April 2005 Newsletter
Welcome to the April 2005 Decentrix eNewsletter!
The 2005 EchoStar Team Summit convention, at the Gaylord OprylandTM Hotel and conference center held April 28 - May 1, is just a few days away! You are invited to visit our booth (#149) to see what's new, to pick up your free gift, and to meet the Decentrix team. We look forward to seeing you there!
In this issue we will focus on online credit card processing for your website. Many of our clients simply take the credit card details from their private and secure 'order processing' area that we provide and manually process the card. This works fine for many companies, however, if you would like to automate this process, read on!
First, we recommend that you review the flash diagram we created of how the automated online credit card processing works.
Next, since there are many terms used in the credit card processing world, to help you understand this complex industry, we have defined some of the common terms below.
Online Merchant Account:
An Online Merchant Account (just like a Merchant Account that is not Online) is an account held at a bank that will underwrite or be ultimately financially responsible for charges accepted by a merchant. It is basically an unsecured line of credit from a bank since the funds from the credit card transaction are deposited into your merchant account (bank account) within 48 hours. A Merchant Account can be even more difficult to obtain for Internet use (an Online Merchant Account) because not all banks want to accept the risk of credit card charges done via the Internet. They consider it more risky since the consumer is not physically present to show you his/her card, therefore when you do get an online Merchant Account, the merchant rates charged are typically higher then those associated with brick and mortar businesses. Once you have an Online Merchant Account, you still must have an Online Gateway to process orders on your website.
Customer's credit card issuer:
This is the Bank that issued a consumer's credit card.
Merchant Account Provider:
This is the acquiring bank/processor that issues a merchant their Merchant Account. In reality it is a 16 digit number that designates the flow of funds through the system. These funds, based on this number ultimately get deposited into your bank account.
Merchant's Credit rating:
THE MERCHANT'S CREDIT IS LOOKED AT VERY CLOSELY WHEN IT COMES TO BEING APPROVED FOR A MERCHANT ACCOUNT and even more so for an ONLINE MERCHANT ACCOUNT. Here is why... if a merchant were to accept credit cards from customers, and then take the money out of their Merchant Account, not deliver what was promised and disappeared, the acquiring bank (Merchant Account Provider) would be responsible to pay all the charges back. If the funds are not available in the Merchant's Bank Account to provide the refunds to customers who complain, the acquiring bank/processor is still "on the hook" for the refunds to the consumer.
Authorize.Net is an example of an online gateway and is the main one that the Decentrix website interfaces with. It is an easy, fast and secure way to process credit card orders on the Internet. Authorize.Net works with Virtually All the different Merchant Account providers, perhaps even the one that you currently use. If you are interested in setting up an online gateway so that you can either charge the customer's credit card immediately when they place an order OR if you want to authorize the card immediately online from your website, we recommend that you contact someone who specializes in working with Satellite Retailers. The person/company we recommend is:
Internet Commerce Consulting
You can also read about the service and rates at: https://www.e-onlinedata.com/decentrix
Website Options for Credit Cards
Once you set up automatic credit card processing on your website, and have your Online Merchant Account and Online Gateway established, you have two (2) options for how it will work for you.
- Credit Card Authorization only:
When a customer enters their credit card details on your website the system can automatically check to see if the amount to be charged can actually be charged on that card. This is what we mean by "authorization". The system will check to see if the card has enough funds immediately. If it does not, your website system will immediately notify the prospect and not allow the transaction to take place. You, the merchant, will never know that someone tried to order from you but failed. Which is the way it should be - you don't want to be bothered with a "deadbeat" who tried to order from your website with a card that would not process! If the card is successfully authorized, you will get all the order and credit card details in your secure order processing area, and whenever you want, you determine when the credit card should be charged. When you are ready to charge the credit card, you can do so with a click of a button instead of manually processing the card. Typically the card would be charged after the installation has taken place or has been scheduled, as you choose.
- Authorization and Immediate Charge:
You can choose to not only authorize the credit card online but also charge the customer's credit card as soon as they enter their information on your website. Keep in mind that if you enable this feature, you may be susceptible to chargeback's by your credit card processor. If the customer clicks on the submit order button, then does not complete the order or does not have the system installed, you will have to refund the charge or the consumer may initiate a dispute which may result in a chargeback assessed by your merchant account provider.