Any small business owner knows that they usually have unique requirements for payment processing. When starting your small business, it’s important to equip yourself with a few basic merchant services for your customers. In my opinion, every small business should provide these services at a bare minimum.

Credit Card and Debit Card Processing

While this may seem like a given, truth is there are a lot of small businesses out there that dont accept credit or debit cards. The majority of consumers like to pay for goods and services using one of these cards. If you cannot provide these specific merchant services, then you are missing out on those sales. High installation costs for POS terminals and credit card fees sometimes deter merchants from utilizing these services. However, there are many ways to find a processing partner that works for you. In may take some time and effort, but it will surely pay off in the long run. Whichever POS terminal you decide to go with, will also most likely accept debit cards as well. Debit cards are actually used more frequently than credit cards. They also have substantially lower fees. If you want to grow your customer base, and your business, its imperative to provide this merchant service.

E-Commerce

This solution doesn’t apply to every small business, but if you’re product or service can be sold online, make it happen. With tons of tools to create custom webpages and integrate payment options, building an e-commerce platform for your small business is as easy as its ever been. As the payment industry is moving more online, it’s important to stay with the times and provide your products or services to the largest market possible.

Gift and Loyalty Cards

These cards are a great way to not only increase traffic to your business, but also gain customer loyalty. Every year Apple launches a new iPhone, regardless of the new features offered they will always have a line of people camping overnight just to purchase their new product. This isn’t because people can’t wait to use the new fingerprint technology, it’s because Apple has arguably the most loyal customers of any business in the world. Take any opportunity to increase customer loyalty that you can get, in will pay off in the long-run tenfold.

Mobile Payments

Thanks to smartphones, the world is moving off the desktop and onto mobile devices. Square is a perfect mobile processing provider. When you sign-up you will receive a free chip reader that easily attaches to your mobile device. You never now when you’re going to need to make a sale, so it’s best to always be prepared!

When starting your small business it’s important to keep your customer’s best interest in mind. Take advantage of these merchant services to improve your small business.

Renzo Costarella is an entrepreneur, avid learner, and startup enthusiast currently living in Silicon Valley.

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