Merchant Support - FAQ

What is a merchant account?

A merchant account is an agreement with a merchant account provider, sometimes called a merchant service provider, required to conduct credit card-based transactions. With a merchant account, the merchant agrees to honor certain obligations and the merchant account provider agrees to coordinate the transfer of monetary funds through the financial process. Merchant accounts can be obtained from merchant account providers like banks, financial institutions, processing gateways or from independent service organizations.

There are several types of merchant accounts, those for use in "brick & mortar" retail establishments, those for use in mail and phone order businesses, and those for use with Internet storefronts. The terms and fees vary widely, both among and within the types. Generally speaking, the fees grow larger in accordance with the perceived level of fraud risk - in other words, your bank may charge less for a retail POS merchant account, where shoppers present their credit cards to you in person, vs. an Internet merchant account, where you have no personal interaction with the shopper.

How much does a merchant account cost?

Merchant accounts typically require costs for the processing software and for each transaction. Rates, account fees and transaction fees vary widely, and may include application, set-up and monthly fees, discount rate (percentage of each transaction, typically 2-3%), flat fee per transaction, and even chargeback fees in instances of consumer-disputed charges. Some of these charges are avoidable, so do your research carefully, evaluate all of your options and be cautious of hidden fees.

What should a small business owner consider in establishing a merchant account?

Before choosing your merchant account, it's important to select a payment processor (see information on payment processing for further details). StoreSense is already integrated with a number of popular payment processors. Once you've selected the processor that's right for your business, you can then choose an associated merchant account provider.

Do I need a special Internet merchant account?

While not everyone needs an Internet merchant account, there are many benefits to having one. First and foremost, an Internet merchant account will eliminate the need for you to process credit cards manually, saving you time and effort. In some cases, an Internet merchant account may offer you greater protection against credit card fraud than your offline credit card processing system. Check your merchant account Terms of Service agreement carefully.

Finally, you can still use StoreSense even if you choose not to accept credit cards. StoreSense offers many alternative options. StoreSense Professional Plus even includes options for COD, certified checks, department orders and purchase orders.

Which merchant account providers do Kurant StoreSense customers use?

Below are the five most popular merchant account providers used by Kurant StoreSense customers.

Merchant Support Network,
E-Commerce Exchange,
First Data Merchant Services,,,