Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is Interchange?
For every credit card and debit card out there, there is a specific cost that comes from the card associations (Visa, MC, Discover & Amex). ALL merchant service provider’s and credit card processors have the exact same interchange rates that are mandated by Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express
2. What is Interchange Plus Pricing (also known as pass-thru pricing)?
Interchange Plus Pricing is a pricing model for credit card processing. This is the model Preferred Payment’s utilizes. We pass on the exact cost to you (interchange) and we add a fixed markup.
3. Can Preferred Payments work with any gateways or software?
Yes, typically we can work with any gateway and most software or POS systems. Here are just a few examples of who we work with,
- Gateways: Authorize.net, USAepay, Paytrace, Payeezy, Shopify, Converge, Merchant Partners
- Software/POS: NCR, Aloha, Clover, Shopkeep, Bindo, POSitouch, Lavu, Quickbooks POS, Verifone Cloud
4. What is EMV, does it affect me?
EMV stands for Europay, Mastercard and Visa. EMV was mandated in October 2015 to help decrease fraud in a card present environment. The credit card uses the chip to authenticate the transaction. EMV only affects businesses who take cards in person, no one is required to update their terminal but it is recommended to help protect your business against fraud.
EMV does not affect you if you do not take credit cards in person.
5. Is there a downside to not accepting EMV/chip cards?
Yes, if you do not accept chip cards in a card present environment and a customer disputes a transaction the business will automatically loses the dispute. This results in a chargeback.
6. How often will my rates increase with Preferred Payments?
Never. The rates we give you from the beginning is what you receive for the life of your account.
7. How difficult is it to switch from my existing provider?
Not difficult at all. We help you with the entire process and handle most of the changes on our end. There is no downtime for your businesses. The switch can typically be completed within 24-48 hours.
8. What documents are required for a new account?
- Signed Application
- Voided Check
- Copy of Owners Driver’s License
- EIN Letter or Business License
9. How long does the set up process take?
If we receive all the documents, you will be approved within 24-48 hours, and can begin processing within 48-72 hours.
10. How quickly do I receive my funds?
You will receive your funds directly into your bank account the next business day. Friday’s transactions will be deposited on Saturday. Saturday and Sunday’s transactions will be deposited on Monday
11. Will my American Express transactions be deposited with the rest of my funds or will I receive a separate deposit?
Preferred Payments set you up so that all funds will be received in one deposit. Instead of having to reconcile separately, we make it easy to track all funds that were deposited. There is also no delay for receiving your American Express funds.
12. Do I receive access to reports and statements?
Yes – each merchant of ours receives free access to our online reporting tool and electronic monthly statements. The reporting tool allows you to view daily transactions, settlements, deposits, chargebacks, refunds, etc. Our tool also allows you to access your statement each month.
13. POS vs Terminal?
POS Systems help manage your business, they consist of specific functions meant for the industry you are in and have a wide variety of features that can add value. Examples include Inventory management, CRM, Loyalty Programs, Reservation Capabilities, Table Management, etc. If you are looking for something specific, ask us and we will have it!
A terminal is a machine that accepts credit cards without all the bells and whistles. It is a standalone machine that can accept EMV chip cards, mag stripe cards, Apple Pay, and Google Wallets. You will also receive our reporting tool to track all of your transactions.
14. Can Preferred Payments Integrate with QuickBooks?
Yes we can, we can integrate with QuickBooks POS, Desktop and Online. We even have an EMV solution for QuickBooks POS.
15. Can Preferred Payments integrate with my online website and retail store?
Yes. We can integrate your store, regardless of what type of business it is and with your online website so all of your reporting will be consolidated.
16. What is a Payment Gateway?
A payment gateway is a virtual terminal. It serves as an online payments page that will go directly on your website, and you will also have the ability to log onto your virtual terminal to key in transactions manually.
17. How is Preferred Payments different then their competition?
We are a relationship based company, meaning our goal is to satisfy you from the start and keep you around for the life of your business. We want to make the process on you as easy as possible and we are happy to offer our help and support in any way we can. We are transparent and straightforward in our pricing and pride ourselves on a high level of customer service. Each business we work with receives a dedicated account manager so that you have one person to always call, email, and go to for support. We also have backup 24/7 US based support. The rates we initially give you are locked in, they will never raise and we have no contracts, no cancellation fee and no set up fee.
18. Can I accept International credit cards?
Yes you can.
19. What is PCI Compliance?
PCI stands for Payment Card Industry. If you are a business who accepts credit cards you must be PCI compliant. Compliance consists of a self-assessment questionnaire and a scan. Your dedicated account representative will continue to help you attain and maintain compliance for the life of your account.
20. Does Preferred Payments offer everything I need to complete PCI compliance or do I need to reach out to a third party to prove compliance?
Preferred Payments provides you with everything you need to complete compliance. We supply you with your own credentials to log into our online portal to complete compliance. You do not need to reach out to a third party.
21. What is the different between pin and signature debit?
Signature Debit: Signature debit is when the customer uses their debit card but does not enter their pin. Instead they sign the sales receipt, just like a credit card transaction. This is also known as an offline debit transaction.
Pin Debit: Pin debit is when a customer pays using their debit card and enter in their pin number into the pin pad to complete the transaction. The customer does not have a need to sign a receipt. Pin Debit is also known as online debit transaction.
22. What is NFC and Apple Pay?
NFC stands for “Near Field Communication”, giving merchants the ability to accept payment forms electronically through cell phones. An example of NFC is Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Google Wallet. Security is at the forefront of NFC transactions by utilizing tokenization. Tokenization creates a token instead of showing or transferring your actual credit card number.
23. If I already have a terminal, do I need to purchase a new one?
We can often times reprogram terminals you already have so that you do not need to purchase a new one. There are some terminals that have come to “end of life” due to the older technology that may be in them, including terminals that cannot accept EMV cards. If you already have a terminal you would like to use, let us know and we can let you know if we are able to reprogram it.
24. Why doesn’t Preferred Payments lease terminals?
There are a few reasons why we don’t, first being is that we are required to lock you into a contract if we lease you the equipment. Many companies who lease equipment lock you into a contract and raise your rates over time, and there is a high cancellation fee to get out of the contract. We do NOT believe in locking you into anything and we do not believe in cancellation fees. The other reason is because leasing usually means you are overpaying on the equipment. Terminals can range anywhere from 150-800 (most being in the 200 range), many companies who lease make over 1000 dollars off your 200 dollar terminal by the time your lease is over. We are happy to give you options of terminals to purchase so that you have options in cost.
25. What Card Brand and Card Types can I accept if I used Preferred Payments?
You can accept any major card brand, including Visa, Mastercard, Discover, American Express, Diners, JCB, debit, and pin debit. Plus we offer Apple Pay, NFC, gift cards and ACH/Check Processing.
26. What is customer support like?
Each of our clients receives a dedicated representative to help throughout this entire process. After the initial set up and approval, we remain as your first line of support, but we also have 24/7 US based back up support.
27. Can I accept payments in my store and on my website?
Yes! We can have it linked so that all your reporting and sales are consolidated into one, or we can keep them separate. Whichever is best for you.
28. If I have multiple locations, can I see reporting for all locations remotely?
Yes! We have a specific reporting tools for businesses that have multiple locations. You can view transactions, disputes, settlements, deposits, and refunds for each location. You will be able to view locations separately and together. If you are a franchise owner, you can have access to all locations whereas the individual store owners will just be able to see their store.
29. Can I accept gift cards?
Absolutely! We can set you up with new gift cards or if you already have gift cards in place we can use the ones you have.
30. Can I issue refund and is there a cost?
Yes, you can absolutely issue a refund or void a transaction. There is no cost to issue a refund or void.
31. What is the difference between a void and a refund?
A void is when you want to refund a transaction within the same day you accepted the card. In essence you are cancelling out that transaction as if it never happened. It is before it posts to the cardholders statement or account. If a transaction is voided, that money was never actually taken out of the customer’s account. A void can only be done before you settle your sales for the day.
A refund is more of a return, the refund happens after the settlement and after the transaction has appeared on the cardholders account. A refund usually takes 3-7 business days to process. A refund means the money has already been debited from the customer’s account and they now need to wait for the refund to process to see the money back on their account.
32. Does Preferred Payments help with Chargebacks? Do you offer a Chargeback management tool?
Yes we will help you gather documents so that you can dispute a chargeback. We also offer a chargeback management tool which allows you to oversee and quickly respond to any disputes that come your way.
33. Does Preferred Payments offer automatic card updater?
Yes we do, automatic card updater helps minimize declines when you store customers credit cards on file. Our system will automatically update your customers card number if it has expired, was lost, etc. This prevents you from having to reach out to a customer anytime a card expires.
34. What is AVS?
AVS stands for Address Verification Services. It is used to verify the cardholders billing address with what the issuing bank has on file. It verifies both their street address and zip code. AVS helps against identity theft and fraud by allowing you to see if the street address and zip code match what the customer has on file with the bank. Entering the zip code also helps with your interchange rate, due to the additional layer of security if a business enters a cardholders zip code they will receive a lower rate of interchange.
35. Can I accept tips?
Yes. Whether you want a standalone terminal or a POS System, you will be able to accept tips.