What to Know Before Getting Started
Starting a New Business?
Selecting a credit card processor is often more complicated than most people expect. How much should you be paying in fees? Should you lease or buy equipment? Should you be locked into a service agreement for anything length of time? These considerations and several others are imporant to understand before signing up with any merchant account provider. Mistakes are easily made and can be very costly to your business. Along with seeing our top choices for payment services below, be sure to checkout this post to avoid common traps in the merchant services industry.
Considerations For Current Business Owners
Changing merchant accounts can be an expensive, complicated, and time consuming process. Are you really going to save as much as promised? Do you need to buy to new equipment or sign new lease agreements? Will there be other less accountable costs such as those associated with employee retraining? Before selecting one of our choices below, you may want to consider renegotiating your fees with your current payment processing vendors using the help of a contingency-compensated consultant. It can result in a dramatic decrease in costs without the pains of switching. In some cases business owner have also obtained substantial refunds of prior overcharges along with saving thousands in future processing costs. See this post to learn more about this little-known alternative to changing merchant account provider.
An offshore merchant account, also known as an international merchant account or “off shore” merchant account (two words), is a payment processing option available to merchants with high risk business types, a history of chargebacks or fraud, or bad credit. Offshore credit card processing allows merchants who generally don’t qualify for traditional processing to take advantage of less stringent approval standards overseas. While offshore merchant services can be a solution for businesses without any other viable options, they also carry a fair amount of risk. You can find more information about the advantages and drawbacks of offshore merchant accounts here.
To help you find a quality provider, we have put together a list of the top five best offshore credit card processors below. These offshore merchant services providers provide international credit card processing for high risk business types. Most of these businesses are geared toward high risk e-commerce businesses, and merchants should therefore expect to see higher rates than they would pay with traditional credit card processing. As always, the best way to ensure that you get a good deal is to contact multiple companies on this list to compare rates and products.
Our unbiased articles are supported in part by helping you find highly reviewed merchant accounts. You can learn more here.
Why These Merchant Account Providers
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 require offshore merchant accounts.
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.”
eMerchantBroker.com is a Los Angeles, California-based company that offers high risk e-commerce processing solutions including offshore merchant accounts. The company’s products include ACH processing, an online payment gateway, merchant cash advance, and a chargeback management system to help merchants dispute and resolve chargeback claims. eMerchantBroker.com places an emphasis on providing offshore credit card processing.
eMerchantBroker.com offers custom pricing for each merchant and maintains a low complaint rate relative to its size and merchant portfolio. Our review of eMerchantBroker gives the company an “A” rating overall and the BBB assigns the company a rating of “A+.”
Host Merchant Services
Host Merchant Services is a Newark, Delaware-based merchant account provider that is well-suited for domestic and offshore high risk business types. The company’s products and services include point-of-sale solutions, online marketing tools, an online payment gateway and virtual terminal, mobile credit card processing, gift and loyalty programs, merchant cash advance, and offshore merchant accounts. Host Merchant Services specializes in e-commerce businesses and provides a free website and email address to new merchants.
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+.”
Other Merchant Account Options
The providers in this section may not have been researched as thoroughly or may lack a quality that prevented them from being listed above. We have listed them here to provide a broader view of potential merchant account options. Are you a decision maker with your company and believe that you should be listed below? Tell us here.
Durango Merchant Services
Based in Durango, Colorado, Durango Merchant Services offers traditional credit card processing and offshore payment processing for high risk businesses. The company, which was founded in 1999, provides credit and debit payments, e-commerce solutions, payment gateways, fraud protection, and eCheck processing services to high risk and TMF merchants.
Durango offers custom pricing to each merchant depending on business type and processing history, and it consistently receives positive merchant feedback related to its sales and support teams. 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.
Vantage Payments is a Scottsdale, Arizona-based merchant account provider that can provide both domestic and offshore processing for high risk business types. The company offers remote deposit capture, European direct debit, call center services, multi-currency processing, and web design services. The company shares ownership with Transparent Merchant Services, a domestic processor that is known for its membership-based pricing model.
Vantage Payments customizes its pricing and contract terms according to each merchant’s business type and processing history. Our review of Vantage Payments currently gives the company an “A” rating, and the BBB also gives it an “A.”
Based in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Instabill is a credit card processor specializing in high risk merchant accounts. The company advertises offshore merchant accounts, a payment gateway, payment processing in over 160 currencies, and a dedicated account supervisor for each merchant account. Instabill’s website emphasizes a protection against currency fluctuations and a lack of taxation as major selling points for offshore merchant accounts. Instabill also allows for AVS (Address Verification Systems) as a fraud prevention measure.
Instabill bases its pricing on a number of factors including a merchant’s business type and processing history. Our review of Instabill currently awards the company an “A” rating, and the BBB assigns Instabill a score of “A” based on three complaints in the last three years.
If your business offers offshore merchant accounts for high risk merchants, please leave a comment in the comment section below or contact us through our contact page in order to get listed in this article.