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From helping you obtain the equipment you need, to explaining transactions step-by-step, Innovative Merchant Solutions gives you "know-how now" to get you started as a Innovative Merchant Solutions merchant.


What is a merchant account?

A merchant account gives a business the ability to accept credit cards as payment for the company's goods and services. This provides your customers with an extremely popular payment option, beyond cash and checks.

Studies have shown that merchants can typically increase their business by 50% to 80% or more-sometimes even hundreds of percent. Plus, customers are more willing to purchase higher-cost goods using a payment method that offers them repayment flexibility. It is projected that by 2002, credit card transactions will account for 98% of Internet sales, equaling $55.6 billion.

Innovative Merchant Solutions of PA Inc., specializes in setting up businesses of all types throughout the country with merchant accounts and credit card processing solutions. Whether you need a retail merchant account, Internet merchant account, or mail/phone order merchant account we have a cost effective merchant account solution that is right for your business. Our merchant account rates are some of the most competitive processing rates in the industry.


How does a merchant account work?

How it works with retail or swiped accounts:

Step 1:
A customer provides your business with a non-cash payment, such as a credit card, for a purchase.

Step 2.
A transaction then occurs by either swiping the credit card or manually entering the credit card information into the terminal.

Step 3.
An electronic transaction occurs through your credit card terminal which either approves or denies the transaction payment. If approved, your credit card processing service will credit and deposit money into your bank account the amount of the transaction within 2 to 3 days, less any fees (discount rate and transaction fees) per transaction.


How it works with internet accounts:


Step 1:

The consumers complete their orders via the merchants web store. This should be done on a secure web page so that the consumer's personal information including banking information (credit card or check) is encrypted so that it can't be intercepted and read by third parties while being transferred over the internet. Secure pages should always be used while handling credit card processing online.


Step 2:

The shopping cart program on the web host computer gathers the order information, compiling it into a form that the credit card processing company expects.


Step 3:

The shopping cart transmits the formatted order from the web host to the credit card processor (payment gateway). The credit card processor checks that the information it received about the order to be sure it has everything it needs to continue processing the transaction. It then determines what company manages the customer's credit card and transmits a request for the card to be charged.


Step 4:

The customer's credit card company validates the card and the account. If everything checks out correctly and the credit card is clear for purchases the credit card company sends an acknowledgement back to the card processor that the amount requested can be transferred. If the credit card company denies the charge it sends a code back to the credit card processor indicating what the problem was.


Step 5:

The credit card processor now tells the shopping cart program at the web host whether or not the transaction was successful (the shopping cart then can tell the customer whether or not the order was complete and send the order on to the merchant for delivery of the product or service). The credit card processor initiates a funds transfer (settlement request) to the merchant account company for deposit into the merchant's bank account that it has on record.


Step 6:

Internet merchant accounts collect the funds for a specified period of time and make scheduled transfers to the merchant's regular bank account and the credit card processing transaction is complete.

How do discount rates and transaction fees work?

Our merchant account fees are broken up into two parts: the discount rate and the transaction fee. The discount rate
is the percentage of each transaction that the acquirer charges to the merchant in order to process the charge. Because the discount rate is a percentage of the total ticket amount, the amount deducted from the merchant account will vary depending on the ticket size. The transaction fee, on the other hand, is a fixed amount also taken from each transaction. The transaction fee always stays the same. For example, if a merchant has a credit card sale for $100 and the discount rate is 1.70% and the transaction fee is 25 cents, the calculations are: ($100 x 1.70%) + $0.25 = $1.95. In this example, $98.05 is deposited into that merchant's merchant account and $1.90 is deducted to pay for processing the transaction. Let’s now say the credit card sale is for $1000, and the discount rate again is 1.70% and the transaction fee again is $0.25, the calculations are: ($1000 x 1.70%) + $0.25 = $17.25. In this example, $982.75 is deposited into the merchant’s merchant account and $17.25 is deducted for processing the transaction. As you can see the amount taken for the discount rate varies, where as the amount taken for the transaction fee stays the same. Please see our FAQ for any additional questions you may have.

What is the difference between "card present" and "card not present" transactions?

There are two different types of credit card transactions, "card present" or "swiped" transactions and "card not present" or "keyed" transactions. A transaction qualifies as a "card present" or "swiped" transaction when the customer and credit card are present at the point of sale. The transaction then takes place when the card is swiped through a terminal such that the card holder’s information is obtained by reading the magnetic stripe on the back of the card. "Card not present" or "keyed" transactions take place when the credit card information is keyed into the credit card terminal, usually without the credit card or customer present at the time of the sale. The discount rate for a "card not present" transaction is slightly higher than that of a "card present" transaction because the likelihood of fraud or the chance of having a customer return an item is greater.


How do I get a merchant account?
You can request information by filling out our brief online form. Or you can call 1-800-328-2269 to speak to a new accounts representative. We will answer and questions or concerns you may have.




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 Columbus, OH. FDIC Insured. All trademarks, service marks and trade names referenced on this site are the property of their

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