What Is a Merchant Account and why do I need it?

A merchant account is a service provided by various ecommerce companies that allows you to easily accept various credit cards from your customers. You should choose a merchant account based on what kind of card they accept and whether you have international customers.

What about the merchant account provided by my own bank?

Most banks provide merchant account services. However, unlike third party online payment systems, these are not available to all types of business. Only established businesses with a proven record will be able to use them. For all others, a third party merchant account is the only viable choice.

What is a payment gateway?

A payment gateway is the most important part of online payment. It handles transactions between different banks and accepts and manages transfers between different credit card processors such as VISA, AMEX, MasterCard, etc.

Do I need to pay for a payment gateway separately?

Most online payment systems with merchant accounts have their own gateway integrated with their websites. This is the most convenient choice for your small business. However, if you want to use a different payment gateway, most merchant account providers do offer other option.

Conclusion: If you are a new business and don’t know much about payments, choose the most reliable 3rd party merchant account. It requires less work on your part, without compromising on your integrity and provides reliable services to your customers. Using a merchant account will help you attract more customers.