Merchant Industry Review

Merchant Industry Overview

Merchant Industry May Have Overcharged You

If you accepted credit cards through Merchant Industry or any other credit card processing company between 2017 and 2019, recent changes to the law may entitle you to refunds of certain debit card and credit card processing errors and overcharges. See this post to find out if your were among the businesses affected and to learn how you can get your money back.

All-Purpose and Cash Discount Payment Processing

Merchant Industry is a merchant account provider founded in 2007 that specializes in providing credit card processing and debit card processing services to small businesses within the United States. The company also appears to do business under the name “National E-Payment, Inc.” and possibly resells the merchant services of First Data and TSYS according to the company’s inclusion of those merchant account providers on its website. In May 2017, Merchant Industry launched a DBA called “Swipe4Free” (swipe4free.com) that exclusively promotes a cash discount pricing program. The company also provides Apple Pay integration services to businesses.

Merchant Industry Location and Ownership

Merchant Industry LLC is a registered ISO/MSP of First National Bank of Omaha, NE and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. of Walnut Creek, California, with corporate offices located at 36-36 33rd St., Suite 306, Long Island City, New York, 11106. Leo Vartanov is the founder and CEO of Merchant Industry.

Merchant Industry Review Table of Contents

  • Costs & Contract: Merchant Industry offers a three-year contract through First Data that includes a liquidated damages early termination fee.
  • Complaints & Service: Merchant Industry has received more than 35 public complaints.
  • BBB Rating: Merchant Industry has an “A+” rating and has received 40 complaints and 11 reviews across 2 profiles in the past 3 years. The company’s main profile has been accredited by the BBB since 2015.
  • Sales & Marketing: Merchant Industry appears to hire independently contracted agents and has received more than a dozen complaints about its sales team.
  • Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Merchant Industry
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Products & Services Offered

  • Debit and credit card processing
  • Merchant cash advance
  • Gift and loyalty programs
  • ATM placement
  • QuickBooks integration
  • POS equipment

Types of Businesses Served

  • Retail
  • Mobile
  • E-commerce
  • High risk

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Merchant Industry Rates, Fees, and Costs

Key Points

Swiped Rate 2.69% + $0.19
Keyed-in Rate 3.69% + $0.19
Virtual Terminal Rate 1.00% - 4.99%
Payment Gateweay Fee Undisclosed
Annual Fee $99.95
Monthly Minimum Fee $25
Statement Fee $9.95 Per Month
Early Termination Fee $395+
PCI Compliance Fee $79.99 Per Year
Equipment Least Costs Up to $113 Per Month
Equipment Lease Terms Undisclosed

Three-Year Contract

The standard Merchant Industry merchant agreement.is a 3-year agreement through First Data. Though the agreement provides no specific fee structure, First Data’s typical terms include a swiped rate of 2.69% plus $0.19 and a keyed-in rate of 3.69% plus $0.19. The Merchant Industry terms and conditions also include an early termination fee of $395 or liquidated damages (whichever is greater), a PCI Compliance fee of $79.99 per year, PCI non-compliance fees of $19.95 per month, an annual fee of $99.95, a $9.95 statement fee, and a monthly minimum fee of $25.

The company also provides equipment leases that may carry their own terms and fees. On its website, Merchant Industry dedicated a whole section to equipment leasing terms. It goes as far to provide an interactive table of different credit card terminals and their costs. Though its website doesn’t stipulate any specific term for leases, its prices for monthly lease charges are as high as $113 per month. This means that a merchant could end up paying over $1200 for an equipment lease in only a year when a capable alternative could be purchased for under $500.

Virtual Terminal and Payment Gateway Pricing

In addition to its storefront payment processing services, Merchant Industry also dedicates a portion of its website that advertises its virtual terminal and payment gateway services. However, pricing on either of those services is not disclosed. Additional rates and fees, including gateway fees, technical support fees, batch fees, and additional transaction rates typically apply to these e-commerce services.

Contract and Pricing Complaints

As of this update, there are numerous merchant complaints filed against Merchant Industry and its subsidiaries that express frustration with the company’s undisclosed costs, specifically its early termination fees and PCI Compliance fees. The company appears to enforce these charges even when they may have been deceptively presented by sales agents. Although these expenses are higher than budget-friendly merchant accounts, the company might not score so poorly in this section if these costs were more consistently disclosed to merchants upon signup.

Are you happy with your Merchant Industry fees? Tell us about them before your go!

Response from Merchant Industry

Are you a representative of Merchant Industry? Add your voice to this section for free!

Merchant Industry Complaints & Customer Reviews

Key Points

Total Online Complaints 35+
Live Customer Support Yes
Most Common Complaint Sales Tactics

Moderate Complaint Total

We are currently able to locate over 35 negative Merchant Industry reviews, many of which accuse the company of being a scam or a ripoff. Common complaints include deceptive sales practices, excessive billing, no follow-through on verbal agreements, difficulty cancelling service, poor customer support, and expensive hidden fees. Merchant Industry has responded to some of these complaints with different solutions, sometimes offering a partial or full refund and other times insisting that the merchant is bound by his or her contract terms. Since the company appears to have a serious issue with misrepresentation by its sales agents, it does not seem helpful or especially fair to hold merchants to these contract terms.

Merchant Industry Lawsuits

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

Merchant Industry Customer Support Options

Merchant Industry does appear to respond effectively to publicly posted complaints about excessive or repeat billing, which is probably only a small consolation to merchants who have had to go public with these issues in the first place. Additionally, we have located some positive testimonials about Merchant Industry’s service, but these posts are of unconfirmed legitimacy. Merchant Industry offers live phone support to all merchants, but it’s clear that this channel falls short of the service offered by top-rated merchant accounts for great customer support.

Do you have a complaint or testimonial about Merchant Industry? Make your voice heard before you go!

Response from Merchant Industry

Are you a representative of Merchant Industry? Add your voice to this section for free!

Merchant Industry BBB Rating Summary

Key Points - BBB

Product & Service Complaints 18
Billing & Collection Complaints 22
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.

2 Relevant BBB Profiles

As of this review, Merchant Industry holds an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has had 38 complaints filed within the last 36 months, a decrease of 1 since our last review. The company has been accredited since May 2015. Merchant Industry’s alternate business name of National e-Payment also has a BBB page, which currently shows an “A+” rating as a result of just 2 complaints in the last 36 months. We will combine these reports for the sake of simplicity.

BBB Complaint Breakdown

Of the 40 total complaints between both BBB profiles, 18 are due to problems with products and services and 22 have to do with billing and collection disputes. Merchant Industry and National e-Payment successfully resolved 14 of the complaints, while the remaining 26 complaints either were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the complainant or did not receive a final response from the complainant.

What Merchants Say

Merchant Industry has also received 13 informal reviews to its BBB profile, 4 of which were positive and 9 which were negative. The most recent negative review accuses the company of being a rip-off:

Be aware of this merchant processor , they are rip-off company. they will charge much more than Stripe, square, or paypal, and you will see nightmare with every month bill. You also need to waste of time on handling your unexpected things. If you are unfortunate to be a victim already, please let me know my gmail. I am going to have something to deal all these problems. wevision10 Please put this on subject line: Merchant victim

Merchants may benefit from taking the steps to understand how to negotiate rates and fees to avoid situations like this.

A “C” Performance

In light of the company’s complaint total and resolution ratio, we have adjusted the BBB’s rating to a “C.”

How has Merchant Industry treated you? Tell us about it here!

Response from Merchant Industry

Are you a representative of Merchant Industry? Add your voice to this section for free!

Truth In Marketing & Advertising

Key Points

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

Outside Sales Team

Merchant Industry appears to rely on numerous sub-ISOs and independent sales agents to market its services. There is evidence that the company operates under multiple business names and allows its resellers to use the Merchant Industry name at their various locations, which causes some merchant confusion. We are currently able to locate numerous Merchant Industry negative reviews that describe nondisclosure and misrepresentation by the company’s sales agents, higher fees than were agreed to upon signup, and failure by the company’s sales team to deliver on promises made at the point of signing.

ETF Payment Promises

One major issue appears to be multiple agents claiming to pay a merchant’s early termination fees and cancel their account with their existing processor if they switch over to Merchant Industry. In many cases, these agents do not follow through on either guarantee, leaving their clients subject to continuing monthly payments and the full early termination fee upon cancellation.

Incomplete Rate Quotes

The Merchant Industry website includes multiple tables and charts advertising various rates and fees. In all cases, the company’s “Qualified” rate is prominently shown, while its “Non-Qualified” surcharge is accompanied by the claim that “most clients do not experience these fees.” This is not true, and we consider this type of rate quoting to be deceptive because it may lead merchants to have unrealistic expectations of the rates they will pay. In addition, Merchant Industry lists many types of fees common to the industry and claims that while it’s average for merchant services providers to charge all of these fees, Merchant Industry does not charge them (or charges them at a reduced price). The company does not mention several other large, common fees that it does charge, such as PCI compliance fees and early termination fees.

A “D” Rating

Overall, it is our opinion that the company’s rate and fee quotes are deceptively presented, and there are multiple merchant complaints supporting this interpretation. If you believe that Merchant Industry is overcharging you, we recommend seeking a third-party statement audit to eliminate hidden fees.

Did you get what you expected from Merchant Industry? Tell us why, or why not.

Response from Merchant Industry

Are you a representative of Merchant Industry? Add your voice to this section for free!

Merchant Industry Logo

Our Opinion of Merchant Industry

A Low-Rated Option for All Businesses

Merchant Industry rates as a substandard merchant services provider according to all available information. Merchants are reporting a consistent pattern of deceptive practices from the company’s sales agents, and the company’s contract terms are more expensive than industry averages. These issues have resulted in the company receiving a moderate-to-high complaint rate for its size and time in business, and the company’s public responses to these complaints have not demonstrated any serious commitment to customer service. For now, merchants can expect to be better served by a top-rated merchant account provider.

We rely on your feedback about Merchant Industry to keep this review accurate and up-to-date. Please take a minute to tell us about your experience. We and the small business owners of this world thank you!

Thank you for reading my review. I hope that it has helped you with your research.

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.

How I Can Help You

I specialize in helping businesses get refunds of excessive fees and have recovered $1,567,184 this year alone! Submit a recent statement below to find out if you are getting overcharged. I'll take a look at it for free. If I find fees that can be refunded, hire me on contigency. I only get compensated if I put money back into your pocket.

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28 Reviews Leave Your Review for Merchant Industry Below

  1. Michael cox says:

    This is the third merchant service company we have worked with and the best by far. No more turning away sales due to high charges. No long term contracts with high termination fees, not that will ever happen. We are very satisfied with Merchant Industry.

  2. Adiel Huck says:

    Nothing but positive thing to say about Merchant Industry. They have saved us money while streamlining our point of sale process. We no longer have to wait several days for our cash to be available. Best move we could have made.

  3. Dominic Caglione says:

    Slime of the earth. Company that charges cancellation fees that are about 10X the national average. Talk about bad business practices. Their staff is rude as hell too.

  4. yaqu bearnest says:

    I switched to Merchant Industry because I was losing business by my inability to process small sales. Now I can take a debit or credit card for a small amount without losing money. In the produce business when your average sales is around $10. 00, this really helped. I have been very pleased by the fast availability of funds.

    1. Phillip says:

      Hi Yaqu,

      Please reply to this comment with your business name and location in order to authenticate your testimonial. Thanks!

  5. Jack David says:

    Excellent merchant processing company. My business falls into the category of high risk. After providing additional information about my business the opened my account. My sales rep was very helpful walking me through the entire process. The rates are good and the virtual terminal is awesome.

    1. Phillip says:

      Hi Jack,

      Please reply to this comment with your business name and testimonial in order to authenticate your testimonial. Thanks!

  6. Bora E says:

    This company is very frauduant. I have tried to get them to stop charging my business, but they continue to make unauthorized charges. I have tried to contact them more than 100 times!! they always answer they are reviewing. if you work with this company, you will see your business money will be out of your pocket every day.


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

    -Phillip

  7. Amy Bove says:

    THE BOTTOM LINE
    There are multiple reasons to opt for Merchant Industry. From their approval rate and fast turnaround, to their customized processing solutions and state-of-the-art equipment, they offer tons of benefits and cater to multiple types of businesses. Whether your business is online or in-store, it’s likely they’ll be able to provide the right solution for your payment and processing needs.

  8. Roman Winfeld says:

    I read some of these review and I was concerned. But their price was so good that I took a chance anyway. I couldn’t be happier that I did. I have a store and also an online option to sell my goods and they took care of setting up both. When I had an issue with my machine they were responsive and took care of it right away. Even when I called on a weekend. They are solid in my mind 100%.

    1. Phillip says:

      Hi Roman,

      Please reply to this comment with your business name and location in order to authenticate your review. Thanks!

  9. Amy says:

    I could not be happier with the experience I had with Merchant industry. From the first conversation, I was very impressed with the level of professionalism and the the time the team took to answer all questions and inquiries so that I could grow my business. Equally impressive was the customer care experience after making the decision to proceed on with Merchant Industry. The service provided was above and beyond my expectations. I encourage any and all small to medium sized companies to reach out and work with this amazing team!!!

    1. Phillip says:

      Hi Amy,

      Please reply to this comment with your business name and location in order to authenticate your testimonial. Thanks!

  10. Rise Up Boards says:

    They are an awful company and you should stay far away from them. First I signed with Global payment Solutions who it turns out is at the same office as Merchant Industry. they promise low fees at first but if its to good to be true it is. global locks you into Merchant Industry who then locks you into a 3 year contract. I couldn’t process credit cards and wanted out of the company. they will charge me with almost $3,000 of early termination fees. In the meantime they will be charging for about $50 a month for no services. Their customer service, machinery is just horrible. Run away from this awful company. If you did get scammed call local law enforcement.


    From The Editor
    This Post Might Help: Cancelling a Merchant Account Without Paying a Fee

  11. doug barrett says:

    Run from this business! I’ve attempted to resolve issue’s for months for our e-commerce business without any success. Good luck trying to communicate with them as well. You can email them on every issue and beg for a response and you still get ZERO response. I was sent to them by a third party and and now I’m looking at switching because these guys simply don’t care! Sean Puri sent me a new contract back in March 2018 stating new rates and just sign. We signed and we are still being charged the old rates even as of this writing. When asked about our rates Paul informed me that Sean didn’t have us sign the correct documents so he did send them.They put our parent companies name on the credit card report so now I’ve been flooded with customers calling stating they didn’t purchase anything from that company. This has also led to three charge-backs at $35. per charge which is totally their fault however they seem unable to make this change which I’ve asked since March/April 2018 time frame.
    I’ve dealt with Nafisa Sanchez, Paul Kanevsky and Sean Puri and all three don’t seem to care about fixing it.
    SO IF YOUR LOOKING FOR A CREDIT CARD PROCESSOR RUN FROM THIS COMPANY! I’d say that one could accuse them of being a scam or ripoff as your under contract for one rate however they charge you another.
    I’ve given them sufficient time frame to fix their mistakes and even just yesterday I asked them for feedback on the over charges on our invoice which I sent to the three names above and as of this writing NONE of the three even cared to state they received my email.
    I’m even moving towards talking with my attorney on this issue about them as we’re now talking about a decent amount of cash in fee’s they really owe me for overbilling.
    If I could give zero star rating I would have. Just look at all the other people who have given them exceptionally bad reviews. You think they have a problem!

  12. Marjorie Hollingshead says:

    I am so glad I found this page. I made a mistake and called this company thinking I was calling my bank BB&T. I was trying to return a machine that was sent to me by my bank. The sales Rep deceived me into thinking I was talking with BB&T. He asked for my merchant number and when he realized that it was not their service he switched my Merchant number to their companie’s service, Instead of telling me that I had called them by mistake. He then asked me to return the bb&t Merchant Service machine to them, now they are saying they do not have the machine. I have contacted the CEO of their company and a lawyer in NYC. I have put together a case along with recordings of the deception. They did not tell me that they have a 30-90 day cancellation policy. They also tried to get me to cancel with BB&T and promised to pay the cancellation fees. I am very disappointed and cannot believe that this is happening. I am going to fight to see how far I can go to stop this from happening to anyone else. Is there a class action suit out there on these people? I am being threatened by them to pay $750.00 cancellation Fees.The sales Representative is Spencer and the Manager is Paul.

    1. Lee says:

      Its June 2018 , called to get credit card machine download to use their company in January 2018.
      All they have managed to do is lie about the services ai would get and the cost.
      They downlaided the machine finally in May , but did not include the EBT account which is why I really needed this anyway . Then said my machine wouldnt work ( its brand new) but they never tried to redownload . They then said I needed to by a machine and the cost added up to almost 2000.00 for a (200.00 machine).
      I was like I Am not buying a machine .
      I asked to just cancel and forget it , Then I was told it would cost 700.00 early termination fee , FOR WHAT YOU DID NOT PROVIDE ME WITH THE SERVICE . However they did deduct 34.98 x 6 months for inactivity fee , which the Account Manager said specifically that the only charges i would have was when i swiped a card, so he lied from day one. Inactivity fee , that is ridiculous when I could not use the machine . I lost that money , the money Inpaid fir the machine , as well as the business just from EBT alone , approximately 1200.00 more dollars .
      I have called called and called , no reply .
      The time someone answered warned me this conversation is being recorded, ok good then pull all the conversations I had with Craig , help desk and finially Morgan the retention specialist. She was going to help me get it all straight , That was going on 2 weeks ago , and she hasn’t returned any of my calls.
      I am done with these people .
      Horrible , the way they took advantage of me and my company.

  13. Jason Weindruch says:

    DO NOT do business with this company. They are literally white collar criminals: Sean Puri and Bill Grey are unethical and have zero customer service skills.

  14. Maria says:

    stay away from this company it is the worst I’ve known. if you have a small business they do not help you grow. i canceled my account but they still charging even without activity, when I called they told me that since the day i canceled it takes a month to make the cancellation effective but in the meantime they still charge you.

    1. paul moore says:

      Maria is correct! This company is a total scam! The salesperson misrepresented the program and when I talked to the supervisor she just said “that is in the past”.
      They are criminals.

  15. JessicaDon says:

    I was promised a one year contract with this new service, Terence Gumbs was my account manager and did a very poor job at that. I would leave several messages for him and never would get a response. Would finally have to call someone else to get my issues taken care of. Because of his lack of duty with this company they lost our credit card processing services and then have decided that they will charge me the 300 early termination, even after he assured me multiple times that we only had a 1 year contract with them. Once i was digging around tryin to find out when my one year contract was up, the date they gave me was a month later than when I actually signed the paperwork. I was just fed up with them and ready to do business with someone I know i can trust and will take care of me. so very disguisted with this company really from day 1. They hit me with an early termination fee yet they still dont show that i have cancelled my acct. REALLY???

  16. Jessie M. Cass says:

    Merchant Industry really came through for me when I needed them the most. I am a start up business owner and I needed to get all of my accounting in order as well as be able to process credit cards. I called and they provided a free credit card terminal and have the best service including cash advance if we need it. I was blown away; it just doesn’t get any better than this. It has been a great help.

    1. Phillip Parker says:

      Jessie (or Justin Clark according to you email address),

      Please reply to this comment with your business name and location in order to authenticate your testimonial. Thanks!

  17. Al says:

    Merchant Industry as well as ” Statewide Merchant” “Bank card” is the one takes your money from your bank account. they get you confused there. They gave me a contract of $39.00 dollars a month plus .3 visa and other card charges. I did around $780.00 on a credit card transaction and got a $195.00 fee!!!!
    then They never paid the first company which charged me early termination fee and e maid me they can only pay $25.00 per a month . I canceled them and so far they took $250 and another $200.00 dollars out of my bank.
    I kept all the e-mails and looking to find the way give them back the stress and get my hard working money back.
    they are just a big scam even 100 dollars from one person think 20,000,000 people fall in to their trap. that is a lot of money which they earn with dishonesty. Some one will sue them big in future.

  18. ThomasFisher says:

    I needed to accept credit cards for my business and I wasn’t sure which equipment would be best for me. I called Merchant Industry in New York and they couldn’t have been more helpful. We discussed my business and what would save me the most amount of money. After comparing rates and fees with other providers, it was a no brainer. These guys are hands down the best that I found and I still use them today. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

    1. Phillip Parker says:

      Hi Thomas,

      In order to verify this testimonial, please add a reply to this comment with you business name and location.

  19. JamieR says:

    Absolute worst merchant card processing company I have had the unfortunate misfortune to deal with. Promised a lot of really great deals. Guaranteed a savings of $150 a month over my then current company. In actuality it cost me $150-$200 more per month. Promised free debit machine tape. Yes, after calling three different people I finally got the paper 4 weeks later and a whole 5 rolls of paper. I would have to call every 2 days in order to keep us in free paper. It was impossible to reach my rep. I left several messages regarding what I thought were overcharges. I never got a call back from my rep. I finally spoke with a different rep who did indeed acknowledge I had been overcharged. Promised to look at my account in more detail and call be back the next day. She never called me back and I have yet to see the credit. I was guaranteed next day batch deposits. However all deposits hit my account 2 to 3 days after I closed the batch. They then started charging extra fees. I had enough and began the process of severing the contract. I gave them their 10 day notice in writing. I closed my account in October and received an automatic deduction out of my account for $780 in early November as a one time cancellation fee. I again received another automatic deduction for $58.49 in December. I have since refused that ACH charge and am taking steps ensure they can not continue to take money from the account. I have read from others in my same position the only way to stop this from happening is to close my checking account. These guys are the worst and I HIGHLY RECOMMEND anyone looking to do business with these guys to think twice and say NO.

    1. mars wong says:

      how you find the solution at the end? will they refund you the termination fee since they did not honor what the promised you from the contract? I have the same issues with this company, they promised a lot of things and signed the contract, they keep overcharged me every month, they said I have saved more than $150 every month if I switched to them but ended up I paying even more than what I was paying. They are just scam

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