Merchant Accounts

Also called an online or internet merchant account, an e-commerce merchant account allows an e-business to process credit cards online. The account itself exists between the e-business and an online merchant account provider, not a credit card company. Also the majority of local banks don't provide e-commerce merchant accounts. This is because most financial institutions require a signature to authorize credit card purchases (for fraud protection purposes). Therefore most e-commerce credit card transactions occur through an online merchant account provider, who charges a fee for the service. The actual fees (and the name for each) vary greatly from provider to provider. The more common fees include: set-up, discount rate, transaction, monthly statement and termination.

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