Merchant Accounts and merchant account equipment vary with the needs of your business. You need to assess the needs of your business and then shop around to make sure you choose a merchant account that will be what is best for you.
If you have a store presence you will need merchant account equipment for card swiping. Most often, banks will charge you less for transactions which require the customer to swipe their card. Keeping merchant account fees to a minimum should be a priority. It is a great convenience but don’t pay more than you have to. You may need more than one machine for your store and you may need pin pads for customers to enter their debit/credit card numbers. Many machines now are all in one where it is basically one hub where the customer can choose credit or debit and then either enter their pin or sign their names to secure the transaction.
If you have an online store presence you will need a payment gateway. In other words, you will need a secure way to let your customers pay online while trusting that you keep their information private. Payment gateways vary and you will want to do your research here as well, to make sure that you get the right product for your customer’s needs. Most often you are going to need software. You want to make sure that it is as secure as possible. One solution for this is to use a web based company for these needs such as PayPal.
Getting the right merchant account equipment for your business right at the beginning can save you a lot of time and hassle. As your business grows you should be able to fit your merchant account to it’s changing needs. Be sure to ask questions about what you do when you need more terminals or better software or upgrades.