Small Business Growth Alliance 2023: Reviews & Complaints

Small Business Growth Alliance Logo
Small Business Growth Alliance Rating
Star Full Star Full Star Empty Star Empty Star Empty

Agree with our rating?
Leave a comment below

Call Small Business Growth Alliance Call Small Business Growth Alliance (800) 889-7242 View Pricing

Company Overview

The Small Business Growth Alliance (SBGA) is a merchant account provider that claims to be headquartered in Henderson, Nevada. The company lists Merchant Services, Inc. as a partner/product and there is a great deal of evidence indicating that the SBGA is simply a DBA or subsidiary of Merchant Services, Inc. Vanguard Web Management,  MCA, FedEx, and QuickBooks are listed as other partners or products of SBGA. In addition to providing merchant accounts, the company advertises Clover as a POS solution.

Small Business Growth Alliance Payment Processing

Small Business Growth Alliance offers payment processing solutions that allow businesses to accept payments from their customers securely. The company provides a range of payment processing options, including credit card, debit card, and ACH payments. The payment processing solutions come with robust security features, including PCI compliance, fraud prevention, and tokenization. They also offer discounted shipping services to clients.

Point of Sale Systems

Small Business Growth Alliance also offers point of sale (POS) systems that help businesses streamline their operations. The POS systems come with a range of features, including inventory management, employee management, and real-time reporting. The company offers both traditional and mobile POS systems to meet the needs of different businesses. POS systems from SBGA are Clover devices.

Capital Funding

mall Business Growth Alliance (SBGA) provides capital funding solutions for businesses needing quick access to funds for expansion. These funds can be used to pay off business debt, purchase new equipment, increase inventory, launch advertising campaigns, or expand facilities. The funding process is straightforward, with funds deposited into your business account within 7 to 10 business days, and repayment occurring through future credit card sales.

Payroll Services

Small Business Growth Alliance provides comprehensive payroll services to assist businesses in effectively managing their payroll responsibilities. The program automatically calculates various deductions such as medical, 401(k), wage garnishments, and tracks accrued time off. It integrates with multiple time clock services to avoid manual keying in of employee hours and provides direct deposit to employees at no extra cost. SBGA’s payroll service also handles calculations, filing, and payment of federal, state, and local payroll taxes, guaranteeing timely submissions. It provides access to various reports and allows payroll data to be imported into most accounting software. Additionally, the service provides complimentary state and county-specific labor law posters and offers compliance fine coverage.

SBGA Accounting Services

Small Business Growth Alliance (SBGA) offers an accounting solution that integrates with QuickBooks®, allowing for direct payment acceptance and sales transaction import, thereby eliminating manual recording errors. This service enables businesses to send ‘click to pay’ invoices, set automated payment plans, and consolidate nightly reporting from various processing devices including countertop terminals, website gateways, and smartphone apps.

SBGA Web Management

Small Business Growth Alliance (SBGA) offers a comprehensive web management program called Vanguard. The program aims to help businesses enhance their online presence and increase profitability. It includes features such as securing organic search results, building online profile pages, managing online reputation, and providing a real-time client dashboard for monitoring online presence and advertising results. It also incorporates location mapping to improve visibility on search maps and GPS systems, uses QR codes to steer customers towards specific messages, and integrates social media tools to enhance online presence. Additionally, Vanguard provides tools to build and distribute custom coupons to incentivize new customers and reward loyal ones. SBGA’s Vanguard program aims to handle all the elements of a business’s online presence, allowing business owners to focus more on other critical aspects of their business operations.

Location & Ownership

Merchant Services, Inc., is a registered ISO of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Concord, and the SBGA is located at 10624 S Eastern Ave #360, Henderson, NV. It should be noted that this address appears to be a UPS Store, which means that the physical company is probably located elsewhere. The SBGA website states that its electronic payments are provided by Merchant Services, Inc., and 2 executive-level employees of Merchant Services, Inc.— Jason Moore and Robert Parisi — were previously reported as the president and director, respectively, of SBGA. LinkedIn lists Jesse Garcia as owner and Will Evans as President and CEO of SBGA.

Table of Contents

Small Business Growth Alliance services
Some of Small Business Growth Alliance’s services

Small Business Growth Alliance Customer Reviews

Here's What Their Clients Say

Key Points

Total Online Complaints 50+
Live Customer Support Yes
Most Common Complaint Sales Tactics
Recent Lawsuits Yes

Many Severe Complaints

There are currently over 50 negative Small Business Growth Alliance reviews online, many of which accuse the company of being a scam. Common SBGA complaints include deceptive telesales practices, nondisclosure of contract terms, expensive contract terms, and poor customer service. These Small Business Growth Alliance complaints are more or less identical to the complaints that we have seen filed against Merchant Services, Inc. If you have your own Small Business Growth Alliance review to make, please do so in the comments below.

One especially illuminating comment from an employee can be seen in this comment thread. The appointment setter’s comments include the following:

“Owners like you give us ‘telemarketers’ a bad rap, what aren’t you interested in? why are you hanging up on me when i introduce myself? I was taught proper telephone etiquette, did you miss that day in class? if this is the way you handle your business with a customer perhaps you should consider the estimated life of said business.”

SBGA Complaint Response

The SBGA has responded to two of its complaints on Ripoff Report by paying Ripoff Report for arbitration, which essentially expunges parts of the complaints deemed to be untruthful. It does not appear to have directly responded to the other complaints. Business owners who are unable to obtain relief through the company’s customer service team are encouraged to cancel their merchant accounts without paying a fee.

Small Business Growth Alliance Lawsuits and Fines

The Small Business Growth Alliance’s parent company, Merchant Services, Inc. was the subject of a class-action lawsuit filed in 2010 that contained the following allegations:

Plaintiffs allege that Settling Defendants misrepresented and omitted the costs, term, early termination penalties, and other provisions of the processing agreements and leases and unlawfully collected commissions, cancellation fees and other amounts via automatic withdrawals from merchant bank accounts. Plaintiffs also allege that Settling Defendants forged signatures and modified contracts and authorization forms for electronic debits after those contracts and forms had been signed. Plaintiffs additionally contend that Settling Defendants’ sales practices violated rules of MasterCard. Plaintiffs further assert that if customers defaulted on payment, Settling Defendants engaged in improper collection efforts by making unlawful credit inquiries on the personal credit reports of the personal guarantors who signed the agreements.

The claims against Merchant Services, Inc. were settled in 2013, with each member of the settling class receiving up to $350. Merchant Services, Inc. remains an active business, but the company agreed per the terms of the settlement to make the following changes:

By December 20, 2013, the Settling Defendants have agreed to make a variety of changes to their marketing materials to ensure future customers have additional disclosures. They agreed to register any fictitious business names that they intend to use, such as “Merchant Services.” In addition, if they continue to use cost comparison forms, such as the rate estimation comparison sheet, they agreed that document shall contain preprinted information listing or designated areas in which the following information shall be written: the name of the registered independent sales organization involved in the transaction; the entity through which bankcard processing services would be provided; the entity through which leasing services (if any) would be provided; the fact that processing rates are estimated and that higher rates may apply depending on the type of card, including mileage and rewards cards; the fact that equipment leasing is optional; and the fact that a cancellation fee will apply for early termination. Finally, the Settling Defendants agreed to have sales representatives leave with the prospective customer a copy of the above document and a current business card containing his or her current business address, phone number, and email address.

Small Business Growth Alliance Customer Support Options

The company’s website does not specify whether it offers direct phone support on its website.

Small Business Growth Alliance Customer Service Number

  • (800) 889-7242 – General Support

Businesses reviewing their options for payment processing services would be better served by a company that offers great customer service.

Small Business Growth Alliance Online Ratings

Here's How They Rate Online

Online Ratings Summary

BBB Reports 48

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.

Nearly 30 Complaints

Small Business Growth Alliance is listed as SBGA Inc with the Better Business Bureau and currently has an “A+” rating and has been accredited by the BBB since 2013. The company has received 29 complaints to its BBB profile in the past 36 months. Only 12 of these 29 complaints were resolved by the company to the satisfaction of the merchant. The remaining 17 were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or received no final response.

What Merchants Say

The SBGA has also received 19 informal reviews, 5 of which are positive and 14 of which are negative. The most recent negative review describes aggressive telemarketing:

Constant cold calling 2-3 times a day, sometimes within minutes of each other. I’d block the number but it’s a different number every time. I also asked to be put on their do not call list, and they said there wasn’t one. The level of harassing calls is ludicrous and takes me away from taking care of guests.

Clients can learn the best ways to negotiate their fees upfront to avoid these issues.

A “C” Performance Overall

In light of the company’s complaint total and resolution ratio, and taking into account the BBB profile for Merchant Services, Inc., we have adjusted the BBB’s rating to a “C” for our purposes.

Small Business Growth Alliance Fees, Rates & Costs

A Closer Look at The Contract

Key Points

Cancellation Penalties Yes
Monthly & Annual Fees Yes
Processing Rates 1.00% - 4.99%
Equipment Leasing Yes

Three-Year Contract

According to the SBGA website, the company’s electronic payments are provided by Merchant Services, Inc. Merchant complaints indicate that the standard Merchant Services, Inc. rates and contract involve a three-year agreement with a $495 early termination fee, a $134 “data protection” fee, a monthly minimum fee that can rise as high as $75 per month, a monthly PCI non-compliance fee of $19.95, a monthly statement fee of $7.50, and other various fees. Clients (and employees) also mention long-term equipment leases through Northern Leasing Systems that ultimately cost thousands of dollars over the life of the lease. Business owners are advised to purchase equipment rather than lease whenever possible. We also encourage Businesses to check out our list of the providers of the best merchant accounts.

Virtual Terminal and Payment Gateway Pricing

In addition to its storefront payment processing services, SBGA also dedicates a portion of its website to advertising its virtual terminal and payment gateway. However, like Merchant Services, Inc., Small Business Growth Alliance fees and pricing are not disclosed on either of those services. Additional rates and fees, including gateway fees, technical support fees, batch fees, and additional transaction rates typically apply to these e-commerce services.

Higher-Than-Average Pricing

SBGA’s contract terms appear to lock clients into long-term agreements that overcharge them for the products and services they receive. In general, the knowledge we have about SBGA’s contract terms prevents us from classifying the company as a low-cost merchant account provider.

Small Business Growth Alliance e-commerce

Small Business Growth Alliance boasts e-commerce options, though it does not give many specifics

Small Business Growth Alliance Employee Reviews & Sales Tacitcs

Should You Work For Them?

Key Points

Uses Independent Resellers Yes
Telemarketing Yes
Misleading Marketing No
Discloses All Important Terms No

Not What It Appears To Be

The Small Business Growth Alliance presents itself as a membership-based organization that “provide[s] our members with essential products, services and educational resources that allow you to successfully address your most essential business needs.” However, Small Business Growth Alliance reviews from both employees and clients strongly suggest that the SBGA is primarily in the business of selling merchant services and that it uses its name and branding to convince businesses that it serves in some kind of merchant advocacy role. Unlike a true fee-reduction service, SBGA’s first priority is to switch business owners over to one of its merchant account contracts. This does not compare favorably to our list of best merchant services providers.

SBGA Telemarketing Complaints

This 800notes thread details an instance in which an SBGA representative “called and told my customer service rep that they were ‘confirming’ an appt for tomorrow at 10am with me (the owner) to review our credit card charges and determine the amount of a refund we were due for overcharges for our merchant services […] Only problem is, I didn’t call SBGA for any merchant services help or consultation and I am angry that they used a lie to gain access to me and my time through my company customer service rep who would not have known any better.” Another Small Business Growth Alliance review states that “Jennifer called on my work line acting like it was urgent for me to return call. Said she was from ‘Merchant Services’ (what business????) and that we may have had some increases in our fees and she needed to speak to me immediately about that.” These types of sales calls, which verge on “slamming,” are cited repeatedly in Small Business Growth Alliance complaints.

Insiders Speak Out

Complaints from employees only confirm the client reports. One such Small Business Growth Alliance review claims that “the recruiters lie like hell, they tell you it is a ‘business consulting’ job working with small businesses, but in truth you’re selling and pushing one thing, payment card processing and all the other things in your bag are just total BS products and services.” Another SBGA review from a recruiter at the company states that “we as recruiters tell [the agents] that they receive ‘lead generation support’ which comes in the form of a call center rep setting up bogus appointment s that most of the time the store owner didn’t agree upon […] It’s a bait n switch scenario, they get customers signed up for multiple services, lease them hardware and make the merchant pay ridiculous fee for getting out of s processing contract.” These reports seem to describe a standard hiring mill within the credit card industry.

Poor Hiring Practices

SBGA employs a large team of telephone appointment setters and independent sales agents (called “independent business consultants” within the organization), which may explain why agents would resort to less-than-straightforward tactics to land accounts. Considering the reports we have found and the history of Merchant Services, Inc., we have assigned the SBGA a “D” rating in this section.

Our Small Business Growth Alliance Review Summary

Our Final Thoughts

Small Business Growth Alliance rates as a substandard credit card processing services provider according to our rating criteria. The company appears to have a lot in common with Merchant Services, Inc., and the client feedback that we have located raises some serious concerns about SGBA’s sales tactics and contract terms. Some businesses report being confused by the company’s name and mistaking it for the Small Business Administration (SBA). SBGA is not a government entity. If you feel that you’ve been deceived by SBGA, we encourage you to renegotiate your rates as soon as possible.

If you found this article helpful, please share it!

Your Comments & Reviews

How Did Small Business Growth Alliance Treat You?

56 Responses

  • I had the BEST customer service and time with field agent Veronika Coleman, she knows her stuff! Super knowledgeable of her services and product.. she knew what to recommend and wasn’t afraid to let us know if the p.o.s system would benefit us or not. Thank you Veronika for all you’ve done!

  • Ieasha McNac

    Uci - Sbga

    I worked for this scam company and they are fraud. Had us thinking we were hired in to help busisness owners and if signed up we would get a bonus percentage. Well I made several sales and never got a bonus weeks after being told I would. They than started doing shady stuff like acting like they could not confirm who I spoke to and than it doesn’t count towards your production. They have now said I performed below standards and terminated me. No one called me or anything. Just sent me a email names ‘status change’ and said my final check and reason for termination would be mailed to me. Wish I never left my old job for them. Training was a scam and only 4 days. I’m looking into a law suit because they stressed me out and lied to me about my salary and how they operated

  • larrys E IProducts Llc

    Larrys E IProducts Llc

    STRAIGHT TO THE POINT>…. SBGA wants you to work for them to undermine small businesses. In short convince a small business to let SBGA run all there business making the small business owner their worker making them less profits and doing the same work and in this day and age… Virtually this is legally called intellectual property corporation ponzi scam that is not being investigated by the federal government. DO NOT BE FOOLED in to a contract that undermines your business or efforts to make your own money.

  • Rina Winsor

    Assistance League of Greater Placer

    Our local SBGA rep, Rose La Monde, used deceitful tactics to push through a 78 page contract without us (a non-profit) being able to review it. Even after requesting her to stop she insisted we would not be charged. We never received the equipment. We now have pending charges according to the bank. It’s been a nightmare of an experience.

  • Thank you for this Philip, I had a funky feeling about them as soon as they called , they do a great job at lying I will give them that. I was curious so had them come by to talk. They asked for my info but I didn’t give them anything. I said I would think about it. Then he said if you sign up by the end of the month I’ll wave the sign on fee, which I asked about earlier and he insisted there was none. So I decided to look into them some more. Glad I looked them up and read these reveiws. Your an angel Philip.

  • Unsolicited call, kindly asked to not contact me. Was cursed at several times before hanging up. Get them out of here.

  • garid meyer

    very good place. i was happy and treated very well. They know how to treat you like a real person. SBGA offers a heck of lot of great things for the business consumer. Top Job!

    • Phillip CPO

      Please reply to this comment with your business name and location to authenticate your testimonial. Thank you!



  • To: All Who Have Warned or Cautioned Regarding SBGA
    Fr: Covid-Furloughed, Desperate to Find Work (again)
    Thank you for taking the time to post on Mr. Parker’s website. SBGA replied to my online application through a job-posting site. Having perused the SBGA website, I had felt it was probably credit card processing, but didn’t care. Thanks to Covid-19, I figured small businesses need all the assistance they can get right now. “Alliance” felt good to me, a square shooter.
    Eager, and somewhat flattered by the recruiter’s quick reply, I almost scheduled an interview.
    I feel strongly that your advice on this website spared me a world of hurt — even if your comments do date back many years. I’m thinking that this zebra might not have changed its stripes. While I remain jobless, I still have my ethics and value system securely in place. Thank you (and Phillip Parker too)

  • David Kahan

    MANY MANY overpriced fees that are complete BS. The reps really know nothing about business or how the equipment can and should be used. They know nothing about processing via internet scanner and associated compliance issues vs desktop terminal that is not only less expensive, but much less computer software involved. Their $24.95 monthly or up to $49.95 monthly “Security Plan” is utter Bull S***! Their $134 annual PCI compliance is another “bend-over” fee that most other processors no longer charge for. Overall, the rates for processing are very good, but the rest of the BS is just that. Looking forward to cutting the cord ASAP.

  • Albert Garcia

    SCAM *** SBGA Employees lie to get your business. My Rep, Paul Batista, Visited my office over a year ago, and with a bunch of lies he got me to swap my Card Processing company. He said the equipment was free and there would be no contract, other than a month to month. He said he would be back the following week after the equipment would arrive, but It took him 4 months to show at my business again, once I had realized that There was a Equipment Leasing company charging me $40.00 per month for a total of 48 months., Also the Actual Card processor was charging me $79.00 per month besides the discount points, and Finally, there was a phantom company attached to SBGA with the Name of SURUBATA or something like it charging me about 180.00 per month for no reason. So As you can see this is a SCAM…*** I have proof off it, So they can’t deny it. I traced the surabaya company to Welsfargo bank and when I contacted the bank they stated that that account was closed. That Bank account was cancelled by WELSFARGO, and WELSFARGO RETURED MY MONEY. Guess why???

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


  • Julie Medlyn

    SBGA has the worst credit card processing I have ever experienced in 30 years in business. Support is very confusing and no one seems to know how to help. I felt I was always passed to one person and then another, with no real results. The fees are excess and the savings I was promised, never materialized.

    This post will help: Best Payment Processors for Great Customer Service


  • I just got a call at my work from Small Business Growth Alliance. The woman was exceptionally rude. I asked her to take us off her call list and she was even more rude! I would never do business with this place!!!

    This post will help: How to Report Bad Credit Card Processors


  • Elizabeth Pina

    They lied. Did NOT mention the hefty termination fee. ASSURED me I would save at least $100 a month. Big time con. Have had service for only 30 days and can’t stand it any more. Going to terminate and eat the fee.

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


  • Kari E Newman

    This company calls every month. 6 times on the same day from different sales people. I have asked for 3 months to be removed from call list.
    I even gave this company a chance by letting a representative come to our business.
    They represented themselves as being part of a local chamber of commerce and are clearly not.
    I’m ready to file a formal complaint on harassment.

    This post will help: How to Report Bad Credit Card Processors


  • After reading other’s reviews now I have an understanding that this some sort of sales tactic / scam. They have been calling non stop for 3 + months and at one point our office received 6 calls in one day. The same girl that has been calling non stop has now said that actually it was her sister that was calling and she has taken over for her and they’ve changed systems so the previous information was no longer available. They continue to state that we will see a rise in credit card costs on our end and HAVE TO review our statement from our machine. But state that it is free to review and that they are required to do so by our current company. They will not stop contacting us and continue to change the numbers associated with their calls so they cannot be screened. The unsure responses and the rep being unable to answer questions is questionable alone. If you’re selling services make that known and be transparent rather than requesting our information to offer us lower rates which probably cannot be done considering most companies sign leasing contracts.

    This post will help: How to Report Bad Credit Card Processors


  • Such a horrible company that targets small companies and tell them they are with collections or with part or their bank or processor or would even say they are with the county’s business coop to trick people into trusting them. The supervisors there tell the employees to do whatever it takes to get those appointments!!! The only way to be successful in this company is lying threw your teeth. They use scare tactics on both employees and the business owners who they are trying to trick into signing the contract with them. They tell them they are part of their company and they are in charge of handling the rate increases and the new updates. So sad to hear all the stories of the companies who they made go bankrupt or simply tricked them into signing a 3 year contract. It’s sad business owners have to go threw that kind of harrassment. The company rarely adds people to the DNC list. They say not until they get them to change to their services. So many shady sh*t this company has going on its the same company that had the law suit in 2010 I believe just with a different name. Yet they are still doing the same thing they were doing before just made a new name for the company and a new website. They are located in Irvine on research drive but the building has no sign so you won’t know which one they are. Most the people there are white and they treat the others unfairly.

    This post will help: How to Report Bad Credit Card Processors


  • Tom Fahrenholz

    Jessica from SBGA paid me a visit, she was not pushy but told me she could lower my processor fees to a flat fee of $240 instead of a percentage, which to be honest was very appealing since my fee range from $400 to $700 a month. But when i asked for the names and numbers of other business useing them she said she would het back to me. Its been a month with no response. I do like the clover machine i may buy it reguardless

    This post will help: Cheapest Merchant Account Providers


  • Mya has been calling our office for over a week. Today it escalated close to harassment. I am an office manager and have the decision making ability on who to work with, but always discuss decisions with the docs first. Mya refuses to give me more information on her company for me to share with them. During the first call, she acted like she was contracted with our current card processing company, but as I looked into it, she is definitely not. Very shady, very pushy sales tactics with a ridiculous amount of urgency to attempt to get me to send them information. She was rude when I asked for more information about her company and stated that she “gave me everything I needed to know last week” and couldn’t send more info to me via email or fax. When I refused to send info to her, she demanded to speak to one of the docs and stated that I “clearly don’t have decision making abilities.” I told her that we are not interested and to take us off her call list. She has called back repeatedly and hangs up when I answer.

    This post will help: How to Report Bad Credit Card Processors


  • Christina Gardner

    Weirdest phone call ever from I guess a sales person. I wouldn’t trust this company at all.

    This post will help: Warn Your Employees About This Scam
    – Phillip


    I received numerous calls over a period of 3 months from Small Business Growth Alliance. Each time they simply told me to send our latest credit card processing statement as they were required to analyze processing fees to see if we were being charged fairly. Each time I explained that I had never heard of their company and was not sending our information to them. As the calls continued, I started searching the internet and found multiple posts of scams regarding their company. Still more calls and Kaci explained that their company was paid to provide this service to us. I told her we didn’t use Merchant Services. She was adamant that this service was required, that they performed this service for many other processors and she must have our information. She assured me that we would not be charged for the service nor was there any obligation to pay for anything in the future. On the next calls I told Kaci that there was a lot of information pointing to scam about her company on the internet. She told me to check on SBGA.reveiws. I did that and still more scam warnings. I called our CC processors and they had never heard of this company.
    And another call from Kaci. I was pretty sick and tired of her calls by now and didn’t know what harm it would do if I did not let the merchant # show. I sent the statement. Kaci said an analysis expert would call me at 3pm. Well, guess what, that call never came.
    I am not sure what they have used our information for, but it certainly was not for any benefit to our company. And I am worried that there are ways they can use the information in fraudulently.

    From The Editor
    This Post Might Help: How to Report Bad Credit Card Processors

  • Judy Weissman

    located in Irvine Ca.onlyt here is no business in Nv.but they claim there corp offices are there,They were an honest and good Co,untill changing all Management 10 years ago,I worked for them for 15 years as they changed names several times,I dont believe in any of their business at this time they are not honest with their Merchants or employees, ,Dont trust them.

  • I wish I had been smart enough to check these guys out. The pretended to be my current provider and they were doing an audit of my current plan. They took advantage of my new hire status. I thought I was saving my new company money. since I am not the owner of this business they got my personal information. when I asked them why they need that, the reply was, “so we are sure you are who you say you are.” now I read the contracts and I am listed as the personal guarantee the payment of the fees. $186.00 month for 48 months. I just want to cry. we are a small struggling business and I just helped us loose more valuable cash.

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

  • Here’s another den of thieves masquerading as the “Small Business Growth Alliance”, willing to look at your statement and get fees from PCI compliance and rate increases decreased from a push phone call and a couple of statements of your current merchant provider.
    Well a quick search of “SBCA” and a call to my current merchant provider showed / explained to me this is just another scam trying to get me into switching merchant providers and locking me into a 4 year lease for equipment – far surpassing what I currently am paying to process my credit card sales.
    I’m really surprised that businesses are really allowed to take advantage of the busy small business person and have them hastily sign into something they did not want or need.

    From The Editor
    This Post Might Help: How to Report Bad Credit Card Processors

  • Stay away from this company. Cancellation fees are $495 ( you will find out about it only after you signed up this them) and customer service is unable to help when problem with transaction had occurred.

  • Ann Yocum

    My experience with SBGA is just awful. They never sent me any emails regarding the PCI compliance surveys and charged me over $1000 for the last three years for not filling out a survey that I never received any notice through email . They wouldn’t refund me and basically tried to turn it around on me. Terrible experience

  • They are relentlessly harassing, and do not listen when told that we’re not interested. They will call and say “Hi, I spoke to (INSERT ANY NAME) from your company the other day…”. If you recognize the name as a co-workers, you’re roped in that way. If you don’t, they’ll say, “oh well while I have you…”.

    Them: Your credit card machine is outdated.
    Me: We just got this machine brand new 2 months ago.
    Them: Oh well we mean the fee structure is outdated…

    A load of BS. I do have some advice on how to end the conversation with them – just ask for the name of the company and make sure they can hear you typing away as you Google them. That’s the only way I got him to hang up.

    I spoke to a rep named Andrew.

  • “Salesman” called on 2 different days, the first he asked for an employee but was not exactly sure of her name, after obtaining my name from the conversation, he called back 2 days later with a spill about how we are non-compliant with our Merchant Services machine and we need to have them come check it. He wanted to provide us with a updated version and protection plan. He could not tell me who he is governed by or what law states that I need their service. I told him in several different ways we were not interested and did not need services from them not to call back. He was hard to shake and very persistent, but I managed

  • A salesperson called to speak to a manager and I said we were not interested. This employee became demanding and pushy and insisted on knowing my name which I did not give. Nothing short of verbal abuse in my opinion. THIS IS THE WORST COMPANY TO DO BUSINESS WITH. You don’t have people coming to you because of the way you do business. Get a life!!!

  • Chuck Sales

    Just received a call from one of my merchants.
    Was told that they are affiliated with my company.
    Merchant called me and asked about red flags on their account and was told theat merchant services would rescue them and get everything fixed up.
    Merchant became suspicious and called me.
    All lies.
    This is why many companies do not trust any processors.
    I will be taking action to see what can me done to stop this behavior

  • Rosemin Panjwani

    Great company to work with! They really centralized my entire workflow process and brought my costs down as well. Not only did I have to spend less time at the office doing backend work, but I was able to add more value to my business!

    • Hi Rosemin,

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

  • These guys are experts at “slamming.” They called one of my clients and stated they were with “Merchant Services” and proceeded to tell them that because they don’t have a copy of their PCI compliance certificate on file, their rates were going to increase by close of business that day. But, they could avoid a rate increase and lot in their pricing by renewing their pricing agreement for 3 years. They then sent over a new merchant agreement.

    My client instinctively called me freaking out about her rates going up, and I explained to her that her account was with Elavon, not SBGA. I further explained to her what slamming was and how this was a sales technique. After reviewing what they sent her, they were going to lock her into a 3 year contract with a $495 cancellation fee and liquidated damages.

    What does it say about a company that has to acquire clients in this manner?

  • Juan Navarro from, rubbed me approximately $1500 by lying to me that clover machine he sold me was re programmable, and I could take it any time to any other merchant services for better rate. He and his salesman are Thieves, dishonest and criminals.

  • Mark Amway

    Issac Amifir was the guy that lied and then when confronted would not respond to my emails. This company is a big fraud and there are no laws to help protect or resolve disputes with predatory practices like SBGA. They pose behind what sounds like a reputable company, but truth be told they are the worst in the business.

  • Dimitri Zelepuhin

    I just received a call from this so call affiliated with my processor “Corporate Merchant Services” (what I was told) and said that our equipment was out of date.. that MC is running out of CC #’s and they need to check our equipment to make sure we can process new MC numbers they are issuing.
    To bad for them the call was actually recorded!

  • Stephanie Steelman

    Individual name Austin called my business first he said he was affiliated with my processing company and first Data told us they were going to suspend my account because of my equipment. Called again. Said he was part of SBGA. Number he gives is8886421154 ext 2277. Now he claims he wanted us to get lower rates. This company hires people willing to lie

    • A person named Roman called one of my merchants telling them he works for our company and needed to issue a refund because they were being over charged. This is obviously not true and I will be reporting a fraud claim to the FTC. These marketers are flat out defrauding the merchants in order to get them to switch. The number he called from was 866-644-0028 ext 2239 Roman. Merchants Beware…

      Also, I see a very similar claim reported below by Rosie. Sounds like this is a normal business practice by this company.

  • Marla Reynolds

    Same complaint as most, posing as our credit card processing company. And after having met with the consultant, I expressed my frustration that I was roped into a meeting which was more about joining the SBGA. I also addressed this with the assistant who claimed to be from the corporate office of our provider. She then went ahead and called the owner of the business for a second time with the exact same pitch, which is a lie. We will not be doing business with them.

  • I was called by a phone rep, and he identified himself as Merchant Services.
    Posing to be Merchant Service for my company.

    He said my company was entitled to a refund, as they had a separate party preparing their bills and we had been overcharged for months.

    Said a person would come to my store tomorrow and look over my statements, or a secondary choice would be to send in statements.

    As this started sounding more and more fishy, I looked up my merchant services which is through Bank of America, and this company has nothing to do with that.

    I left a message to cancel any visit to my store and am now writing a review.

    Horrible business practices.

    Thanks to others for writing reviews as well, so I could quickly see this was a scam.

  • Joseph Oglesbee

    DO NOT FALL FOR THIS!! They will tell you there is no contract, early termination fee, and will sell you on specific “specials” they are having, but they will scam you. There are so many complaints on this and I wish I had listened to them. My representative, Jonathan Watts, the president of the SBGA in Myrtle Beach, SC lied to me about all this. When I asked him what was going on with all this he disappeared and won’t respond at all. TGhese people are not honest nor are they looking out for your best interest. Steer clear if you value your money and hard work.

  • Patricia Garrett

    I just received a call from a “Maria” , on behalf of SBGA.
    EXTREMELY rude, shouting on the phone, asking me if she needs to repeat in Spanish ( I am not Hispanic)
    I have never received a marketing call using bullying tactics. VERY STRANGE, and VERY IRRITATING

  • Steven Zittle

    The SBGA is a horrible excuse for a business. Horrible customer service on all accounts – from payroll to credit card processing. We spent so much time trying to track down answers to simple questions, that it was worth paying whatever it cost to get out of our contracts with them. Even when I notified them (in writing) of our intent to cancel, they ignored it and continued to charge us monthly fees.

    They are horrible. RUN, RUN, RUN far away from this company.

  • Brett Gribble

    A total scam. Calls my business on numerous occasions saying they represent our Merchant Processor. When I asked the Rep who that was; I could not get an answer. When asked to be placed on the do-not-call list the Agent became rude and stated that they did not have to take me off of the list. What a scam.

  • I was very misled on the while deal. They told me it would not cost me anything to switch. That was a lie. They said they could take care of my other credit card processor cancelation. That was a lie. They said my deposits were out in the back on the next day. That was a lie. They NEVER stated about subtracting 1.69% from all deposits. I was told I would receive a refund for some of the money I was charged. I never have. I can not get a reply from my CSR no matter how many times I try. I am canceling or just simply not using the service anymore.

    • Same story here. My sales person Zachary told me the contracts with my previous processor would be paid of. It has not happened. Zach will no longer return emails. I have SBGA several times and have been told they with have someone from Zachs office contact me which of course has never happened. Thinking about filing a small claims case since I have an email from Zach that say the amount I gave him to cancel with my previous processor would be taken care of.

  • This company called our business saying they were our merchant processor which I knew to be false. I told them so and they said they are a larger company that runs our processing company which I also knew to be untrue. They then said that our account had been flagged for problems with our POS terminal. I told him he was lying because we do not have POS terminal and he said oh my mistake and quickly hung up.

  • They called saying they partner with FirstData and that our processing account had been flagged as being overcharged by our billing company (Pivotal). I did send them a couple of statements to see what they said about them, and they pointed out alleged overcharging on the percentages (around average from what I see) and said we’d be charged all kinds of fees at the end of the year for not being EMV-compliant (we are a small doctor’s office, it would be very hard for a patient who’s identity we verify to present us with a fraudulent card). Pivotal has not been charging us any fees for this non-compliance and the whole thing seemed really fishy. They were extremely pushy (always a red flag) and wanted all kinds of information. To even see the terms of their offer, they wanted a filled out application with a credit check. Perhaps that’s standard, but I don’t feel comfortable with a company working for another company wanting our most personal information in order to push us into a sketchy contract when both companies have terrible reviews. I’ll be looking for Pivotal to give us better terms or find somebody new, thank you.

    • marian phillips

      Currently going through the same kind of thing with them. They misrepresent themselves. They called saying they partner with North American Bancard and that our processing account had been flagged as being overcharged by our billing company. Our current processor has average fees. We don’t do many credit card/debit card transactions each month. At this time I will not sign with them as they evade your questions, and pressure you to sign. They have been “wooing” me for a few months.

    • This company is fraudulent. They claimed to be with my present company First Data. Just as the prior complaint asked for previous statements. Very smooth and nice. Claim we are being over charged and their alliance will help us. Huge scam and rip off company. Unfortunately they caught me being trusting and now I am going through the process of getting them away from our company. BEWARE. I was suspicious but they were persistent how they were going to help and did not disclose any commitment and cancel charges.

  • Cynthia Campbell

    A representative from Small Business Growth Alliance repeatedly called our business with threats of the EMV credit card compliance. The lady made it sound like they were asked by our credit card processor to call on us, but our processor has never heard of them. The woman kept calling back, relentlessly going over various points, even telling me this wasn’t a sales call. All she did was waste several of our employees time, including mine, which we don’t have to spare! Avoid this scam!!!

  • Just received a call from SBGA offering to review our card processing fees. I asked Marilyn more than once if she represented a company that offered credit card processing. She faced around my question and upon research I see that, in fact, SBGA does offer credit card processing. I definitely will t be meeting with them or giving them any further info. Shady phone tactics.

  • Cheri Astrahan

    They cold called our home business from a number that has over 20 pages of complaints on They left a message that made no sense to me. Our home business doesn’t use credit card processing. We have two contract customers only. They knew nothing about our specialized small business and violated the DNC regulations.

  • Hard core liar. They called saying there was an “error” on my account, and that I needed to send in my credit card processing statement in order for them to correct the error. I recorded the conversation and plan to post it publicly.

  • Dawn O'Connor

    SBGA is the very worse business to do business with. They hold a huge responsibility to businesses and SBGA cheats and lies in every way possible. It is nearly impossible to get them to return a call. SBGA, I wouldn’t doubt they have put small businesses out of business in the past and will in the future. DO NOT DO BUSINESS WITH THEM. I pray for the day when my contract is over.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Comments must contain details about your experience. Please do not use ALL CAPS. Self-promotion, marketing content, or contact information of any kind will not be published. By submitting a comment, you are agreeing to our Comment Policy


Copyright © 2023, Inc. (Digital Fingerprint: 0d38c6720f0d78a701b74d58653af608). Getting paid to re-write this page? Click here to earn a reward.

Any unauthorized copying and reproduction of the content of this page, including all meta data and computer code, is strictly prohibited. While the information in the above article is believed to be accurate as of its publish date, the author and publisher make no representation or warranties with respect to the accuracy, applicability, fitness, or completeness of the contents. The author and publisher shall in no event be held liable to any party for any direct, indirect, punitive, special, incidental or other consequential damages arising directly or indirectly from any use of this material, which is provided “as is,” and without warranties. Any and all use of trade names and/or marks are for identification purposes only and shall not be construed as a claim of affiliation, or otherwise, with, Inc. ("CPO") in any form. The sole purpose of the material presented herein is to alert, educate, and inform readers. It is not intended as legal or financial advice. We may earn revenue if you obtain services from a provider that we recommend. See this page to learn how we support our operations.

FTC Advertising Disclosure
We take great pride in providing one of the only objective an unbiased merchant account review websites on the internet. To support this responsibility, we may in some cases, but not all, earn revenue if you choose a service provider that we have fully researched and vetted. We only recommend providers that we have determined to be safe for our readers. We do not accept payment, gifts, or any other bribes in exchange for postive reviews or ratings. We care about doing right by our readers.
closecloseShow disclosure
About CPO

We are committed to ensuring the accountability of credit card processors by bringing transparency to their business practices. Our primary objective is to to expose unscrupulous processors that impose substantial rate markups, unjustifiable fees, and exploitative contracts that result in substantial losses for small business owners.

We have been in operation since 2009, diligently conducting comprehensive research, publishing extensive reviews, and monitoring more than 1,000 payment processors. Our expertise in the merchant services industry has garnered recognition from esteemed publications such as the Los Angeles Times, INC Magazine, The Atlantic, and the Miami Herald, among others.

Popular Merchant Account Research
Fiserv Review
stripe logo
Stripe Review
square credit card processing logo
Square Review
Low Cost Processor of 2023