Credit card processing fees are something that every business needs to deal with. Accepting plastic is a practices that a majority of businesses need to do in order to be successful, but it comes at a cost.
In a recent guest column for the Detroit Free Press, Michael Gibbons examined the plight that credit card processing fees has become for businesses and how little there is that companies can do about it.
Gibbons is the president and CEO of Mainstreet Ventures, an Ann Arbor-based group that owns and operates 16 different restaurants in five states. This gives him a unique perspective on credit card processing fees. At every one of his businesses, a customer paying with a credit card means a percentage of that sale price comes off the top as a fee split between the processing company and the banks. This fee is essentially non-negotiable.
"If our restaurants want to accept credit cards, we have to accept their fees," Gibbons wrote. "I can't think of any other business expense where we have this kind of take-it-or-leave-it deal. When we buy everything from plates to produce, our managers look at multiple vendors, find the best product at the best price, and come to a mutually beneficial agreement on the terms of the sale."
This leads to no competition in the market and little transparency and small business owners are stuck paying the price.
Companies need to partner with the right credit card payment processor that is willing to work with them to create a mutual beneficial solution.