CPO » Blog Archives

Tag Archives: Mobile Credit Card Processing

Top 8 Android Credit Card Processing Apps

Best Android Credit Card Processors

Android LogoAndroid smartphones are quickly becoming as popular as the iPhone and offer many of the same apps (Also see: Best iPhone Credit Card Processing Apps). Now your Android phone can help you manage your business by offering the same mobile credit card processing options that iPhone users enjoy. The concept of processing credit card transactions with your mobile phone is not a new one, but the technology is continually improving. Additionally, these low-cost apps also make for excellent backup processing options in the event that your main processing option fails.
Continue reading

Published by:

Best iPad POS Systems

iPad POS

© Depositphotos – Monkey Business

Depending on what type of business you run or where you do your shopping, you may have noticed a recent change at the checkout counter. At small businesses and large businesses alike, traditional credit card terminals are being dumped in favor of iPad-based point-of-sale (POS) systems. iPad POS systems are appealing to merchants because they require cheaper hardware, they can be integrated with other cloud-based services, and they allow for greater customization based on a merchant’s business type.
Continue reading

Published by:

Top 9 iPhone Credit Card Processing Applications

Best iPhone Credit Card Acceptance Apps

iPhone Credit Card

© Depositphotos – Anatoliy Babiy

The top iPhone credit card processing applications make it easier to run your business from anywhere (Also see: Best Android Credit Card Processing Apps). Whether you are selling crafts at a trade show or providing in-home services, you can now accept credit cards with your iPhone through a variety of applications. These low cost apps also make for great backup processing options in the event of a service disruption from a primary processor.
Continue reading

Published by:

ProPay Review

Category Breakdown
Sales & Marketing rated A plus
Costs & Contract rated A minus
Complaints & Service rated A
BBB Rating rated A minus

Overall Rating

"A" Credit Card Processor Rating


Overview

ProPay Logo

ProPay Logo

Founded in 1997 and based in Lehi, Utah, ProPay (propay.com) is a merchant account provider that shares attributes of both a traditional credit card processor and services like PayPal, Stripe2Checkout, and Google Checkout. ProPay was acquired by TSYS in late 2012 and now operates under the ProPay name as “a TSYS Company.” Dave Duncan is the president of ProPay.

ProPay’s similarities with a traditional merchant account include the ability to swipe credit cards at the point of sale, which can result in a lower processing fee, as well as the ability to accept payments for other purposes such as e-commerce and mail order/telephone order sales. Unlike a traditional merchant services provider, ProPay does not support the use of desktop credit card terminals like the type used at most retailers. However, like PayPal and 2Checkout, ProPay has an easy signup process and is open to non-traditional merchants such as direct sellers and micro-merchants. Like PayPal, ProPay acts as its own holding account and merchants must manually transfer their money to a linked checking account.

ProPay offers several ways to accept credit card payments, including mobile options. The first, “ProPay Jak,” is a service similar to that of GoPayment, Square, and Pay Anywhere in which merchants can use a card reader with a smartphone to accept credit cards. However, unlike the other three options, ProPay Jak includes a variety of other services which are not offered by its competitors, such as access to a virtual terminal.

The second mobile option that ProPay offers uses a small skimming device called the “ProPay FLASH Card Reader” (formerly known as the MicroSecure Card Reader) which allows merchants to collect credit card data by swiping the card’s magnetic strip and storing it for later processing when the merchant has access to an internet-connected computer. Merchants can also use the ProPay FLASH device to process real-time sales through ProPay’s virtual terminal once the device is connected to the Internet. Lastly, ProPay offers an automated phone system where merchants can call in to process real-time sales.

ProPay Jak Video Introduction

ProPay Products and Services:

Industries served

  • E-commerce
  • Mobile
  • International
  • Non-profit
  • MOTO

Sales & Marketing | A+

Key Points – Sales & Marketing
Uses independent resellers? No
Promotes deceptive rate quotes? No
Discloses all important terms? Yes

ProPay does not use any deceptive marketing or sales tactics that are apparent to this reviewer. The entire signup process is handled in-house and on the company’s website. Additionally, ProPay’s displayed pricing is transparent and does not hide fees. We are not seeing any merchant complaints at this time that accuse the company of deceptive advertising strategies.

ProPay Marketing Example

Costs & Contract | A-

Key Points – Costs & Contract Terms
Swiped rate: 2.60%
Keyed-in rate: 3.40%
Termination fee: None
PCI compliance fee: None
Equipment lease: None

ProPay offers an annual agreement with an annual fee but no monthly fees, monthly minimums, gateway fees, or statement fees. We are unable to determine at this time whether the company charges a cancellation fee for merchants who terminate their contracts early, but ProPay has not charged such a fee in the past. We also have not seen any complaints regarding a termination fee.

Since this review’s initial publication, ProPay has made it difficult to locate the pricing of all of its services on its website; however, the company offers simple processing fees with a single rate that is set by how the card is transacted (either typed-in or swiped through a card reader). For instance, the company’s “Merchant Account” page currently lists a fixed swiped rate of 2.60% and a fixed keyed-in rate of 3.40%, and we have found no merchant complaints indicating that these fees are deceptively quoted. One exception to this rate structure is American Express Cards, in which the rate is the same under both transaction types. Fees and rates also vary based on the account type the merchant chooses with ProPay. Additionally, ProPay can customize rates for high-volume businesses. This page appears to be ProPay’s current pricing for its merchant account options.

ProPay’s rates and fees are competitive with most traditional three-tier merchant account setups, and probably less expensive in many cases. However, ProPay is more expensive than Interchange Pass-through rate pricing.

Complaints & Service | A

Key Points – Complaints & Service
Total complaints: 25+
Live customer support? Yes
Most common complaint: Fund holds

ProPay has very few complaints for a company of its size, and most of these complaints were filed before 2014. Many of the complaints that it does have appear to be filed by merchants that have a limited understanding of how credit card processing fees are assessed and would experience the same issues with any provider.

The one common theme in the legitimate complaints filed against that company is that ProPay has a tendency to hold funds and freeze accounts if a merchant starts making charges that differ from its normal transaction history, or if the merchant suffers a chargeback. It some cases, it appears that ProPay will suddenly terminate an account without notice, thereby leaving the merchant without a way to accept credit cards. Understandably, these same merchants complain of receiving poor customer service.

ProPay appears to be very cautious about how much risk it is willing accept from a merchant, so higher risk businesses may want to look elsewhere. It is also wise to avoid chargebacks at all costs if you choose to go with ProPay.

Generally, we do not count complaints regarding fund holding against a providers unless there is a clear pattern of abuse or deception. It is a standard industry practice for providers to hold funds in the event they suspect high risk transactions or fraud. In ProPay’s case, it appears that it is operating within normal guidelines when choosing to hold funds. To learn more about fund holds, see this post: Why Credit Card Processors Hold Funds.

BBB Report | A-*

Key Points – BBB Report
Product/service: 20
Billing/collection: 12
Advertising/sales: 2
Guarantee/warranty: 0
Delivery: 0

As of this update, ProPay is accredited with the Better Business Bureau and holds an “A+” rating. The company has 34 reports filed in the last 36 months, which is unchanged from the time of our last review. Of the 34 complaints, 20 are due to problems with products and services, 12 to billing and collections disputes, and two have to do with advertising or sales issues. All complaints were resolved to the merchants’ satisfaction except two. We have adjusted the BBB‘s rating for the purposes of our review based on our own rating criteria. For more on why we adjust BBB ratings, please see our rating criteria.

* Denotes CPO-adjusted BBB score

Bottom Line


ProPay Review

Rated 4.4 out of 5 Stars
Reviewed by Phillip Parker
Reviewed on 2015-01-06

ProPay is a great credit card processing option for small businesses looking to avoid a traditional merchant account or looking for ease-of-use and simple pricing. ProPay’s services are particularly well suited for mobile merchants, e-commerce merchants, service-based businesses, mail/telephone order companies, and single register retailers that have internet access. ProPay does not supply traditional credit card terminals or POS systems, so it may not be the best option for restaurants or busy retailers. High risk merchants and those that have a higher chance of chargebacks may want to look elsewhere because ProPay appears to act swiftly by freezing accounts that it suspects to be a threat for losses.

This review was originally published on 10/14/10 and was last updated on 1/6/15.

Leave your review of ProPay in the comment section below:

Published by:
Credit Card Processing

Best Credit Card Processing Apps For Real Businesses

Not All Mobile Credit Card Readers Are Created Equal

Whether you’re an iPhone or Android user, you’ve probably heard of the popular mobile credit card processing apps and card readers by Square and PayPal Here. While both provide an easy way for just about anyone to begin accepting credit card payments using a smartphone, each has major drawbacks for businesses that need high volume processing, multiple users, and reliable customer support.

If cash flow is a major concern for your business, you may be unwittingly taking a substantial risk by processing your card transactions through services that have policies better supporting the processing needs of babysitters and occasional flea market vendors than for real-world businesses. For example, both Square and PayPal are notorious for placing holds on merchant funds without notice or warning of any kind. In some cases merchants have reported funding holds lasting six months or more. Add to this that Square has no live phone support and PayPal’s support is mediocre at best, and you may be setting yourself up for a big headache down the road.

That being said, Square and PayPal Here suit some processing needs quite well. Based on merchant reports, it appears that the two are great options if you process less than $4,000 in credit card transactions per month, your average ticket is under $500, and you don’t have a need for separate user IDs for employees. However, If your business exceeds the processing amounts mentioned, or you don’t want your staff to have the same access privileges that you do, it’s time to upgrade to a mobile processor that tailors its services to meet the needs of established businesses.

The Criteria

Below are our recommendations for the best mobile processing applications for real businesses based on ease of setup, features suited for real businesses, pricing, and merchant satisfaction. We have also divided the picks into two sections: “Out of the Box Solutions” and “Custom Providers.”  We recommend that you read the descriptions of all the picks in the list because each has its own set of features which may be better tailored to your wishes. Also keep in mind that each provider may require additional information about your business if you wish to increase your processing limits beyond standard approvals.

We will be updating this list regularly as new services are discovered and reviewed, so follow us on Google+, Twitter, or Facebook to see the latest picks. You can also subscribe via RSS or to our periodic Newsletter.


“Out of the Box” Solutions

Inner Fence Logo

Inner Fence Logo

Inner Fence | InnerFence.com

Among the other “out of the box” picks on this list, Inner Fence makes the cut due to its wide range of device compatibility. Merchants can use the system to process credit card payments on Apple and Android devices as well as on PC and Mac computers. This makes it a great option for merchants who have small retail shops or occasionally sell at flea markets, or professional service companies that want to accept payments both in-house and remotely. The main drawback of Inner Fence, as of this review, is that the system does not support separate user IDs for multiple users.

Useful Features

Inner Fence Key Points
Multiple users: Not supported
Availability: U.S. and Canada
Customer service: Phone and email
Card reader: Free for first, $79 additional
Monthly fee: $25 (U.S), $35 (Canada), $20 (Non-Profit)
Swipe rate: Variable
Keyed rate: Variable
PCI Compliance fee: None
Termination fee: None
  • Review and Refund Transactions from App or Website
  • Sales Tax Calculation
  • Geo-tagging of transactions
  • Digital Signature Capture
  • Tipping

Best Suited For

Family businesses and Sole Proprietors who do not need multi-user capabilities but want device flexibility.


GoPayment Logo

GoPayment Logo

GoPayment Pro | GoPayment.com

GoPayment by Intuit comes in second on this list because this mobile card processor offers a great combination of low pricing, easy activation, solid support, and useful features perfectly suited for real businesses. Intuit has included two account types for GoPayment: a basic account that is similar to Square in activation and pricing, and a “Pro” account that is better suited for real businesses. GoPayment also syncs with Quickbooks, the most popular small business account software in the U.S., making for easier accounting.

Useful Features

GoPayment Key Points
Multiple users: Up to 50 with four clearance levels
Availability: U.S., Canada, UK
Customer service: Phone, email, FAQ, forum
Card reader: Free
Monthly fee: $12.95
Swipe rate: 1.75%
Keyed rate: 2.75%
PCI Compliance fee: $35-$100 per year
Termination fee: None
  • Digital Signature Capture
  • Geo-location Sales Tax Calculation
  • View Transaction History
  • Void & Reverse Transactions
  • Email & Re-Send Receipts
  • Virtual Terminal Access on PC and Mac (process payments via a computer)
  • Many more…

Best Suited For

  • Small Mobile Fleets (Food Trucks, Mobile Car Wash, Tool Sales, Limo/Taxi Services, etc…)
  • Professional Services (Plumbing, Carpet Cleaning, Moving, Painting, etc…)
  • Trade Shows & Flea Markets
  • Door-to-Door & Outside Sales

SalesVu Logo

SalesVu Logo

SalesVu | SalesVu.com

SalesVu is great “out of the box” option for business owners that want a mobile credit card processing app as well as a POS System that can assist in organizational needs. This application goes far beyond just processing credit card payments and has different versions tailored for retail, professional services, and bar/restaurant needs. SalesVu has partnered with Mercury Payment Systems to provide the credit card processing portion of the services and merchants must be approved through Mercury if they wish to accept card payments; however, it appears that the app may compatible with other merchant account providers, or as a standalone POS without card processing. Be sure to inquire if you would like to use a different card processor. Merchants considering SalesVu should also be aware that Android device support and features may be more limited than with Apple iOS devices.

Useful Features

SalesVu Key Points
Multiple users: Unlimited
Availability: U.S., Canada (app-only worldwide)
Customer service: Phone and email
Card reader: Free for first, $109 additional
Monthly fee: $15-$45
Swipe rate: 2.7%-3.5%
Keyed rate: 2.7%-3.5% (1.73%-3.26% for Canada)
PCI Compliance fee: None
Termination fee: None with 30 days’ notice
  • Digital Signature Capture
  • SKU Management
  • Inventory Control
  • Employee Time Keeping
  • Cash Management
  • Email or Print Receipts (compatible receipt printer optional)
  • Email Invoices
  • Many, many, more…

Best Suited For

Businesses that desire an inexpensive credit card processing and a POS application, such as:

  • Small Retail Stores
  • Professional Services
  • Restaurants & Bars

Custom Providers

The companies below represent credit card processing providers that have a mobile payment app and card reader in addition to providing a full range of other merchant services and products. These options are best suited for well established merchants (regularly processing over $5,000 per month) seeking the ability to process payments in the field without purchasing or leasing dedicated mobile credit card processing terminals, as well as those seeking payment processing via multiple methods (e-commerce, desktop, etc) in addition to mobile payments. The pricing will not be covered in the same format as the “Out of the Box Solutions” because costs may vary based upon numerous factors, such as business type and processing volumes. Merchants should inquire with each provider directly for pricing quotes.

 

Payline Data Logo

Payline Data Logo

Payline Data Mobile | PaylineData.com

Payline Data tops this list due to its “A+” rating awarded in our review of the company. This provider offers a full range of processing services in addition to its mobile app and card reader. Payline Data also offers month-to-month contracts with no early termination fees, competitive rates and fees, and excellent customer service. Furthermore, the company can board several “high risk” business types that other providers may not accept.


Helcim Logo

Helcim Logo

Helcim Mobile | Helcim.com

Helcim is another merchant account provider that receives an “A+” rating from CardPaymentOptions.com. Based in Canada but capable of serving U.S. and Canadian merchants, Helcim offers retail processing solutions for physical storefronts, a virtual terminal for card-not-present businesses, and mobile processing solutions for iPhone, iPad, and Android users. Helcim consistently receives positive reviews online for its transparent pricing, month-to-month contracts, equipment purchase policy, and highly rated customer support.


Chase Paymentech Logo

Chase Paymentech Logo

Chase Mobile Checkout | ChasePaymentech.com

Chase Mobile Checkout by Chase Paymentech is another great option for businesses seeking traditional credit card processing services that include a mobile app solution and who want to work with a big bank. The company is an “A” rated provider according to our criteria and has an extremely high customer satisfaction score. In most cases, Chase Paymentech offers month-to-month contracts (subject to “free” equipment offers) and no PCI compliance fees.


Heartland Payment Systems Logo

Heartland Payment Systems Logo

Mobuyle | HeartlandPaymentSystems.com

Heartland Payment Systems rounds out this list with Mobuyle, its own mobile app and card reader solution. The company promotes that even if merchants lose cell connectivity or Wi-Fi access, Mobuyle’s “store and forward” technology will still allow the merchant to collect card payments.  This can be a useful feature for merchants in areas where cell phone service is spotty. Additionally, Heartland actively promotes Interchange-plus pricing (See: “Fee Sweep“) with Mobuyle.

Published by:

PayAnywhere Review

Category Breakdown
Sales & Marketing rated B
Costs & Contract rated C
Complaints & Service rated D
BBB Rating rated C

Overall Rating

C


Overview

Pay Anywhere Logo

PayAnywhere Logo

PayAnywhere (payanywhere.com), sometimes spelled as “Pay Anywhere,” is a mobile credit card processing service of North American Bancard; however, PayAnywhere warrants its own review because the service is a departure from North American Bancard’s typical merchant account setup. It should be noted that even though the service is powered by North American Bancard, the actual processor of the credit card transactions is Global Payments.

Much like Intuit’s “GoPayment” app, PayAnywhere is North American Bancard’s answer to Square’s mobile credit card processing service. The service appears to have launched in 2010, so it is still relatively new to the merchant services arena and has not enjoyed the same kind of buzz and popularity as Square and GoPayment. Even so, PayAnywhere has been garnering a lot more media attention and has become a solid competitor in the wireless credit card processing industry.

Sales & Marketing | B

Key Points – Sales & Marketing
Uses independent resellers? Yes
Promotes deceptive rate quotes? No
Discloses all important terms? No

PayAnywhere does not appear to use any deceptive marketing or sales tactics that are apparent to this reviewer. It looks as though the company primarily markets its service through advertising, public relations, strategic partnerships, and referrals from North American Bancard. However, merchants have reported similar complaints found with Square in that PayAnywhere fails to mention prior to account setup that it holds funds to mitigate risk. Merchants have complained that the company held large amounts of funds with no prior warning of such policies. Therefore, we have lowered the score of this section to reflect merchants’ sentiment that PayAnywhere’s marketing is slightly misleading when it comes to ease of use.

PayAnywhere Marketing Example

Costs & Contract | C

Key Points – Costs & Contract Terms
Swiped rate: 2.69%
Keyed-in rate: 3.49% + $0.19
Termination fee: None
PCI compliance fee: None
Equipment lease: None

As of this review, PayAnywhere has no setup fees, no monthly fees, and no cancellation fee, and it comes with a free card reader that plugs into the audio jack of compatible smartphones. The processing fee is also similar to those of Square and GoPayment with 2.69% fee for sliding a credit or debit card through the attached card reader and 3.49% plus $0.19 for keyed transactions. It appears that the processing fees are the same for all card brands, including American Express and Discover. Also as of this review, the service is compatible with most current Apple devices (iPhone, iPad, iTouch), Android (2.4 or later), and many Blackberry models.

Since our last review, PayAnywhere has seen a sharp increase in complaints regarding its cash reserve and termination policies. Like many of its competitors, the company appears to commonly freeze accounts or withhold large payments in anticipation of potential chargebacks. The problem is that the service appears to provide little notice or justification for these holds, effectively keeping merchants from their own money without their knowledge. The company’s terms of use grant it a great deal of liberty when establishing reserve accounts (including the right to collect interest gathered on withheld funds), and the pattern of merchant complaints about this policy seems to indicate that the company may be taking advantage of this power to an inappropriate extent.

Complaints & Service | D

Key Points – Complaints & Service
Total complaints: 180+
Live customer support: Yes
Most common complaint: Fund holds

We are currently able to locate over 180 PayAnywhere negative reviews, many of which describe the company as a scam or ripoff. Although the company has a very large client base and should be expected to have some complaints, it has seen a rapid uptick in complaints since our last update. Two major themes are consistently mentioned by complainants. As mentioned earlier in this review, the service holds funds in order to reduce the risk of fraud. The company’s policies seem to have a broad definition of which types of transaction appear to be fraudulent, which has resulted in numerous complaints from seemingly legitimate merchants reporting fund holds. The next common complaint is of receiving poor and unprofessional customer service when calling into PayAnywhere’s customer support. It appears that the calls are routed to the same call centers as regular North American Bancard customers, which also receives poor ratings in our review of the company. This definitely diminishes the edge over Square that PayAnywhere might have achieved with live customer support.

There have also been a few merchants reporting that PayAnywhere charged other fees in addition to the processing fee. PayAnywhere’s full pricing can be found here, but we have found reports of other possible fees that include a $25 Chargeback fee, $25 NSF fee (Non-Sufficient Funds), and $15 “Retrieval” fee which is left undefined. If you have experienced fees outside of the processing fees or those listed in PayAnywhere’s disclosed pricing, please leave a review in our comment section below detailing your experience. Although we are under no obligation to verify the content of user reviews, a valid email will be required for pricing-related comments as further evidence of these claims may need to be supplied in order for your comment to remain published.

BBB Report | C*

Key Points – BBB Report
Product/service: 78
Billing/collection: 69
Advertising/sales: 8
Guarantee/warranty: 1
Delivery: 3

As of this update, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) is showing that PayAnywhere has been accredited since August 2012 and is awarding the company an “A+” rating. Our last update showed 128 complaints filed in the previous 36 months, but that total has jumped to 159 in under six months. Out of the 159, 69 are regarding billing and collections disputes, 78 with product or service problems, eight with advertising or sales issues, and three with delivery problems. Of the complaints, all but 11 have been resolved to the merchant’s satisfaction. Although this resolution ratio is impressive given the large increase in complaints, the complaint volume itself is troubling. This has prompted us to adjust the BBB’s score to a “C” for the purposes of this review.

* Denotes CPO-adjusted BBB score

Bottom Line


PayAnywhere Review

Rated 2.4 out of 5 Stars
Reviewed by Phillip Parker
Reviewed on 2014-08-26

PayAnywhere rates as an average mobile payment processor according to our rating system. The service is beginning to gain ground in the mobile processing market. There are currently numerous reports of merchants experiencing holds, poor customer service, and fees outside of company’s stated pricing. Some of these fee complaints may just be a misunderstanding of charges, or confusion in the way PayAnywhere bills its fees.

It should also be noted that, although our initial review of the company was positive but contained outdated pricing and device compatibility information, North American Bancard’s approach was to threaten us with “legal redress” if we did not update it immediately. We have updated this review (as we do every 12 to 18 months) only in the interest of accuracy, and with new insight on NAB’s strategy for dealing with publishers.

This review was originally published on 12/3/12 and was last updated on 8/26/14.

Leave your PayAnywhere review in the comment section below:

Published by:

Square Register Review

Overview

Square Register

Square Register

Square Register (squareup.com/sell-in-store) is a free point-of-sale (POS) application offered by Square, a rapidly growing credit card processor founded by Twitter’s Jack Dorsey. Designed as a cloud-based replacement for traditional cash registers, Square Register can be thought of as a much more robust version of the company’s mobile app. Like the free Square app, Square Register can be downloaded to iPhone, iPad, or Android devices, although it is optimized for use with the iPad. The service also uses the standard Square card reader to accept swiped payments. Square Register distinguishes itself from the company’s mobile app, though, by providing the following additional features for merchants:

  • Offline payment processing
  • Customizable item descriptions and layout
  • Advanced analytics with QuickBooks and Xero integration
  • Real-time sales tracking and reporting
  • Limited hardware compatibility (for receipt printers, kitchen ticket printers, cash drawers, bar code scanners, etc.)
  • Multiple users for the same account
  • Customizable rewards and loyalty programs
  • An optional Square Stand (shown above) that allows merchants to swipe without the Square card reader

Square Register Video Introduction

Square Register Pros

According to multiple professional and user reviews, Square Register receives praise for its sleek design, ease of use, and low cost. For smaller merchants who are already planning on using Square, the Register provides a number of helpful services for no additional charge. The data tracking and reporting offered through the app is helpful for merchants trying to grow their businesses, and acceptance of Square Wallet may make their stores more attractive to customers who use that service. Hardware integration is also a big plus for merchants who seek a gentler transition from traditional registers to a cloud-based service like Square. To that end, the iPad app coupled with the Square Register Stand enables Square merchants to offer a more traditional checkout counter setup on their iPads that is less likely to confuse or inconvenience employees and customers.

Square Register also comes with Square pricing, which is just 2.75% swiped or 3.5% plus $0.15 keyed. The transparency and simplicity of this pricing plan is attractive to many merchants, although Square payment processing is not recommended for mid-sized or large merchants due to other potential costs.

Square Register Cons

Although Square’s pricing may be attractive to a number of business owners, the company has two major drawbacks that appear to be responsible for most of its online complaints. For one thing, Square’s easy signup is made possible by omitting a thorough underwriting process. This means that Square’s primary means of protecting itself against fraud is to place sudden fund holds on large or suspicious transactions, often without providing any advance notice to merchants. This policy, which is the topic of hundreds of public complaints, is unfortunately part of the processing service that comes bundled with the Square Register.

For another thing, Square offers virtually no live customer support for merchants. There is no Square Register phone number. This means that hardware issues, software bugs, billing disputes, and other issues may go unresolved for very long periods of time, leaving merchants without a solution of any kind during operating hours. This is the most consistent issue cited by Square merchants who have filed public complaints. For merchants lucky enough to avoid fund holds or service issues, Square is a great option. For those who encounter problems, there is hardly ever a swift and effective resolution.

There are currently numerous reviews posted to the iTunes store that claim that the app is crashing or failing to read cards since the iOS7 update for iPhone and iPad. Merchants are reporting a wide variety of bugs related to the update, but the common theme among complainants is that they have no idea how to solve the problem besides simply waiting for a fix from Square. It does seem as though phone users are struggling much more than iPad users, and we do not recommend Square Register for use outside of iPads for this reason.

Bottom Line

Square Register is a difficult service to rate because it is so inextricably linked with Square’s payment processing service. For merchants of all sizes who are already using Square, the service is undeniably a helpful add-on. For no additional cost, Square merchants can add a large number of well-designed, customizable features designed to improve their iPad-based point-of-sale systems. For non-Square merchants, though, Square Register comes with the same caveats that Square does. Possible fund holds and minimal customer support should be enough to scare most merchants away from Square, and the Register app is not a strong enough point-of-sale system to override these concerns. For now, an average grade of “B-” splits the difference between the “A” that is awarded to the actual Square Register app and the “D” that has been assigned to Square’s service as a whole.

This review was originally published on 11/12/13 and was last updated on 8/25/14.

Leave your review of Square Register in the comment section below:

Published by:

GoPayment Review

Category Breakdown
Sales & Marketing rated B plus
Costs & Contract rated C
Complaints & Service rated B plus
BBB Rating score pending

Overall Rating

"B" Credit Card Processor Rating


Overview

GoPayment Logo

GoPayment Logo

Just like the review for Square, this GoPayment (GoPayment.com) review will focus on the concerns of business owners and not so much on the technology of the product.

GoPayment (often misspelled as Go Payment or GoPay) is a mobile credit card processing product for iPhone, iPad, and Android devices created by Intuit Merchant Services. As of this update, Intuit appears to be slowly converting the name of the service from “Intuit GoPayment” to “QuickBooks GoPayment” or “QuickBooks Payments,” possibly in an effort to reclassify GoPayment as a mobile processing option within QuickBooks Merchant Services. For the purposes of this review, we will be scoring GoPayment independently of Intuit Merchant Services because GoPayment operates under completely different contract terms and pricing.

GoPayment Video Introduction

Sales & Marketing | B+

Key Points – Sales & Marketing
Uses independent resellers? No
Promotes deceptive rate quotes? Yes
Discloses all important terms? No

The marketing strategy, web design, and execution of GoPayment is strikingly similar to that of Square. And just like Square, GoPayment offers a free smartphone app and card reader, although the reader appears to be the more robust ROAMpay reader. Overall, GoPayment is very transparent about its pricing, but there are two common fees that the company’s “Pricing” page does not disclose. The first is a PCI Compliance fee that is assessed on e yearly basis and is calculated according to a merchant’s processing volume (see section below for exact figures). The second is a $0.15 fee that is tacked on to all “Non-Qualified” transactions, which can only be seen by scrolling to the bottom of the company’s homepage and clicking a small “Important pricing terms, offer details, and disclosures” link. Although this information is technically disclosed, it’s not located anywhere near the pricing breakdown in the middle of the page.

Intuit primarily markets its service through online advertising and strategic partnerships.

Related: Best Credit Card Processing Apps For Real Businesses

Costs & Contract | C

Key Points – Costs & Contract Terms
Swiped rate: 1.75%-2.75% + $0.25
Keyed-in rate: 3.15-3.75% + $0.15-$0.25
Termination fee: $295-$500 or none
PCI compliance fee: $35-$100 per year
Equipment cost: Variable

Aside from the similarities in execution and marketing, there is a significant difference in the way Intuit sets the processing rates for GoPayment versus how Square sets its pricing. GoPayment’s pricing has also become much more complicated in recent months.

Intuit appears to offer two pricing plans for its QuickBooks mobile processing service: “Simplified” pricing and “GoPayment” pricing. It seems that the Simplified plan is available to QuickBooks Merchant Services customers who add mobile processing to their existing accounts, while GoPayment pricing is reserved for merchants who only want the mobile card reader without also paying for other QuickBooks or Intuit services.

Simplified pricing is available in two versions: “Pay As You Go” and “Pro.” The Pay As You Go plan quotes a swiped rate of 2.4% plus $0.25 and a keyed-in rate of 3.4% plus $0.25 with no monthly fees. The Pro plan quotes a swiped rate of 1.75% plus $0.25 and a keyed-in rate of 3.15% plus $0.25 with a monthly fee of $19.95.

The standalone GoPayment pricing plan also offers a “Pay As You Go” version and a “Pro” version. The Pay As You Go plan charges a flat fee of 2.75% per swiped transaction and a 3.75% fee on keyed-in transactions with no monthly fees. The Pro plan charges a swiped rate of 1.75% and a keyed-in rate of 2.75% with a monthly fee of $12.95. These are the service’s transaction fees and monthly fees, but there are other potential costs that will be discussed in greater detail below.

Unlike Square, which uses the same processing rate for all card types, GoPayment actually groups all swiped transactions into two tiers. The fine print indicates that the advertised swipe rate is actually reserved for swiped Visa and MasterCard “Qualified” cards, which are typically personal credit/debit cards that do not have a rewards or miles program attached to them. Similarly, the keyed-in rate only applies to manually entered transactions that are “Qualified.” GoPayment will add $0.15 to any transaction, swiped or keyed, that is considered “Non-Qualified.” GoPayment defines “Non-Qualified” as “corporate cards, foreign cards, and transactions that do not meet Visa/MC/Discover Network requirements for the best interchange program.” There is no mention of whether rewards/miles cards fall into the “Non-Qualified” category, which seems to indicate that they fall into the “Qualified” tier. These tier distinctions are important because a high percentage of credit cards have have rewards programs attached to them.

GoPayment also appears to added an early termination fee to its service in some cases. The company’s merchant agreement states that the merchant “may be required to pay termination fees as set forth in your Merchant Application. If your Merchant Application references a ‘standard termination fee,’ a fee of $295 dollars will apply upon your termination of Services.” Intuit also assesses an annual PCI Compliance fee that varies based upon transaction volume ($35 for 1-24 annual transactions, $50 for 25-99, and $100 for 100+).

[Related: Compare Fees and Save Money]

GoPayment is transparent about processing limits and notifies merchants what their limits are in their online dashboards. Merchants who will have high processing volumes or high ticket sales ($5,000+/mo or $500+/sale ) will want to contact the company to get higher processing limits.

It is important to note that the free card reader offer only applies to new customers. Therefore, it looks like existing customers will still be bound to their original merchant account agreement and be required to purchase the card reader if they wish to use GoPayment.

Overall, GoPayment’s pricing has become remarkably complicated since the service was first launched, and it appears that GoPayment merchants can receive either very competitive terms or very expensive terms. For a full breakdown of GoPayment’s pricing tiers and additional fees, see this page.

Complaints & Service | B+

Key Points – Complaints & Service
Total complaints: 80+
Live customer support: Yes
Most common complaint: Fund holds

There are over 80 complaints filed against the company on this and other consumer protection websites. Most of these complaints have to do with GoPayment placing holds on transactions in excess of a merchant’s processing limit, although some have been filed regarding poor customer service or nondisclosure of “Non-Qualified” transaction rates. Since GoPayment clearly displays merchants’ processing limits upon signup and in the service’s dashboard, it seems that many of these complainants simply did not understand that they were only allowed to process up to a certain amount on a weekly or monthly basis. A GoPayment representative has been very active in responding to complaints in the comment section of this review.

Probably the biggest advantage that GoPayment support offers over Square is a dedicated telephone customer support line. Square relies primarily on email support and buries its contact number, which often goes to a voice mail system when called.

Related: Best CC Processing Apps for Service: iPhone | Android

BBB Report | N/A

GoPayment is technically under the Intuit umbrella of services and does not have its own Better Business Bureau (BBB) profile. Intuit’s BBB profile has an “A+” rating as of this review. For the purposes of this review, Intuit’s BBB rating will not be factored into GoPayment’s overall rating for two reasons: First, the report is not specific to GoPayment, and second, GoPayment appears to operate under completely different service terms and customer support than Intuit’s traditional merchant account setup.

Bottom Line


GoPayment Review

Rated 3.2 out of 5 Stars
Reviewed by Phillip Parker
Reviewed on 2014-08-21

Overall, GoPayment card processing appears to be a decent product and most merchants seem happy with the service. Additionally, GoPayment’s paid account tier offers better swipe rates than Square, which makes it more attractive for businesses that have higher processing volumes or accept credit cards on a regular basis. It should also be noted that GoPayment is compatible with many more phones than Square. A complete list of compatible devices can be found on the GoPayment website.

This review was originally published on 7/13/11 and was last updated on 8/21/14.

Leave your review of GoPayment in the comment section below:

Published by:

Flint Review

Category Breakdown
Sales & Marketing rated A plus
Costs & Contract rated A
Complaints & Service rated A plus
BBB Rating rated A

Overall Rating

A+


Overview

flint logo

Flint Logo

Flint (flint.com) is a mobile payment processing service offered by Flint Mobile, a startup headquartered in Redwood City, California. Flint’s smartphone-based processing app places it in direct competition with popular services like Square and GoPayment, but there are a few significant differences between this service and its rivals. Most notably, Flint eschews a dongle or card reader in favor of enabling merchants to scan credit card numbers with the cameras in their iPhones and Android smartphones. The payments are securely processed and are never stored in a merchant’s phone, and Flint advertises one- to two-day depositing of funds. Merchants can also key in a customer’s credit card number with no increase in fees.

The Flint mobile app offers transaction history tracking and Facebook integration, which may be appealing for merchants looking to cultivate a social media presence. The service is also integrated with QuickBooks online, which enables it to sync all transactions automatically with a merchant’s QuickBooks account. Merchants who sign up for service through Flint must establish a merchant account with the company’s processor, so it does not appear that they can integrate their existing merchant accounts at this time. As one final note, Flint currently supports only Visa and MasterCard, meaning that users will have to establish processing through American Express independently.

Sales & Marketing | A+

Key Points – Sales & Marketing
Uses independent resellers? Yes
Promotes deceptive rate quotes? No
Discloses all important terms? Yes

Flint appears to primarily rely on its website and its new reseller program, Flint+, to market its services. The company does not employ a team of sales agents, and there are currently no complaints online about its marketing tactics. The Flint website provides an easy-to-use rate calculator and lists its fees upfront, and we have not located any evidence that these rates are misleadingly quoted.

Flint Marketing Example

Costs & Contract | A

Key Points – Costs & Contract Terms
Swiped rate: 1.95% or 2.95%
Keyed-in rate: 1.95% or 2.95%
Termination fee: None
PCI compliance fee: None
Equipment lease: None

Flint offers flat pricing that is calculated in a simple and novel way for the industry. For debit card payments, merchants pay 1.95% of each transaction. For credit card payments, merchants pay 2.95% of each transaction. These rates do not change depending on whether the transaction was swiped or keyed, and there are no termination fees, monthly fees, or PCI compliance fees associated with the account. Merchants can terminate at any time without penalty.

One possible issue that merchants may encounter with the service is the company’s seven-day deposit limit. The company’s terms of use state that any amounts processed in excess of $1,000 in any trailing seven-day period may be placed in a reserve for up to 30 days. A company representative has clarified the company’s transaction limits further in the comment section of this review. At this time, there is only one online complaint regarding Flint’s deposit limits, indicating that most merchants either never encounter this issue or are made fully aware of it before signing up.

Although there are no complaints as of this update about the company’s terms of use, one of the company’s policies is potentially of some concern at this time. Like its mobile payments competitors, the company appears to prioritize ease of sign-up, which means that merchants are usually approved for a Flint Mobile Account before Flint’s underwriting department can make a detailed assessment of the merchant’s risk for fraud or illegal activity. With other companies, this has resulted in sudden termination of services and large fund holds for merchants, which is often compounded by the minimal customer support offered by these companies. Flint offers live support, which is a major plus, and the service is not showing a large complaint volume in relation to its fraud prevention policies at this time. Even so, merchants are encouraged to carefully read the company’s list of prohibited activities and inquire about processing limits before signing up.

Complaints & Service | A+

Key Points – Complaints & Service
Total complaints: 20+
Live customer support: Yes
Most common complaint: Limited features

We are currently able to locate only a handful of Flint negative reviews outside of the BBB at this time, indicating that the company is not a ripoff or a scam. This is a relatively new service, so it is possible that it has yet to receive the complaints that come with widespread use, but it is showing mostly positive reviews in both the iTunes App Store and the Android Market. Users cite its ease of use, its customizable receipt system, its clear pricing, and the ability to function without a card reader as highlights of the service. One reviewer balked at having to provide their email password to allow the service to send customizable receipts, but this shouldn’t be an issue for merchants who keep separate email addresses for their businesses. Flint offers live phone support with its service, which gives it a major advantage over Square and may be largely responsible for the total absence of complaints about the company.

BBB Report | A*

Key Points – BBB Report
Product/service: 1
Billing/collection: 0
Advertising/sales: 1
Guarantee/warranty: 0
Delivery: 0

Flint is currently not accredited with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and is showing an “A-” rating based on two overall complaints. One complaint was filed due to a problem with the product or service, while the other was related to a delivery issue. Both were resolved with BBB assistance. The BBB cites the company’s length of time in business as the primary factor lowering its rating. Given the company’s complaint rate and resolution ratio, we have slightly adjusted its grade to an “A” in this category.

* Denotes CPO-adjusted BBB score

Bottom Line


Flint Review

Rated 4.8 out of 5 Stars
Reviewed by Phillip Parker
Reviewed on 2014-08-15

Flint appears to be an innovative and reliable mobile processing option according to all available information. The service is still very new, so it’s possible that complaints will pop up as it continues to grow. That said, the central concept of the app provides an intriguing alternative to its competitors, and Flint’s pricing is transparent and competitive.

This review was originally published on 10/24/13 and was last updated on 8/15/14.

Leave your review of Flint in the comment section below:

Published by: