Best Practices for International Merchants

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      Four Ways to Boost International Sales

The explosion of internet use sees no end as billions of users across the globe log online daily. Those users are filling their virtual shopping carts and clicking “place order” more than ever before, a reality that translates into billions of reasons why merchants who deal online need to bring their wares to the international stage.

Growing your international sales can be the boost your business needs to thrive both now and well into the future. Seeking out markets overseas allows a wider customer base and can lift you from the mire of a sometimes saturated US market. It is a cost-efficient means of generating increased sales.

Retailers ready to go global must take into account the added costs and complexities. You’ll need to translate your website copy into different languages and have international customer service at the ready. You’ll also need to manage foreign currencies.

However, with a few tricks of the literal trade, you can successfully do business abroad.

Start with Targeted Markets

You don’t have to go big or go home. At least not right away. It’s wise to grow slowly, especially as you learn to navigate the international waters of merchandizing. Choose your initial target markets carefully. Consider those just across the borders as costs and delivery issues are typically less. Working with foreign markets that share a language and general way of doing business creates less confusion, both for you and for your new customers. Starting small also allows you to do your research as you manage the logistics of import regulations, taxes and tariffs, etc.

Consider Currency

The last thing you want to do is intimidate potential buyers ready to pay in euros or yen by pricing products and services in US dollars. Although these buyers can convert currency fairly easily online, it may take more effort than they are willing to expend. You don’t want to give them a reason to leave their shopping cart in the middle of the virtual aisle and be out the door.

You also want your pricing to be reflective of what similar items might cost in your international customer’s domestic market. What prices are they used to paying? What prices can they afford to pay? Considering your international customers’ spending power and whether or not they can and will pay the added expenses typical of international shopping will help you decide which markets might be profitable and how to price your products and services.

Deliver with Diligence

One of the biggest culprits for failed online buying transactions is problematic shipping and handling. Confirming that both the pricing and shipping policy are clear, concise and easy to understand can help combat these issues. Consider publicizing shipping charges specific to each customer’s home country on your homepage, which you can do fairly easily with available software. You can also maximize sales by offering a variety of shipping options. Those anxiously awaiting delivery are often willing to pay more to have box in hand as soon as possible. Others may be looking for a budget rate and expect you to provide it. Offering different price ranges for shipping is a great way to build trust with your customer base. Finally, be sure to provide an estimated date as to when the product will arrive.

Get Paid

You can sell all day long and twice on Sundays, but if you don’t get paid, you don’t get paid. You need to make it easy for your international customers to hand over their hard-earned cash. Just as plastic has become king in the States, many other countries also do business with credit cards. However, depending on your chosen international market, a variety of other payment methods are used. Wire transfers, cash-on-delivery, and PayPal-type payment services are all popular. Be sure to facilitate your target market’s preferred means of payment.


Doing business abroad takes vision, forethought and planning. But it’s a great way to expand your customer base and ultimately increase sales, and today’s technology makes it easier than ever before. So go forth and expand your business horizons.

Are you interested in increasing sales with an international merchant account?

Contact today.


High Risk Merchants Benefit from Multiple Accounts

Gone are the days when single merchant processing accounts were sufficient. Gone are the days when acquiring banks encouraged business growth. And gone are the days when high-volume and high-risk merchants could rest easily that their processing accounts were protected.

It’s an odd fact that in today’s economy, fast growth scares some processors. Processors promise merchants who open a single merchant account that fast growth will not be a problem. Oftentimes, however, that simply is not true. In today’s volatile and fraud-filled economic world, rather than being rewarded for fast growth, high-volume and high-risk merchants are punished.

If yours is a business with substantial month-on-month processing growth, load balancing payment processing among multiple merchant accounts is the best way to protect your business.

So how do high-risk merchants benefit from multiple accounts?

Multiple accounts facilitate fast growth

High-volume and high-risk merchants report increasing frustration because acquiring  banks have begun instituting a monthly volume cap on their processing. Not so with multiple merchant accounts. With multiple accounts, businesses can dramatically increase their sales volume and process payments without interruption. Merchants      processing more than $100,000 per month should consider opening multiple accounts, which allow them to continue to grow their business and avoid hitting a volume cap.

Manage multiple accounts on a high risk processing gateway 

Processing electronic payments through multiple accounts allows you to load balance between the different accounts. With a high risk processing gateway, you can view accounts individually or globally, making management of multiple accounts easy. Customer service, accounting, reporting and reconciliation of accounts is a simple. a breeze.

Multiple accounts protect your business

Because of various new regulations, acquiring banks are taking a closer look at merchant account portfolios. Banks see merchant accounts as short term lines of credit, so when credit tightens, payment processing accounts are affected. More and more banks are putting caps on the amount of processing that can be run through high volume merchant accounts.

Establishing Multiple High Risk Accounts

The implementation of simultaneous merchant accounts can be smooth and easy, as long as you have the right technical infrastructure for support.  A high risk gateway to enable load-balancing is a must. It’s also good to have either in-house or outsourced services at the ready, including accessible tech-support and a solid understanding of e-commerce.


More and more businesses are operating with multiple processing accounts. They have wised up to the fact that no longer can they do business securely or efficiently with single accounts. In today’s world of online buying, merchants are saving their businesses with several merchant accounts, allowing them the processing volume they need to accommodate growth.

As a quickly growing high-risk merchant, you mustn’t jeopardize your business’ potential by relying on the single payment processors of old. Get yourself another merchant- or two or three. Get yourself a payment gateway so you’ll have the capability to load balance between your newly established multiple accounts.

Then get yourself a cup of coffee and relax.

Are you a high risk merchant that wants to expand processing capacity with additional accounts?

Contact today.

Payment Processing for Ecigarette Merchants

Are you facing exorbitant transaction costs from your current payment processor who is citing reasons like ‘high risk’ industry for the obnoxious premium?

Now, there is a better way to accept payments while keeping the transaction expenses under control.

Diversify Payment Processing to Protect Your Business

All indications are that the growth for the industry is straight up. Brand loyalty is high among e-cigarette users who tend to buy over and over from the same site.

Some payment processors put caps on processing accounts, making it difficult to grow.  In other cases, a particular acquiring bank may stop accepting ecigarette accounts due to changes in bank policies towards the industry.

Payment processing is too important to depend on a single acquiring bank.  As your volume of processing increases, the wisest strategy to establish more than one merchant account to mitigate risk.  Load balancing the accounts on a single payment processing gateway makes management, customer service, and accounting reconciliation a breeze.

Make sure to add as many alternative payments as possible as well.  In the US, cards are the first choice of payments.  Echecks are also gaining wide acceptance and 30% of US sites now offer buyers the option to pay with a direct debit from a bank account.

Exponential Growth in e-Cigarette Market

Ecigarettes were developed as an alternative to tobacco cigarettes to reduce the health problems caused due to smoking.  E-cigarette or electronic cigarettes were first introduced by Chinese retailers in the US in 2005 .

Sales of ecigarettes have soared in recent years.  One out of every five adults who smoke has tried an e-cigarette. According to a study by Wells Fargo as of July, 2014, there are 2.5 million e-cigarette smokers in United States with a projected market of $1.7 billion.

In fact, according to the Wells Fargo analyst, Bonnie Herzog, in 10 years the e-cigarette industry is predicted to be as big as the tobacco industry itself.


There are some banks and payment processors who are not willing to offer ecigarette accounts because they are put in the same classification as online tobacco sales. Other processors charge exorbitant rates with high reserves.

But you have better choices.  You can get ecigarette merchant accounts with fair rates and no reserves.  And, the news gets better.  The more volume you process, the lower your rates can be.   

Are you are an online retailer for e-cigarettes and need to establish or diversify your payment processing accounts?

Contact today.