to ensure that they can integrate with your specific software.

How can I close a merchant account if it no longer fits my needs?

The process for closing a merchant account will depend on your provider. Usually, you will need to contact their customer service or support department to initiate the process. Be aware that some providers may charge a fee for closing the account, especially if you are under contract. Always read the terms of your agreement carefully before closing your account.

Reader Comments

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1 User Reviews

  • Michael

    Wow, I just had to drop in here and give a huge shout-out to the brilliant author who penned the article on the ‘Best Merchant Accounts for Consultants.’ Thank you so much for sharing such valuable information with us!

    As an independent consultant, I’ve been struggling to find the perfect merchant account that suits my unique business needs. Your comprehensive guide has been an absolute game-changer for me. The way you broke down the different options and explained the pros and cons of each provider was incredibly helpful.

    I feel so much more informed and confident now in making the right decision for my consultancy. Your writing style is clear, concise, and engaging, which made the whole reading experience a pleasure.

    Once again, thank you for your hard work and dedication in putting together such a fantastic resource. You’ve undoubtedly saved countless hours of research and headaches for many of us consultants out here. I’ll be sure to share this article with my colleagues and friends in the industry.

    Keep up the excellent work, and I’m already looking forward to your future pieces!

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