Retail Merchant Services Overview
A UK-Based Elavon Reseller
Retail Merchant Services is a European ISO of Atlanta, Georgia-based merchant account provider Elavon. Founded in 2007, RMS claims to provide retail, mobile, and e-commerce payment processing to over 27,000 merchants in the UK and Ireland. In February 2017, RMS was acquired by an investment firm called TCV. The company also provides merchants with the convenient feature of providing customers with a secure link to facilitate payments.
Retail Merchant Services Location and Ownership
RMS’s headquarters can be found at Matrix House, North Fourth St, Milton Keynes, MK9 1NJ. Kevin O’Keefe is listed as the CEO of Retail Merchant Services.
Retail Merchant Services Review Table of Contents
- Costs & Contract: Retail Merchant Services appears to offer a three-year contract with an early termination fee of £180.
- Complaints & Service: Retail Merchant Services has received more than 200 public complaints.
- BBB Rating: Retail Merchant Services does not have a profile with the Better Business Bureau.
- Sales & Marketing: Retail Merchant Services hires independent sales representatives and has received a high number of complaints about its sales practices.
- Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Retail Merchant Services
Types of Businesses Served
Our unbiased reviews are supported, in part, by helping you find highly rated merchant accounts. You can learn more here.
Retail Merchant Services Rates, Fees, and Costs
|Swiped Rate||2.65% + £0.19|
|Keyed-in Rate||3.50% + £0.19|
|Early Termination Fee||£180 or Liquidated Damages|
|PCI Compliance Fee||Up To £100|
|Terminal Refurbishment Fee||£96|
|Equipment Lease Terms||36 Month (locked)|
According to multiple online reviewers, the standard RMS contract is a three-year agreement through Elavon with automatic renewal for one-year terms, a £180 early termination fee, a £96 terminal refurbishment fee upon cancellation, a variable monthly minimum fee, a PCI Compliance fee of up to £100 per year, and an attached non-cancellable, 36-month terminal lease. Merchant reviews convey rates of 2.65% plus £0.19 for swiped transactions and 3.50% plus £0.19 for those which are keyed-in on top of monthly fees of at least £10. Cancellation of the terminal lease will result in RMS charging a merchant a Liquidated Damages fee that can total over £1,000.
Virtual Terminal and Payment Gateway Pricing
In addition to its storefront payment processing services, Retail Merchant Services 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.
Many Contract Complaints
Most public complaints filed against the company are related to unexpected or higher-than-expected fees. The company’s standard terms are not competitive in comparison to budget-friendly merchant account providers, but the fact that they are inconsistently disclosed according to merchants has lowered the company’s score to a “D.”Are you happy with your Retail Merchant Services fees? Tell us about them before your go!
Retail Merchant Services Complaints & Customer Reviews
|Total Online Complaints||150+|
|Live Customer Support||Yes|
|Most Common Complaint||Expensive Cancellation Fee|
High Complaint Total
Given the company’s size and time in business, there are a high number of negative Retail Merchant Services reviews that accuse the company of being a scam or a ripoff. In the comment section below this review, we have received more than 200 complaints related to undisclosed fees, higher-than-expected rates, expensive equipment leases, and poor customer service. Almost all of these complaints refer to one unexpected fee or another as the primary issue. Despite this, the company maintains a positive rating of 4 out of a possible 5 based on 4,,727 reviews on Trust Pilot UK, a consumer reporting website.
Costly Early Termination Fees
One of the most common complaints left across different merchant reviews is in regard to RMS’ costly early termination fee. Several complaints express frustration with that fee far exceeding £1,000:
I have never dealt with such a disgraceful company. The terminal worked sporadically and after three replacement terminals I decided to cancel my contract with them. I have spoken to various people in the office who assured me the contract had been terminated, I returned the machine and I am now sent a bill for £1545.12 because I have cancelled. This is totally out of Order as the product they provided me with was not fit for purpose. They are now still sending me a letter to return the terminal which was returned months ago and I cannot get to speak to anyone to make this rightI am totally disgusted with the company and the products that they provide.
One merchant details an even more expensive cost to the cancellation of their services:
I can only endorse every word that’s been said about this service. I cancelled before using any of their service’s because of lies and being mislead and possible fraud. I was still asked to pay over £2000 cancellation fee. I stopped all direct debit payments and took legal advice. I have no intentions of paying a penny and will look forward to telling my truth in court if necessary.
Furthermore, in that same forum, that very merchant leaves a follow up to their initial complaint after being contracted by RMS. The merchant conveys that the company has initiated legal proceedings to collect the outstanding fee:
Update to my review. The following was sent to me by RMS.
Could you please provide your merchant ID number so i can locate your account and get our customer resolutions team to call you back to discuss this issue?
Ironically, it’s the Resolution Team that I have been dealing with and who have recently sent me a final letter requesting over £2000 or they will commence court proceedings.
I have taken legal advice and am prepared to go to court.
Liquidated damages clauses included in the early termination fee of a merchant agreement are one of the contract terms that should be avoided at all costs. Fortunately, merchants do have some recourse to cancel their account without paying a fee.
Other Complaint Details
On UK Business Forum, there are multiple threads devoted solely to discussing merchant issues with RMS. Most complainants who have received terminals through RMS bemoan the expensive cancellation and refurbishment fees associated with this equipment.
Retail Merchant Services Lawsuits
We have not found any outstanding class-action lawsuits or FTC complaints filed against Retail Merchant Services. Dissatisfied merchants who wish to pursue a non-litigious course of action against the company should consider reporting it to the relevant supervisory organizations.
Retail Merchant Services Customer Support Options
RMS offers customer support by phone and email, but reviews indicate that these channels are not especially helpful to merchants. RMS’s performance in this category has not earned it a place among our top-rated merchant accounts for great customer service.
Retail Merchant Services BBB Rating Summary
No Profile with the BBB
The BBB does not maintain a profile for Retail Merchant Services at this time. We will therefore not factor the BBB into this review.
Truth In Marketing & Advertising
|Employs Independent Resellers||Yes|
|Advertises Deceptive Rates||No|
|Discloses All Important Terms||No|
Outside Sales Team
Retail Merchant Services appears to market itself primarily through cold calling and independent sales representatives. The use of independent agents is commonly tied to high merchant complaint rates due to the fact that these agents are usually paid by commission and receive little oversight. RMS appears to be no exception, as there are numerous online complaints that describe nondisclosure of contract terms, high-pressure sales tactics, and misleading claims by sales agents. The most common pain points for merchants appear to be the company’s early termination fee and terminal rental fee, neither of which is consistently disclosed at the point of signing according to complaints.
No Deceptive Quotes
To its credit, the company does not promote misleading offers or rates in its official materials. If you suspect that RMS is sneaking hidden fees into your contract, you can hold them accountable with a third-party statement audit.
Retail Merchant Services Marketing Example
About Phillip Parker
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.