The adult industry is a vast array of unique businesses ranging from the better known adult novelty shops and lingerie stores to strip clubs and massage parlors or the lesser known e-commerce stores that cater to the most interesting of fetishes and fantasies. Regardless of what kind of adult business you own or operate, adult merchants need to accept payments for their products and because adult merchant businesses are considered high risk merchants they do not have the same access to payment processors as the restaurants and clothing store of the world. Many times, adult businesses go with the first high risk payment processor that will accept them in order to get the service they need without having to put too much attention towards it. More often than not these merchant accounts process month after month with little more than an afterthought until another payment processor comes along and makes the merchant aware that there is something better available to them. So when should you consider switching to another merchant account provider? Let’s explore some of the circumstances.
Why Should I Switch Merchant Service Providers?
Merchant services shouldn’t be viewed as a provisional service and the payment processor you choose should feel more like a partnership than a service provider. Some of the reasons to switch to a new merchant service provider are:
- Cost – This is by far the most common reason adult merchants look to switch their payment processor. At first, many adult merchants aren’t familiar with merchant services or the distinction of a low risk merchant account versus a high risk merchant account. Not only this, when they first get their merchant account they usually don’t have the leverage to negotiate the costs associated with getting a high risk merchant account. However, once an adult business has some payment processing history they can look at who can give them the best rate without giving up quality of services provided.
- Service – You would think that with the costs associated with some of the high risk merchant accounts out there that these high-priced merchant service providers would be incredibly responsive and customer service oriented in order to validate those high costs. It’s simply not the case. The horror stories that circulate, regardless of how they might be embellished by the upset party, are at times jaw-dropping. Oddly, these stories aren’t just from merchants. There are agents and referral partners alike that tell tales of unresponsive staff and not receiving payment for the hard work and dedication they put into promoting and selling a given brand.
- Reserves – At times it’s not the costs or the customer service that hurts the merchant so much as the reserve being held. Many times, high risk merchant service providers will place a reserve or a rolling reserve on adult merchant accounts in order to protect themselves against potential losses from the high risk associated with the adult business they are willing to approve for a high risk merchant account. However, many of these high risk payment processors don’t work with adult merchants that show consistently clean processing to have that reserve reduced or eliminated.
- Settlement Times – Like any other business, adult businesses need to have a good handle on their cashflows in order to operate efficiently. There are too many adult merchant service solutions in the market that seem great but then have settlement times that essentially hold funds for an extended period of days or weeks. They don’t hide this from the merchant but they don’t exactly advertise it either.
- Technology – It doesn’t have to be dated technology that causes adult merchants to switch. Often times merchants are oversold on the amount of technology they need in order to operate their business. This technology is expensive and usually followed by a slew of ancillary product or service upsells in order to maximize profitability for the merchant service provider. Many times it’s far more than a given adult business needs to process payments efficiently. Merchants with processing history or retail establishments can usually leverage reduced costs or free equipment and technology.
- Peace of Mind – Some adult merchants, particularly start up adult merchants, look for a quick and easy solution to accept payments such as third party providers the likes of PayPal, Square, Stripe, or even low risk merchant services but hide what they are truly selling. None of these merchant service providers openly accept adult businesses. It’s risky for the adult merchant because if caught the merchant can be shut down and in the worst cases find themselves with the serious problem of being placed on TMF or MATCH listing.
When Should I Switch Merchant Service Providers?
Switching to a reliable high risk merchant service provider that caters to adult merchants can greatly improve operational aspects and save hundreds or even thousands of dollars every month. You can switch merchant service providers whenever you want although your current provider may have you under contract or have a cancellation policy that requires you to pay your way out. Ideally you want to switch from your payment processor once you find another high risk merchant service provider that is able to better meet the needs of your business. However, it’s in your best interest to have some payment processing history as it creates better leverage for you to get the better deal. As a side note, high risk merchant service providers typically like to see at least 3 months of current payment processing history that does not have excessive chargebacks.
Which Merchant Service Provider is Best for My Adult Business?
Ideally the best merchant service provider for your adult business is one that meets the needs of your business with a solution that satisfies the issue taken with your current payment processor. If you express your displeasure or concern to a new high risk merchant service provider they should address it with a remedy and full disclosure so that you know you are working with a payment processor that solves problems, builds relationships, and provides services that meet your needs. So whether your issue is cost, service, reserves, technology, settlement times, or peace of mind; find a high risk merchant service provider like Painless Processing where we have the best rates for adult merchants with the fastest approvals and superior service in order to make high risk payment processing for adult businesses so easy… it’s Painless.