By Bob Becker - Clearent Intelligent Processing
What has happened in my industry of providing the services for credit card processing and the POS Industry has made me very upset for close to three years. Both of these industries have lost the respect and honesty to the retail and especially the restaurant industry which I will explain and hope that you do not get into a situation that you cannot get out of.
In the not so far back past, if you wanted a good POS System you would go to the traditional systems such as Micros, Aloha, Squirrel and others. These systems commonly gave you the features that you would need so that you would run your business accordingly. The problem with most of these systems is that they are expensive and while you have these systems I have found that they would charge many fees for maintenance, support and quite a lot of money to upgrade the system for compliance. Why did they do this? You had no where else to go and because you had a substantial investment in the system and thought that this was part of the expense of keeping your business successful. So they charged whatever, quite frankly, they can get. I have seen upgrades of systems over $12,000 for an original $25,000 system.
Then a few years ago the I Pad was invented. A very good electronic configuration that keeps improving. If a good designer for the retail/restaurant industry can establish a good software program for the I Pad to provide all of the features and needs that the merchant has at his disposal, then maybe it can be a good replacement for the expensive traditional POS providers. What has happened is that it did and it did it at a fraction of the cost!
In fact, there are more features in some of these I Pad systems than the traditionals and if you ever need to have some sort of addition into the software, it can be done. Now please remember that this section is the BAD NEWS and not the good news so I will go on.
The majority of the POS Cloud I Pad providers out there have established relationships commonly with one credit card processing provider. What this means is that if you wanted to purchase their system you would need to sign up with the credit card processing services. They may give to you many unjust reasons for doing so. They may say it is better communication in the system, better troubleshooting, finding transactions but it is all a bunch of baloney. The real reason is attrition of not losing the account and to receive compensation back from the credit card processor for setting them up with their services. Now you will be paying two entities for this system and not one.
Sure the credit card processor may say that they will match your present fees but I have found when I analyze many of these statements a few months down the line that it is much higher. When you find this out and complain, what can be done about it? Nothing! You became entrapped in a situation where you have no power to keep your processing fees to a minimum and at the mercy of your POS provider and the processor and this is just one item that will happen to you.
In the beginning the credit card processor may give to you an interchange plus program but through my findings of analysis I have found that basis points on to the interchange is tacked on or in other places of the statement. This is additional profits to these two entities and at your expense. An example; a restaurant merchant receives quite a lot of rewards credit cards which the cost of interchange percentage is about 2.00%. I have seen many times an addition of .30 points added in on this charge or 2.30%. Let us say that you receive $25,000 per month in rewards cards. Just take $25,000 X .0030 and you will get $75 in additional fees for that month and this is just for one type of card. That is $900 per year. That $900 goes directly into the profits of this relationship and it is just one type of card. Let us say that this same restaurant does about $100,000 per month and that their debit card acceptance is 60% of all the cards accepted which is about the norm for debit cards. That is $60,000 per month tack on the .30 basis points into the interchange of debit cards and you can see that your charges will also go up another $2,160 per year.
Many of these providers have been accused and are being sued in class action lawsuits. I will just name a few which are all very large providers. Mercury Payment systems which is now called Vantiv are being alleged of adding hidden fees and or over charges within their statements. EVO which has at least 500,000 merchants are being sued regarding deceptive additional charges on interchange. North American BankCard (NAB) is also in a class action lawsuit accused of defrauding client users by undisclosed monthly fees and falsely advertises many services as free but then charged. Wells Fargo Merchant Services is another that is facing lawsuit and is being alleged with misleading sales tactics, expensive cancel fees and over-billing and mislabeling some of its own fee as interchange. Just type in these entities on the internet and the word lawsuit and they all come up. They are all, I believe, trying to settle and make this go away and will probably settle for pennies on the dollar and a slap on the wrist.
Additionally I am seeing constant increases being announced in the merchant statements with increases that is taking away the profits of the merchant. More so I am seeing increases within the statements that are not announced. The only reason why your account should have an increase is if the card associations announce an increase in their interchange and then is simply passed on to you. This is not being done in these entrapment partnerships.
My industry of providing the processing of your cards understands that you do not understand your statement. Many statements do not itemize interchange and it is because of this reason and other dishonest factors going into making additional profits after the contract has been signed. We know that a successful restaurant owner is more busy making his business successful than any business out there. The relationship of a POS Provider and a credit card processor is disrespectful and dishonest to the merchant.
If you have been investigating I Pad POS solutions for your business I am sure that you are running into this type of scenario in that they want you to use their processor. Some of them say that in order to use another provider is that they would then need to provide to the system a middle-ware. A middle-ware is what communicates with the processor when you swipe the card. Of course, the middle-ware is free when you use the recommended processor but to use a third party source it will cost you money and commonly I have seen between $1,200 to $2,500 to purchase. On top of that is they will charge a monthly fee to communicate with the middle-ware in the tune of about $50 per month. What this simply means from the sales rep that gave you this information is that they will make over and above about $350 for the middle-ware and or much higher and the $50 per month for the charge. Again, dishonest and no respect. Then the fees with the POS provider start to go up. Monthly maintenance, compliance upgrades, tech support or whatever.
This is what I call ENTRAPMENT. You have no power to negotiate other than leaving that provider for another and lose your investment, time and inconvenience while just getting stressed out with their attitude. Enough is enough. I miss the days of a handshake. If a POS Provider or credit card processing provider wants to make more money in their business than go out and get another. They should not increase their rates and charges and trap you into a situation that you can do nothing about.
Most restaurants make a net profit of about 6 - 8% each month. Why give almost 3% to 3.75% back to these people! Eventually if not sooner this is where they would like to be and possibly your only answer to be successful is to raise your prices. If you think that you are in this type of situation now just let me know and we will together get this resolved.
This is the bad news, now go to the good news.
About eight months ago I have decided to interview and investigate the Cloud I Pad System Software Providers that you may have already talked to and many that you may have never heard of. My interviews consisted of twenty-four providers. I have asked them many questions as to what they provide in their features and the most important question is if they require or recommend one particular credit card processing provider. If they say yes, then there is no reason to go on for their primary objection is to entrap the account and then add in fees.
Per my investigation I have found only six providers that are what I call universal to process through all platforms. Since then I contacted these providers back for if they are universal and I provide my services to you and you want to change to another service, then that should be no problem. Four of these providers have changed their mind and require one processor to do the activity and receive their kickback profits.
Of the two that I feel very comfortable with and put them through the grinds of my stipulations, I want to tell you this for I want to make sure that you are very secure in not getting ripped off with my credit card processing services or with my recommended I Pad POS System Providers.
HERE IS WHAT I WILL PROVIDE TO YOU WITH MY PROFESSIONAL PROCESSING SERVICES
1) Most importantly, I am going to guarantee that you will never have an increase with your credit card processing program with my services. I have clients that have been with me for twenty years and they never had an increase. All of my clients have actually had a decrease and one reason is because of the Durbin Amendment for debit cards and its low interchange rate. I passed this along to all of my clients at 100% and they saved thousands of dollars with this reduction. I am one of the only providers to do this and it is only fair when this amendment passed to give it to the merchants. Most other providers either kept it all or a part of it just to make additional profits and without the client knowing of it.
What I will do if you would like is I will analyze your present merchant program if you are accepting cards now and give to you my program. I will give to you a bottom-line savings compared of what you are doing now and why I can do this. If you are new in the business and this is your first inquiry, I will work with you with a good interchange plus program with no hidden fees or surprises.
Many times as I have done in the past, my savings have covered the cost of the POS equipment over a short period of time with the traditional systems. With I Pad POS, sometimes it can be immediate. This is not only a promise but I will put it in writing. I truly respect the restaurant owner and will be completely upfront.
My business Relationship is Clearent Smart Processing. They have known about my services for many years and welcome my clients on this behalf. They have excellent in house 24/7 client support and between I and my staff will be bending over backwards to make sure that everyone your activity will be going through smoothly on our platforms. We are excellent when it comes to providing our services to restaurants. I don't care if your restaurant is a low volume or a high volume.
2) NEXT DAY FUNDING - What is important is to get to you your money. In order to do this we will be getting to you your batches the very next day and usually by 10 a.m. the next morning.
As for my requirements for providing to you an excellent I Pad POS System I do have two providers but I will need a little information from you to select what is good for you so I would need to have the form filled out at the bottom of this website.
My requirements from both I Pad Providers is the same as mine. You will never have an increase in your program. You are getting a license for their software. You will be paying a monthly fee for the license. That fee will never go up other than if you require additional stations. It is fixed in. Now you have two guarantees. One from me to never increase your program and the other from the I Pad POS Providers. There you go, no surprises once that you sign up with us.
I PAD POS PROVIDER REQUIREMENTS
Here are my requirements that my recommended I Pad POS Providers must provide in order for you to enjoy the features in the system:
1) Sales reporting - Includes managing overhead with labor reports, product mix reports, and hourly sales reports.
2) Inventory Reporting - real-time view of available inventory and proactively restock inventory and maintaining levels. Identify most profitable menu items, reduce waste, costs vs. profits on all of items.
3) Labor Reporting - Track employee productivity, employee activities within the software and measure employee costs against sales.
4) Reporting on the Go - Access data directly to your reporting dashboard from a Smartphone or other devices when not on site.
5) Alerts - Notifications to alert you about low stock items, employees nearning overtime thresh holds and the ability to edit shifts right from the app.
6) Rewards and Gift Card program - Included is the ability to design a loyalty program to reward your customers for repeat business and have the ability to market your customers with exclusive offers and promotions.
7) Order At the Table - Speed up the order process and engage your customers by taking and processing sales from anywhere in your establishment. Greatly enhances table turnover.
8) Payment Flexibility - Includes split customer bills and start bar tabs.
9) IMPORTANT - EMV Compliance - Process EMV chip cards by scanning the cards correctly to meet global standards and avoid any penalties with no cost compliance and upgrade complacency. By scanning the chip card, you are relieved of any fraudulent cards that go through the system. Also, and importantly, this is to be tip adjustment either now or later on in the shift or end of day for all cards including the chip card. No double entry meaning that you must enter the tip at the terminal and then at the POS System. This is single entry at the system. Also and please understand that for the last year and a half many issuing banks that give out their chip cards want the merchant to scan their chip cards and not swipe them. If you swipe them you may be issued a charge back just for doing this. These charge backs are getting more and more popular with the issuing banks and there is nothing that you can do or do wrong except you swiped their chip card. Some of these issuing banks are keeping the charge back themselves and not give it to the cardholder who does not even know that there was a chargeback. So importantly, we can provide this service unlike most other providers that cannot and will continue to put you on hold. It is very expensive to update their software to have this done which they chose not to do so and put you possibly in a charge back atmosphere.
10) New Version Upgrades and 24/7 customer phone and email support - There is no charge for new version upgrades and the system must upgrade automatically to meet all approved standards for the PCI Industry in the software subscription.
11) Need additional features not listed here? The software provider will design and provide.
Now with both my services and the I Pad Provider, if you do not like me you can leave me in just 30 days. I am not going to hold on to you to jeopardize your business or charge you a fee to leave me. Just give me a 30 day notice to close up your account. My I Pad Providers are the same. Your monthly payment for the license is just that, monthly.
If this sounds good to you you can go to the bottom of the page and fill out my questionnaire. If you would like just fax or email to me one of your statements. Fax number is 1-866-313-8857 and we can start by telling you how much money I will save you and the program will be fixed in. I will then take a look at your questionnaire and have one or two of my recommended I Pad Providers get in touch with you. I will email to you that they will be contacting you. Get the particulars to see if this system is good for you. Do a demo. If it is good for you then we will get you completely set up and, quite frankly, save you a lot of headaches, frustrations and quite a lot of money.
You expect this, you deserve this and I will get it for you.