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Maxx Merchants Virtual Terminal Instructions

Posted by Alex Neir on Fri, May 31, 2013 @ 12:21 PM
Maxx Payment Gateway Diagram
This post is intended to help with the most common tasks when it comes to the Maxx Merchants virtual terminal. We have broken the instructions into the following four categories.
Using the Maxx Merchants Virtual to perform a credit card sale

 

Using the Maxx Merchants Virtual Terminal to complete a void or refund

 

The reporting functionality of the Maxx Merchants Virtual Terminal. We also discuss custom report exports and merchant defined fields.

 

How to create additional user accounts with in the Maxx Merchants Virtual Termainal.

 

If there are additional videos that you would like to see please don't hessitate to give us a call and we would be happy to produce it for you. 
Support - (800)917-8026

Tags: Payment Gateway, Merchant Account Education, Virtual Terminal

Maxx Merchants Virtual Terminal | Overview

Posted by Alex Neir on Fri, September 21, 2012 @ 01:59 PM

This blog is intended to detail the features and functionality of the Maxx Merchants virtual terminal and payment gateway.

The Maxx Merchants virtual terminal is a web based interface for transacting electronic payment processing functions. The features that will be addressed in this blog include the following:

  • Credit Cards
    • Credit Card Sale – Enter your credit card details to transact payment. The Maxx Virtual terminal lets you configure what fields are presented to the user to capture. This allows your business to customize the sale screen with just the info you require for the sale.
    • Credit Card Authorization – Separate authorization lets you authorize a sale and then capture the funds at a later time. Great for businesses that want to authorize the sale with the order is placed and then capture the funds when the order is shipped.
    • Credit Card Capture – Capture funds at a future date.
    • Credit Card Void / Refund – The terminal has full void and refund capabilities.
  • Electronic Checks
    • Electronic check sale – Electronically capture a check account number and routing number to complete the sale. No longer have your customers mail a check only to then take the check to the bank for deposit. The process happens electronically and speed the whole process up.
    • Electronic check void and refund
  • Recurring BillingRecurring billing lets you set up intervals with which to bill a customer’s credit card. A very nice option to set up a subscription billing.
  • Customer Vault – Store your customer’s credit card information off site for easy encrypted retrieval. Each customer’s sensitive data is tokenized and stored off site on our secure servers. Customer data is easily retrieved by looking the customer up by last name and is returned with all credit card information masked.
  • CertifyPCI – This module offers additional certification pertaining to the payment card industries data security standards.
  • iSpyFraud – This module offers robust and configurable fraud detection rules that examine incoming sales to limit potential fraud losses
  • Reporting – The reporting module lets you examine all transactions run through the virtual terminal or payment gateway and holds those transactions for up to 7 years.

If you would like take advantage of a virtual terminal solution for your business please provide us with your contact information and a representative will be in touch shortly.

Virtual Terminal Set Up

Tags: Payment Gateway, Electronic Check Acceptance, Virtual Terminal

5 pitfalls to avoid with your ecommerce website

Posted by Alex Neir on Tue, June 12, 2012 @ 01:19 PM
ecommerce

Let’s face it, the Internet is as big as the industrial revolution in how it is reshaping the landscape for commerce. That being the case your business’s website is a giant extension of your brand and ability to deliver goods and services. So, are you making it easy for your customers to buy from you on your ecommerce site? We have put together a list of things you should try to avoid in the hopes of stream lining your online offerings.

1. Your website is slow

    Speed is everything in this instant gratification society. If your customers have to wait around for your site to load you are going to lose them. It’s that simple.

    However, site speed can be a tricky. You want to make sure you have a good hosting company that understands your business type. You also want to make sure the shopping cart you select is optimized for your site. Little site improvements can speed up the load time and will result in more conversions.

     2. Your website is cumbersome

    It is very important that your customers be able to buy from your site in less than 5 clicks. Research shows that conversions rates drop considerably once the 5 click threshold is breached. The lesson, condense the site and improve the flow. Customers want a clean, easy and quick check out.

    3. Your credit card capture page is not intuitive

    There is an industry standard for the order in which credit card information is to be entered. Do not waiver from this standard. Statics show that customers have become trained in how they enter credit card information. If the order is altered the customer is likely to make a mistake and their experience is degraded.

    4. Overcharging for shipping

    Some sites see shipping as a revenue generator. Others try to lower prices below the competition and make it up in shipping.  Savvy consumers are factoring shipping as part of the total cost to purchase. The best thing you can do is reduce your shipping cost to as low as possible and pass those savings on to you customer.

    5. Poor browser optimization

    If your website is not optimized for all the different browsers that your customers are using, you are losing sales. Have you ever been to a site that was missing information or formatted incorrectly? What did you do? Did you stick around to try to navigate through to find what you were looking for? My guess is no, you simply hit the back button and when to another site. That is what you customers are doing if you’re not browser optimized.

    Tags: Payment Gateway, Ecommerce, Virtual Terminal

    Credit Card Re-bill Without Storing the Customer’s Credit Card Number

    Posted by Alex Neir on Tue, November 29, 2011 @ 12:20 PM
    Credit Card Re-Bill

    How does a business re-bill a customer’s credit card after a purchase has been made? Doesn’t storing the customer’s credit card information open up potential liability for a business if that information is breached? These are very common questions related to payment processing with credit cards.

    A credit card re-bill is common for businesses that have repeat customers or recurring billing options. It is often an added convenience to offer customers the ability to retrieve their credit card information rather than re-entering it.

    For a business to store customer credit card information there are strict Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI-DDS) that must be adhered to. Credit card information is a primary target for identity thieves and as a result has come under stiffer protection regulations. Designing a properly protected and compliant credit card storage system can be an expensive and cumbersome undertaking.

    So how can my business store customer credit card information cheaply and securely?  

    The simple answer – outsource the storage. By letting a third party store the customer’s credit card information the business gains all benefits of card information retrieval with zero liability. Outsourcing credit card data storage is a simple, fast, cheap and headache free option that is offered by a number of providers as part of their gateway services. A few of the companies offering this service include The Maxx Payment Gateway, Network Merchants and Authorize.Net.

    How does it work? 

    Customer credit card information is stored off-site on secure computer servers managed by the company offering the service. Each individual customer’s information is accessible via an online interface or your businesses website (cloud service). A unique key is used to access the customer information and retrieve the credit card details for re-bill purposes. This functionality is typically pre-built and offered as a plugin to the overall virtual terminal or payment gateway service. Since the sensitive data is stored off-site with secure encryption used for retrieval, PCI compliance is maintained and your businesses liability is minimized.

    Proper storage of sensitive information entrusted to your business is an important responsibility. Please contact our knowledgeable staff for more information about a credit card re-bill solution for your business. (800)917-8026

    Tags: Payment Gateway, PCI Compliance, Credit Card Re-Bill

    WordPress shopping cart, ecommerce made easy

    Posted by Alex Neir on Tue, May 03, 2011 @ 03:17 PM
    WordPress Shopping Cart

    WordPress shopping cart, ecommerce made easy

    Do you have a WordPress website for your business and are you looking to add a shopping cart to facilitate online sales or ecommerce? Adding a WordPress shopping cart has never been easier thanks to the Shopp plugin for WordPress.

    Shopp lets you add a full blown shopping experience to your website with the simple installation of their plugin. Shopp installs just like any other plugin and once installed the application walks you through your product catalog set up. Setup has been simplified and streamlined to get your products configured with ease.

    Shopp has been developed with ease-of-use as the primary objective. It is ready to go out-of-the-box and enables you to get your online store up and running in very short time.

    What’s involved?

    The Shopp WordPress shopping cart is available at their website http://shopplugin.net/store/. When you make the purchase you must also select a payment gateway to accompany the plugin. The payment gateway is the software that encrypts your customer’s credit card information and sends it to your merchant account. The merchant account then performs the authorization of the sale at the customer’s bank. The authorization is a reserve of funds to then be deposited into your bank account as payment for the products purchased.

    If you are unsure which payment gateway to select I recommend Authorize.net. They have reasonable pricing and easy integration options to get your store connected with a merchant account.

    Once you have made a gateway decision and completed the purchase of the plugins, simply install the plugin through your WordPress administration dashboard. Once installed follow the easy set up instructions to add your products to the shopping cart. You are able to test the layout and organization of the products as you go. Once you are satisfied with the operation you will need to configure your gateway and merchant account.

    I would suggest contacting a merchant service provider to help you set up you gateway and merchant account. Once the gateway and merchant account have been integrated you are ready to sell you products on-line 24 hours a day, 7 day a week.

    Here at Maxx Merchants we are WordPress specialists and can help with all aspects of getting your WordPress shopping cart up and running. For additional help and pricing please provide us with your Name and Email and an account specialist with get in-touch immediately.  

    Get Me Started

    Tags: Payment Gateway, Ecommerce, Internet, WordPress Shopping Cart

    Sell your products online – A guide to ecommerce

    Posted by Alex Neir on Thu, April 21, 2011 @ 06:29 AM
    A Guide to Ecommerce

    Sell your products online – A guide to ecommerce

    Are you looking to set up an online store? Are you confused with all the moving parts and how they work together? If the answer is yes, then look no further as our guide is intended to explain what you need and how to set it up.

    This guide is broken down into 3 sections, each intends to explain how an ecommerce site works and what’s involved.

    1. Starting an Ecommerce Website
    2. Shopping Cart Compatibility
    3. Merchant Account Rates and Fees Explained

    Starting and ecommerce website. Starting with the basics, what is involved? We begin by discussing each individual piece of the solution. We start with the website itself, next we talk about the shopping cart and hosting, last we discuss the payment gateway and merchant account. Don’t get discouraged as it seems like a lot in the beginning but once you understand how each piece works it becomes much simpler.

    Shopping cart compatibility. In this section we discuss the shopping cart and payment gateway in detail. We offer a workflow on how the shopping cart and payment gateway work together with the merchant account to accept payments via the internet. We also have a shopping cart compatibility worksheet to help focus the information you need based on your set up. 

    Merchant account rates and fees explained. In this section we break down all the rates and fees associated with a merchant account so that you know what to expect. We offer a detailed explanation of each, as well as a guide to pricing.  

    The internet is a powerful vehicle for expanding your business reach. By opening an ecommerce store you are able to reach customers that you previously could not. You also allow your customers to purchase your goods and services 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Additionally, you are creating a stronger brand as exposure on the internet increases brand awareness, brand availibility and loyalty.

    Would you like to accept payments from your website? If so please click the image below.

    Accept Payments from your Website 

    Tags: Payment Gateway, Ecommerce, Internet

    Protect your business from merchant account fraud. Card Testing.

    Posted by Alex Neir on Tue, October 05, 2010 @ 03:27 PM
    Merchant Account Fraud
    Does your business accept payments from a payment gateway or ecommerce site? What you pass back to the customer when the credit card is declined may expose your business to a new form of merchant account fraud, called card testing and end up costing you a bundle.

    Maxx typically recommends making the response to the customer as vague as possible and specific as necessary. After all, the goal is to retain the customer’s order through offering helpful messaging in the case of an error. There is a very important balance here as you do not want to provide too much information making it advantageous for card testers to use your site.

    Card testing fraud is a two step procedure. Step one is the practice of using a computer program to test credit card numbers until a valid card number is found. Step two is to use a similar program to then find the correct expiration date to validate the transaction.

    Your merchant account and gateway charges you for every transaction regardless of weather the transaction is approved or declined. There for if your site is providing the correct information to a card tester they will typically attempt as many transactions as necessary to get a card number and expiration match. The result – hundreds, if not thousands of attempts. Depending on you’re contracted per transaction rate, this could result in substantial costs to your business.

    How can you protect your business?

    First, block the IP addresses for known card testers. Here is a list of the IP addresses for know card testers.

    Second, develop an error messaging strategy with different responses depending on the error passed from the gateway. Again, a good practice is to be as vague as possible and specific as necessary.  

    Some Examples:

    General: We are terribly sorry but the card you are attempting to use has been declined. Please use an alternate credit card and submit your order again. If you are still experience difficulty please contact us directly at (800)xxx-xxxx and we’ll be happy to assist you.”

     

    AVS mismatch, or other error: We are sorry but the address and zip code entered does not match the information on file with your credit card issuer. Please re-enter the address and zip code. If you are still experience difficulty please contact us directly at (800)xxx-xxxx and we’ll be happy to assist you.”

    It is always a good idea to monitor your transaction closely to insure you are not victimized by fraud attempts. If you feel you are experiencing an abundance of merchant account fraud attempts there are numerous tools available to help mitigate credit card fraud. If you would like information on these tools please contact us at (800)917-8026.

    Tags: Payment Gateway, Maxx Payment Gateway, Merchant Account Fraud

    When is a merchant account better than PayPal?

    Posted by Alex Neir on Tue, September 14, 2010 @ 03:28 PM

    When is a merchant account better than PayPal?

    When is a merchant account better than PayPal
    This is a common question that most businesses struggle with when deciding to add payment processing to a web site. When should a PayPal account be utilized and when does it make sense to move to a merchant account?

    First we need to look at the typical charges associated with a PayPal account and merchant account. To accept payments over the internet you need a payment gateway and a payment processing account. The payment gateway’s job is to capture the cardholder information from the business website, encrypt it and send it to the payment processing account.  The payment processing account then authorizes, settles and deposits the funds into the business bank account. PayPal combines these services into one fee structure. The typical payment processor will split the two charges out. Both are represented below.

    Type

    Set-Up Fee

    Monthly Fee

    Percentage

    Transaction Fee

    Merchant Acct

    None

    $12.95

    2.5%

    $0.22

    Gateway

    None

    $10.00

    None

    $0.10

    PayPal

    None

    None

    2.9%

    $0.30

    Now when examining these costs they don’t have much relevance unless we look at the costs as a percentage of sales. I have calculated the cost (as a percentage of sales) at various monthly sales volumes with a sales price of $25.

    When is a merchant account better than PayPal

    After analysis the answer to our question “When is a merchant account better than PayPal?” becomes clear:

    • On paper, PayPal looks to be a very cost effective solution and certainly is if you’re monthly sales volume is below $2,000 a month.
    • A merchant account is better than PayPal when your monthly sales volume exceeds $2,000 a month

    Now our analysis up to this point has been an examination of direct purchase costs.  We need to also look at the cost savings in terms of ease of use and time.

    PayPal

    • PayPal has a delay in depositing sales into the business bank account and can place a hold on the money at any time without notification
    • PayPal does not allow access to card holder information including the credit card number
    • PayPal’s shopping cart is vey basic and can not handle shipping charges with any sophistication and offers no tax calculation.

    Merchant Account

    • The payment gateway allows integration with most commercially available shopping carts. This allows your business the freedom to select a shopping cart that has the right features and functionality for your check out process
    • Allows your business to tailor the ordering approach to your customers, therefor maximizing sales
    • Allows for taxes and shipping to be calculated based on business rules
    • Allows complete control of customer information for entry into a marketing and sales database
    • Disclosure of the card holder’s information including the ability to edit the credit card number for easier refunds and chargeback investigation
    • Offers more freedom to manage your business

    In conclusion, a merchant account is better than PayPal if your business if transacting more than $2,000 a month in sales. In addition a merchant account is a better solution if you require more flexibility and freedom to tailor the shopping experience to your specific business needs.

    Time to open a merchant account? Download our free guide to avoid costly mistakes.

    Tags: Payment Gateway, Maxx Payment Gateway, PayPal Comparison, Payment Processing

    Starting an ecommerce website

    Posted by Alex Neir on Mon, July 12, 2010 @ 05:18 PM

    Starting an ecommerce website
    Are you at the point where you need to start an ecommerce website to begin the process of offering your products and services online? If the answer is yes then I have a handy little guide to help get you started. The process of starting an ecommerce website begins with the website itself. It is always best to select a website that gives you the ability to update your content, products, prices, etc., on your own rather than relying on the developer. Some popular CMS (content management systems) include Wordpress, Drupal and Joomla. internet concept backgroundYou will want to select the platform that work best with your shopping cart. We talk about that in just a bit. 

    The next consideration when starting an ecommerce website is selection of a shopping cart. The shopping cart software allows you to set up your products and services for sale on the Internet. There are many commercially available shopping carts available to choose from. You will want to select the cart that offers the functionality you are looking for. You will want to look for a cart that offers merchant tools, supports many payment options, offers configuration for shipping and taxes, offers real-time statistics and reporting, and has the appropriate security. You will also want to select a shopping cart that is compatible with your payment gateway. This will illuminate the cost associated with integrating your shopping cart and merchant account. Maxx Merchants is compatible with over 25 commercially available shopping carts.

    Your next step when starting an ecommerce website is the hosting service. The hosting service provides a home for your website on the Internet and allows your customers to reach you. You will want to select a hosting service that offers the appropriate functionality for your site and shopping cart. Most services offer various packages for a monthly service fee. I like doteasy.com as the hosting is free and they let you upgrade as necessary for any functionality you might require.

    So you have your website, your hosting service and your shopping cart all dialed in but the most important part of starting an ecommerce website is accepting payment.

    There are 2 pieces that need to be considered when starting an ecommerce website; The Payment Gateway and the Merchant Account.


    The payment gateway is the application that connects your website shopping cart to your merchant account. The job of the payment gateway is to collect the credit card information from the customer, encrypt it and sent it to the merchant account for processing. When selecting a payment gateway you want to select one that is compatible with your shopping cart, offers good pricing, has the ability to facility all payment functions (payments, voids, refunds, etc), offers robust fraud protection, is PCI compliant and has an interface for you to run reports on your sales. The Maxx Payment Gateway offers all these features giving you complete control over your transactions.

    Next is selection of a merchant account. The merchant account’s job is to authorize the card that is being used for payment and then deposit those authorized transactions into your bank account. It’s important to choose a merchant account that offers good rates on processing, has 24 hour turn around on settled transactions, offers live customer support, has high approval rates and low merchant attrition. You want a processor that stands behind your account and consults you as to the very best way to set up your ecommerce website. Maxx Merchants can provide you the level of service you expect for your merchant account.

    The last piece of the puzzle in starting an ecommerce website is your marketing. All of your efforts are wasted if no one knows your site exists. Make sure you design your site with all the current search engine optimization (SEO) techniques. You will also want to post your new site on all the most popular social networking sites.
    Good luck and if you need any assistance I am here to help and you can contact me directly.

    Alex Neir – (800)917-8026, alex@maxxmerchants.com

     

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    Tags: Payment Gateway, Ecommerce, Maxx Payment Gateway