Address Verification System (AVS) Definition

Merchant Account Address Verification System Explained:

What is an Address Verification System? As the name implies, an Address Verification System (AVS) verifies that the billing address of the credit or debit card matches the address that was given by the customer. An AVS is an optional feature that can be enabled for e-commerce payment gateways and virtual terminal credit card sales. Because AVS only verifies the numeric portion of the address, certain anomalies like apartment numbers can cause false declines; however, it is reported to be a rare occurrence. AVS is widely supported by Visa and MasterCard in the USA, Canada, and United Kingdom. American Express only supports AVS in the USA.

If enabled, merchants will incur a small AVS fee that usually costs between 5-25 cents per sale, but the fee varies by processor and can be more expensive. Merchants will only incur an AVS fee if the feature is enabled in the payment gateway and the customer’s address is entered. Using AVS adds security and can lower the overall transaction fee of the credit card sale.

AVS Video Explanation

Use of this video does not constitute an endorsement of any kind by CardPaymentOptions.com.

Phillip Parker is a former merchant services sales agent who believes the industry has been overrun by people who engage in fraud and deception in order to steal from hard working business owners. He created this website to help you avoid the bad players, save money on fees, and to get peace of mind with your merchant account. If you would like to help support his work, learn more about our cost reduction service. We can evaluate your statement, tell you exactly how much you're overpaying, and then help you dramatically reduce your fees with your current credit card processor. Looking to switch instead? See our list of the best merchant account providers.

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