Does Your Retail Store Need a Merchant Account?

credit card processing
Credit card payment

Here’s a classic dilemma for many small retail store owners: Does your business really need a merchant account?

Consider the following scenario: Your start-up retail store successfully weathers the recession. Growth has been fantastic and the customers are enthusiastic despite having lower purchasing power. Unfortunately, this ‘honeymoon’ period won’t last long – for one reason or another, sales will eventually lose its growth momentum and your store will hit a wall, so to speak.

Maybe it’s because you aren’t attracting enough new clientele. Or maybe it’s because a competitor has recently entered the market, stealing some of your market share pie. Whatever the reasons, you’re business is in desperate need for a breakthrough.

Very underrated, credit card processing is often overlooked by retail store owners as a viable way to increase store foot traffic and boost sales. As more people make the shift from purchasing with cash to purchasing with credit, credit cards usage is growing in popularity. A lot of consumers frequently cite the security and flexibility that credit cards offer in addition to the saving advantages, in terms of value for money, special offers, etc, as among the many advantages of using a credit card. For small businesses, the benefits of accepting credit cards can be pretty substantial. The first step in being able to do this is setting up a merchant account.

A retail merchant account will make your retail store more appealing compared to those that don’t have one. And this is just scratching the surface. The following are more reasons to consider equipping your business with a merchant account:

  • With a retail merchant account, you can cut down on your store’s operating expense, in terms of hiring the right employees to handle cash purchases and ensuring that the no ‘internal’ thefts occurs – all in exchange for a small charge for each transaction.
  • A retail merchant account offers you convenience, and customers love convenient shopping – in fact, a lot! Credit cards have been linked to decreased customer queue time and increased customer satisfaction and loyalty.
  • As mentioned above, a store offering credit card processing will gain a competitive advantage over others that don’t in large part because of increased customer convenience and trust. Moreover, with the arrival of wireless technology, you can offer more payment options for your customers – e.g. Instead of herding customers to the checkout line, you can have staff process transactions anywhere in the store with the help of a wireless credit card processor.

With all these upsides, you also need to conduct some due diligence to ensure you that opening a retail merchant account is the right decision for your store. You need to check the background of several payment solutions providers to see whether you are dealing with trusted ones. A lot of the larger, more established companies that offer merchant credit card processing services, such as North American Bancard, Pay Pal, etc, can save you from future headaches. Secondly, you need to know what kind of terms and services you are getting from the deal – you would obviously want the lowest cost and the most beneficial terms for your retail store and its customers.