Ignite Payments Review
Updated 1/18/2019: Ignite Payments is now CardConnect (cardconnect.com). Some preexisting sub-ISOs of Ignite Payments have retained the “Ignite Payments” brand, but they now belong to the First Data/CardConnect family of corporations. Please see our CardConnect review for up-to-date information about this company.
Ignite Payments (ignitepayments.com) is a wholly owned subsidiary of First Data devoted specifically to reselling First Data merchant accounts through independent sales channels. Established as the result of a rebranding effort in June 2013, Ignite Payments appears to be another iteration of the First Data Independent Sales brand, much like Cardservice International. In fact, it appears that some Ignite Payments offices may also do business as Cardservice International. Although most Ignite Payments websites appear to clearly disclose the company’s relationship to First Data, merchants should be aware that all Ignite Payments offices are simply independent resellers of First Data’s merchant services. As a result, Ignite Payments has multiple websites and locations in operation under its name. Here’s a partial list:
- ignitepaymentsmiramar.com (San Diego, California)
- ignitepaymentsassociates.com (Vermont)
- ignitepaymentsucommerce.com (Ignite Payments Universal Commerce)
- ignitepayusa.com (Camarillo, California)
- instamerchant.com (Gilbert, Arizona)
All of these Ignite Payments locations (and, it is likely, all Ignite Payments locations in existence) are registered ISOs/MSPs of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Walnut Creek, California. They are also all likely under different ownership.
- Sales & Marketing: Ignite Payments hires independently contracted sales representatives and has received a moderate number of complaints about its sales team.
- Costs & Contract: Ignite Payments offers variable contract terms through First Data that may include long-term equipment leases and early termination fees.
- Complaints & Service: Ignite Payments and its various DBAs have received more than 100 public complaints.
- BBB Rating: Ignite Payments (as First Data) has an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has received 1,045 complaints in the past three years.
- Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Ignite Payments
Ignite Payments Customer Reviews
Here's What Their Clients Say
|Total Online Complaints||100+|
|Live Customer Support||Yes|
|Most Common Complaint||Hidden Fees|
We are currently able to locate over 100 Ignite Payments negative reviews filed outside of the Better Business Bureau, and some of these complaints outright accuse the company of being a ripoff or a scam. Common complaints include undisclosed fees, withheld funds, difficulty cancelling service, and poor customer support. The “Ignite Payments” brand is very new to the industry (launched in June 2013) and has not had a lot of time to amass either positive or negative reviews. However, the company’s alternate and former names of Cardservice International and First Data Independent Sales are currently showing over 100 complaints on various consumer protection websites, indicating that Ignite Payments might soon catch up in terms of complaint volume. Additionally, it is probable that complaints intended for Ignite Payments may be scattered among its numerous websites and locations or be redirected to the online profiles of First Data. Most Ignite Payments locations likely offer customer service through First Data.
Ignite Payments Online Ratings
Here's How They Rate Online
Online Ratings Summary
|Product & Service Complaints||529|
|Billing & Collection Complaints||269|
|Advertising & Sales Complaints||214|
|Guarantee & Warranty Complaints||1|
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.
The BBB currently maintains more than a dozen profiles for various Ignite Payments locations across the country. A search for the company’s headquarters redirects visitors to the profile for First Data, and the BBB appears to have transferred all of its complaints for Ignite Payments’s headquarters to First Data’s profile. First Data currently has an “A+” rating and has received 1,045 complaints in the last three years.
At the time of an earlier review, Ignite Payments had received 152 complaints in the previous three years. The BBB’s decision to fold its Ignite Payments complaints into the BBB profile for First Data has made it difficult to determine how many BBB complaints should be attributed to Ignite Payments. Given First Data’s complaint total and the previous figures for Ignite Payments, we have adjusted its score to an average grade of “C” for the purposes of this review.
Ignite Payments Fees, Rates & Costs
A Closer Look at The Contract
|Early Termination Fee||Variable|
|PCI Compliance Fee||Variable|
|Equipment Lease Terms||Variable|
The standard contract terms offered by Ignite Payments will vary greatly depending on the sales office or agent servicing the account as well as a merchant’s size, business type, and time in business. The only factor that is common to all Ignite Payments contracts is the the First Data processing network. According to merchant complaints, Ignite Payments fees can include an early termination fee calculated through Liquidated Damages or no fee at all. Similarly, merchants may experience very high monthly PCI Compliance fees or none whatsoever. Merchants are encouraged to read their merchant applications and program guides carefully before signing up for service.
Two major sources of complaints filed against Ignite Payments and its other DBAs appear to be its equipment leases and its cash reserve policies. It seems that most Ignite Payments locations resell First Data Global Leasing equipment leases, which are typically long-term, expensive, non-cancellable agreements, and some merchants report hardware malfunctions as well. Complaints regarding the company’s fund holds are likely related to high risk branches of Ignite Payments and may or may not be legitimate complaints. Overall, the significant degree of variability among Ignite Payments contract terms inclines us to give the company an average grade of “C” in this category.
Ignite Payments Employee Reviews & Sales Tacitcs
Should You Work For Them?
|Employs Independent Resellers||Yes|
|Advertises Deceptive Rates||No|
|Discloses All Important Terms||No|
Ignite Payments functions as a network of independent sales offices with no central regulating body. Although all offices fall under the umbrella of Ignite Payments/First Data, each location has the freedom to customize its service package and its contract terms to a large extent. This is a common marketing structure for the credit card processing industry, but in this case, it is enacted on a very large scale. There are currently numerous Ignite Payments reviews online that describe nondisclosure or misrepresentation of rates and fees by the company’s sales agents, and there are even more under the names “First Data Independent Sales” and “Cardservice International.” Although these different names represent First Data’s independent sales unit during different phases of its existence, there is no indication that the company’s policies have changed significantly with each rebranding. As with so many other companies in the industry, merchants may receive transparent rate quotes with full disclosure of contract terms, or they may deal with a sales agent or office that obscures or misrepresents its rates and fees.
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