The Difference Between Card Present vs. Card-Not-Present Transactions

AdobeStock_147141593.jpeg

Although it seems simple, Card Present and Card-Not Present Transactions have been confused due to the variety of payment channels currently available. Technically speaking, a transaction is considered “card present” only if the data was captured at the time of the sale. Data can be captured either by swiping a magnetic strip, using an EMV chip card, or a contactless digital wallet with a stored card(Apple Pay). Any other payment method would be considered “card-not-present” even if a customer physically brings in their credit card during the time of their transactions.

Here are examples of Card Present and Card Not Present Transactions:

Card-Present:

-Credit Card Machines

-Smartphones or Tablets with Card Readers

-Terminals That are Contactless

-Card Readers with POS Systems

Card-Not-Present:

-Recurring/Subscription Billing (ACH)

-Orders Over the Phone or Manually Input

-Online Purchases

-Payment apps or tablets without card readers

Why This Matters?

The cost to process credit cards depends on whether the transaction was Card Present or Card-Not-Present transactions. This should be factored in when you decide how you want your business to process payments. At the interchange level, card-present transactions typically cost less.

Let us Help

At Gulf Management Systems, we can help your business process all types of transactions. Contact us today to see how we can help you!

How Recurring Payments Can Benefit Your Business

AdobeStock_196609854.jpeg

Is your business focused too much on dealing with manual billing, or even chasing bills? Find out how recurring billing can make your life easier and save you money!

It Builds Relationships with Your Customers

Recurring payments allow the distribution of goods or services between you and your customers over a period of time. One payment begins the relationship between you and your customers. Automatic payments have begun to be the new normal for consumers. This takes the stress out of worrying about missing a payment for them and ensures you get paid in a timely manner. Once your customers enroll in ACH automatic payments, they are likely to remain long-term customers.

Simplify Your Company Billing

ACH Payments process on the same day for customers every month so you know when you’re going to get paid! No more hassle waiting for customers to make a payment or tacking on late fees to their account. The fact of the matter is that even the best customer can forget to make a payment, and this ensures that they won’t miss a payment. Automatic billing simply makes life easier for everyone involved. You want to keep customers satisfied as well and to not have to worry about payment hassles. With automatic payments, as long as there are sufficient funds the money will be safely extracted from your customer’s bank every month.

Grow Revenue Through Subscription Services

Recurring billing used to only be used for utilities, clubs, or newspapers but today recurring billing can fit a variety of business model types. Whether you are a CPA, or own a software company, a recurring billing model can be an effective way to run your business. Often a low-cost business such as a gym relies on recurring billing to avoid payment disputes since they often have many customers. With ACH payments, payments are almost guaranteed to come every month and is a lot cheaper as ACH payments can cost as little as $0.50 per transaction no matter how large. This can be a great cost-savings for business when you pay anywhere between 2-4% in credit card fees normally.

Running a business can be hard, but automatic payments can make your life easier! At Gulf Management Systems we help business seamlessly accept ACH Payments. Find out how we can help your business!

How The Holiday’s Affect ACH Payments

AdobeStock_88999073.jpeg

It’s that time of year again, the holidays! Did you know certain holidays affect ACH Payments?

Here is a list of U.S. Banking Holidays:

  • New Year’s Day

  • Martin Luther King Day

  • President’s Day

  • Memorial Day

  • Independence Day

  • Labor Day

  • Columbus Day

  • Veteran’s Day

  • Thanksgiving

  • Christmas

These holidays are recognized by the Federal Reserve System. These are the days banks are closed and not operating in their normal function.

This can affect the rate at which your business processes ACH payments.

The Affect of Banking Holiday’s on ACH Payments

When ACH payments are initiated, they will clear in 3-4 business days. Just like if you were initiating a payment on a weekend, if you initiate a payment on a banking holiday the typical clearing times will be delayed, and the payment will initiate on the next business day. Be sure to keep this in mind during the holiday season (Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s Day).

When utilizing ACH payments, it’s key to understand the ACH system and how it works. At Gulf Management Systems, we help businesses process ACH payments conveniently and at a cost-effective rate. Contact us today to see how we can help!

Guide for Merchants to Avoid Credit Card Chargebacks

AdobeStock_136708095.jpeg

Chargebacks can be a very damaging fact of life for most businesses that accept credit cards. There are many ways that businesses can help mitigate risk and avoid credit card chargebacks.

What is a chargeback? A credit card chargeback is what occurs when a customer refutes charges to their credit card issuer. If the issuer deems the customer dispute as valid, which typically happens, then your business merchant account is debited for a credit card charge that was previously cleared. In addition to this, typical chargeback fees can range from $15-$100. Check below for ways to reduce the risk of chargebacks for your business.

Use Clear Payment Descriptors
A majority of credit card disputes come from unclear payment descriptors. Payment descriptors are the name of the merchant that appears on customer’s credit card statements. If they see a charge from a place they don’t recognize making a purchase from, they will likely think it’s a fraudulent charge. Having a name that your customer will recognize is one of the most important ways to help reduce credit card chargebacks.

Take Care of Customer Service Issues

Credit card processors are the first to notify you if there is a customer that is disputing a payment charge. It’s always a good idea to get ahead when these notifications come your way, so you can address the issues head on. At the end of the day good customer service will always be the best way to avoid any kind of dissatisfaction. If the customer voices any issues, always do your best to resolve any issues.

Learn to Spot Signs of Fraud

Your business needs to have a chargeback protocol in place, because you never know when a credit card chargeback will arise. With a chargeback protocol in place, your business will have a system in place for fraud prevention and chargebacks. Some of the important things to look out for are suspicious details such as security codes not matching, billing and shipping codes not matching, etc. It’s often easy to confirm customer information through a thorough online search.

Importance of Having a Merchant Services Partner in a Software

adult-american-blond-1282268.jpg

There are many new software solutions popping up every day, is this a bad thing? Of course not! But the issue is that these new software’s often look to handle their customer payments themselves without the help from a merchant services processor. Handling payments on your own can be very time-consuming and tedious if issues arise. How can a merchant service partner help? See more below.

Take Care of Payment Issues

A payment processor will take care of any payment issues that arise, because that’s their job! A payment processor is there to facilitate incoming payment transactions as well as dealing with failed payments and monthly billing. A merchant service provider is best equipped with software’s that utilize subscription or monthly service billing, as these are the easiest type of transactions to facilitate for both parties. It reduces late fees or failed payments from customers.

Little Integration Required

For Gulf Management Systems it’s very easy to plug our API into a software to start processing our clients payments. It’s often a very simple process getting your software to plug in with most merchant service providers.

It’s Simple and Inexpensive

Integrating your software with a merchant service provider can be both simple and inexpensive. With our ACH payment solutions, you can process payments for as cheap as $.10 per transaction in some cases no matter how large they are! You accept the payments and we do the work for you! What can be better than that?

Looking for a merchant partner for your software?

See How We Can Help You

How to Provide More Options for Payroll Clients

accomplishment-agreement-business-1249158.jpg

If you provide payroll services for clients it can always be good to offer additional services, right? Being able to offer more convenient options means a better relationship between you and your clients. Below are a few great options that every payroll provider should consider!

Direct Deposit

Direct deposit is a great service to add because everyone uses it! Whether using it for a one-time payout or weekly payouts, every consumer and business uses some version of direct deposit. This is a cheap and invaluable service that could benefit any client. The convenience and security of direct deposit means it’s more hands-off for you while your client benefits from your services. This is a must for CPA’s and lawyers! Opting for direct deposit mitigates risk without worrying about checks getting into the wrong hands anymore.

Prepaid Debit Cards

A prepaid debit card is a great alternative to banking that is a secure and effective solution for payouts. These can be used for larger refund amounts, employee debit cards, and can be used as an alternative form of payroll. The benefit is that they are safer than cash, convenient, and are accepted worldwide! They are simple and can be a great additional offering for your business.

ACH Payment Processing

With ACH payment processing, you can accept recurring payments from your clients! For example, if you have clients who pay you monthly for services, ACH can be a great addition to your business. Payments are processed through the Automated Clearing House, one of the safest payment networks. You can easily setup fixed payment amounts from your clients that will process every month without them doing a thing or worrying about missing a payment.

 

               Offer More Options Today!

Gulf Management Systems Gears Up to Attend 2018 IPPA Business Excellence Conference

ippa-logo.png

New Florida-based member of leading nationwide trade association related to payroll and taxes for employers of all sizes to showcase myriad of premium payroll-oriented services; JW Marriott Desert Ridge in Phoenix to play host for October 17 to 19 event.

Clearwater, FL – October 4, 2018 – Gulf Management Systems, a Clearwater, Florida-based merchant provider of premium payment processing solutions, announced its intentions to attend the 2018 IPPA Business Excellence Conference, scheduled to take place from October 17 to 19 at the JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort and Spa in Arizona. Gulf Management is a new member of the leading nationwide trade association related to payroll and taxes for employers of all sizes (IPPA), and plans on showcasing its myriad of innovative payment-oriented services at the Conference including those associated with direct deposit and credit payments options.

The IPPA is comprised of privately-held companies whose primary function is the preparation of payroll and related taxes for employers of all sizes. Its broad base of independent service bureaus – large and small – is dedicated to offering the best client service and the most advanced technology. The Association prides itself on a proven track record of providing competitive solutions for today’s marketplace.

Gulf Management Systems’ payment specialists create custom payment solutions for businesses at transparent rates, seeking to become partners will all of its clients. From start to finish, Gulf representatives ensure each client’s success, providing them with a plethora of options to best serve their customers and simplify payment processing via a scalable and personalized approach. Since 1992, the company has boosted productivity and savings for businesses through its technology and payment processing expertise.

What’s more, as an all-in-one payment processor specializing in technology-enabled debit card, credit payments, ACH, EFT, e-commerce and direct deposit services, Gulf Management Systems brings the experience demanded of all types of businesses, boasting the capability to handle all points of the payment process for an operation.

“We are committed to our customers by way of unique customer service – different from most payment processing providers,” says Charles G. Billone, President of Gulf Management Systems. “Each of our accounts is supplemented by a hands-on, dedicated personalized coach that supports the client, and this coach puts in the required effort to set up the account, learn the essence of the client’s business and provide a detailed orientation to ensure the user is well-versed with regard to processing as to avoid any errors or delays – thus contributing to their overall confidence as a merchant.

“At this year’s IPPA Business Excellence Conference, we plan on exhibiting these characteristics for all attendees via demonstrations and discussions to show what kind of organization we are in the world of employee payment solutions.”

Gulf Management also became PCI Compliant in 2017, meaning each of its clients could rest assured knowing they receive the highest level of security. Benefits of PCI Compliancy include decreased risk of of a security breach, obtainment of a guideline standard regarding how to handle data, peace of mind knowing data is secure and avoidance of costly fines.

Gulf Management Systems is located at 2753 SR 580 Suite 212 in Clearwater and can be reached by calling (800) 947-3156. For more information visit www.GulfManagementSystems.com or email operations@GulfManagementSystems.com.

How Do Credit Card Fees and Costs Work?

AdobeStock_123513772.jpeg

For new and even current businesses, credit card fees can be very confusing. Accepting credit cards is an important part of your business, but you want to first understand what you’re paying for and the fee process and structure. There’s many solutions available to you and before deciding you want to be well-informed. There is a lot of factors that go into the credit card fees you end up being charged, which is discussed below.

Credit Card Interchange Fees

The largest portion of fees comes from interchange fees, which are collected from the credit card issuers. These fees are a certain percentage and then a fixed fee, typically no more than $0.25 per transaction. However, there are a variety of factors that go into this.

Credit Card Network

The four major credit card networks are Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express. They all have slightly different credit card rates, which will be discussed.

Type of Card

Some fees are altered whether the card in the transaction being used is a credit or debit card. The type of credit card is also important. For example, business credit cards can be more expensive to process, and other types of reward cards as well.

How You Process the Payment

This means whether you swipe the credit card through a card reader, or manually punch in the card for a credit card verification, these will both impact the fees you pay on a transaction. There’s also different fees between online and mobile payments. However, transactions that are swiped tend to have the lowest fees involved.

Merchant Service Provider Fees

A merchant service provider, which handles your payment processing for business will charge fees for the services they provide your business. Depending on the volume of transactions your business runs, the fees will vary. We recommend taking your time when evaluating the credit card process. At Gulf Management Systems we create a customized payment solution that fits your business. Call us at (855) 847-7764 to find out more or simply fill out the form below.

Let Us Help You With Payments

Name
Name

How to Evaluate a Payment Processor

rawpixel-665368-unsplash.jpg

When it comes to payment processing, it can be quite confusing. The system can be difficult to understand even basic things, such as what your rate is and the various fees that go along with accepting credit cards.

However, accepting credit cards have become crucial in the world of business today. Our society is shifting towards going paperless, with consumer purchasing preferences moving towards credit cards as opposed to cash. As a business owner you should be aware of these trends to make sure you’re not paying any hidden fees and charges that affect your profits. Here are a few tips for evaluating a payment processor.

Their Rates and Fees

With payment processors, there are a variety of factors that go into the rates and fees you’ll pay to process payments. Some of these may include; monthly sales volume, amount of years you’ve been in business, credit rating, etc. Some processors will advertise a flat rate across the board while some make a customized payment solution, just like we do at Gulf Management Systems. In your search for a processor, some will offer lower rates for business that utilize swiped transactions, sale’s through a credit card machine. This tends to be the most secure and least risky solution.

Their Customer Service Process

As noted, many businesses are unaware of payment processing rates and extra fees involved. This often results in people getting locked into contracts and overpaying way too much for their payment processing. At Gulf Management Systems our payment consultants will go over all our recommended options based off your business and individual needs. We explain all the fees involved, where they come from, and how we will be able to save you the most money. Many business owners are unaware of the various options at their disposal such as credit card processing, E-Checks, and ACH payment processing.

The Application Process

Some companies in the past would send a representative to your place of business to verify the location but that is rare this day and age. Throughout the application process you should be prepared to provide documents such as your business license, tax returns, and other financials. This typically require a two-way access to your bank account if they accept you. This will allow them to deposit funds into your account or even withdraw them in the case of a chargeback.

Takeaway

In all, choosing the appropriate payment processor is a very important decision for your business. At Gulf Management Systems, we’ve been helping business process payments for over 25 years, see how we can help you!  

The 5 Best Ways to Collect Customer Payments

rawpixel-783423-unsplash.jpg

For business owners, keeping up with payments can be difficult at times. To ensure timely payments, your customers should have a variety of payment options that facilitate an easy transaction on their end.  Having payments that come on time is very important and reduces headaches and frustration!

While payment technologies continue to advance, customer expectations continue to rise. To adapt to this, your business must offer several ways for customers to make payments. No one wants to mail in a check or pay over the phone, they need to have multiple available channels to make payments!

Add a Payment Button To Your Website

Incorporating a simple “pay now” button to your website can be a huge benefit to your customers. Being able to accept payments online is a big hurdle many businesses face. Adding e-Commerce to your business's website is a great way to increase revenue and attract customers. This allows customers to make purchases or pay bills at their personal convenience, saving you time asking for a check or other forms of payment.

Send Online Invoices

Invoices are a common way many professional companies send bills to customers through email. Sending traditional paper invoices to take too long and often results in late bill payments. Through online invoice technology, you’re able to streamline the collection of your payments online. Customers can simply hit a button before being directed into a payment portal to securely make their online payment. With more payments occurring online, customers expect every business to offer online payments.

Accept Recurring Transactions

Accepting recurring payments from customers is the easiest and most cost-effective way to take payments. ACH Payments allow customers to pay from their bank account and every month on a set date the payment will be taken out from their account. Customers can be charged monthly, yearly, or on whichever payment schedule they are on. ACH payments are also the safest way to accept transactions for both customers and businesses. The main benefit of recurring transactions is that customers don’t need to manually enter payments every time they need to make a payment. The transaction is safely processed every month utilizing ACH payments.

Take Payments On-The-Go

For businesses that are on the move, accepting mobile payments can make a big difference. For service-based businesses, they typically rely on customers mailing in checks or writing down credit card information. Using a simple mobile payment system, Gulf Management Systems allow merchants to accept payments wherever they are. Less people carry cash these days and customer preferences are leaning towards credit and debit card payments. Having this kind of flexibility allows businesses to increase their revenue and eases of payments for their customers.

With the right payment technology partner, your business can accept a variety of payments. At Gulf Management systems, we create a customized payment solution that fits YOUR business, contact us today and see how your business can succeed with us!