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Merchant Accounts
bp  What is a Merchant Account?
bp  Why does my business need to accept credit and or debit cards from my customers?
bp  How do I apply for a merchant account?
bp  Will your merchant account work with my existing terminal, software or gateway?
bp  How long will it take for my application to be processed?
bp  What credit cards will my business be able to accept?
bp  Can I reconcile my merchant account or check my activity before I get my month end statement?
bp  Will my business receive a statement on the transactions processed?
bp  How will my business receive payment for each transaction?
bp  Are my funds guaranteed?
bp  What is the cut off time for settlement of my daily batch?
bp  How long will it take for the funds to be deposited to my bank account?
bp  What are interchange Fees?
bp  Who sets interchange fees?
bp  Is there a schedule for interchange fees?
bp  Why are there so many different interchange categories?
bp  Do interchange fees ever change?
bp  Who pays interchange fees?
bp  What are merchant account basis points?
bp  Why do merchant account providers use the basis point system?
bp  What is Tiered Pricing?
bp  What is a qualified rate?
bp  What is a mid-qualified rate?
bp  What is a non-qualified rate?
bp  What is Durbin Amendment?
bp  What exactly is the monthly minimum fee?
bp  Which of my fees count towards the Monthly Minimum Fee?
bp  What is the Monthly/statement fee?
bp  How Long does the authorization last?
bp  What is Authorization/Transaction Fee?
bp  What is Address Verification Service?
bp  Why is my merchant statement from a company other than E-Commerce Exchange?
bp  What is a chargeback?
bp  What are IRS Reporting/Regulatory Requirements?
bp  Will I receive notification of the report sent to IRS?
bp  How much are the IRS Reporting/Regulatory fees?
bp  What is the TIN (Tax Identification Number) Validation fee?
bp  What do I need to do as a merchant?
bp  How do I know if my information with the processor is correct/matching with the IRS Database?
bp  What is the deadline to update this information?
bp  What if my information is not updated by the deadline?
bp  What is Regulatory non-compliance Fee?
bp  What is EMV?
bp  Why is EMV being implemented?
bp  How does EMV work?
bp  How will the payment process differ?
bp  Is a chip card the same as a contactless payment?
bp  What is the difference between Chip & PIN and Chip & Signature?
bp  What does it mean for merchants?
bp  How does EMV impact PCI compliance?
bp  What action should I take?
bp  What is NFC?
bp  How does NFC work?
bp  How can NFC payments benefit my business?
bp  How can NFC payments cut down on fraud?
bp  Why should I invest in NFC now?
bp  What is ApplePay?
bp  What is Android Pay?
bp  What Is EBT?
bp  What do I need to do to process EBT?
bp  Where to get free signage to alert that you accept credit cards?
bp  Merchant Services Guide Documents and Change / Requests Forms
Non-Bankcards
bp  What are non-bankcards?
bp  How can I accept additional credit card types?
bp  What are the benefits of accepting American Express?
bp  How do I add American Express to my existing merchant account?
bp  What is ESA American Express merchant account program?
bp  What is the new American Express OptBlue merchant account program?
bp  How much do OptBlue merchant accounts cost?
bp  What platform does my merchant account have to reside upon to be set up with OptBlue?
bp  Does the program affect the current OnePoint merchants?
bp  Can I switch to the American Express OptBlue program if I am under an old ESA American Express program?
bp  What are the benefits of accepting Discover cards?
bp  How do I add Discover to my existing merchant account?
bp  What is Discover MAP?
bp  How much does a Discover MAP merchant account cost?
bp  What is Discover IMAP?
bp  How much does a Discover IMAP merchant account cost?
bp  Are Diners Club and Carte Blanche considered non-bankcards?
bp  Is there a setup fee to add any non-bankcard types after merchant account is approved?
Debit Services
bp  What are Debit Transactions?
bp  What are the advantages of Pin-Based Debit Transactions?
bp  What is a Pinpad?
bp  I'm already processing debit cards without a PIN pad through my existing merchant account. Isn't that sufficient?
bp  What do I need to start accepting PIN-based Debit transactions?
PCI Compliance
bp  What is PCI-DSS?
bp  Where can I find the PCI Data Security Standards (PCI DSS)?
bp  What procedures do I need to follow to become PCI Compliant and to obtain a PCI DSS Certification?
bp  Who is the PCI vendor that I will be using?
bp  How much does the PCI DSS analysis cost?
bp  What happens if I have not completed the PCI DSS analysis?
bp  Do the new merchants have a deadline to get compliant?
bp  How does PCI compliance work if my business process using only the mobile phone or tablet?
bp  How does PCI compliance work if my business has multiple merchant accounts?
bp  Can I use a PCI vendor of my choice?
bp  What happens if I complete and pass the PCI Compliance Scan and/or Questionnaire?
bp  What happens if I do not pass the PCI Compliance Scan and/or Questionnaire?
bp  What if we are using a PCI certified Payment Gateway (Authorize.net, QuickCommerce, PlugnPay, etc.), Equipment (Verifone, Hypercom, Ingenico, etc.), Software (PC Charge, QuickBooks, QB POS, etc.) or Shopping Cart (ProStores, Cart32, Shopsite, etc.)?
bp  Where can I find out if my equipment or software is compliant?
bp  Who can I talk to if I have further questions?
Payment Gateway
bp  How does a Payment Gateway integrate with my website?
bp  How can I customize the Gateway transaction form?
bp  Is my Payment Gateway integrated with my shopping cart?
bp  Levels 1, 2 and 3 Credit Card Processing
bp  What Is Level 1 Processing?
bp  What Is Level 2 Processing?
bp  What Is Level 3 Processing?
Check Services
bp  What are Check Services?
bp  Why does my business need to accept checks from my customers ?
bp  What type of checks can I accept?
bp  How will my business receive payment?
bp  Can I be set up for auto settlement of the batches?
bp  What is the cut off time for the settlement of my daily batch?
bp  Do I need special equipment to use check service?
bp  What are the fees for using check services?
bp  Will there be any monthly fees or monthly minimums on check services accounts?
bp  Is there an annual fee for my check services? When will I be charged the annual fee?
bp  How much is the annual fee for my check services?
bp  Why is my check services statement from a company other than E-Commerce Exchange?
bp  How do I apply for a check services account?
bp  How long will it take for my application to be processed?
Payroll
bp  What do I need to be able to use Intuit Payroll Service?
bp  Can I switch to Intuit Payroll Service mid-year?
bp  Does Intuit Payroll Service handle both hourly and salaried employees?
bp  What about bonuses, commissions, and overtime?
bp  Can I pay contractors and produce 1099s?
bp  How do I pay my employees?
bp  Can I pay employees using direct deposit?
bp  How much does Direct Deposit cost?
bp  Which benefits and deductions does Intuit Payroll Service handle?
bp  Does it track workers' compensation?
bp  How does Intuit Payroll Service help me with payroll taxes?
bp  Which federal and state payroll tax forms are included?
bp  How is my data protected?
bp  How do I share data with my accountant?
Leasing
bp  Will I be able to lease the software and/or equipment I need?
bp  How is the lease payment determined?
bp  What are my options at the end of the lease?
bp  When can I expect my lease payments to be deducted?
Gift Cards
bp  What is a Gift and/or Loyalty Card?
bp  What are Loyalty Card Reward Points, Award Levels, & Redemptions?
bp  How are Value and Points tracked?
bp  What terminals and applications can I use to process Gift and Loyalty Cards?
bp  What if I already have a Gift and/or Loyalty Card program in place with a different company?
bp  Do I have to pay more to have both Gift and Loyalty?
bp  How long does it take for me to receive my order once placed?
bp  What is online Reporting?
bp  How Can I Use Gift and Loyalty Cards for Target Marketing?
bp  How Gift Card is issued?
bp  How Gift Card is redeemed?
bp  When will the monthly fee for Gift Card be accessed?
Support and Service
bp  How do I get technical assistance?
bp  What type of software or equipment should my business use to process credit cards and checks?
bp  Does E-Commerce Exchange offer a Warranty on its products?
bp  Does E-Commerce Exchange offer an extended warranty?

Merchant Accounts

What is a Merchant Account?
A merchant account is a commercial account number established by contractual agreement between your business and the banks we represent. A merchant account enables your business to accept credit and or debit card payments from your customers.

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Why does my business need to accept credit and or debit cards from my customers?
By accepting major credit cards you can increase your credibility, customer convenience, and best of all, your sales. Statistics say accepting credit cards can increase sales by 30 to 100% !

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How do I apply for a merchant account?
Simply, link to our online application and submit the requested information. You may also email us or call us at 1-800-477-5363 for further assistance on setup, or other processing related questions.

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Will your merchant account work with my existing terminal, software or gateway?
To help you integrate with most of most of the terminals, software or gateways out there, our merchant accounts can be boarded on one of the below platforms:

Ipayment Merchants : Omaha, Nashville, North, TSYS and Buypass.
Sage Merchants : TSYS and Paymentech.
Intuit Merchants : Nashville and Omaha.
CardConnect Merchants: North.
Pivotal Merchants: TSYS.
Optimal Merchants: TSYS.

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How long will it take for my application to be processed?
Within a few working days your company will be able to accept credit cards from your customers. Our processing department specializes in expediting your application so you can immediately start accepting credit cards from your customers. All necessary paperwork will be faxed, emailed or sent next day via FedEx, and a next day scheduled prepaid pickup for fast return of all documentation.

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What credit cards will my business be able to accept?
We will apply for your business to accept Visa/MC and Discover Card. You may choose to apply for American Express, Diners Club and JCB. A separate application is required for American Express, Diner's Club and JCB. You will also be able to take any check card with a Visa/MC logo. If you are a retail business, you can take most debit cards if you sign up with our debit card services. Businesses using our international merchant solutions can also accept Switch, Delta, Visa Electron, Laser and Solo.

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Can I reconcile my merchant account or check my activity before I get my month end statement?
Yes, click here to reconcile each card type by processor.

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Will my business receive a statement on the transactions processed?
As a merchant with us you will receive a comprehensive statement detailing your credit card transactions. You could receive your statement in the mail or by logging into your merchant account online.

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How will my business receive payment for each transaction?
Once the transaction has been approved your customer's charges are deposited directly from our credit card processor to your bank account. Transaction deposits typically range from 24-72 hours from the date of the transaction.

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Are my funds guaranteed?
Any customer has the right to dispute a credit card charge from the card's issuing bank. If a charge is challenged, a retrieval request will be sent to the merchant asking for proof that a sale had been made by the customer. In addition, the merchant's credit card processor has the right to discontinue service for many reasons. And finally, a merchant should take due diligence to protect against someone trying to order merchandise with stolen cards by becoming familiar with the process. Read here and your merchant agreement for a detailed explanations of charge backs and retrievals.

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What is the cut off time for settlement of my daily batch?
For iPayment merchants, the cut off time to settle all credit transactions is 3.00PM PST and to settle all debit transactions is 3:55PM PST
For Sage merchants, the cut off time to settle all credit and debit transactions is 11:00PM EST
For Intuit/IMS merchants, the cut off time to settle all credit and debit transactions is 12:30AM PST
For Card Connect merchants, the cut off time to settle all credit and debit transactions is 3.00 PM PST
For Pivotal Payments, the cut off time to settle all credit and debit transactions is 8:00PM PST
For Optimal merchants, the cut off time to settle all credit and debit transactions is 9:00PM PST

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How long will it take for the funds to be deposited to my bank account?
iPayment merchants will receive the funds in their bank account in 1-2 business days.
Sage merchants will receive the funds in their bank account in 2 business days.
Intuit/IMS merchants will receive the funds in their bank account in 2 business days.
Cardconnect Merchants will receive funds in their account in 1 business day.
Optimal Merrick merchants will receive the funds in their bank account in 2-3 business days.
Optimal International merchants will receive the funds in their bank account in 1 to 2 weeks.

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What are interchange Fees?
Each time credit card processing occurs through a merchant account, interchange fees are billed. This fee is for using the credit card interchange process between the acquiring bank (where the merchant account is held) and the issuing bank (the bank that issued the consumers card).

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Who sets interchange fees?
Interchange reimbursement fees are set by Visa and MasterCard, or more accurately, by their stakeholders - both Visa and MasterCard are public companies.

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Is there a schedule for interchange fees?
Yes, following links will take you to the Interchange fee schedules:
bpVisa  https://usa.visa.com/dam/VCOM/download/merchants/visa-usa-interchange-reimbursement-fees-2016-april.pdf
bpMaster Card  http://www.mastercard.com/us/merchant/pdf/MasterCard_Interchange_Rates_and_Criteria.pdf
bpAmerican Express  https://firstaffiliates.com/Affiliatewiz/AMEX%20OPT%20BLUE%20FEE%20ATTRIBUTES%20RETAIL.pdf
bpDiscover  https://firstaffiliates.com/Affiliatewiz/Discover%20Interchange%20Rates.pdf
                                       
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Why are there so many different interchange categories?
Risk is the primary reason for having different interchange categories. Lower the risk associated with a credit card transaction, lower the interchange fee will be to process it and vice versa. The other factors contributing to the number of interchange categories are type of business, average ticket etc.

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Do interchange fees ever change?
Yes, Visa and MasterCard can update or change the interchange reimbursement fee schedule twice annually in April and October.

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Who pays interchange fees?
Acquiring banks (the merchant's bank) pay interchange reimbursement fees to the cardholder's bank (issuing bank) using funds they collect from merchants.

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What are merchant account basis points?
Basis points, also called the discount rate, are simply the percentage of a sale that a merchant pays their merchant services provider to process credit cards.

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Why do merchant account providers use the basis point system?
Basis points are used for convenience of calculations since they are expressed as 1/100th of 1%, or 0.01%. For example, a business with a basis point of 149 has a discount rate of 1.49%. Or, a basis point of 34 would equal 0.34%.

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What is Tiered Pricing?
The Tier Pricing is the most popular pricing method and the simplest system for most merchants to understand. In 3-Tier Pricing, the merchant account provider groups the transactions into 3 groups (tiers) and assigns a rate to each tier based on a criterion established for each tier. There are a lot of different factors that can influence the rate you are given by your merchant account provider: Type of card being used (a no-frills Visa card versus a Visa Rewards Card will process at different rate "tiers;" the interchange on a rewards card will be higher) The way a transaction is processed (swipe in-person, over-the-phone orders, keying in card number in-person, accepting payments online) The type of business accepting the card (are you selling high-risk, high ticket items? Is your business type historically prone to troublesome chargebacks?)
Typically there are 4 tiers that are set depending on the type of business as follows:
Debit: Debit cards where the PIN is entered by the customer at check out
Qualified: Check cards that are swiped through the terminal.
Mid-Qualified: Check cards that are keyed in to the terminal, Rewards cards that are swiped or keyed into the terminal
Non-Qualified: Corporate or international cards swiped or keyed

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What is a qualified rate?
The qualified rate is charged for a normal payment made on a standard credit card. These transactions are the least expensive for merchants because they carry the smallest risk of fraud or human error. Non reward credit cards fall into the qualified rate category unless they are manually keyed into the terminal.

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What is a mid-qualified rate?
The mid-qualified rate is charged for transactions that do not fit the criteria for the qualified rate. For example, the mid-qualified rate is charged if a sales clerk manually keys in credit card information instead of swiping the customer’s card (the clerk must perform address verification; otherwise the merchant will pay the non-qualified rate). Rewards cards and some business cards fall into the mid-qualified category.

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What is a non-qualified rate?
The non-qualified rate is the highest rate a merchant can be charged for a credit card transaction. This rate is charged when a sales clerk manually enters a card and does not perform address verification or when other necessary information is absent at the time of the transaction. Most corporate and promotional cards fall into the non-qualified category.

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What is Durbin Amendment?
The interchange fee that is supposed to cover the risk of fraud, transactional costs, and other overhead had become a big expense for the small retailers unlike the big merchants who had the power to negotiate. The Durbin Amendment was therefore passed as part of the Dodd-Frank financial reform legislation in 2010 to require the Federal Reserve to limit fees charged to retailers for debit card processing. The rule also allowed non-exempt card issuers to charge a one-cent fraud prevention fee to merchants in addition to another 0.7 percent for fraud prevention already included in the interchange fee.

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What exactly is the monthly minimum fee?
A Monthly Minimum fee is a fee charged in the event that a merchant's discount fee for the month does not meet the monthly minimum fee amount. For example, if the merchant's Monthly Minimum Fee is $20.00, and the merchant's discount fees for the month is a total of $15.00, then the processor will charge the merchant a Minimum Monthly Fee of $5.00 to make up for the difference.

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Which of my fees count towards the Monthly Minimum Fee?
For Intuit merchants, the total discount fee including Qualified, Mid and Non Qualified discount fees count towards the Monthly Minimum Fee.

For Ipayment merchants, the total discount fee including Qualified, Mid and Non Qualified discount fees count towards the Monthly Minimum Fee.

For Sage merchants, total volume of sales for the month × Qualified discount rate count towards the Monthly Minimum Fee.

For Optimal Payments merchants, the total discount fee including Qualified, Mid and Non Qualified discount fees count towards the Monthly Minimum Fee.

For the CardConnect MMF, all processing fees outside of the monthly fees (statement fee, PCI non-compliance, Regulatory Product Fee, etc.) count towards the Monthly Minimum Fee.

For Pivotal merchants, the Monthly minimum Reflects the total discount and transactions paid, Non Qualified rates and other fees (account on file, auth) do not apply.

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What is the Monthly/Statement fee?
Monthly fee are the fees charged for maintenance of the account that includes toll free Customer service, technical support, online reporting etc. Monthly fee is the fixed amount paid by the merchant to their processor.

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What is Authorization/Transaction Fee?
The authorization process allows the card issuer to approve or decline a transaction. In most cases, authorizations are processed electronically in a matter of moments, The fee that the merchant pays to get this electronic response is called Authorization Fee.

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How Long does the authorization last?
American Express authorizations will last for 7 days before they fall off. Visa/Master and discover authorizations can last 5-30 days with exceptions depending upon the amount of transaction, issuing bank etc. Merchants are encouraged to capture authorizations within 24 hours to avoid downgrading.

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What is Address Verification Service?
AVS is a service that is built into the authorization process to help prevent fraudulent transactions. The numerical portion of a consumer's address is sent along with the transaction data and is matched against the address that is registered with the consumer's credit card from their issuer's bank. A response code is sent back with the approval (or decline) message that indicates a match or not. Currently, a match or mismatch is simply reported back to the merchant and may or may not result in a transaction decline depending on the POS settings. The merchant then has the option to contact their customer to confirm the correct address before they ship any goods.

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Why is my merchant statement from a company other than E-Commerce Exchange?
E-Commerce Exchange also offers products and services from other processors such as Innovative Merchant Solutions, iPayment, Intuit Payment Solutions, CardConnect, Optimal Payments, Pivotal Payments and Sage Payment Solutions which may have their name on the statement.

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What is a chargeback?
A chargeback is a claim from a shopper’s card issuing bank to obtain funds that have been paid to you for a transaction to be credited back to the shopper.
The shopper’s bank will usually contact your merchant bank to notify them of the chargeback claim, your bank will then get in touch with you to notify you of the chargeback and any action they expect you to take to resolve this.

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What are IRS Reporting/Regulatory Requirements?
Certain new regulatory requirements, including the Housing Assistance Tax Act of 2008 which included the enactment of Section 6050W of the Internal Revenue Code, require processors to report payment card transactions and third party network transactions to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for each calendar year beginning January 1, 2011.

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Will I receive notification of the report sent to IRS?
Yes, when an annual information return is filed with the IRS the processor will provide each merchant with a corresponding Form 1099-K, reporting their monthly and annual gross sales.

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How much are the IRS Reporting/Regulatory fees?
iPayment merchants will be charged an IRS monthly reporting fee of $3.50 per month.
CardConnect merchants will be charged an IRS monthly reporting fee of $3.50 per month.
Pivotal merchants will be charged an IRS monthly reporting fee that is built into the Visa NPF fee of $3.00 per month.
These fees currently do not apply to Intuit Payment Solutions/IMS, Sage or Optimal Merrick merchants.

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What is the TIN (Tax Identification Number) Validation fee?
As a part of the new IRS requirement, processors are required to match the company name and corresponding TIN to the TIN matching database at the IRS. This may require further communications to merchants via additional letters, telephone calls, emails or other correspondence asking merchants to verify their company names and TIN. The fee associated with the expenses related to these services is the TIN Validation fee. This fee is currently not billed by any of our processors.

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What do I need to do as a merchant?
All merchants need to make sure that their Tax Identification Number and the Business Name with their processor for each MID exactly match with the IRS Database.

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How do I know if my information with the processor is correct/matching with the IRS Database?
All iPayment merchants whose information does not match with the IRS database have received notifications via email, letters, phone calls or other correspondence directing the merchants to this website https://tinvalidation.merchant-info.com/ to update their account information.
All Sage merchants whose information does not match with the IRS database have received emails directing them to this website http://sage.my1099k.com to update their account information. Merchants who do not respond to the email, or do not have an email on file have received letters in the mail with this information.
This does not apply to all Intuit payment Solutions and Optimal Merrick merchants since the processor updates this information for them.

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What is the deadline to update this information?
All merchants will need to have their information updated by Jan 31, 2012.

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What if my information is not updated by the deadline?
In the event that a merchant does not have a matching company name and TIN within the IRS database , beginning in January 2013, the IRS will require that the processors begin withholding 28% of all deposits for such non-compliant merchants and remitting such withholding amounts directly to the IRS. The process of repocessing these funds will be between the merchant and IRS. Furthermore, there are also several state governments that will implement similar rules and therefore will require withholding of an additional percentage of a merchant's funds (as determined on a state by state basis).

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What is Regulatory non-compliance Fee?
All merchants that do not have their information updated with the processors will need to pay a fee. This is called Regulatory non-compliance fee or the TIN invalid fee. Currently all iPayment merchants are charged $14.95/month for Regulatory non-compliance fee effective immediately. All Sage merchants are charged $50/month for Regulatory non-compliance fee effective February 2012. Pivotal Merchants are charged $6/month for retail and $10/month for online.This fee does not apply to Intuit Payment Solutions, and Optimal Merrick merchants.

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What is EMV?
EMV stands for Europay, MasterCard, Visa—the three companies that created a global standard for credit and debit card acceptance. This standard is now adopted by all major brands including American Express, and Discover/Diners Club. EMV credit and debit cards have a secure microchip on the front of the card. The microchip adds a new level of security, protecting sensitive cardholder information. During a payment transaction the embedded microchip works in concert with an EMV-enabled terminal to complete the transaction.

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Why is EMV being implemented?
EMV is designed to reduce credit card fraud resulting from lost, stolen or counterfeit cards used in a card present (CP) transaction. EMV is widely deployed in Europe, Canada, and parts of Asia and will become common throughout the U.S. over the next several years.

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How does EMV work?
During a payment transaction the secure microchip generates a unique, one-time dynamic code that is used by the card issuer to verify a card is valid. Using a dynamic code during each transaction combats card cloning and skimming since the code can’t be reused to create another transaction. EMV cards can also be used to make contactless transactions while retaining the same level of security.

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How will the payment process differ?
Instead of swiping a card, customers will “dip” their EMV card into an EMV terminal. The card will remain in the terminal throughout the transaction. Customers may also be prompted to enter their PIN or provide a signature, just as they do today with traditional swipe cards. Many EMV terminals also support contactless payments giving customers the option to hold their card near the terminal to complete a transaction.

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Is a chip card the same as a contactless payment?
No. A chip card must be inserted into an enabled terminal that allows the chip to make contact with the reader to authorize and complete the transaction. On the other hand, contactless cards employ near-field communication (NFC), which transmits account information by waving or tapping the card in front of an enabled device.

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What is the difference between Chip & PIN and Chip & Signature?
Chip & PIN and Chip & Signature are two types of chip cards in the market. Chip & PIN requires a PIN to complete the transaction and any data stolen from the merchant is useless because the transaction data expires after it leaves the Chip & PIN reader. Chip & Signature requires a customer signature to complete the transaction. In the U.S., most card companies are only offering Chip & Signature. Chip cards also have the same magnetic stripes as non-chip cards and may be used in the traditional methods of swipe or key entry, but these transactions will not have the additional security protections provided through EMV card readers.

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What does it mean for merchants?
Although upgrading to EMV-capable terminals is voluntary, merchants face a liability shift October 1st 2015. For merchants this means on October 1st 2015, if a fraudulent transaction could have been prevented by the use of an EMV terminal, the merchant is liable.

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How does EMV impact PCI compliance?
Merchants are still required to achieve and maintain PCI compliance, including completing annual SAQ requirements, as well as quarterly external vulnerability scanning when required.

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What action should I take?
With the October 2015 liability shift approaching it’s important to prepare now. We offer several terminals that support EMV. If you are just becoming familiar with EMV, we offer resources and support that will help you understand your options as you decide what is best for your business.
*For QuickBooks Payment customers, Intuit will cover EMV fraud liability from 10/1/2015 through 3/31/2016

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What is NFC?
NFC is short for “Near Field Communications.” Essentially it allows customers to use their cell phone to make a payment simply by tapping it on an NFC-enabled payment terminal. The customer – using systems like Apple Pay, Android Pay or Softcard – no longer needs to find cash or their credit/debit card. They just tap their phone on the reader and the payment is processed.

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How does NFC work?
NFC payment systems like Apple Pay begin with a microchip that’s built into the cell phone. The customer links the payment system on their phone to their bank account or credit card. When it comes time to make a purchase, customers tap or hold their NFC-enabled phone in close proximity to the NFC reader, which uses secure radio frequency technology to transfer transaction data.

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How can NFC payments benefit my business?
NFC payments allow the customer to simply tap their NFC-enabled payment instrument (credit card, Smart phone, etc.) on your point-of-sale device, removing the need to swipe, insert or manually key. This saves time on both sides of the counter, alleviating lines that slow your business and frustrate your customers.

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How can NFC payments cut down on fraud?
The microchips that are embedded in NFC payment instruments dynamically generate card verification values (the numbers traditionally printed on the back of a credit card) for each transaction. This ensures that NFC payments will be very difficult to counterfeit.

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Why should I invest in NFC now?
NFC is not just another payment acceptance technology; it will provide a combined solution for integrating payment with non-payment applications, which could increase consumer traffic and sales. Emerging non-payment solutions such as digital couponing, loyalty programs and mobile wallets will help drive customers into stores. However, these consumers will expect merchants to integrate these new services with their payment in one transaction. Mobile wallets are available and in use today. Consumers can download these applications onto their mobile devices and store their payment credentials digitally. If they make a purchase at a POS that accepts NFC payments, they simply unlock their device and tap it to the terminal to initiate the payment. For added security, most mobile wallets and mobile devices now offer password protection and PIN entry to verify the cardholder’s identity and intent.

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What is ApplePay?
ApplePay™ is an extension of Apple’s® Passbook app in to a digital wallet. Consumers can import Visa, MasterCard and American Express payment cards from their iTunes® account or use the phone’s camera with a card in hand to pay. The app now incorporates TouchID™, an NFC transmitter, and a secure element to affect card transactions. Customers can pay for merchandise by using Apple’s iPhone® 6s, iPhone 6s plus, iPhone® 6, iPhone 6 plus, and the Apple Watch.

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What is Android Pay?
Android Pay is Google's latest attempt at a mobile payments network, replacing the old Google Wallet for most functions. Unlike Google Wallet did in the past, Android Pay is working in conjunction with banks and card issuers to make it super easy and secure to make payments with your credit cards in stores that have NFC payment terminals.

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What Is EBT?
Your business must meet the requirments set forth by the USDA to process EBT or SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)transactions. Your business must obtain an FNS number issued by the USDA FNS Work Center which authorizes your business to process EBT or SNAP transactions. Back to the top

What do I need to do to process EBT?
EBT (Electronic Benefit Transfer) is an electronic system in the US that allows the state governments to provide benefits to authorized recipients via a plastic debit card. Common benefits provided via EBT are typically sorted into two general categories, Food Stamps and Cash benefits. Through EBT, a recipient uses his/her EBT card to make purchases at participating retailers. With our merchant account you can process transactions using EBT quickly and easily, so you can meet the needs of your customers.
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Where to get free signage to alert that you accept credit cards?
Order complimentary signs and supplies, or download logos to let customers know you accept credit cards.

Store:
Web store:
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Non-Bankcards

What are non-bankcards?
Until recently non-bankcards were considered any card types other than Visa and MasterCard including American Express (AmEx), Discover, Diners Club, Carte Blanche and JCB. The recent inception of American Express OptBlue and Discover MAP have allowed card types processed under these programs to be considered bankcards.

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How can I accept additional credit card types?
All of our merchant account applications come with Visa, MasterCard, Discover, Diners Club, Carte Blanche and JCB and have an option to request American Express. The exception is for Optimal Payments applications which have the option to accept Discover and JCB separately. For American Express, you will have the option to sign up when completing a merchant application or complete a card type addition form there after.

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What are the benefits of accepting American Express?
Some benefits of accepting American Express are:
  • 14% of American Express card members carry no other charge card
  • 55% agree that American express is their card of choice
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How do I add American Express to my existing merchant account?
To add a new American Express merchant account, contact our office and we will send you a form that needs to be completed and faxed to 310-321-5410 or emailed to service@ecenow.com. We will then submit your application for approval. Once approved, we will provide you with an American Express account number under the appropriate program described below and add it to your merchant account with us.

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What is ESA American Express merchant account program?
ESA (External Sales Agent) American Express program is for merchants that are franchises, process over 500k in American Express charge volume annually, reside outside the 50 US states and belong to certain industries as defined by American Express. American Express makes the decision to approve or decline new ESA applications. All ECE Processors offer this program. Please note that effective December 31, 2015, the American Express ESA program will no longer be available.

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What is the new American Express OptBlue merchant account program?
Any merchant that is not required to be set up on ESA will be set up for OptBlue if the merchant wants to accept American Express. The American Express OptBlue program makes it easier for you to reconcile your merchant account by generating one statement with transactions and fees for all card types. OptBlue American Express deposits are credited at the same time as all other card types. This program is offered by all of our processors iPayment Inc., Sage Payment Solutions, CardConnect and Intuit Payment Solutions at this time. The participating ESA processors make the decision to approve or decline the American Express OptBlue applications. Merchants who are estimated to process over $1 million in annual American Express Charge Volume are not eligible for OptBlue.

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How much do OptBlue merchant accounts cost?
There is no setup fee associated with the OptBlue program. You will pay a discount fee and a transaction fee.

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What platform does my merchant account have to reside upon to be set up with OptBlue?
IPayment and Intuit Payment Solutions/IMS require the merchant account to be set up on the Omaha or Nashville platforms. For Sage and Pivotal Payments the OptBlue program only works on TSYS.

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Does the program affect the current OnePoint merchants?
OnePoint merchants will be converted to OptBlue automatically.

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Can I switch to the American Express OptBlue program if I am under an old ESA American Express program?
Yes, you will need to close your existing ESA American Express account with American Express by directly contacting their customer service department at 800-528-5200. Once the old account is closed, contact us and we will send you a form that needs to be completed and faxed to 310-321-5410 or emailed to service@ecenow.com. We will then submit your application for approval. Once approved, we will provide you with a new American Express account number under the new American Express OptBlue program and add it to your merchant account with us.

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What are the benefits of accepting Discover cards?
Some benefits of accepting Discover cards are:
  • JCB cards can now be accepted from any US merchants accepting Discover cards
  • Customers who prefer to use Discover cards look for vendors accepting Discover cards first
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How do I add Discover to my existing merchant account?
To set up a new Discover account, contact our office and we will send you a form that needs to be completed and faxed to 310-321-5410 or emailed to service@ecenow.com. We will then submit your application for approval. Once approved, we will provide you with a Discover account number under the appropriate program described below and add it to your merchant account with us.

If you have an existing Discover account contact our office and we will send you a form that needs to be completed and faxed to 310-321-5410 or emailed to service@ecenow.com. We will then add it to your existing account with us under the iMAP program.

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What is Discover MAP?
MAP (Merchant Acquiring Program) is our standard offering for all new merchants along with their Visa and MasterCard accounts. With this program, merchants will process under the same discount rates for all card types except American Express and receive one statement for all credit card types except American Express if they are not set up on OptBlue. This program is offered only by our processors iPayment Inc., Innovative Merchant Solutions and Sage Payment Solutions at this time. Optimal Payments merchants should have this option in the near future.

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How much does a Discover MAP merchant account cost?
There is no separate monthly fee for Discover MAP accounts. The MAP merchant account is included with the standard merchant account monthly customer service fee. All rates are set by the processor and typically match the Visa and MasterCard discount and transaction rates billed by the processor.

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What is Discover IMAP?
IMAP (Interim Merchant Acquiring Program) is an offering when MAP is not available and in which case you may contact Discover directly to have an account set up. You must contact Discover directly for any assistance with this program. You will also receive a separate processing statement from Discover each month. Optimal Payments merchants have the option to have Discover number set up under the IMAP program when applying for a merchant account or at a later time.

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How much does a Discover IMAP merchant account cost?
There is no monthly fee with this program. All discount rates and transaction fees are set by Discover. Additionally, a transaction fee will be billed for each transaction by the processor.

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Are Diners Club and Carte Blanche considered non-bankcards?
Traditionally these card types were considered non-bankcards but are now processed with all merchants accepting Discover and MasterCard. Hence they are considered bankcards under these programs.

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Is there a setup fee to add any non-bankcard types after merchant account is approved?
None of our processors charge to set up a non-bankcard account with the exception of Sage Payment Solutions. Sage charges $35 if the non-bankcard account is requested 30 days after the merchant account is approved.

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Debit Services

What are Debit Transactions?
Debit is an electronic payment method that allows cardholders to access funds from their bank account at the point of sale using a debit card and a Personal Identification Number (PIN). The cardholder must enter a PIN to authorize payment of goods, and once the transaction is authorized, the money is debited from the cardholder's bank account and credited to the merchant. This service allows customers to securely purchase products and services using their existing bank account while allowing businesses to expand their online payment options beyond credit cards and significantly reduce their processing fees.

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What are Debit Transactions?
Debit is an electronic payment method that allows cardholders to access funds from their bank account at the point of sale using a debit card and a Personal Identification Number (PIN). The cardholder must enter a PIN to authorize payment of goods, and once the transaction is authorized, the money is debited from the cardholder's bank account and credited to the merchant. This service allows customers to securely purchase products and services using their existing bank account while allowing businesses to expand their online payment options beyond credit cards and significantly reduce their processing fees.

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What are the advantages of Pin-based Debit Transactions?
  • Reduced Processing Fees - Merchants are charged a flat fee for each on-line (PIN-based) debit transaction instead of a percentage rate (discount fee) plus transaction fee. Each network may have nominal additional transaction and discount fees.
  • Reduced Fraud - Purchases are authorized at the time of sale, reducing the potential losses inherent with other types of payments, such as paper checks.
  • Eliminates credit card chargebacks - PIN-based debits are not subject to chargebacks.
  • Transactions cannot be downgraded - PIN-based debits are not subject to the downgrade fees that sometimes apply to credit card transactions that did not qualify for the best rate.
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What is a Pin Pad?
To process PIN-based debit transactions, the debit card must be swiped through a PIN Pad that has been programmed with a unique encryption security code. Instead of signing the receipt for the transaction the customer will be prompted to enter his or her PIN number into the PIN Pad. The terminal will encrypt the PIN number and pass it to the bank for verification.

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I'm already processing debit cards without a PIN pad through my existing merchant account. Isn't that sufficient?
There are two types of debit card transactions: PIN-based (online) and signature-based (off-line). Debit cards that have a VISA or MasterCard logo on them can be processed without entering a PIN code. These types of transactions are referred to as "off-line" debit transactions. In this type of sale the merchant accepts a debit card the same way in which they would accept a normal credit card. The card is swiped through the terminal and the consumer signs the receipt. As far as the merchant is concerned there is no difference in the way a credit card or an off-line debit card is processed. Funds are transferred from the consumer's bank account just as in a PIN-based ("on-line") debit transaction. However, the main disadvantage to the merchant is that the same discount fees charged to credit card transactions also apply to off-line debit transactions, which may or may not increase the expense of processing based on your average ticket.
  • PIN-based - The cardholders ATM, debit or check card, Personal Identification Number (PIN) and a magnetic-stripe reader are used at the point of sale to provide fast, efficient online debit transactions. The POS terminal dials for an authorization directly to the card issuer, and the cardholders checking account is immediately debited for the transaction. Your customer receives a speedy and convenient payment choice, while you reap the rewards of immediate funding, a possible lower transaction fee and chargeback protection.
  • Signature-based - MasterCard and Visa-branded debit cards, often referred to as check cards, may be accepted at any credit card POS terminal. Unlike PIN-based debit transactions, signature-based purchases are debited to the cardholders checking account within 2 to 3 business days rather than immediately. With signature-based debit, youll pay a little more to process a transaction, eliminate the customer cash-back option and receive little protection against potential chargebacks.
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What do I need to start accepting Pin-based Debit Transactions?
Contact your sales representative and request that your account be configured to accept PIN-based (online) Debit/ATM cards. Our customer service will activate the debit payment type for your merchant account. After activating your account and receiving a PIN pad (or if your terminal has a built in pin pad) you can start processing debit transactions using the Process Debit option in your Terminal. This is an additional service which will carry a monthly fee.

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PCI Compliance

What is PCI-DSS?
The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a set of requirements designed to ensure that ALL companies that process, store or transmit credit card information maintain a secure environment. PCI DSS is a worldwide information security standard assembled by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC). The standard was created to help organizations that process card payments to prevent credit card fraud through increased controls around credit card data and its exposure to compromise.
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Where can I find the PCI Data Security Standards (PCI DSS)?
The Standard can be found on the PCI SSC's Website.

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What procedures do I need to follow to become PCI Compliant and to obtain a PCI DSS Certification?
PCI DSS Certification is a procedure implemented to perform a review of your data security practices. This procedure will review if you are currently processing credit cards using approved equipment, POS software and/or hosted Virtual Terminal under the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) requirements.
To initiate PCI DSS analysis, go to the following websites based on your processor and complete the preliminary questionnaire. This will then direct you to the appropriate PCI DSS Self-Assessment Questionnaire and a quarterly network scan if applicable.
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Who is the PCI vendor that I will be using?
Each of our processors has partnered with a certified PCI vendor who will guide you through the PCI DSS analysis. They are also called Approved Scanning Vendors (ASV) since they provide network scanning services. Listed below is the PCI vendor your processor has selected.

  • iPayment, Inc. - ComplyGuard
  • Sage Payment Solutions - Trustwave
  • Intuit Payment Solutions - Control Scan
  • Optimal Payments - SecurityMetrics
  • CardConnect - Trustwave
  • Pivotal - Aperia
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How much does the PCI DSS analysis cost?
In an effort to reduce fraud and the related cost associated with data breaches, all processors are required to ensure that their merchants businesses are compliant, including the use of compliant payment applications. Processors are also required to report any non-compliant merchants to the credit card associations. The fee associated with this procedure (the PCI DSS analysis fee) is in addition to any fees payable under your agreement with your processor. See below for PCI DSS analysis fees charged by your processor.
  • iPayment, Inc - An annual PCI Compliance Fee of $99.00 for merchants signed after 11/30/2014 or an annual PCI Compliance Fee of $129.00 for merchants signed before 11/30/2014 will be assessed based on when the merchant account was boarded as follows:

    For merchants boarded between April 1st and September 30th, the fee will be assessed on November merchant statement. For merchants who signed before 11/30/2014 and processed under $2,000 in the month of September, the fee will be split into 2 payable amounts of $69 & $60 and billed on the November and December merchant statements respectively.
    For merchants boarded between October 1st and March 31st, the fee will be assessed on May merchant statement. For merchants who signed before 11/30/2014 and processed under $2,000 in the month of March, the fee will be split into 4 payable amounts of $39, $30, $30 & $30 and billed on the May, June, July and August merchant statements respectively.
    The $99.00 annual PCI Compliance Fee for merchants signed after 11/30/2014 will be billed for the entire amount.

  • Sage Payment Solutions - For merchants boarded before March 1st of every year, A PCI DSS Analysis fee of $99.00 will be billed on the June statement. For accounts boarded after March 1st, this fee will be billed on the June statement of the following year. In addition to this, Sage will also bill the SPS Compliance fee of $99.90 on the November statement. For the accounts that were set up with $99 annual fee, the SPS Compliance fee will be waived.
  • Intuit Payment Solutions - The PCI DSS validation service costs will be determined based on the number of card transactions you processed in the last 12 months. Merchants that processed from 1 to 24 transactions will be charged $35 per year, merchants that processed from 25 to 99 transactions will be charged $50 per year and the merchants that processed 100 plus transactions will be charged $100 per year. This will be billed on the April statement.
  • Optimal Payments - The cost of the PCI DSS validation service is 204 USD per annum, or an equivalent cost in foreign currency. This will be billed on the statement following the month you request access to the validation service, and will renew same month every year.
  • CardConnect - An annual PCI Compliance Fee of $99.00 will be billed on the July statement for all merchants.
  • Pivotal - An annual PCI compliance fee of 139.80 will be charged in November, in addition to the 6 dollar monthly Fee.
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What happens if I have not completed the PCI DSS analysis?
  • iPayment, Inc. - If PCI DSS analysis is not completed by the 24th of the current month, a non-compliance fee of $35 per month will be charged to your statement. iPayment will continue to charge this fee monthly until the PCI validation process is completed. You must complete the entire PCI process (including scanning if required) by the 24th of any given month to avoid the monthly PCI non-action fee. For example, to avoid this fee for the month of October and subsequent months, you must complete the PCI DSS analysis by October 24.
  • Sage Payment Solutions - If PCI DSS analysis is not completed by the last day of the month after the PCI DSS Analysis, a monthly Non-compliance fee of $35 will be added to your statement. For example, if you are billed $75 for the PCI DSS fee on the June 2013 statement, you have until July 31st, 2013 to complete your PCI DSS validation process. If you do not become PCI Compliant by July 31st, you will be billed a $35 Non-compliance fee on the July 2013 statement. Sage will continue to charge this fee monthly until the PCI DSS validation process is completed. You must complete the entire PCI DSS process before the last day of any given month to avoid the monthly Non-compliance fee. NOTE - If you notice that you were billed the Non-compliance fee on error for any month, please contact Sage to have it waived.
  • Intuit Payment Solutions - Intuit currently does not charge for non compliance. However, merchants must comply with the applicable standards. A merchant that has his or her security compromised and is found to be non-compliant is subject to fines from the card associations as well as other financial and business losses, such as brand damage, and loss of customer trust.
  • Optimal Payments - A monthly non-compliance fee of $35.00 will be billed and Optimal Payments will continue to charge this fee monthly until the PCI DSS validation process is completed. You must complete the entire PCI DSS process before the end of the month to avoid the monthly non-compliance fee.
  • CardConnect - A monthly non-compliance fee of $19.95 will be billed and CardConnect will continue to charge this fee monthly until the PCI DSS validation process is completed. You must complete the entire PCI DSS process before the end of the month to avoid the monthly non-compliance fee.
  • Pivotal - You will be charged a month non compliance fee of 19.99.

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Do the new merchants have a deadline to get compliant?
Yes all new merchants, regardless of who their processor is, have to get PCI compliant within 90 days of their new merchant account approval.

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How does PCI compliance work if my business process using only the mobile phone or tablet?
Only some of our processors require PCI compliance on the mobile merchant accounts. Please see the below:
  • iPayment, Inc. - You will need to follow the same procedures above as a regular iPayment merchant to get PCI compliant. You will complete the SAQ and run a scan using the ip address on your phone or tablet. The annual PCI Compliance fee and the non PCI Compliance fee will be the same as mentioned above for iPayment merchants.
  • Sage Payment Solutions - Mobile merchants are not required to go through the PCI compliance process at this time. SAQ or scan is not required to be completed and the annual PCI Compliance fee or the non PCI Compliance fee will not be charged currently.
  • Intuit Payment Solutions - Mobile merchants are not required to go through the PCI compliance process at this time. SAQ or scan is not required to be completed and the annual PCI Compliance fee or the non PCI Compliance fee will not be charged currently.
  • CardConnect - You will need to follow the same procedures above as a regular CardConnect merchant to get PCI compliant. You will complete the SAQ and run a scan using the ip address on your phone or tablet. The annual PCI Compliance fee and the non PCI Compliance fee will be the same as mentioned above for CardConnect merchants.
  • Pivotal - You will need to complete the PCI checklist to avoid non-compliance fees, however the monthly fee is waived.

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How does PCI compliance work if my business has multiple merchant accounts?
  • iPayment, Inc. - You will have an option to link multiple merchant accounts to your scans and your self assessment questionnaires once you get your first account compliant provided all the additional accounts have the same Federal Tax Identification number and share the same processing procedures and security policy enabling them to get compliant in the assessment even if the additional merchant accounts are for different locations. However, the PCI DSS analysis cost and the non compliance fees explained in the above sections will be billed to each merchant account separately.
  • Sage Payment Solutions - You will have an option to link multiple merchant accounts to your scans and your self assessment questionnaires once you get your first account compliant if all the additional accounts have the same Federal Tax Identification number and share the same processing procedures and security policy enabling them to get compliant in the assessment provided the additional merchant accounts are for the same location as the first merchant account. Only one PCI DSS analysis fee will apply to all accounts. However, the SPS Compliance fee and the non compliance fee explained in the above sections will be billed per merchant account.
  • Intuit Payment Solutions - You will need to follow the exact same procedures and pay the same fees as the first merchant account to get each additional merchant account compliant even if they all have the same Federal Tax Identification number.
  • Optimal Payments - You will have an option to link multiple merchant accounts to your scans and your self assessment questionnaires once you get your first account compliant if all the additional accounts have the same contact name and have the same email account on file even if the additional accounts are for different locations and use different hardware and software to process. Only one PCI DSS analysis fee will apply to all accounts.
  • Optimal Payments - You will have an option to link multiple merchant accounts to your scans and your self assessment questionnaires once you get your first account compliant if all the additional accounts have the same contact name and have the same email account on file even if the additional accounts are for different locations and use different hardware and software to process. Only one PCI DSS analysis fee will apply to all accounts.
  • CardConnect - You will have an option to link multiple merchant accounts to your scans and your self assessment questionnaires once you get your first account compliant provided all the additional accounts have the same Federal Tax Identification number and share the same processing procedures and security policy enabling them to get compliant in the assessment even if the additional merchant accounts are for different locations. However, the PCI DSS analysis cost and the non compliance fees explained in the above sections will be billed to each merchant account separately.
  • Pivotal -Multiple assessments will be done for multiple payments methods (online + terminal). Each account will be charged a month PCI fee.

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Can I use a PCI vendor of my choice?
We recommend using your processors PCI vendor, but if you choose not to you can select any PCI SSC Approved Scanning Vendor (ASV). We recommend and offer PCI Compliance analysis with Comodo. More info about Comodos HackerGuardian service can be found at - https://www.firstaffiliates.com/Affiliatewiz/PCI.aspx.

  • iPayment, Inc. - Yes, you will need to forward the PCI DSS certificate and quarterly scan results if applicable provided by your ASV to iPayment at pci@merchant-info.comto be filed and to avoid the monthly non-action fee. The $129.00 annual fee is non refundable and hence iPayment prefers that you utilize their ASV when you are ready to renew your PCI services.
  • Sage Payment Solutions -Yes, you will need to upload the PCI DSS certificate provided by your ASV to the Trustwave/TrustKeeper site https://pci.trustwave.com/sagepayments. A $10.00 processing fee applies for the manual validation process.
  • Intuit Payment Solutions - Yes, you will need to submit the PCI DSS certificate provided by your ASV to Intuit at imsagentrelations@intuit.com.
  • Optimal Payments - Yes, you will need to submit the PCI DSS certificate provided by your ASV to PCICompliance@OptimalPayments.com. Optimal Payments will then waive the PCI DSS validation service fee.
  • CardConnect - No, You will need to go thru Trustwave for PCI compliance. No other vendor’s certificates will be accepted.
  • Pivotal - No, you need to call in and get certified through Aperia.
NOTE: If a quarterly scan is required, you must run the scan (either manual or scheduled) every 90 days and forward results to the processor in order to stay in PCI compliant status and avoid the non-compliance fee.
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What happens if I complete and pass the PCI Compliance Scan and/or Questionnaire?
If you initiated PCI DSS analysis through the PCI vendor your processor has selected and successfully passed, your processor will be notified that you are PCI Compliant and no further action is needed on your part.


NOTE: If a quarterly scan is required, you must run the scan (either manual or scheduled) every 90 days in order to stay in PCI compliant status and avoid the non-compliance fee.
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What happens if I do not pass the PCI Compliance Scan and/or Questionnaire?
Contact your on site technical staff or your IT, web development, hosting or other technical providers for help remediating any issues with your PCI vendor. If they are unable to help, contact your processor at the number below. Finally, if you still need help, contact our office to find out if our technical support team can assist with remediation or recommend alternative solutions.

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What if I am using a PCI certified Payment Gateway (Authorize.net, QuickCommerce, PlugnPay, etc.), Equipment (Verifone, Hypercom, Ingenico, etc.), Software (PC Charge, QuickBooks, QB POS, etc.) or Shopping Cart (ProStores, Cart32, Shopsite, etc.)?
Even though your processing software or equipment is compliant, it does not mean you as a merchant are PCI Compliant. You will still need to proceed with a PCI vendor to ensure all of your systems are processing and/or storing data correctly and have no vulnerabilities.

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Where can I find out if my equipment or software is compliant?
Click on the appropriate links below for complete lists of PCI validated payment gateways, equipment and software -
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Who can I talk to if I have further questions?
Please contact your processor at the phone numbers below with any questions regarding PCI Compliance.
  • iPayment, Inc. Merchant Services – PCI Compliance help line 1.877.277.0998
  • Sage Payment Solutions Merchant Services – Trustwave 1.800.239.2468
  • Intuit Payment Solutions - Control Scan 1.800.771.8603
  • Optimal Payments Merchant Services – Security Metrics 1.877.705.6069
  • CardConnect - Trustwave- 1.800.239.2468
  • Pivotal - Pivotal PCI care - 1.888.729.7958
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Payment Gateway

How does a payment gateway integrate with my website?
Typically setup is quick and easy. The merchant or webmaster simply establishes a link between the Gateway secure server and the merchant's website. Examples of the linking HTML code can be found in the Integration guides. Many applications have already Integrated our Secure Payment Gateways.

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How can I customize the Gateway transaction form?
The transaction forms can be configured from within the virtual terminal. For additional help or information, please e-mail us.
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Is my Payment gateway integrated with my shopping cart?
Our service needs to be compatible with the merchants shopping cart software. Most Payment gateways can integrate with several shopping cart programs; however some companies "Lock Out" competing payment services such as QuickCommerce. Contact our Customer Service team for compatibility of shopping carts or click here to see a partial list of integrated carts.

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Levels 1, 2 and 3 Credit Card Processing
Credit card transactions can fit into one of three different categories: Level 1, Level 2 or Level 3 processing. With each level of processing, there is a certain amount of data and requirements needed for verification and authorization. This data can range from very limited to very detailed, depending on the type of customers or clients your business serves. The more data fields required, the lower the processing rates.

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What Is Level 1 Processing?
Level 1 credit card processing refers to business-to-consumer (B2C) transactions, during which consumers use their personal credit cards to make purchases both large and small. The data required for a Level 1 transaction to go through is small, with just the merchant name, transaction amount and date needed.

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What Is Level 2 Processing?
Level 2 credit card processing refers to a more detailed transaction designed to support business-to-business (B2B) payment processing. Business or government clientele require business-specific payment methods, with the ability to monitor and control corporate and employee spending. Level 2 credit card processing simplifies the B2B transaction, improving customer service for your business clientele and providing them with more accurate transaction reports.

The data required for a Level 2 transaction includes:
Merchant name
Transaction amount
Date
Tax amount
Customer code
Merchant postal code
Tax identification
Merchant minority code
Merchant state code
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What Is Level 3 Processing?
Level 3 credit card processing requires the most detailed data, and the transactions are often made with government or corporate purchasing cards. Government agencies and businesses use purchasing cards for enhanced reporting and more control over employee purchases. The data fields required for Level 3 processing includes those from Level 2 transactions, in addition to a number of others such as item product codes, item descriptions and quantities, item tax rate, ship from postal code, freight amount, duty amount, destination postal code, destination country code, and more.

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Check Services

What are Check Services?
Check Services are payment services that allow online and traditional merchants to accept and process checks from consumer and corporate bank accounts safely and securely.

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Why does my business need to accept checks from my customers?
By accepting checks you can increase your credibility, customer convenience, and best of all, your sales. Statistics say 40% of the population is totally check dependent!

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What type of checks can I accept?
This is determined by the type of service you sign up for. You could accept personal, Business, Government, Traveler’s, Cashier’s, Certified, Equity Lines of Credit checks and Money Orders. Or even cash Corporate Payroll checks.

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How will my business receive payment?
Checks are automatically deposited in your bank account electronically within 2-3 business days. You will not need to go to the bank.

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Can I be set up for auto settlement of the batches?
Most check services are set up for auto settlement. Sage Payment Solutions EFT and CrossCheck merchants can request the time on auto settlement of batches be changed to their preference for certain types of services only. E-check.net merchants can set up auto settlement of batches by logging into their account online.

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What is the cut off time for the settlement of my daily batch?
For Sage Payment Solutions EFT merchants, the batch settlement cut off time is 10:00 PM PST.

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Do I need special equipment to use check service?
In most cases you can approve checks without purchasing any additional equipment. With a check service in place, you can accept checks on your existing POS terminal, Web-Based Virtual Terminal, over the phone and/or over the Internet. However, depending upon how you are set up and the type of check service you choose, you might need a check reader or an imager.

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What are the fees for using check services?
The fees are usually lower than credit card processing fees and are dependent on various factors like the monthly volume, type of business etc. You can go through the application or call a sales consultant to find out the exact fees.

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Will there be any monthly fees or monthly minimums on check services accounts?
Yes, depending upon the service provider you are set up with, there could be monthly fees and monthly minimums billed to your account.

For Sage Payment Solutions EFT merchants, the monthly fees will be waived for the first month if you are set up after the 25th of the month. For Crosscheck merchants, and E-check.net merchants, the monthly fee will be prorated for the first month.

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Is there an annual fee for my check services? When will I be charged the annual fee?
There is no annual fee for CrossCheck and E-check.net merchants. Sage Payment Solutions EFT merchants will be charged the annual fee on their December statement every year, in some cases we can provide special pricing to get that waived based on volume of the account. Inquire with a sales associate for more detail.

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How much is the annual fee for my check services?
Sage Payment Solutions EFT merchants are charged an annual fee of $59.95. None of the other check service providers charge the annual fee at this time.

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Why is my check services statement from a company other than E-Commerce Exchange?
E-Commerce Exchange also offers products and services from other check service providers like Sage Payment Solutions EFT, E-Check.net and Crosscheck and the statements may have their name on them.

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How do I apply for a check services account?
Simply, link to our online application and submit the requested information. You may also email or call us at 1-800-477-5363 for further assistance on setup, or other processing related questions.

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How long will it take for my application to be processed?
Within a few working days your company will be able to accept credit cards from your customers. Our processing department specializes in expediting your application so you can start accepting checks from your customers as soon as possible.

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Payroll

What do I need to be able to use Intuit Payroll Service?
You'll need Internet access so Intuit Payroll Service can download the latest payroll tax rates for your automatic paycheck calculations.
Also, the federal government requires every person or company paying wages to have an Employer Identification Number (EIN). Employers must include it on all federal forms and returns. You can apply for an EIN and get it immediately at the IRS Web site at http://www.irs.gov/Businesses/Small-Businesses-&-Self-Employed/Apply-for-an-Employer-Identification-Number-(EIN)-Online/
If you choose to buy so Intuit QuickBooks Assisted, Intuit Enhanced Payroll or Intuit Full Service Payroll Service in QuickBooks, you will also need to have the most recent 3 versions(or newer) of QuickBooks Pro, Premier or Enterpris. If you choose to buy Intuit Online Payroll Service, you need to use QuickBooks online.

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Can I switch to Intuit Payroll Service mid-year?
Yes. But, if you've already paid employees this year, you'll need to enter your year-to-date payroll history, so our calculations are correct. Our step-by step guide can help you.
If you're paying employees for the first time this year, there's no payroll history to enter. So, it’s easy to get started.

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Does Intuit Payroll Service handle both hourly and salaried employees?
Yes.

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What about bonuses, commissions, and overtime?
Intuit Payroll Service handles all of these, plus other many other wage types.

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Can I pay contractors and produce 1099s?
Yes. You can pay both employees and independent contractors only with Enhanced Payroll.

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How do I pay my employees?
Just enter employees' hours, and Intuit Payroll Service will calculate paychecks, subtracting payroll taxes and deductions. Then print paychecks instantly or use our convenient Direct Deposit. You can also pay groups of employees on different days. For example, you may pay salaried employees monthly, while paying hourly employees every two weeks.

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Can I pay employees using direct deposit?
You can deposit pay into U.S. bank accounts with Intuit's Direct Deposit. You can also deposit pay to Intuit Pay Cards (ATM/debit cards that don't require bank accounts). With our flexible Direct Deposit, you can add or remove an employee, or edit their banking information, anytime. You can also choose to pay some employees by direct deposit and others by check. You must send Direct Deposit transactions to us by 5pm (Pacific Time) two business banking days before the paycheck date. You can deposit paychecks into up to two different accounts per employee. By using Direct Deposit, you no longer need to print pay stubs, since employees can view their paystubs online.

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Which benefits and deductions does Intuit Payroll Service handle?
Intuit Payroll Service tracks vacation time, sick time, paid time off, medical and dental insurance, 401(k) and other retirement plans, cash advances, and more. You can choose different deductions for different employees.

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Does it track workers' compensation?
Only Assisted and Enhanced Payroll help you apply the right workers' compensation codes, so you can generate detailed reports of exactly how much you owe. You can also use our pay-as-you-go workers' compensation service to automatically pay exactly what you owe each pay day. (Extra fees apply.)

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How does Intuit Payroll Service help me with payroll taxes?
• Intuit QuickBooks Assisted Payroll
o Intuit handles your payroll tax payments and forms for you. Guaranteed accurate and on-time. If a tax issue comes up, Intuit will resolve it for you.
• Enhanced: (Comes only with QuickBooks Enterprise 2016 Gold and Platinum)
o Federal and state payroll taxes are calculated for you. Just click to e-pay your taxes.
o Automatically fills in the latest federal and most state payroll tax forms. Then just click to e-file.
• Full Service:
o Intuit handles your payroll tax payments and forms for you. Guaranteed accurate and on-time. If a tax issue comes up, Intuit will resolve it for you.

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Which federal and state payroll tax forms are included?
Intuit Payroll service completes these federal payroll tax forms for you: W-2, W-3, 940/Schedule A, 941/Schedule B, 944/945a, 943/943a, 1099-MISC and 1096.
Enhanced Payroll includes many state forms. For state forms not yet supported, we provide a State Tax Summary report with all the payroll data you need.

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How is my data protected?
On paydays, all online transactions are protected using the same kind of encryption used by leading banks.

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How do I share data with my accountant?
You can e-mail reports and your company files to your accountant. You can also grant them the access to your payroll service account.

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Leasing

Will I be able to lease the software and/or equipment I need?
Yes, We offer leasing as an option to paying for the equipment or software up front. Since we do not offer terms, this is an excellent alternative when you want to preserve working capital, have a tax deductible business expense, and a low down payment.

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How is the lease payment determined?
The lease payment is based on the type and quantity of equipment or software you choose, your credit score and the number of months you select, i.e., 12, 24, 36, or 48 months.

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What are my options at the end of the lease?
With Northern leases you may continue month-to-month, buy-out the lease at fair market value, or terminate the lease depending on the type and terms of your lease since it is an operating lease.

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When can I expect my lease payments to be deducted?
The amount written on the lease, first, last or both will be deducted by E-Commerce Exchange via ACH the day (this transaction may take 1-3 days to post to the customers account) the application is submitted by the sales consultant to our new accounts department.

Once the leasing company receives the lease, payments will be deducted via ACH as follows:
Northern Leasing - A prorated rental payment from the day of verification until the end of the current month will be deducted. Then the 1st of each month from then on.

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Gift Cards

What is a Gift and/or Loyalty Card?
A gift and/or loyalty card is a reusable, stored-value card that enables merchants to have an electronic alternative to paper gift certificates and paper loyalty cards. Our gift and loyalty cards are composed of high quality PVC formatted to standard credit card size and thickness, which includes a magnetic stripe on the back that contains card information.

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What are Loyalty Card Reward Points, Award Levels, & Redemptions?
Merchants decide what reward(s) to give customers when a specific point level is reached. Rewards can be products, services, discounts, or spendable value added to the card. The cardholder also has the option to not redeem an award and continue accumulating points in the program. Awards are given by the merchant according to merchants specific program rules. For example, for every amount a customer spends, they receive a corresponding reward point. A merchant may decide to reward 1 point for every dollar a customer spends on a purchase, and once the customer’s rewards points reach a specific level, the customer gets say $5 off next purchase, a free coffee mug, etc. This in turn means repeat customer visits.

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How are Value and Points tracked?
Gift Cards store available value and track purchases. Each time a gift card is used, the amount of value decreases based on the amount of purchase. Loyalty cards store points and a reward is provided once a certain threshold is met. Rewards can be provided in dollar value or as a redeemable CLUB point. Each time a loyalty card is used, points accumulate until the designated threshold is met. Once the threshold is met, a reward point/value is generated back on the card to be used on the next visit.

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What terminals and applications can I use to process Gift and Loyalty Cards?
All of the terminals and applications that process Stored Value Gift Card transactions can also be set up to process transactions for the Loyalty Program.
To view programmable POS Systems, terminals and applications click here.
We also offer for QuickBooks POS.

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What if I already have a Gift and/or Loyalty Card program in place with a different company?
You can convert your existing program to work with ours to take advantage of some of the benefits our program provides that others may not, like processing on websites.

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Do I have to pay more to have both Gift and Loyalty?
No, the pricing includes both services.

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How long does it take for me to receive my order once placed?
For PreDesigned orders, production takes 5-7 business days or less before shipping.
Custom/Logo card orders 100-499: 5-7 business days’ production.
Custom/Logo card orders 500 or more: 10-15 business days for production after final proof approval.

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What is online Reporting?
The online reporting system provides reports indicating loyalty points earned through purchases, a summary of redemptions, transactions voided, balance inquiries and other activity relative to that merchants program.

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How Can I Use Gift and Loyalty Cards for Target Marketing?
Through a web-based Virtual Terminal application, customer demographic information can be tied to a specific card number and stored in the host database. This database can be used to target marketing campaigns to specific customers based on a variety of card usage criteria.

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How Gift Card is issued?
1. Customer requests card denomination amount and merchant collects payment from customer upfront.
2. Merchant selects program on terminal or POS system, inputs clerk ID, and swipes the card through the terminal.
3. Merchant keys in dollar amount for the card and the terminal processes the transaction to add that amount to the card.
4. Receipt is printed showing the balance on the card and the card is handed to customer.
5. Transaction is complete.

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How Gift Card is redeemed?
1. Customer presents the gift card as form of payment for goods or services.
2. Merchant selects program on terminal or POS system.
3. Merchant inputs clerk ID and swipes the card through the terminal.
4. Merchant keys in dollar amount to redeem off the card.
5. The terminal processes transaction and the amount is subtracted from balance on the card.
6. Receipt is printed to show customer the balance on the card and the card is handed back to customer.
7. Transaction is complete.

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When will the monthly fee for Gift Card be accessed? The monthly fee is accessed the next month no matter when they sign up the month prior.
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Support and Services

How do I get technical assistance?
If after consulting our technical manual you still require additional support, we ask that you email us detailing the question at hand (please include with question your business name, phone number, and contact name). Our technical service advisor will research the question and get back to you. We offer two support options - for details click here.
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What type of software or equipment should my business use to process credit cards and checks?
We offer your business multiple options for processing credit card and check orders: Click here to see our product list. We have the software or terminal(s) your business will require at competitive lease and purchase prices.

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Does E-Commerce Exchange offer a Warranty on its products?
Most equipment has a 1 year manufactures warrant which will cover product defects and other standard warranty coverage.

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Does E-Commerce Exchange offer an extended warranty?
At E-Commerce Exchange we offer an equipment and software replacement policy as long as you have services with us for any equipment you purchased from us or others. We will replace it within 24 hours until we can get yours repaired. All shipping and repair costs must be agreed to and paid up front by the customer.

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| Policies |
Commerce Technologies Corporation
American Express may require separate approval.
E-Commerce Exchange is a registered ISO of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Walnut Creek, CA.
Wells Fargo, N.A. is not affiliated with International accounts.