Datalink Bankcard Services Review

Datalink Bankcard Services Overview

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Established in 1989

Datalink Bankcard Services is a merchant account provider headquartered in Richardson, Texas. Founded in 1989, the company appears to act as a reseller of First Data and Merrick Bank’s merchant services. There is also some evidence that Datalink Bankcard does business under the names “Main Street Processing” and “Tier 1 Processing.” Datalink Bankcard Services should not be confused with another company by the name of “Datalink,” which appears to deal with data transfer and storage and is unrelated to the company described in this review. The company also partners with Clover to offer merchants POS solutions.

Datalink Bankcard Services Location and Ownership

Steve Odom is listed as the CEO and president of Datalink Bankcard Services, which is a registered ISO/MSP of Merrick Bank, South Jordan, Utah and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Concord, California. The payment processor is headquartered at 3505 Token Drive, Richardson, Texas 75082.

Datalink Bankcard Services Review Table of Contents

  • Costs & Contract: Datalink Bankcard Services offers a three-year contract through Merrick Bank with an early termination fee of $250 or more.
  • Complaints & Service: Datalink Bankcard Services has received more than 15 public complaints.
  • BBB Rating: Datalink Bankcard Services has an “A+” rating and has received 16 complaints and 5 reviews in the past 3 years across 2 different profiles. The company’s main profile has been accredited by the Better Business Bureau since 2006.
  • Sales & Marketing: Datalink Bankcard Services appears to hire independently contracted sales agents and has received some serious complaints about its sales team.
  • Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Datalink Bankcard Services
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Products & Services Offered

Types of Businesses Served

  • Retail
  • Mobile
  • E-commerce

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Datalink Bankcard Services Rates, Fees, and Costs

Key Points

Swiped Rate 2.50% + $0.20
Keyed-in Rate 3.50% + $0.20
Virtual Terminal Rate 1.89% + $0.23 - 2.90% + $0.30
Payment Gateway Fee None
Payeezy Pro Plan Fee $19.95 Per Month
Early Termination Fee $250+
PCI Compliance Fee Undisclosed
Equipment Lease Terms 48 Month (locked)

Three-Year Agreement

According to a copy of the Datalink Bankcard Services merchant agreement, the company offers a 3-year agreement through Merrick Bank Merchant Services with automatic renewal for two years. Typical rates under those contracts are 2.50% plus $0.20 per transaction and a keyed-in rate of 3.50% plus $0.20. The contract also includes an early termination fee of or Liquidated Damages (whichever is greater), an undisclosed annual membership fee, a $25 chargeback fee, and a 48 months non-cancellable equipment lease. The company may also charge PCI Compliance fees or monthly minimum fees that are not listed in this agreement.

Virtual Terminal and Payment Gateway Pricing

In addition to its storefront payment processing services, Data Link Bankcard also dedicates a portion of its website that advertises its virtual terminal and payment gateway services. through Payeezy, powered by First Data. Payeezy offers 2 separate plans, the Basic Plan and Pro Plan. Neither plan charges setup fees, statement fees, or gateway fees. The Basic Plan charges a rate of 2.90% plus $0.30. Meanwhile, the Pro Plan offers a lower rate of 1.89% plus $0.23 and a monthly fee of $19.95.

Datalink Bankcard Contract Complaints

Datalink receives a low score in this section because of its long-term contract with automatic renewal and its potentially very costly early termination fee. This fee is calculated by multiplying the merchant’s monthly cost by the number of months remaining in the contract, and it can easily exceed the $250 minimum that will be charged upon termination. A number of merchant complaints about Datalink mention its termination fees and claim that sales agents verbally promised that there would be no such fees. For this reason, merchants should be sure to check the actual language of the contract despite what a sales agent claims. Datalink Bankcard’s terms are not competitive with the cheapest merchant accounts available.

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Response from Datalink Bankcard Services

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Datalink Bankcard Services Complaints & Customer Reviews

Key Points

Total Online Complaints 15+
Live Customer Support Yes
Most Common Complaint Sales Tactics

Low Complaint Volume

There are currently over 15 negative Datalink Bankcard reviews online, some of which describe the company as a scam or a ripoff. Common themes among complainants include deceptive sales tactics, unprofessional hiring policies, account holds, nondisclosure of termination fees, misleading rate quotes, and unhelpful customer support. A handful of complaints online against the company appear to be the result of a personal agenda and are therefore without merit, but these have been discounted for the purposes of this review. A company representative has responded to the apparently false allegations made against the company, but there are no instances outside of the BBB in which legitimately frustrated merchants received a public response from Datalink.

Datalink Bankcard Lawsuits

We have not found any outstanding class-action lawsuits or FTC complaints filed against Datalink Bank Card. Dissatisfied merchants who wish to pursue a non-litigious course of action against the company should consider reporting it to the relevant supervisory organizations.

Datalink Bankcard Customer Support Options

Although the content of some of these Datalink Bankcard complaints is troubling, the overall complaint volume does not justify a grade lower than “C” at this time. Datalink offers extensive customer service contact information on its website, including phone number, email addresses, and a contact form, but it does not currently rate as a top merchant account provider for customer service.

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Response from Datalink Bankcard Services

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Datalink Bankcard Services BBB Rating Summary

Key Points - BBB

Product & Service Complaints 1
Billing & Collection Complaints 0
Advertising & Sales Complaints 13
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 5 BBB Complaints

Datalink Bankcard Services has been an accredited business of the Better Business Bureau since 2006 and currently has an “A+” rating despite 3 complaints filed within the last 36 months. Of these complaints, 1 was related to a problem with the product or service while 2 were due to advertising or sales issues. Only 1 of the 3 complaints was resolved with BBB assistance, while the remaining 2 either were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or did not receive a final response from Datalink Bankcard.

A Second BBB Profile

Datalink’s alternate business name of “Main Street Processing” also has a BBB page and is not currently BBB accredited with an “A+” rating. Despite the positive rating, the company has 11 complaints posted to its profile. All 11 were due to advertising or sales issues. Only 2 of the 11 total complaints were successfully resolved.

What Merchants Say

In addition to the 14 combined complaints posted to Datalink Bankcard’s 2 separate BBB profile, the company has also received 6 informal reviews between them. 3 of the current reviews are positive in tone an the remaining 3 are negative. The most recent negative review was left by a merchant alleging conduct that is emblematic of slamming tactics:

They called in disquise of our current provider. They ran thru everything so fast, my OM agreed. A few days later we got the paper work and it showed we agreed to a 48 month contract! WHAT!???We tried to cancel and we would have to pay $500! Very shady

This review prompted a response from the company:

We reached out to the merchant to discuss her concerns and it appears that she was provided erroneous information from our service center. Datalink wants each and every customer to be satisfied with their processing services. If a merchant feels that they misunderstood or any of the terms of our services were not sufficiently disclosed, we will make it right or allow the merchant to terminate those services without penalty or any further obligation. We have had this level of commitment to our merchants since we opened our doors in 1989. This was conveyed to the merchant in a follow up conversation and we will honor our policy and her her request. The merchant stated that she was grateful for our followup and our actions.

Merchants stuck in similar situations would benefit from knowing how to shut down sales calls.

A “C” Performance

Overall, by combining the two BBB reports, we have come to an adjusted BBB grade of “C” for the purposes of this review.

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Response from Datalink Bankcard Services

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Truth In Marketing & Advertising

Key Points

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

Telemarketing and Outside Agents

Datalink Bankcard appears to utilize telemarketing and independently contracted sales agents to market its services. This “hiring mill” practice is described in two different online complaints from former employees, who outline an unethical sales policy that intentionally misleads customers over the phone. According to these complaints, it seems that Datalink representatives (sometimes using the name “Main Street Processing”) are trained to inform merchants that they can save money on their credit card processing because of “the Durbin Amendment,” which is a ploy to get merchants to fax over their current statements for review. There is also a report stating that Datalink representatives are encouraged to pose as a merchant’s current processor, a practice known as “slamming.” Merchants should be aware that the Durbin Amendment does not require them to switch their providers or change their service, and all business owners should be wary of calls claiming only to be “with Visa” or “your processor.”

Merchant Sales Complaints

Although there are only a handful of these specific claims from former employees, they are corroborated by a moderate number of publicly available Datalink merchant reviews that accuse the company’s sales agents of misrepresenting contract terms or failing to disclose the complete costs associated with its service. To its credit, Datalink does not appear to engage in deceptive advertising strategies in its official materials, but the detailed complaints about misleading sales practices raise enough concerns at this time to lower the company’s rating to a “D.”  If you suspect that Datalink Bankcard is charging you undisclosed fees, we recommend seeking an independent statement audit to find and eliminate hidden charges.

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Response from Datalink Bankcard Services

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Datalink Bankcard Services Logo

Our Opinion of Datalink Bankcard Services

An Average Option

Datalink rates as an average merchant services provider according to our rating system. The credit card processor has received a moderate complaint volume related to its sales practices and contract terms, and the details of its contract suggest that its service can be more expensive than industry averages. Datalink can improve its overall rating by removing the liquidated damages clause from its contract terms and by altering its apparent sales tactics. For now, merchants are advised to compare the company’s pricing to the top overall providers to get the best deal.

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Why I'm Qualified to Write About Credit Card Processing and Merchant Account Services

I'm a former credit card processing sales director who left the industry because I didn't like how it takes advantage of small business owners. It feeds like a leech on businesses and thrives by imposing fees that are nearly impossible to comprehend. Seeing a need for change, I left and built this website help business owners better understand the industry, research merchant services providers, and get refunds of excessive merchant account fees. My experience of working "behind the curtain" in the industry, and using that knowledge for good, has resulted in millions of dollars returned to hard-working small business owners as well as enterprise-level companies.

From the time that I starting working in the merchant services industry to when I left to create this website, I've been on the pulse of payments for nearly 15 years. It didn't seem fair to keep this "insider" knowledge to myself. To lift the fog, I've reviewed hundreds of companies, read thousands of user reviews, and learned the pricing tricks of every provider. If you have questions about credit card processing, you can find the answers on this website.

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6 Reviews Leave Your Review for Datalink Bankcard Services Below

  1. Laurel Appleman; dba - IN STITCHES on The Quilt Trail says:

    Don’t bother with this company – when I closed my business I sent their machine back, and they decided to not ever receive it… so they robbed me of 599.00.
    What would I ever do with that machine?

    Go some where else to do charge card machine business… AnYwHeRe would be better…

  2. Every time I turn around they are charging a fee for this and for that. It’s like they sit around and just think up things to charge for, like pci compliance fee. I don’t even take credit cards on-line but yet I’m charged for it every three months and still have to go through the test, or another fee monthly until you do.

    This post will help: Best Merchant Accounts for Lodging


  3. Beverly Vasterling says:

    This is the absolute worst company I’ve ever had to deal with. I have been since last Thursday trying to close it down and find out the address to where I can ship these worthless machines back to them. My boss had to OK that I could talk with them and still can’t get them to close this account. I’ve already changed over to a much better company. Every time I’ve had to call I never could hear them. So when I asked nicely for them to repeat? They became a little irritated. Every single time. You need more training on customer service.

    This post will help: Cancelling a Merchant Account Without Paying a Fee


  4. Barbara says:

    Still being billed for services, have not used in over 2 years. Non compliance fee, and $3.00 fee for whatever. MC located fee.

  5. Eva Cooper says:

    I had dealt with company over 15 years! Recently had some issues with service. Decided to cancel the service mid MARCH this year. After 2weeks of phone calls I was told it had been canceled and no further fees would be charged. This was end if March. I was charged the monthly fee early April. Figured that one would happen. Got bank statement today, May 16, discover I was charged the monthly fee for April AaND THE QUARTERLY “PORTAL FEE”! Call and get multiple excuses, againwent to my bank and file dispute charges! It’s not a large amount, ITS THE PRINCIPAL!!!

  6. Eric McNamee says:

    There is a company called Tier 1 Processing that is affiliated with Datalink. I came across them before and now some of my merchants are being contacted using the sales pitch that they are affiliated with my company, which obviously they are not. The phone number they are using is 855-455-6851 and their fax is 855-792-7161. They’ve called a couple of clients of mine multiple times and each time it’s a different representative. From your reviews I think contacting Tier 1 and posting a review about them would be advantageous to merchants who are unaware of these weak ploys to scam merchants into a new contract with expensive leases.

    Also Tier 1’s website is conveniently down all the time.

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