charge6Applying for a merchant account for the first time can seem intimidating. Fortunately, the process is actually quick and painless. Due in large part to increased competition in the space, the application process has improved considerably.

The first thing to know is that there is no industry standard for the application. Different payment gateway providers have different application processes. The more reputable companies will process the application in days (rather than weeks) and require only very basic information.

Here is the information that will be required at one time or another during the application process:


The merchant account provider will need a list or categorization of the products that will be sold on the site. This is to determine whether any of the products violates the guidelines or terms and conditions. In addition, you will be expected to check with the provider if you are uncertain if a future product or service meets said guidelines.

Tax ID or SSN

Personal account users will need to provide the social security number. Business account users will need to provide the associated Tax ID number. That is also known as the EIN.

Bank letter

Confirm the routing and account number to your provider by getting a letter from the bank or providing a void check. They can then use that information to confirm the account details. This is the location where the money will be deposited.