Subscription-based services are nothing new to business. But for financial institutions, billing a customer monthly or annually poses a higher risk for chargebacks due to some customers running their orders on autopilot and not even being aware that they need to pay for them monthly. This usually results in disputes over charges that eventually result in chargebacks.
If you’ve not had any luck in applying for a high risk merchant account for your subscription-based business, here are some tips that could help you turn things around:
For starters, you won’t have a lot of options to work with since most traditional payment processors don’t accept high risk merchants. Search for providers in your area that cater to high risk businesses within your industry.
If you’re having a hard time looking for the right payment processor in your area, you can also work with brokerages that can connect you to the right partner or Independent Sales Organizations (ISOs) where you can create an account through their company.
Once you have a shortlist of potential payment processors, get in touch with these companies to know how they can help you. Keep in mind that your merchant account will play an important role in your revenue stream and your business, so you should find an account provider that you can work with for a long time.
Don’t be afraid to ask about fees, approval times, processes and payment gateway integrations to ensure that you’re choosing the right partner.
Since you’re tagged as a high risk business for offering a subscription-based service, you need to make sure that your application proves your credibility. Most merchant account providers have downloadable application forms through their website. These forms usually ask you information about your business like your tenure, location, size and sales volume.
You will also be asked to provide additional documentation like your articles of incorporation, identification card, Social Security number, recent bank statements and past payment processing records.
Once you’ve completed your application and requirements, your payment processor’s underwriting team will then get to work in evaluating your application. This process may take between 2 and 10 business days, and within that time, you could be asked for additional documentation.
Some underwriters could also ask you to make changes in your website and other information before you could get approved for an account.
Once your account is all set up, your merchant payment processor will inform you of the approval. You will also be given instructions on how to process payments and handle any issues moving forward.
Make sure to take notes and follow these best practices to keep your chargeback rates as low as possible and keep your high risk merchant account for a longer time.
Don’t be afraid to ask your merchant provider any questions about your account and how you should manage it properly.