Are Small Firms And Credit Cards Compatible?

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Question: Why should a small business accept credit cards?

Answer: Many small businesses, and not just retailers, now accept payment by credit card instead of operating their own, in-store credit or accepting checks. Major reasons are:

  • Many consumers prefer to pay using plastic instead of cash or checks due to the convenience of paying with a card, the many credit card reward programs, and the record keeping and fraud prevention and protection programs offered by credit card issuers to their card holders.
  • Credit cards make it much easier for out of town visitors to buy merchandise and services while traveling, an important consideration in areas heavily dependent on tourism.
  • The average consumer spends 20 percent to 30 percent more per visit when paying with plastic than with cash or checks.
  • With credit cards, there is little to no risk to the merchant as long as the card issuer's rules are followed. Losses from bad checks or bad store credit are becoming a thing of the past.
  • While all major credit card issuers charge fees for accepting their cards, usually per transaction and a percentage of the sale, these fees can generally outweigh the operating costs of offering your own credit, and losses from unpaid store credit and bad checks. The larger your sales, generally, the lower the fees, and the profits from higher sales can help the credit cards pay for themselves.

If you are an existing or prospective business owner and want to know more specifically how this can be applied to your own business, please contact SCORE in the Payson area at 1-800-410-2260, or by e-mailing us at score@northlink.com.

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