National Bankcard Systems Inc. (enbs.com), established in 1997, is a multi-million dollar credit card processing vendor. The company also operates under several DBAs including The Merchant Store (usmsi.com), The Merchant Equipment Store (merchantequip.com), and US Point of Sale (uspos.com). National Bankcard Systems is a member service provider for First Data, Elavon, iPayment, Total Merchant Services, and Cardservice International. National Bankcard Systems is located at 5725 US 290, #105, Austin, Texas 78735. National Bankcard Systems is a Registered ISO/MSP of BancorpSouth, Tupelo, Mississippi, US Bank of Minneapolis, and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Walnut Creek, California. Joe Brannon is the company’s principal and Peter Estep is its president.
- Sales & Marketing: National Bankcard Systems hires independent sales agents and has received a low number of complaints about its sales practices.
- Costs & Contract: National Bankcard Systems appears to offer a three-year contract with an early termination fee of up to $250.
- Complaints & Service: National Bankcard Systems has received more than 10 public complaints.
- BBB Rating: National Bankcard Systems has an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has received one complaint in the past three years.
- Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With National Bankcard Systems
Sales & Marketing
Key Points - Sales & Marketing
|Employs Independent Resellers||Yes|
|Advertises Deceptive Rates||No|
|Discloses All Important Terms||No|
National Bankcard Systems utilizes outside sales agents in offices across the country to market its services. The use of independent sales agents is usually tied to elevated complaint rates, and in the case of National Bankcard it appears to be an issue. We have found a handful of complaints accusing the company’s agents of misrepresenting or failing to disclose fees, although specific fee amounts are unavailable. Because National Bankcard is partnered with five different processing companies, it is possible that some of the complaints that would normally be targeted toward National Bankcard are being funneled to the online profiles of these other entities, but it’s nearly impossible to chart whether and how often this might occur. The company’s use of multiple websites and business names also clouds the issue to some extent, as does the similarity of its name to that of National Bankcard.
As a point in its favor, the company does not appear to engage in any deceptive advertising strategies in its official materials. The company’s low complaint total has resulted in an “A” rating for this section.
Costs & Contract
Key Points - Costs & Contract
|Early Termination Fee||Variable|
|PCI Compliance Fee||Variable|
|Equipment Lease Terms||Variable|
National Bankcard’s status as a member service provider for five very large processors means that its contract terms are likely to vary greatly depending on the agent setting up the account and a merchant’s business type and time in business. This variability seems to be confirmed in the few available complaints about the company, which cite undisclosed fees, difficulty cancelling service, billing errors, charges for unwanted equipment warranties, and higher-than-expected rates in equal measure. The companies that appear to provide processing contracts to National Bankcard do not score very well in this category as a group, so we aren’t inclined to assume the best about National Bankcard’s terms.
We have found some official complaint responses by the company indicating that NBS offers a three-year contract with an early termination fee of $250 unless the merchant purchases equipment upfront, in which case there is no ETF. In general, merchants are advised to carefully examine the terms of their individual contracts (especially keeping an eye out for early termination fees and PCI Compliance fees) and evaluate whether these terms will work for them.
Complaints & Service
Key Points - Complaints & Service
|Total Online Complaints||10+|
|Live Customer Support||No|
|Most Common Complaint||Hidden Fees|
Outside of the BBB, we were able to locate more than 10 National Bankcard Systems complaints. Three of these complaints were authored by software vendors who had not been paid by employees of National Bankcard for personal services rendered. These appear to have no bearing on National Bankcard’s conduct as a merchant services provider. We also found eight complaints in the comment section of this review citing poor customer service, unexpected fees, and unauthorized billing. While these complaints reflect poorly on National Bankcard’s customer service, eight complaints in over four years isn’t an especially high complaint volume.
As noted above, it is possible that some complaints about National Bankcard are redirected to the much larger processors with which it is affiliated. The fact that the company’s website lists no dedicated support information seems to confirm this.
Key Points - BBB
|Product & Service Complaints||0|
|Billing & Collection Complaints||1|
|Advertising & Sales Complaints||0|
|Guarantee & Warranty Complaints||0|
National Bankcard Systems has been an accredited business of the Better Business Bureau since 2000 and scores an “A+” at this time of review. The company’s alternate business name of “The Merchant Equipment Store” has been accredited since 2004 and is showing an “A+” rating. Given the fact that these two companies share the same address and upper management, we will combine their BBB profiles for the purposes of this review.
Within the last three years, one complaints has been registered on the BBB website, and it was related to billing and collection. The complaint resolution log reveals that it either were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or did not receive a final response from the merchant. Given the company’s overall complaint rate, we agree with the BBB’s grade at this time.
About Phillip Parker
Hi, I’m Phillip and I’m disgusted by the state of credit card processing in the U.S. and abroad. I believe that the industry has been overrun by people who engage in fraud and deception in order to steal money from hard working business owners. I’ve made it my mission to expose the companies and individuals who engage in predatory marketing, pricing, and contracts, or just provide terrible service. Along with uncovering the bad guys, I’ve also discovered the good guys who do stand out from the status quo. CPO is a website where you will find ratings and reviews of these companies along with advice on how to save money and which service providers consider. Together we can move the industry in a positive direction. If you would like to help support my work, please checkout “Fee Sweep” my eGuide to getting the lowest possible fees when accepting card payments. If you haven’t heard of “interchange” this advice will save you hundreds, even thousands, in processing fees.Schedule a Consultation with Phillip
Related: Phillip’s Top All-Purpose Merchant Account Picks
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