CardConnectDirect Overview

A Reseller of CardConnect

CardConnectDirect (cardconnectdirect.com) is a merchant account provider headquartered in Fishers, Indiana. The company previously operated under the names “AdvoPay” and “Advocate Merchant Solutions” but appears to have rebranded to CardConnectDirect at some point in 2016. CardConnectDirect resells the services of CardConnect, which itself is a large subsidiary of First Data.

CardConnectDirect Location and Ownership

Founded in 2010, CardConnectDirect is a registered ISO/MSP of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., in Walnut Creek, California, and is headquartered at 11140 E 106th St, Fishers, Indiana 46037. The company also appears to have operated under the name “Wise Payment Systems” for some time. William Wise is listed as the founder and CEO of CardConnectDirect.

CardConnectDirect Review Table of Contents

  • Sales & Marketing: CardConnectDirect employs a team of independent sales agents and has received multiple complaints about its sales team.
  • Costs & Contract: CardConnectDirect appears to offer a five-year contract through First Data with a variable early termination fee.
  • Complaints & Service: CardConnectDirect has received more than 10 public complaints from merchants and employees.
  • BBB Rating: CardConnectDirect has an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has received 4 complaints in the past three years.
  • Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With CardConnectDirect

Products & Services Offered

Types of Businesses Served

  • Retail
  • MOTO
  • E-commerce
  • Utilities
  • C-store
  • Auto repair
c

CardConnectDirect Rates, Fees, and Costs

Key Points

Swiped Rate Variable
Keyed-in Rate Variable
Early Termination Fee Variable
PCI Compliance Fee Variable
Equipment Lease Terms Variable

CardConnectDirect Pricing

CardConnectDirect is a reseller of CardConnect’s merchant services, which means that its contract terms are likely to be similar to those offered by CardConnect. Reports of CardConnect’s contract terms include a high early termination fee (over $500), a PCI Compliance fee, other monthly fees, and a tiered pricing structure. CardConnectDirect is showing multiple complaints online that mention a five-year contract term with cancellation fees that can exceed $1,000. One complaint in the comment section below cites an annual fee of $100 (charged twice to this merchant), a $7.50 statement fee that ballooned to $19 over time, and other assorted fees.

Beware Equipment Leases

An advertising brochure from the company also states that the company’s equipment leases (likely provided by First Data) are non-cancellable. Although these reports suggest that CardConnectDirect does not offer especially competitive contract terms, we do not have exact figures for the company’s pricing at this time. According to the available evidence, however, we do not expect the CardConnectDirect’s contract terms to be competitive with the cheapest merchant accounts. We will award CardConnectDirect an average grade of “C” until more specific information is available.

Response from CardConnectDirect

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CardConnectDirect Complaints & Customer Reviews

Key Points

Total Online Complaints 10+
Live Customer Support Yes
Most Common Complaint High Fees

Low-Moderate Complaint Total

We are currently able to locate more than 10 negative CardConnectDirect reviews outside of the Better Business Bureau, a few of which accuse the company of being a scam or a ripoff. Most of these complaints were posted by merchants and complained of difficulty cancelling the service, high fees, excessively long contracts, and non-cancellable equipment leases. The other complaints were filed by former employees and described a negative, unethical office environment. A company representative replied to some complaints against CardConnectDirect with a copied-and-pasted response that did not appear to be especially helpful. For CardConnectDirect’s size and time in business, this is a low-to-moderate complaint rate.

CardConnectDirect Support Options

The CardConnectDirect website provides a dedicated phone number and email address for customer support, but it is unclear at this time whether these lines are serviced by CardConnectDirect or First Data. CardConnectDirect’s communication channels are lacking in comparison to top-rated merchant account providers for customer service.

Response from CardConnectDirect

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a

CardConnectDirect BBB Rating Summary

Key Points - BBB

Product & Service Complaints 2
Billing & Collection Complaints 2
Advertising & Sales Complaints 0
Guarantee & Warranty Complaints 0
Delivery Complaints 0

Note: We have adjusted this company’s BBB rating according to our own standards. To better understand why we adjust BBB ratings, please see our Rating Criteria.

Under 10 Complaints

CardConnectDirect is not an accredited business with the Better Business Bureau. As of this review, the company has an “A+” rating with the BBB and has had 4 complaints filed against it in the last 36 months, which is down from 12 complaints at the time of our last update. Two of these complaints stemmed from problems with products or services and the remaining two were filed regarding billing or collection issues. All four complaints either were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or did not receive a final response from the merchant. CardConnectDirect also is showing two negative reviews on the BBB website.

What Merchants Say

One merchant describes misrepresented rates and charges after account cancellation:

STAY AWAY!!! Credit card processing is the big mystery of the world.. so let me help you. STAY AWAY FROM THIS COMPANY. I was promised all kinds of great interest rates that would work for my small business. What I got was extremely high interest rates and charges that I was told I would not have. Even when I cancelled the service, with no charges on the machine, the bill was $55.40. My salesman had a lot of excuses ” the company didn’t give me the small business rate they promised” ” I am working on it” and so on.. Not that he did anything about it. I would have saved hundreds, if not thousands, by just using the square instead. I don’t want any one else to make the mistake.

It appears that this merchant could benefit from knowing how to cancel a merchant account without paying a fee.

An “A” Rating

At the time of a previous update, the BBB had posted a notice about excessive complaints related to nondisclosure of the company’s early termination fee, along with a written resolution from CardConnectDirect promising to take action to reduce these types of complaints. This notice has since been removed. The company’s complaint total is enough for us to agree with the BBB’s rating at this time.

Response from CardConnectDirect

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c

Truth In Marketing & Advertising

Key Points

Employs Independent Resellers Yes
Advertises Deceptive Rates No
Discloses All Important Terms No

Sales Complaints

CardConnectDirect appears to partner with ISOs and independent sales agents to market its services. This hiring practice can generate a high number of complaints for a merchant account provider due to the fact that independent sales entities are often untrained and unregulated. In this case, we are able to locate multiple CardConnectDirect complaints that cite deceptive sales tactics by a CardConnectDirect agent, specifically regarding contract length and misrepresentation of rates. This is consistent with negative reports that have been filed against CardConnect. If you suspect that CardConnectDirect’s sales team has added undisclosed fees to your account, we recommend seeking a third-party statement audit.

Employee Complaints

There are also at least three online complaints that appear to have been posted by current and former employees of the company, who allege that the company has a poor training and support network as well as high turnover. These complainants also note that CardConnectDirect representatives appear to have posted multiple fake positive reviews about the company in order to improve the CardConnectDirect’s reputation as an employer. Although it seems that the company’s internal issues are not having a serious impact on the service it offers, it is troubling to see that CardConnectDirect may be willing to mislead the public about its reputation. To its credit, the company does not appear to engage in deceptive advertising strategies in its official materials.

Response from CardConnectDirect

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CardConnectDirect Marketing Example

CardConnect Direct Logo

Our Opinion of CardConnectDirect

An Average Credit Card Processor

CardConnectDirect rates as an average merchant services provider according to our standards. The company is showing a low-to-moderate complaint rate overall for its size and time in business, but it appears that CardConnectDirect may not offer especially competitive contract terms. We are unable to verify specific details of the company’s standard contract at this time, but we will monitor the company’s reputation to determine whether it will become one of the worst-rated providers or on par with the top-rated providers.

Phillip Parker is a former merchant services sales agent who believes the industry has been overrun by people who engage in fraud and deception in order to steal from hard working business owners. He created this website to help you avoid the bad players, save money on fees, and to get peace of mind with your merchant account. If you would like to help support his work, learn more about our cost reduction service. We can evaluate your statement, tell you exactly how much you're overpaying, and then help you dramatically reduce your fees with your current credit card processor. Looking to switch instead? See our list of the best merchant account providers.

Schedule a Consultation with Phillip

12 Reviews Leave Your Review for CardConnectDirect Below

    Eliminate hidden fees and mistakes without switching merchant accounts. Get a free statement audit today to see how much you are overpaying.

  1. Carol Buddin says:

    Called to set up return of the machine and the “customer service” person, not only wouldn’t let us speak to a manager, he hung up on us. Wow…still shocked at this company and their behavior.

  2. Eliminate hidden fees and mistakes without switching merchant accounts. Get a free statement audit today to see how much you are overpaying.

  3. Carol Buddin says:

    Same bad experience. Changing fees all the time, Can’t get through to anyone to help in customer service. It’s like talking to a machine that keeps repeating itself. Nothing in contract that I signed, about a 5 yr duration. Cancellation fee does not go down whether you are cancelling 4 yrs early or 6 month early.
    Dishonest company…I just received a letter dated Feb. 2016 (today is June 27, 2016) stating that I need to return the machine or be charged $1400. I had never received this letter, just noticed that someone by another name had tried to take the $1400 out of my bank account. They go out of their way to confuse and twist the stories. Now trying to return this machine and getting a run around about it. The letter said to call and didn’t include a phone number. DON’T DO BUSINESS WITH ADVOPAY!!

    1. Joe watson says:

      Predatory company that fees you to death. Like the other person says, avoid this company

  4. Carrie Snyder says:

    My husband and I own and operate a retail store in Ohio. We were approached by a sales representative–his first name is Josh but I can’t recall his last name anymore–who reviewed our statements and promised he could save us money. We had been in business a year at that time (March 2013). We signed on with AdvoPay but were never told of any contract. After several months we had yet another sales rep promise lower rates. When she asked about our contract with AdvoPay, we had to dig for half an hour to find it–5 years! We never agreed to that length of time, and it was not on the contract we signed. Instead it is in a separate 35-page document, and is on page 33 in very small print. It seemed that the company was deliberately hiding this information, and when we got in touch with Josh to complain about this length, he claimed he told us (not true). The next time we talked to the main office just a short time later, they said he was no longer with the company so they couldn’t do anything about it.
    We resigned ourselves to having to stick with AdvoPay, but since then–and here we are 3 years later in March 2016: we’ve been charged $100 annual fees TWICE a year, which thankfully I noticed when they started online statements; we were charged $20 per month PCI non compliance fees plus $100 annually to have some other company do the compliance thing; our $7.50 statement fee went to $10, then $15, and is now $19 despite the fact that they don’t even mail us anything anymore, and despite my call to customer service about the rising fee which he said he would keep at $10 for us. There are “Data Breach” fees of $9.95 every month, “Regulatory Product” fees of $9.95 every month, “Batch Header” fees to batch out each night for $.35 per day, and I don’t even know how much we are overpaying in interchange and other miscellaneous fees. Nearly every month our bill includes a disclosure about a new rate increase.
    I am so ready to be done with this company’s deceptive practices, but I dread the hassle of dealing with the cancellation fee. I’ve left numerous unreturned messages with customer service voicemail about all these fees, but they just ignore us until we get tired and too busy to continue trying to call. If AdvoPay would simply let us out of this absurd contract–we’ve been with them 3 years now–so we could move on to a company that actually has lower rates and is not afraid to let businesses work with them without a contract because they are actually happy to be with them, that would make us happy at this point.

  5. Eliminate hidden fees and mistakes without switching merchant accounts. Get a free statement audit today to see how much you are overpaying.

  6. K Fong says:

    In May 2015, Gina M Kapiskosky representing AdvoPay visited our business located at 11810 Hg Trueman Rd. Lusby, MD 20657. During the first visit, Ms. Kapiskosky made an offer to my father, also owner, regarding credit card and check cashing equipments and services provided by Card Connect/Advopay located in Fisher, Indiana. Ms. Kapiskosky stated that AdvoPay could offer a competitive rate for the credit card transactions as well as their check cashing machine with a feature that will compensate bad checks with a monthly fee. Ms. Kapiskosky stated that no contract is required for both equipment and services to sign up.

    On May 28, Ms. Kapiskosky emailed the proposal of the credit card with an effective rate of 1.86%, which was lower than our 1.99%. (Proposal attached). We also discussed on the phone of the check cashing rate to 0.1% and $5/mo to add the feature for covering bad checks. We decided sign up with Advo Pay since the rate is better and we desperately needed a solution when dealing with bad checks.

    On June 12, Ms. Kapiskosky was supposed to set up both the credit card and check cashing machines, but she arrived to the store with only one credit card device. Ms. Kapiskosky stated that the check cashing machine will arrive at a later time. After the visit, Ms. Kapiskosky was out of reach even though we tried to contact her via phone numerous times. Ms. Kapiskosky was then returned to the liquor store on July 6 and stated that one of her family members had passed away. She claimed that the check cash machine was ready and wanted to install for us. The machine was installed on July 13, after a lot of back and forth.

    As we received our first credit card statement, it showed that our transactions were billed with an effective rate of 2.88% instead of 1.86% (that was stated on the contract agreement). Our second statement was billed for 2.385%. We contacted Ms. Kapiskosky and she admitted that the rate was incorrect. Ms. Kapiskosky told us that AdvoPay would make the adjustment and would issue refund to our account accordingly. Due to the billing error, we stopped using the credit card machine. However, neither the rate adjustment nor the refund was issued.

    The check cashing machine did not work as well. The device would reject any check that has a face value over $500. Ms. Kapiskosky again failed to resolve the issue. In addition, Advopay withdrew $700 from our bank. Ms. Kapiskosky was unable to explain the details of charges and was unable to have the company issue the credit back to our bank account. We recall our last conversation with Ms. Kapiskosky was on September 11,2015, Ms. Kapiskosky was unable to help us get the refund as she had promised. We attempted to contact Advopay and address the situation. However, Advopay refuses to resolve the issue and stated that the issue remains between Ms. Kapiskosky and our business.


    Are you with AdvoPay? Learn how to resolve this complaint.

  7. DENNIS VIVEIROS says:

    Hi my name is Dennis Viveiros and I am the owner of 2 small business located in a small town in Watertown
    Ct. In March 2013 a gentlemen named Chris Greenlaw came into my facility and introduced himself as
    working for AdvoPay credit card processing. He stated that he would be able to save me money on my
    monthly bill if I switched over to his company. He then proceeded to ask if he could see a statement. I gave
    him the Statement and he said he could save me a ton of money! Shortly after I started to receive my bills
    from Advopay I noticed the charges were 3 times higher than what I was paying with my last company when
    I was processing the same amount in revenue. I called Chris right away and advised him of all the fees. He
    told me it takes time but I was going to be refunded. The next statement came in and the same fees were
    still there plus a bunch of new fees. He said he was going to take of those as well. He stated that I was only
    suppose to be charged 20 bases points plus a $7.50 statement fee. As my evidence every conversation I
    ever had with Chris GreenLaw was recorded as he was advised in our meetings. I then tried to call Chris
    again and his Cell number was disconnected. I then called the processing company in which they gave me
    another 3 different numbers for him in which those were all disconnected. I then was really fed up and I
    asked the Processing Company to give me his bosses Number. I then had a chance to speak to Greg Perry
    about all the Fees that were not suppose to be charged. I went straight to Greg Perry, because I felt that
    Chris was lying about the refunds I was told I was getting. Greg said he would refund some, but not all the
    charges. I told Greg That I wanted everything refunded because I have recorded conversations with Chris
    that clearly states that I was not suppose to be charged anything more that a $7.50 statement fee plus 20
    bases points. I told Greg I would upload the conversation and he can listen to it himself. He did not care and
    just said no! At that point I knew Chris was trained to do these terrible acts. If I was Advopay and someone
    that represented my company went around misleading and lied to my new customers I would do everything
    to make it right and fix what my employee did on his behalf. When he said no to me after I stated the
    evidence I had I knew that this is the way that company just operates! At that point it was an Argument. I
    told him that I am a SMALL BUSINESS and that every dollar a small business spends is spent wisely! I told
    Greg I didn’t switch companies to spend more money. I switched so it would be cheaper and it hasn’t been
    since the first month. At this point he said he is not doing anything for me and chuckled. I then went to my
    bank to dispute the charges. The Vice President of the bank sat with me for over 6 hours reviewing these
    charges to file a dispute. Unfortunately we couldn’t file a dispute and the applications were not accepected
    because it needed to be done within 24 hours on a business account. One thing she did state is that “she
    has been doing banking since the stone age, and she has seen cases like this before, but NEVER as bad as
    this one” As being the vice president of the bank she has written me a letter of her evidence in which she
    found that this company had foul play! (If you need to contact her, her name is Lori Gonzales she is the Vice
    President. The address to her office is 1157 Highland Ave Cheshire, CT. The telephone number there is (203)
    271-1508.) Her recommendation was to close both accounts and open new accounts, so they weren’t taking
    more money from me. That’s what I did. I called Advopay on 11/13/13 to cancel my accounts and Madison
    stated that I was on a 5-year contract. I told her that I have a recording statement from Chris Greenlaw the
    agent who signed me up that clearly states that any of the documents he had me sign didn’t have or say that
    I was signing any type of contract. She still insisted that I was on a contract. She said I signed to the terms
    and conditions. I was never given or shown any terms or conditions. I signed a form allowing advopay to bill
    my bank account $7.50 plus 20 basis points, not a contract. She stated that the contract was in a different
    booklet. Well I never undersigned that booklet. I told her she couldn’t have me sign a bank form and have a
    contract on page 33??? I have canceled my account and now they are treating to impact my credit with an
    $800.00 early termination fee for a contract I never signed. In addition I had posted a listing for anyone who
    is having the same issues as me in the state of Connecticut, and it has been remarkable how many small
    business has reached out to me complaining about the identical issues I am currently facing. We were going
    to all come together to file a class action law suite, but I was advised to try and contact your office first. In
    addition Chris Greenlaw was fired when I really started to press the issues with Greg on where the heck were
    my refunds! This is an Act that needs to stop! Small Business are the Heart of making the Economy Grow and
    putting people to work, but Corporations like Advopay puts a burden on you when they are just plane out
    stealing money from your bank account. Let me also include that I have a statement that they charged me
    more in fees than what I actually made! Does this even sound correct to you? [contact information redacted]

    1. Hannah Lempera says:

      Dear Consumer,

      I am so sorry to hear about your unfortunate experience. We appreciate your feedback and hope that you do give us the chance to remedy this situation.

      As a full-disclosure company, AdvoPay offers transparency along with a detailed analysis of interchange rates. Please contact our customer service department at (888) 570-2386 so that we may have the opportunity to resolve this matter.

    2. DeAnne says:

      Did you ever form a class action law suit? We are struggling with the same issues as of today with this company’s lies and huge fees. We were promised lower rates, with no cancellation fees and total refund of machine costs. With a one year contract. We have had to call and complain every month about extra fees and high rates. Now that we want to cancel they said it was a 5 year contract and 750 cancellation fee. I signed paperwork in March 2014, but never received anything in writing until May 2014 (which of course they said is too late to cancel after I actually recieved the contract writing). We took our salesman’s word on rates and fees. We would love to be included or form a new lawsuit in our state if possible.

      1. Jessica K says:

        I, too, plan to file against this company and the sales rep that lied & deceived. Awful company!

  8. Eliminate hidden fees and mistakes without switching merchant accounts. Get a free statement audit today to see how much you are overpaying.

  9. Gail Brooker says:

    We stopped using this company in April 2013. Have been charged every month since then for equipment rental fees. Got charged in August $619.00 for what I have no idea. VERY BAD COMPANY. We mailed the equipment back to them in April 2013. They called to say they had it. Then why charge us for 4 months even though we are not using them to process cards?

    1. Hannah Lempera says:

      Dear Consumer,

      I am so sorry to hear about your unfortunate experience. We appreciate your feedback and hope that you do give us the chance to remedy this situation.

      As a full-disclosure company, AdvoPay offers transparency along with a detailed analysis of interchange rates. Please contact our customer service department at (888) 570-2386 so that we may have the opportunity to resolve this matter.

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