Updated: Nov 3, 2019
Everywhere I go, I see Visa, Mastercard, Amex, and Discover. What happened to the "we accept check" signs? What happened to people carrying cash? It has all but disappeared. Have you ever wondered why?
As smart devices came on to the scene about ten years ago, everything sped up. That allowed for faster and faster payments. Who took advantage of that? Visa, Mastercard, Amex, and Discover. They invented lots of new toys, such as wallets. They went on an advertising spree and partnered with such companies as Paypal and Square, to name a few. They added points programs. They even lobbied congress for new anti-money laundering laws geared towards pushing cash out. The goal was to hook everyone on credit card, and destroy cash and check payments. Their efforts have paid off in spades!
Why do I use the word "Crack" in the title of this article? Well, crack cocaine was one of the most addictive and destructive drugs of the twentieth century. It was cheap and destroyed countless lives. What does that have to do with credit cards? They do the very same thing.
Getting a credit card merchant account is so easy these days, you can be approved in minutes online. It's comfortable with Apple Pay and Square and Paypal. Your customers can touch their phone to a screen and bam!
So why is this bad? How could something so simple be wrong for your business? Keep in mind that it comes with a price tag. You are likely paying at least three to four percent as a merchant. Let's do some match and lay it out for you.
If you are a small business doing one hundred thousand a year, that credit card fee costs you four thousand dollars a year. Not terrible, right? Wrong.
x 10 Yrs
Look at it over ten years. That is a nice car. You could go on a lot of vacations with that much money. What if your business does two hundred thousand a year or a million dollars? That million dollar business will spend $400,000 in fees over ten years!
The picture I am trying to paint for you is one of reality. You should not be spending 3-4 percent or more of your money accepting payments. It is a waste of valuable resources. You are handing it to them without a fight.
To make this ultra-clear for you, next time you go to pay for your car or house note, or your credit card bill, see if they will accept a credit card. I bet you they do not. See, the banks don't like losing three to four percent. They ask you to pay with your checking account. Imagine that; the very same people selling you credit card services will not accept their own service. I wonder why.
How do you get off of this modern-day business crack? It is easy. Diversify your payments. You can accept cash. You can accept checks. You can accept bitcoin. You can accept wire transfers and ACH payments. All of these exist and cost much less.
With checks, I often hear the excuse that too many bounce. The national average is less than 1/4 of one percent. I would say that is better than the four percent you pay to accept a card. What excuse can you give on cash? You can open a bank account for nothing with Bank of America, Chase, Wells Fargo, Citibank, and others. Your customers can make a cash deposit into your account and send you the receipt. ACH, wire transfers, and Bitcoin are cost-effective and can't get charged back.
All I'm saying is, don't be a sucker and only accept credit cards. You are handing over your hard-earned money. You are letting them punch you in the face and then thanking them for it.
If you are a smart business owner, set up a merchant account to verify and accept an electronic check. Sign up for a bitcoin merchant account. Coinbase is a popular choice with businesses. You can cash out your earnings instantly.
Start doing homework on your bottom line. See where you can cut out those pesky credit card fees. Make sure you are accepting every form of payment you can imagine. You will thank me for it in the long run.
Thanks for reading. If you like this or any of my other articles, please make sure and share them on social media.
Founder and President
Green.Money (Green Payment Processing)
About the Author:
Lonnie Passoff started the first-ever internet-only electronic check processing firm in 2008. It has grown to be the largest e-check processor on the planet. A veteran of the United States Army, he has become a multi-millionaire through honest, smart business practices. He frequently speaks at business conventions and is a paid advisor to multiple corporations. He also holds a seat on the board of breast cancer non-profit, as well as a clean ocean initiative in the Caribbean.