Startup Kit

Additional Materials


Payment Processing 101

Thursday, June 30, 2011
Getting Paid While Making Your Customers Happy In 3 Easy Steps

Payment processing for your new business doesn’t have to be a hassle. The NASE’s exclusive payment processing vendor, First American Payment Systems, offers a step-by-step guide to figuring out a payment processing plan for your new business.


As you know, there is so much to consider as you are starting a business. You are working out your business plan, calling vendors, deciding on staffing, developing your marketing, and multi-tasking like never before as you prepare to launch your new venture.

As you work through your business plan, something you need to consider early on is how you are going to get paid! That is, after all, how you’ll keep your business running. When starting a new business, it’s so easy to get caught up in your long to-do list, but so important to have and follow through with a plan regarding your payment processing. In this article, we’ll walk you through a three-step process, show you how easy it can be, and help you have everything ready to go for your new business.


Step 1: Bring Me The Money!

Start by thinking about what types of payments you are going to accept. In addition to cash, are you going to accept credit cards, debit cards and checks? If you think it would just be easier or cheaper to only accept cash, consider this:

Now more than ever, consumers are carrying less cash and using plastic instead. Why? Here are a few reasons: It is more convenient for people to carry a card than to intentionally visit a bank or ATM to withdraw cash before visiting a store; consumers like being able to track their transactions on their credit card statements; many people like to get reward points or to rack up on airline miles; and it can be considered more secure than carrying around a lot of cash.

Consumers will spend 25 to 44 percent more when they are using a debit or credit card. This is great news for a small business owner! By offering customers a choice, they will most likely spend more money in one visit. If a customer comes to your store and they see a new product they love or learn about a new service you are offering, they will most likely buy it then. If they only have $10 in their wallet and you only take cash, you unfortunately just lost a sale for that $25 item – and it will not be easy getting them back to buy that product or service after they leave.

The types of payments you accept directly affect your customers. When you accept the most common payment types, you meet their expectation of convenience. Customers will appreciate being able to use their preferred payment option to do business with you.


Step 2: What You Need

The type of business you have will determine what type of payment processing equipment and setup you need. A restaurant, for example, will need an option for taking tips. A home-based jewelry vendor that frequently travels to tradeshows will need a wireless terminal or Smartphone application to process payments on their cell phone. A company that wants to sell their products online will need an e-commerce solution. A gym or storage facility could use a virtual terminal to set up recurring monthly payments, and there are also solutions for businesses that want to guarantee checks or convert them electronically. First American Payment Systems has easy to use and affordable payment processing options for every type of business.


Step 3: Time to Make the Call

Now that you understand what types of payments to accept and what possible options are out there, the next step is to make the call to a payment processing company so that you can get started. While there are many payment processors out there, First American Payment Systems offers special pricing that is only available to NASE Members. Our corporate sales team will take a consultative approach in helping you figure out exactly what you need to help you process payments for your type of business. We also offer unbeatable customer service and technical support. Our in-house multilingual customer service call center is located in Fort Worth, Texas, and is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

First American’s corporate sales team can consult with you over the phone or even by email, if you prefer. We’ll talk to you about your business and figure out what products will work best for you. We will help you determine if the wireless terminal you thought you needed is cost effective for your type of business, or whether or not you should set up recurring payments for your customers or simply use a POS terminal for all of your transactions. After determining what equipment you need and the costs, we’ll send you an application. Your First American consultant can even go through the application step-by-step with you. To be prepared to fill out the application, be sure to have ready your tax ID number, company name that you have on file with the IRS and a voided check.

Once you submit your application, it will go through an approval process. If you submit your application before noon, it can be approved the same day and your equipment can be shipped out the next morning. The entire process from start to finish usually takes between 24 and 48 hours. Once your equipment arrives, your consultant will have the merchant setup team call to get you started!

With First American, setting up your merchant account is a simple process. It’s important to meet the needs of your customers, which will in turn result in more sales for you. To get started processing payments with First American, call us at 866-835-5558 or click here to have a representative call you. Read more about the benefits First American offers NASE Members here.


First American Payment Systems is an exclusive NASE benefit partner. First American offers NASE Members benefits such as credit card processing with rates as low as .08 percent and $0.10 per transaction over cost, free statement analysis and more.




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