As a merchant, you take pride in providing the best service possible to each and every one of your customers. That’s why it can come as such a shock – even an insult – whenever a chargeback request comes in claiming that you failed to deliver on a transaction. While chargebacks are a reality of doing business, especially in card-not-present situations like eCommerce, there are steps you can take to avoid them outright and to fight back when they do pop up. The following represent six of the most effective strategies, and adhering to them will put you at a significant advantage when it comes to handling pesky dispute requests.
In part one of this article, we examined Toast’s discounting and billing structure and how it impacts merchants. Essentially, Toast offers significant discounts to restaurants on hardware and software but then charges significantly inflated transaction fees, which wipe out any other savings for restaurants doing any kind of significant volume. In part two, we’ll look at the functionality of Toast POS, what it does well, and where it leaves restauranteurs wanting more in comparison to its competitors.
A credit card is a credit card, and a payment terminal is a payment terminal, right? 😉
Many merchants and restauranteurs would agree with that statement, but they’d also be very wrong. As a result, a huge number of restaurants don’t have the hardware they need to process EMV cards – the current standard in the payments industry – and they’re opening themselves up to serious trouble as a result. So, what are EMV cards, what makes them so important, and how do they impact your restaurant?
Third-party processors, like PayPal, Square, and Stripe, are companies that provide payment processing to clients by pooling all client payments through their own master merchant accounts. For example, if you sign up with PayPal, you do not get your own merchant account. Instead, whenever you accept a credit card payment, that payment is processed through PayPal’s merchant account (along with every other transaction from every one of their members), and you are then paid out, in turn, by PayPal.
Toast POS is a cloud-based restaurant POS provider and payment processor that offers restaurants a variety of POS options built on an Android framework. Toast has been growing rapidly since it launched its POS platform in 2013, and many restauranteurs are drawn to Toast both for its simplicity and the attractive pricing offers the company makes to new clients. But, despite its success, Toast POS has some notable drawbacks that make it a good choice for some restaurateurs, but a terrible choice for others. In this two-part article, we’ll examine some of the pros and cons of Toast and how it stacks up against some of the other competition.
One of the most important questions any business should ask themselves when looking for a new merchant account or merchant services provider is “how will this service impact my profitability.” It can be easy to simply write off merchant fees as a cost of doing business – and certainly, they are – but small differences in those fees can have big impacts on a merchant’s bottom line. A difference of a fraction of a percentage point or a few dimes in fees, when applied over every single transaction a business does, can easily be the difference between profit and loss – success and failure. So, it’s incredibly important for merchants to realize that not all pricing plans are created equal, and to understand the options they have available to them. One pricing plan that merchants looking for a new payment processor should keep an eye out for is interchange-plus pricing – a less common, but highly beneficial pricing model that helps to eliminate overcharging by keeping fees grounded and transparent.
In 2018, almost 5,900 brick and mortar retail locations closed. 2019 has seen another 6,000 go the way of the dodo, and by 2026, as many as 75,000 stores will shut their doors permanently. The reality is, brick and mortar stores are expensive – far more expensive than their web-based eCommerce counterparts. As a result, physical retail locations often can’t match the prices offered by online competition. In cases where companies operate both online and brick and mortar stores, the majority of sales generally still occur in physical locations, but the gap is shrinking rapidly as people gravitate to the convenience of online shopping. And with services like Amazon Prime offering same-day free delivery, why wouldn’t they? Certainly, there are products – specifically high-end purchases – that will likely always require an in-person shopping experience. But for the average purchase – socks, video games, even groceries – why wouldn’t consumers embrace the convenience of shop at home, especially when the wait times for delivery are so low?
In part one of this two-part series, we looked at some of the technology-based solutions merchants have available to them to catch fraud early on and stop it before it can result in chargebacks and lost revenues. In part two, we’ll look at the other side of the coin – legitimate chargebacks filed by customers who feel like they’ve been wronged. These chargebacks can’t always be avoided, and sometimes all a merchant can hope for is a fast and easy resolution. But there are steps that merchants can take to minimize the number of legitimate chargeback requests they face, and they all revolve around understanding the customer-side of the equation and elevating the quality of service provided.
There are a number of factors that go into the success of a restaurant. Enjoyable food and friendly staff are two of the most obvious ones, but for a quick service restaurant, highly efficient operations are equally important. The ability to move a high volume of customers from the front door, through ordering, to enjoying their meal, and out again is absolutely crucial, and that focus on speed and efficiency is the main reason customer order kiosks are sweeping the industry. These kiosks provide a wide range of benefits to both customers and restaurants alike, making them an excellent choice for any restaurant looking to boost efficiency, customer experience, and revenue.
Chargebacks are a reality of accepting credit card payments. While many chargebacks are requested for valid reasons, there are plenty of cases in which disputes are initiated despite the merchant holding up every aspect of their end of the bargain. Unfortunately, many merchants don’t really understand the dispute process, how to handle a chargeback, or the consequences that chargebacks represent to the health of their businesses. Those consequences can include unexpected drains on revenue, penalties levied by the card companies, and across-the-board rate increases.