Invisible Insurrection
Business Services

3 Risks Business Owners Face from Payment Processing, and How to Avoid Them

February 22, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Small business owners who are looking to break into the world of ecommerce rely on credit card processing services to supply the tools they need to transfer money digitally. That is fast becoming the norm, especially as more payments shift to mobile. Business owners can no longer afford to avoid digital transfers, but there are several risks they face trying to adopt these new systems. Read on for tips on how to avoid these risks and run a successful ecommerce wing to your business.

Paying Hidden Fees

Small business owners run cost-effectively if they want to survive, so many are tempted to use low-rate payment processors without realizing the true costs. Hidden fees are where you’ll end up paying the most money. Watch out for transfer fees, third party account fees at the credit card terminal, late fees, minimum balance fees and more.

Taking Security with a Grain of Salt

Another mistake small businesses frequently make is failing to take the security of their customers, and their businesses seriously. Few anticipate someone attempting to pay a bill with fraudulent or stolen cash. Even less think about their credit card readers getting hacked.

Failing to Integrate

When customers have to leave your site to make a payment, it’s not very good for business. There is a continuity break and that alone could mess up your sales funnel. It can also make you look unprofessional.

How to Solve these Problems

Essentially, talking to the payment processor in question will save you a lot of headache down the road. You can ask them about transaction fees, and if there are charges to transfer outside of your merchant account. You should ask where and how customer data is stored, to be sure you’re offering a secure transaction method. Integration often comes down to tools, which you can only get if you communicate what you need.


Charge.com is one of the most affordable merchant account providers online, offering free software with no setup or cancellation fees.

Standards in EDI

February 12, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Written by Act Data Services, Inc. 1-800-ACT-DATA

No involvement in EDI will be possible without discussing the standards involved. The standards govern how EDI messages are built. In this article we will look at what the standards are, what make up the standards and standards are chosen.

It helps to start out knowing that EDI messages are built using a syntax. More importantly, there is more than on syntax when it comes to EDI.

A syntax is the set of rules on which an EDI message is built. EDI is dominated by the use three primary syntaxes in the world today. The three syntax are ANSI ASC X.121 (often called ANSI X.12), UNTDI2 and EDIFACT3. ANSI X.12 is the dominant standard in North America and is widely used in Australia and New Zealand. UNTDI used to dominate in Western Europe, and messages using this syntax are still widely used in the UK. However, international messages are only done using EDIFACT3.

EDIFACT was created out of the understanding that with international commerce and shipping, it was no longer feasible to use national standards. EDIFACT was the result of the merger of UNTDI and ANSI in 1985. ANSI itself was no longer used after 1995. Industries such as travel, insurance, and health only use EDIFAT.

The EDI standard comprises the syntax and message design rules and the directories. The design rules are the technical rules that should be following during message design. The directories indicate the building blocks of the messages. For example, a single message could be part of a larger message and will indicate it in the design.

________________________________________________________

Act Data is an electronic data interchange provider for retail and supplier environments. They will handle all aspects of the implementation including vendor compliance.

Four factors to consider when selecting an expert witness

February 12, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Written by Lyle Charles

The right expert witness can ensure that you foster successful outcomes. Litigation can be stressful for the parties involved and a good construction expert witness can reduce or eliminate these outcomes. Here are 4 factors that should be considered when selecting an expert witness.

Ensure your expert is willing to see the case through to the end – Some professionals will avoid deposition and testimony. Therefore it is best to hire an expert who is willing to fulfill these obligations and see your case through to the end.

Make sure your expert has a good team behind them – Construction delay claims and other litigation can drag out over a long time. Therefore you should ensure that you always have an expert on hand to assist you through the entire process. Choose an expert witness that is backed by a team of strong experts that will support you thought-out the process.

Don’t be too narrow in evaluating industry expertise – Although specific industry expertise is important, the varied experience can also bring a lot to the table. An expert with a wider knowledge can help to solve complex issues and shed a different light on a case.

Give yourself options – Sometimes different cases will need different expert witnesses. For example, construction delay claims may require a specific expert witness. Therefore it can be a good idea to change your witness according to your case at hand.

____________________________________________________________

Experts, such as Lyle Charles provide a professional opinion and a complete construction consulting service.

Areas to consider when creating a Business Plan for a gelato shop

January 10, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Written by Gelato Products

Creating a business plan is an important step to making a business successful, mainly because a business plan will summarize the steps that the business will take to grow and reach its goals. If you are looking at opening a gelato stop, it is best to draw up a clear business plan to ensure you stay competitive. Here are a few areas to consider.

Main investments – It is important to ensure that you have a list of tangible and intangible goods that will be required to run and open your store. This means that you will need to know details about the size of the shop, its location, employees and their needs and many others. Your main tangible investments will include investments in machinery, equipment, laboratory accessories, and furnishings. It is also a good idea to source suppliers for gelato supplies like gelato cups and spoons.

Intangible investments, on the other hand, will include start-up costs, bureaucratic expenses, registration trademarks etc. It can be a good idea to get assistance from a consultant for these stages.

Shop promotions – Shop promotions are a great way to get your shop and products noticed. Include weekly and monthly promotions in your plan with a budget that will cover the event. To get ideas on how to organize a promotion, look for inspiration online and visit your competitors.

Flavors – It is best to plan to create at least 20 flavors to understand what flavors are best for your target market.

_________________________________________________________________

Gelato Products offers a wide range of products including ice cream spoons and Los Angeles wholesale gelato supplies.

How Important is a Background Check to the Hiring Process?

December 23, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Employers need to face a fundamental question for themselves: how important is it to run a criminal background check for employment? For some industries, running these checks is one of the most important aspects of applying for a job, because it clears someone to handle money or to drive long distances without becoming a liability to the company. In this guide, you’ll learn when to start doing background checks, and what you need to provide to potential employees in order to conduct one.

When to Start Checking

The moment you’re ready to hire your first employee, you should start instituting a policy to conduct pre-employment checks. They are affordable, and they can be used as a tool to help find the best qualified candidates for a job.

In some states, such as California, it’s really important that you treat every candidate as a potential (regardless of criminal history). Therefore, if you decide to rescind an employment offer upon discovery of a crime in someone’s past, you’ll need to be prepared to show how that decision might affect your business.

Legalities

If you inform candidates when they apply, then you should be ok in most states. Running instant background checks involves learning some very personal and private details about someone’s life, so you need to be careful about how you approach the topic. You should make sure that you’re following the rules of your state.

The first step is to look up some information in your local chamber of commerce, and to speak with an attorney if possible. They should be able to point you in the right direction to learn more about the laws of your city and state. Also, be prepared to offer the potential employee a copy of the check you ran, and a disclosure explaining why that check disqualified them from the job (if that applies).

Importance

At this point, you’re probably wondering if it’s necessary to do this for every new hire. There are two things to consider here:

  1. New hires working with sensitive data, or in a position that may affect company insurance or day-to-day operations, should receive a background check. It’s a good idea to make sure you’re working with someone trustworthy.
  2. Background checks are inexpensive. Narrow down your candidates until you find a few you like, then discuss background checks with each one and run them as needed.

In short, not every business will find themselves in need of a background check. Most businesses would benefit from running one, though, and far fewer are making that critical decision. Make 2017 the year you begin checking your employee’s history of employment.

Bio: Specializing in both criminal background checks, and tenant screening, Tenant Screening Services, LLC offers instant reports and pre-employment checks available online.

Applying for an online merchant account

November 16, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

charge6Written by Charge.com Payment Solutions, Inc.

Applying 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:

Products

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.

____________________________________________________________________

Charge.com offers an online merchant account for small to mid-sized businesses who want an affordable way to accept credit cards online.

 

How to Overcome Common Freelance Expenses

October 31, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

freelancers-expensesIn today’s economy, freelancers have grown exponentially as more opportunities open up to work from home. The freelance economy relies on being able to save money in small ways, including on how they get paid. Since many contractors come from outside the US, it’s important for employers to do everything they can to help freelancers get the payment they deserve. That starts by examining the way freelancers are paid. Here are some thoughts on ways freelancers can help employers, and themselves, save money getting paid.

Digital Wallets and Bank Accounts

Mostly, freelancers utilize digital wallets in order to send and receive money. If they attach that wallet to a high interest savings account, they may be able to recover some of what they lose in fees trying to transfer the money in the first place. It’s also helpful to have a second bank account so that freelancers can keep their income and savings separate. It will help long term savings for vacations and rewards.

Transfers

Freelancers tend to work with people outside their home countries. That’s where a good digital wallet with low fees can be useful. You can keep funds in your wallet and use them to pay for goods and services in your own country, or transfer them to your external bank account.

This way, you’ll be able to easily create an emergency fund for yourself. Once you quite your day job, you lose your guaranteed paycheck. You can earn more money working on your own, but it takes quite a bit of work to get to that point. Creating a solid savings plan early helps you get past those early-stage hiccups.


Read Payza reviews, sign up for a Payza account and get your free digital wallet to begin moving money around the Internet for a low cost.

Three Reasons to Switch from Cash-Only Business

September 30, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

switch-from-cash-only-businessCash only businesses used to be the norm, but there are many reasons why businesses are beginning to transition out of these models. If your business is slow to adopt credit card processing services, there’s more reason than ever to consider making that switch. You do end up paying small fees on each transaction, but once you understand the system you pay less for a lot less liability. Here are three reasons why businesses are going through with the switch.

Technology is Affordable

The technology for mobile, EMV and online credit card processing is more affordable than ever before. Often times, small merchants can rent units for a reasonable monthly fee. If you prefer to buy your technology, and service it in house, there are multiple options with entry level models proving very affordable. Plus, accepting credit cards in store usually comes with the software needed to accept payments online as well.

Less Liability

Cash only businesses are a huge liability in today’s society, especially in major cities with high crime rates. Cash businesses tend to keep lots of cash on hand, especially if they are family run and don’t have people standing by to make bank deposits. That increases the odds that your store will be the victim of a robbery.

When you accept credit cards, money is moved digitally and securely from one bank to another. You don’t hold customer information you don’t need, and you get your money from the transaction quickly.

More Options

There are more options for credit card processing than in the past, meaning retailers can shop around and find affordable solutions tailored to suit their needs. Once you understand how fees are calculated, it’s simple to find a good deal.

Bio: Accept credit card payments with no application fee and affordable rates with an account at Charge.com Payment Solutions, Inc.

Lower Costs for a High Risk Merchant Account

July 1, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

merchant-account-high-riskLearn more about what a high risk account is, and what that means for your business.

If you’re a merchant in entertainment, or someone who sells intangible goods, then you might be viewed as a high risk. There are other factors, such as the history of your business and the volume of goods you sell, but being high risk isn’t the end of the world. High risk merchant accounts are just a part of the business, and this guide will help you learn how you can reduce the fees you pay if you fall into this category.

Reduce Chargebacks

Institute a return policy, and make sure you’re going above and beyond to solve customer issues. If they do a chargeback with your business, it can really hurt your risk rating. If you cut your volume of chargebacks by 20% for the year, you’ve already substantially reduce the fees you’ll pay for high risk credit card processing.

Avoid Pre-Set Limits

This is a common trap that many new businesses fall into. Pre-set limits look great when you’re processing a low volume of transactions. The fees are reduced, in relation to your risk, but you’re not seeing the bigger picture. Once you process more transactions than your limit, you’ll make up for those low fees in transaction fees, and those will kill your profit margins very quickly.

Be Selective

You’re high risk, so you shouldn’t move on the first offer that’s made to you. That sounds counter intuitive, but it’s actually a good idea to shop around a bit for a payment gateway that will work for you. Don’t settle for less, especially just because the fee structure is nice.


Charge.com Payment Solutions, Inc. offers comprehensive payment processing solutions for online and mobile credit card processing, including high risk merchant accounts.  

Ecommerce best practices for shopping carts

June 20, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

1Written by Secure Net Shop

For the customer, the checkout page of the shopping cart can result in a lot of anxiety. This is the point where they need to confirm the purchase. This can result in an internal debate of whether they should buy the item, if it’s worth the price. They will also be mindful of the many risks, such as security and shipping of the product. These distractions can cost a lot in terms of sales so it is important to follow some best practices when it comes to shopping carts:

Clean layout

With so many things going through the customer’s mind, it is important to maintain the cleanest possible layout for the shopping cart and checkout pages. Maintain clear labels and buttons and make sure there is nothing confusing about the page or the content. Everything from the current contents of the cart, the quantity and every element of the total price should be shown clearly.

Guest checkout

Always have the option for a guest checkout. For a lot of people not having the ability to guest checkout is a deal breaker. It is the need to create and maintain yet another account along with the username and password combination. One way to get the customer to create an account is to offer to create the account on the thank you page, with only a prompt for a password. Most shopping cart solutions will support these features.

Seals

The best and most reliable way assuaging customer hesitancy is to provide a sense of security. To that end, display all available seals for certificates and acceptance of payments. In addition, show any other seals or logos of anything you believe will add to the sense of security of the site.

_______________________________________________________

Secure Net Shop is an ecommerce shopping cart software provider for ecommerce sites.

Next Page »