Merchant Services Express// FAQ

FAQ

  • What do I get with an Internet merchant account?
    • You get four things:

      You are able to Accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover and Amex

      1) An Authorize.Net or other Payment Gateway script to integrate into your Web site so your customers can make purchases directly off your site 24 hours a day without you having to run the transaction manually. to link to your web site.

      2) A Virtual Terminal to run the transactions manually through your computer or any computer connected to the web

      3) 24/7 tech support and technical support along with a dedicated website where you can review all of your transactions, run reports and download your monthly statement

  • How do I apply for a merchant account?
    • Click here to apply for a merchant account

  • When do transactions get funded?
    • Merchant Services Express offers a zero day hold for merchants that qualify. For all other merchants, you will get your money within two business days after you close your batch.

  • How long before I can start accepting credit cards?
    • On average it takes about three days to get a merchant account set up, but we do offer same day approvals for time sensitive applicants.

  • Can I be approved if I have bad credit or no credit?
    • We maintain one of the highest approval rates in the industry. With our free application you have nothing to lose.

  • I'm a seasonal merchant that only processes three months out of the year. Does my merchant account still need to be PCI Compliant?
    • Yes, all merchants, whether small or large, need to be PCI compliant. The payment brands have collectively adopted PCI DSS as the requirement for organizations that process, store or transmit payment cardholder data. Inherent in having a merchant account is the ability to handle cardholder data.

  • Can I choose not to certify for PCI Compliance?
    • MasterCard and Visa require all acquirers to report on the PCI Compliance of their merchants. If you choose not to complete the self-assessment questionnaire you may overlook certain data security practices that minimize your risk of a security breach. In the event that your business is compromised, you may be subject to fines of up to $500,000 per payment brand. These fines would be in addition to the expenses and fraudulent transactions resulting from the breach.

  • Do I need a shopping cart for my Internet account?
    • No, we provide you with code that passes your customer’s information to our gateway. However merchants the have a large number of products on their website may find it easier to use a shopping cart.

  • Will I be trained to use the credit card terminal?
    • Yes, once your account has been approved one of our installers will make an appointment with you to train you on your terminal. For immediate assistance call 888-292-0050 ext. 111

  • How long before I can start accepting credit cards?
    • On average it takes about three days to get a merchant account set up, but we do offer same day approvals for time sensitive applicants.

  • How do I get my money?
    • There are four steps to getting your money;

      1) Initiating,

      2) Authorizing,

      3) Completing the transaction and

      4) Receiving your funds.

      Step 1- Initiating the transaction to verify that a card is active and within the approved spending limit:
      Brick-and-mortar and retail or restaurant environments-swipe the card or key in the number through a point-of-sale terminal (i.e., card is physically present). Mail order/telephone order environments-enter the card identifiers the customer has provided you by mail, telephone or fax (i.e., the card is not present). Internet environment-Customer provides your Web site with card identifiers (i.e., card is not present).

      Step 2- Real-time authorizing, which reduces chargebacks and catches card-entry errors:
      Credit card number is entered. Terminal or software transmits the credit card number and expiration date and sales total. Data is transmitted to customer’s credit card-issuing bank. Customer's issuing bank approves or declines the transaction.

      Step 3 - Completing the transaction:
      Merchant's terminal or software transmits transaction details in a batch at the close of the business day. The transactions are forwarded to each credit card company, which redirects the transactions to appropriate banks. Bank debits credit cardholder's account.

  • What is PCI DSS?
    • The Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standards (DSS) is a set of requirements for enhancing payment account data security. These standards were developed by the PCI Security Standards Council, which was founded by American Express, Discover Financial Services, JCB International, MasterCard Worldwide and Visa, Inc. to facilitate industry-wide adoption of consistent data security measures on a global basis.

  • I have never heard of PCI Compliance before, is this new?
    • No. Merchants have been advised to take the PCI self-assessment and be compliant for the past 3 years. The framework of the PCI data security standards has existed in different forms for some time now and continues to evolve. You may be more familiar with the payment brands' programs that promote the implementation of the PCI DSS.

      MasterCard®: Site Data Protection (SDP) program
      Mastercard.com/sdp

      Visa®: Cardholder Information Security Program (CISP)
      Visa.com/cisp

      Discover® Network: Discover Information Security & Compliance (DISC) Discovernetwork.com/fraudsecurity/disc.htm

      American Express®: Data Security Operating Policy
      AmericanExpress.com/datasecurity

  • What am I required to do to certify my account is PCI compliant?
    • The minimum requirement is that you complete a PCI DSS self-assessment questionnaire on an annual basis. If you electronically store cardholder information or if your processing systems have any internet connectivity, a quarterly scan by an approved scanning vendor is also required.

  • I only process a few hundred dollars a month. Does my merchant account still need to be PCI Compliant?
    • Yes, all merchants, whether small or large, need to be PCI compliant. The payment brands have collectively adopted PCI DSS as the requirement for organizations that process, store or transmit payment cardholder data. Inherent in having a merchant account is the ability to handle cardholder data.

  • I’m already using a “PCI compliant” terminal/gateway. Why do I have to have my account certified for PCI compliance?
    • The PCI Security Standards Council has various requirement programs. The Payment Application Data Security Standards (PA-DSS) is a set of requirement to help software vendors and others develop secure payment applications that do not store prohibited data such as full magnetic stripe, CVV2 or PIN data, and ensure their payment applications support compliance with the PCI DSS.
      Use of a terminal/gateway that runs PA-DSS certified software is one of many components that are evaluated in the assessment of an account's PCI DSS compliance.

  • What is an approved scanning vendor?
    • An approved scanning vendor is an organization that validates adherence to certain DSS requirements by performing vulnerability scans of a merchant's internet-facing systems.

  • Is there a fee for becoming PCI compliant each year?
    • Yes, but if you have already become PCI compliant, then you will not have to pay any additional fees for the calendar year.

  • Will I be provided with anything that I can display to my customers showing that I am a PCI compliant merchant?
    • Yes. Upon completion of your PCI certification, you will receive a certificate of compliance, and if requested, a logo to display on your website.

  • How long is the PCI compliance certification valid?
    • The PCI compliance certificate is valid for one year from the date the certificate is issued you are required to complete the PCI DSS self-assessment questionnaire on an annual basis.

*Important* Your merchant account is bound by the terms and conditions of the merchant agreement and is not subject to the return policy.

Merchant Services Express

Merchant Account Benefits

  • Lowest rates in the industry
  • No annual fees
  • No application fees
  • No reprogramming fees
  • No customer service fees
  • Friendly, knowledgeable agents