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JFGLN
02-20-2011, 09:30 PM
I need to start accepting credit cards. What do I need to know? What pitfalls to watch out for?

CLARK LAWN
02-20-2011, 09:48 PM
talk to your bank, they will be able to provide you with everything you need. dont sign a contract.

JFGLN
02-20-2011, 10:07 PM
I have been looking at Costo's program. I will be checking with my credit union also.

Lefet
02-21-2011, 07:19 AM
Depending on how you want to accept CC, if over the net, you may want to check out Paypal. They have a free one you can put on your website and only pay a percentage when you use it.

walker-talker
02-21-2011, 05:44 PM
I sent out a survey for my exisiting customers asking if they were interested in using CCs and only had one customer say that they would. And this customer in a once a year customer. I have a few interested in receiving their invoice via email.

lawntimenosee
02-22-2011, 12:35 AM
I sent out a survey for my exisiting customers asking if they were interested in using CCs and only had one customer say that they would. And this customer in a once a year customer. I have a few interested in receiving their invoice via email.

I am getting ready to do this exact thing too.

Do you happen to have an outline or template for the survey you sent out? Just trying to make sure I don't forget anything and cover all bases.
Now is a good time for me to update all contact info & numbers too.
I think a lot of customers may opt for the email invoicing.

aarons lawn
02-22-2011, 12:41 AM
i will never take plastic they charge a small fee for there machines i dont like to share my profits wih anyone besides the crew

JFGLN
02-23-2011, 07:51 PM
i will never take plastic they charge a small fee for there machines i dont like to share my profits wih anyone besides the crew

I was looking for info from people that have researched or are currently accepting credit cards from their customers.

Wayne's Lawn Service
02-23-2011, 08:36 PM
We have accepted CC for many years now. Based on the number of accounts you service, it may make sense based on enough participation from you clients. When you look at the fees when spread throughout your total overhead, it's not bad. You can also charge a small fee for processing those payment to offset the fees charged.


We quickly saw people spending more money on add-on services by giving the option to pay with a CC. Based on your clientele, you may want to take Amex as well. They do charge a bit more to run, but many high-end clients carry that card.

That's my .02 worth. Hope it helps.

MowHouston
02-23-2011, 09:26 PM
When you process credit cards, you will have the following types of fees.

Setup Fee: $0 - $60+
Monthly Fee: $10 - $30
Per transaction percentage: 1.7% - 3.0%
Per transaction flat rate: $0.20 - $0.30

After cards are processed and totaled out for the day, it takes 24-72 hours for them to be deposited into your bank account depending on who you have.

I do not recommend PayPal. Their fees are higher and pita customers can get their money back in a heartbeat because PayPal only protects sellers when tangible items are sold and proven to be delivered via tracking number.

Also, you cant personally process the cards yourself through PayPal unless you upgrade to Website Payments Pro, which comes with all of the above fees, plus they hold 30% of your income for 90 days as "protection" in case of chargebacks.

The company I use charges $10/month, 1.7% + $0.22 per transaction. No set up fee.

THEGOLDPRO
02-23-2011, 09:35 PM
I accept credit cards on my iphone from intuit, the fees are not bad and its cheap enough that i dont mind having people charge the card rather then paying check.

I have noticed people are more open to spending money on projects like bigger mulch jobs and etc when they know they can charge it on there cards and pay 20 bucks a month making minimum payments rather then coming up with cash.

srl28
02-23-2011, 09:49 PM
MowHouston--care to share what company that is that you are using?

JFGLN
02-23-2011, 10:54 PM
When you process credit cards, you will have the following types of fees.

Setup Fee: $0 - $60+
Monthly Fee: $10 - $30
Per transaction percentage: 1.7% - 3.0%
Per transaction flat rate: $0.20 - $0.30

After cards are processed and totaled out for the day, it takes 24-72 hours for them to be deposited into your bank account depending on who you have.

I do not recommend PayPal. Their fees are higher and pita customers can get their money back in a heartbeat because PayPal only protects sellers when tangible items are sold and proven to be delivered via tracking number.

Also, you cant personally process the cards yourself through PayPal unless you upgrade to Website Payments Pro, which comes with all of the above fees, plus they hold 30% of your income for 90 days as "protection" in case of chargebacks.

The company I use charges $10/month, 1.7% + $0.22 per transaction. No set up fee.



Thanks MowHouston, That's the kind of info I was looking for.

slawn
02-23-2011, 11:32 PM
Does anybody use accept credit cards by phone? All you need is a phone. I was looking at this site, no setup fee, 2.59% + $.30 per transaction.

http://www.acceptcreditcardsbyphone.com/index.html

MowHouston
02-24-2011, 09:01 AM
Does anybody use accept credit cards by phone? All you need is a phone. I was looking at this site, no setup fee, 2.59% + $.30 per transaction.

http://www.acceptcreditcardsbyphone.com/index.html

All merchant companies offer that service.

You basically have to choose whether you want to slide the card, set up a website so the customer can enter their card, manually enter the card on a virtual terminal on your computer, or manual enter it on the phone.

Doing it on the phone sucks. I did it that way and when I reached 70 customers, I dreaded doing it even though it meant getting paid. If you're going to do it yourself, virtual terminal is the way to go.

MowHouston
02-24-2011, 09:02 AM
MowHouston--care to share what company that is that you are using?

Leaders.

www.leadersmerchantservices.com

aarons lawn
02-24-2011, 04:23 PM
I was looking for info from people that have researched or are currently accepting credit cards from their customers.

im not a 100% sure but i think they take like 2%

walker-talker
02-24-2011, 04:39 PM
I wouldn't mind getting setup for credit cards, but I don't have enough demand to warrant the monthly fees. This is why I wanted to get setup with Square.

LushGreenLawn
02-25-2011, 07:27 AM
Intuit.
12.95 monthly, no setup fee, no minimum. If you do it from an android phone with them there is no montly fee. Transactin fees are around 2.5percent or less.
Posted via Mobile Device

JFGLN
02-26-2011, 01:39 AM
I decide to go with Costco's program,

Setup Fee: $0
Monthly Fee: $0
Per transaction percentage: 1.48% - 2.2%
Per transaction flat rate: $0.20

walker-talker
02-26-2011, 08:41 AM
I decide to go with Costco's program,

Setup Fee: $0
Monthly Fee: $0
Per transaction percentage: 1.48% - 2.2%
Per transaction flat rate: $0.20

Can you provide a link?

Thanks

JFGLN
02-26-2011, 11:46 AM
Here is the link. My prices are a bit lower because I have a retail location and I'm an executive member at Costco.

http://www.elavon.com/acquiring/costco/

srl28
02-26-2011, 12:37 PM
Any members of PLANET on here, there is a company that provides credit card processing via terminal, phone, or online portal. They contacted us a while back and I've been looking into their system. Prices and fees weren't too bad. NPC systems I believe is the company name-anyone ever heard of or used them?

THEGOLDPRO
02-26-2011, 05:28 PM
i use this.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smOmCzco168&feature=related

Hoots
02-27-2011, 11:19 AM
I use eprocessingnetwork.com It costs $15/mo. and I can set customers up on an auto draft. I haven't looked lately but its around 2-3%. I can accept payments through my iPhone since the whole system is online, no machines to rent or buy.

PM me if you want more info.

LushGreenLawn
02-27-2011, 09:02 PM
I decide to go with Costco's program,

Setup Fee: $0
Monthly Fee: $0
Per transaction percentage: 1.48% - 2.2%
Per transaction flat rate: $0.20

Thats a great program

makbootzy
02-28-2011, 12:30 PM
I just signed up for Square...they send you a card reader that you can plug into you 3.5mm headphone jack on your iphone or android phone. No monthly or start up fee just 2.78% per transaction when you swipe a card or 3.5% + 15 cents when you manually type in number. You can download the app though marketplace on your phone(free) and go to https://squareup.com/ to sign up and recieve your free ard reader.

walker-talker
02-28-2011, 01:52 PM
I just signed up for Square...they send you a card reader that you can plug into you 3.5mm headphone jack on your iphone or android phone. No monthly or start up fee just 2.78% per transaction when you swipe a card or 3.5% + 15 cents when you manually type in number. You can download the app though marketplace on your phone(free) and go to https://squareup.com/ to sign up and recieve your free ard reader.

How the heck do you get a hold of their support people? I ordered my square back in November and still not received it yet. Somebody on here told me that you have to set up your checking account info before they mail it. I just did that a week ago and currently waiting to verify the bank deposits/withdraws. The thing is, I received the confirmation emails a long time ago telling me that my account was activated and I would receive another email once the card reader was being shipped.

It looks like they use twitter for their support, but I havn't figured all that stuff out yet...lol.

coolluv
02-28-2011, 01:55 PM
If you have to swipe the card then that means the customer is going to be there. So really what good is it. How often are your customers home when you service the account? Even if they are it seems like a pain to have to stop and go through that. I would think it would be alright for landscape work but for service work it would not work. Might as well save the money and get a check.

Is there a way that you can have the customers information on file and then just charge them at will. Like the day of the service. Better yet just click on the invoice and hit one button and done.

Just asking.

Dave...

walker-talker
02-28-2011, 03:35 PM
I suppose you can keep their card number on file, but not recommended. I would use the service more for one-time service jobs. Otherwise, I would want to set something up where they could log into their account and pay online.

bustutah
02-28-2011, 04:12 PM
I used to accept cards. I sighed up to increase my customer base. I included this new feature on that years biz cards. I didn't gain any customers that signed up for this service. Think hard about this one. Just one more thing to keep track of. Good Luck

seabee24
02-28-2011, 09:10 PM
Hpe I have for the last year. I traded a high percentage and they don't charge me a monthly fee. So that's nice if we get slow. I asked our customers too, only a few said yes....but I will tell you, I gained 2 landscape jobs and a mowing customer simply because I do accept credit cards. Since then 10% have signed up for auto payment...I create an invoice email it, and charge their credit card in less than 15 mins. No trips to the bank, 2 days later funds are in my account. No NSF checks. I had some customers get behind and were past due...a quick call and they paid over the phone. I think for our industry a swiped is worthless. Get set up with authroized.net virtual terminal, They have a back door that allows you to process on their web site, or using your accounting software or a mobil app for like 2.99. Works well, I have other uses as well for snow removal.
Posted via Mobile Device

LandscapePayments.com
03-15-2011, 11:23 AM
Hello everyone.

As a sponsor I just wanted to let you know we provide an online service allowing your customers to pay their invoices online, through your own secure web payment page. There is no obligation. If you decide you no longer want the service you can cancel at any time.

Some of you are getting some great rates for swiped transactions. Our fees are 2.3% + $0.25 per transaction and a $9.95 monthly statement fee. I think you will find our rates are extremely competitive, even compared to the previously mentioned Leader Merchant Services and Costco internet transactions.

Our goal is to try and save you time and money so you dont have to process the payments yourself or make sure your customer is home to swipe their card.

For more information visit us at www.landscapepayments.com. If interested in signing up use promo code lawnsite2011 and sign up for $39 (50% off normal price).

Feel free to post here or contact me if you have any questions.

ChuckNC
03-15-2011, 08:53 PM
Hey JFGLN,
Just as Lefet said,
look into paypal. I did that for my internet business
and the cc charge is .99% per transaction.
Well worth it IMHO.
Cheers
Chuck

Triper
03-17-2011, 10:26 PM
If you have a smart phone use:

www.squareup.com

No monthly fee, 2.75% only when you use it. (https://squareup.com/pricing)

$1000/meek limit before they start holding funds (but you can do as much as you want, they just withhold funds for up to 30 days. (https://help.squareup.com/customer/portal/articles/11863))

tradeyouraccounts
03-18-2011, 06:17 PM
Do you normally charge the customer the processing fees like with square its 2.75% or do you normally take on the fees for convenience?

LandscapePayments.com
03-18-2011, 07:46 PM
Tradeyouraccounts,

There is no Federal law on that prohibits you from adding a surcharge to cover the cost of the transaction fee. However, there are states that have laws against surcharges (CA, CO, CT, FL, KS, MA, ME, NY, OK, and TX).

Visa and MasterCard prohibit them, but Discover allows surcharges on credit card purchases, except in the above states. So through your merchant account you are not allowed to charge extra for the transaction fee.

You are allowed to charge a convenience fee if you meet the following rules:

For merchant who offer an alternative payment channel (i.e., mail, telephone, or e-commerce) for customers to pay for goods or services, a convenience fee may be added to the transaction amount. If the merchant chooses to asses a convenience fee to its customers, the merchant must adhere to the following rules:

The fee is being charged for a bona fide convenience of using an alternate payment channel outside of the merchant's normal business practice

The Fee:
-Must be disclosed to customers as a charge for alternate payment channel convenience.
-Is applied only to non face-to-face transactions.
-Must be a flat or fixed amount regardless of the amount of payment due
-Is included as part of the total transaction
-Cannot be added to recurring transactions
-Is assessed by the merchant that provides goods and services to the cardholder and not by a third party
-The customer must be given the opportunity to cancel prior to the completion of the transaction

Hope it helped.

LawnsRUsInc.
03-19-2011, 09:30 AM
I am happy that we take credit cards like others have said people spend more money. I have had CC transactions as high as $11k on just one card. Also when we sign up people for the season on lawn maint. or Fert they just pay over the phone right away. We also offer financing to our customers as we are a authorized john deere vendor. For the CC machine we use an app on our phones $5 per month and 2%

stoptrafficlawns
04-25-2011, 01:23 PM
Lawnsrus - can you tell me the app that you use on your phone?

ChuckNC
04-25-2011, 04:02 PM
Hey Stoptrafficlawns,

You can try this link
http://pocketnow.com/thought/2010-the-year-smartphones-become-mobile-credit-card-terminals

Depends on which smartphone you have and also
watch monthly rates and percentage.
Prices vary on a huge scale.

hope that helps
Chuck

Dr.NewEarth
04-25-2011, 11:48 PM
We use a US based company called "Chase Payment Tech" and get a really good deal because we're members of the
Canadian Nursery Landscape Association

I don't need to rent a machine. They give you a number to call and you key in all of your transactions from your phone. You have a secret code to use too.

You can charge one off customers from your cell phone on the site.

We bill regular clients at the beginning of the month, so no-one skips out on a payment.