First Data Reseller
Beacon Payments (beaconpayments.com) is a merchant account provider that serves small, medium, and large businesses based in the United States. The company is a First Data reseller and a registered ISO/MSP of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Concord, California.
Headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts
Founded in 1998, Beacon Payments can be found at 25 Temple Place Suite 2L, Boston, Massachusetts 02111. David Selenow is listed as the Vice President of Beacon Payments and Gerald Kadish is listed as the company’s CEO.
Beacon Payments Review Table of Contents
- Sales & Marketing: Beacon Payments hires independent sales agents and has received a few complaints about its sales practices.
- Costs & Contract: Beacon Payments offers a three-year contract through First Data with an undisclosed early termination fee.
- Complaints & Service: Beacon Payments has received fewer than 10 public complaints.
- BBB Rating: Beacon Payments has an “A” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has received three complaints in the past three years.
- Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Beacon Payments
Sales & Marketing
Key Points - Sales & Marketing
|Employs Independent Resellers||Yes|
|Advertises Deceptive Rates||No|
|Discloses All Important Terms||No|
Independent Sales Agents
Beacon Payments appears to hire independently contracted sales agents to market its services. As a general rule, this practice makes it difficult for any company to monitor and regulate its sales team’s behavior, which in turn tends to result in elevated complaint rates among merchants. Beacon Payments, however, does not appear to receive many complaints related to its sales force.
Sales Approach Complaints
We have located a few Beacon Payments complaints that criticize the company’s sales approach. In one complaint, a merchant was contacted by a sales representative, asked to sign a “merchant account application” that was actually a contract, and then was unable to reach the agent after that point. The merchant was surprised to see that they were being billed for a service they hadn’t received. Beacon Payments responded by issuing a full refund, and the merchant expressed satisfaction with the response and suggested that they had perhaps been too hasty filing a complaint. Some current and former sales agents with the company also state that Beacon Payments expects its agents to do a lot of door-to-door selling, which can be aggravating for both agents and merchants.
The Beacon Payments website actively promotes Interchange-plus pricing, which is the most transparent rate structure available. This is a positive indicator that the company does not condone deceptive sales tactics, but the company’s overall rating does suffer from the few complaints available about its sales team. If you suspect that Beacon Payments is charging you undisclosed fees, we recommend seeking a third-party statement audit to find and eliminate hidden costs.
Costs & Contract
Key Points - Costs & Contract
|Early Termination Fee||Variable|
|PCI Compliance Fee||Variable|
|Equipment Lease Terms||Variable|
Beacon Payments is straightforward about its ability to offer Interchange-plus pricing to merchants, but it does not disclose the exact markup it offers above interchange. The transparency of the company’s pricing structure appears to have kept merchant complaints to a minimum, as there are only a few complaints about the company’s standard contract (which is available in part below). This document describes a three-year agreement through First Data with a variable early termination fee, but we have not found any merchant complaints that disclose the amount of this fee.
Beacon Payments Fees
The only negative reviews of Beacon’s contract terms mention the company’s monthly minimum fees, which is $30 if merchants do not process at least $1,500 in a given month. In addition, there is a $10 monthly fee that may be applied to some accounts regardless of processing volume. Beacon Payments’ pricing is not competitive with cheapest merchant accounts at this time. If you have any knowledge about the standard Beacon Payments contract, please leave that information in the comment section of this review. See the Beacon Payments Program Guide.
Complaints & Service
Key Points - Complaints & Service
|Total Online Complaints||<10|
|Live Customer Support||Yes|
|Most Common Complaint||N/A|
Low Complaint Volume
At the time of this update, there are only a few negative Beacon Payments reviews outside of the BBB, indicating that the company is not a ripoff or a scam. The available complaints describe difficulty cancelling service, aggressive sales tactics, and dissatisfaction with the company’s monthly fees.
Customer Support Options
Beacon Payments offers a dedicated 24/7 phone support number on its website, although it’s unclear whether this number is serviced by Beacon Payments or by First Data. Although Beacon Payments is not considered to be one of the top-rated customer service providers, the company’s overall complaint rate is low enough to warrant an “A” rating for the purposes of this review.
Key Points - BBB
|Product & Service Complaints||1|
|Billing & Collection Complaints||2|
|Advertising & Sales Complaints||0|
|Guarantee & Warranty Complaints||0|
Under 10 Complaints
Beacon has been an accredited business of the Better Business Bureau since 2011 and currently holds an “A+” rating. At this time of review, Beacon Payments is showing three BBB complaints in the last 36 months, two of which were related to billing and collection and one of which was related to problems with product or services. The merchants were satisfied with the company’s response in one case but were either dissatisfied or did not provide a final review in the other two.
What Merchants Say
One merchant complaint cites continued charges after account cancellation:
Although by signing a contract for Credit Card processing we were told No FEES at all except one flat 2.7% fee we were charged a $ 49.00. We decided to let it go this fee. But after we in writing closed the account they continue charging, our request to speak with the manager were never honored, the agent promised twice to refund our money and nothing happen. Because we already suffered an scam from ******** **** ******** phone **** *** ** ** we do not want to suffer another scam by a company that is under the umbrella of the BBB
Merchants who find themselves in this situation may benefit from taking the proper steps to cancel their merchant account without paying a fee.
An “A” Performance Overall
There are also three informal negative reviews posted to the company’s profile, all of which the company responded to in an attempt to resolve. Due to Beacon Payments’ low complaint volume and diligence in responding to all complaints it receives, we agree with the BBB’s overall rating.
About Phillip Parker
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