By setting up your business to accept credit card payments, you can expand your customer base and make it easier for customers to make larger purchases. A merchant services account, or credit card processing system, includes a relationship with a bank that handles your credit card transactions as well as a terminal that you keep in your storefront or office that interfaces with the bank. It is important to compare credit card machine companies in order to choose the equipment that is best suited for your business.
Interview credit card machine companies and ask about their terms for leasing or buying equipment. You can find credit card machine companies online, or your bank can refer you to a company that leases or sells equipment compatible with their services. Ask about monthly lease rates and contract terms such as commitments to lease a machine for a period of several years. Inquire about penalties if you break a contract as well as annual fees. Ask about the price of buying a machine and calculate the amount you would spend leasing a machine over that same period of time.
List the features you require for your credit card machine. Consider whether you will be using your credit card machine in a situation where wireless capability would be convenient, such as trade shows or craft fairs. Evaluate whether the type of transactions you will be performing call for a credit card machine with a printer, such as a retail storefront or restaurant where the customer is personally present to sign the credit card receipt. If most of your transactions take place over the phone or online, you may be able to buy or lease a less expensive machine that does not include a printer. Call or e-mail credit card machine companies and ask about prices for buying or leasing a machine that will meet your business needs.
Search online for companies that sell used credit card machines. Visit office supply stores in your area and ask about used credit card machines. Ask the company selling the used credit card machines about their warranties. Make sure that any used machine you are considering includes capabilities such as printing and wireless access if you need these features. Call the bank that will be processing your credit card transaction and make sure that the used machine that you are considering buying will be compatible with their services.