Credit Card Machines for Your Business

07/12/2015 by Edirex

Your purchase of a credit card machine is a relatively inexpensive investment, considering the important role it will play in your company’s transactions. The ongoing merchant account fees are the greater of these two expenses, so you should be aware that vendors who underprice your terminal may end up overcharging you on the back end.  

Basic credit card machines can run between $150-$300, up to $600 with a printer included, and from $600-$1k for wireless. Greater reliability and speed are two features worth spending a few extra dollars. Now, compare your merchant account vendor’s monthly charges and per transaction fees, and line out your apples-to-apples comparison.

If you decide to go ahead and purchase the terminal from your merchant account vendor, it can simplify the process a bit - they will program your machine and generally give you a price break. If you are buying your terminal from another online or in-store source, you should first make the choice of which merchant account provider you’re going to use. You’ll want to know specifically which types of machines are compatible with the process you will be utilizing to process your transactions.

There are three main types of credit card terminals available:

  1. Traditional Terminals - These have a magnetic stripe reader, and typically a keypad with a small digital display; they will have a built-in printer or a separate unit. Certain models have more keys or larger displays, but most of them are backlit allowing use in low light conditions.

  1. Wireless Terminals - Of course, wireless would be a needless benefit for in-store transactions, however these units are invaluable for businesses ‘on the go’ such as cab drivers and on-location services. They do come with built-in printers, but other factors should be considered, like: range of wifi, battery life, unit weight, durability and shock resistance.

Virtual Terminals - If you operate solely online or by phone,you’re not alone. Many businesses are conducted in this manner. Your merchant account vendor will provide the software that handles these transactions, and you will only need to login and enter the credit card number to receive an authorization.