Retailers operate off and on line, yet when using the term retail in the context of a merchant account, one usually refers to a physical store where cards are swiped through credit card processing terminals.
These swipe machines are connected (by phone or internet) to the credit card network and enable data transactions passing back and forth between you and (last in chain) shopper’s issuing bank.
Using these terminals you will be able to perform authorize, capture and refund transactions on your shoppers’ credit card accounts.
Many merchant account providers offer a free point of sale terminal as part of their retail merchant account offering.
Some of these offerings are indeed appealing, yet prior to jumping on the first free terminal offering out there, one needs to consider other aspects of credit card processing.
In order to accept credit cards you will need to open a merchant account or use a third party processing solution.When choosing the right solution for you, compare rates, fees (and hidden fees), payment schedules, merchant tools, fraud prevention tools and reporting capabilities.
If you have a web site and need online credit card processing capabilities look for Credit Card virtual terminal and Domestic Merchant Account as well.