If you’re looking to obtain a new merchant account, you might begin your research by reading merchant account reviews. In general, these aren’t as helpful as we’d probably like them to be – they’re not always easy to find, and most of the reviews you do find are not worth your time.However, recognizing bad reviews makes all the difference in the world, and this article will help you separate the useless from the helpful.Rates and fees are constantly changing.Merchant account reviews are often little more than tables that display rates and fees offered by merchant account providers. These condense a great deal of information into an easy-to-digest format, but they’re misleading for one simple reason: rates and fees are constantly changing and may be negotiable. Those selling merchant accounts don’t use fixed prices. Instead, they offer a variety of changing rates based on market fluctuations and competition. Additionally, they may negotiate rate and fee packages for individual merchants.Beware affiliate marketers.Many of the reviews you’ll encounter are written by marketers in the employ of merchant account sellers. The goal of these reviews is not to objectively identify the best deals, but to generate sales for the company they’re working for. As such, these reviews will consistently point readers towards companies that may not actually be the best choice for the merchant.Understand that merchant account providers have multiple sales agents.As mentioned before, merchant account providers don’t use fixed pricing models. There’s more to it, though: merchant account providers will also have multiple sales agents, often dozens. Each review you read is essentially reviewing one sales agent and one pricing scheme, not the company at large. There’s more to a great relationship with your account provider than the numbers – the agent’s experience, the quality of their customer service, and any number of other factors will play into how satisfied you are, and all of these vary between individual sales agents. Furthermore, individual chemistry always plays a part in business dealings. One reviewer may have a terrible experience with an individual sales agent for any number of reasons, while a different reviewer could have a wonderful one.There’s even more. No two merchant service providers are exactly alike in their specialties and weaknesses. General comparisons between providers neglect to mention that one company may specialize in services for Internet businesses, while another may specialize in wireless accounts. By making flat, general comparisons between providers, reviews don’t take the whole picture into account. Finding Good Merchant Account Reviews:Any review that is focused primarily on merchant account rates and fees is not going to give you an accurate picture of the company’s services. Instead, look for reviews that evaluate things like industry experience, customer service, and a depth of rate and fee options. These things are indicators of long-term productivity and commitment to excellence.Ignore reviews that make sweeping generalizations. Instead, search out reviews that company specific agents or types of merchant accounts, giving you a more accurate profile of the services available to you. Look for reviews that are built upon multiple experiences from multiple researchers. Since individual researchers will all have different experiences with any given account provider, reviews based on a single researcher’s opinion are more likely to be unbalanced or unfair.Lastly, avoid reviews written by marketing affiliates. Some indicators that a review has been written to market a particular company include things like “Apply Now” buttons, extremely glowing reviews for one specific provider, or affiliate ID numbers in links. Unbiased reviews should not, for instance, refer to any one company as the absolute best. What’s best for one merchant may be a mistake for another, because every merchant has different needs.
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This article to help businesses get a cheap merchant account and more helpful information such as merchant account reviews is available at MerchantCouncil.
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