If you run a restaurant, it makes sense to provide your patrons with as many different options to pay as possible. These days, nobody carries cash, so it makes sense to sign up with a merchant account so that you can take credit and debit card payments from your customers. Not only will this help to streamline the process for you, but it will also help you save more money since not accepting card payments is often a sure way to see customers go and try somewhere else if they don’t have the cash on them.
Finding a payment processor for your restaurant is certainly no easy task. There are several different options to choose from, with various rates and different service terms to read through and decipher before you choose one that is the best for you. You’ll also need to consider a merchant that will work with your current Point-of-Sale (POS) system if you have one and aren’t looking to upgrade that as well.
Look for the Best Processing Terms
Regardless of the merchant company that you go for, you will want to choose one with flexible terms that gives you the freedom to change if you want to. If you find better services or pricing elsewhere, it’s always better to be able to switch services quickly and freely so that you can take advantage of what’s on offer.
Consider Your Equipment Needs
Think about the physical equipment that you are going to need for taking card payments. You might need updated tills, card terminals and card payments, and think about how many you are going to need. It’s also worth considering whether you are going to need wireless card readers, which are usually essential for restaurants that offer table service, giving customers the option to pay right from their tables.
How You Take Payments
The type of restaurant you run and how you accept payments from your customers will also need to be taken into consideration. Merchants tend to have different rates for different types of transactions, so if you allow customers to pay in person and also online, for example, if you offer a takeaway service too, you’ll need to make sure that you get quotes for both these methods.
Look Beyond Your Bank
If you have a good relationship with your business bank, they may be a reasonable option to work with and might provide you with good processing rates. However, don’t just go straight for your bank because they are the easiest option to sign up with. Companies like UTP Merchant Services, that specialise in providing a range of card machines may be able to provide you with better rates, terms, and service. The UTP Group offers all types of card readers and stands out from competitors with a quicker funding within hours not 3-5 days which many companies provide, meaning you get the funds in your account almost immediately. They also work with Barclaycard, as opposed to many competitors that typically work with smaller, lesser-known banks. Find out more about card machines for you here.
Consider Your POS System
If you already have a POS system in place and aren’t looking to change it, you will need to find a merchant that is going to be compatible with what you already have. Talk to your POS provider about what they offer and find out which services that will work with your system are recommended by them. It’s always worth noting that many POS providers will also provide a merchant service that their POS system is designed to work with exclusively, in which case you will need to change your POS equipment in order to switch providers.
Talk to Other Restaurant Owners
It’s a good idea to do your research on the different merchants available and speak to some other restaurant owners to find out which ones they have had success with in the past and what they would recommend. Talking to your fellow restaurant owners can be an ideal way to get the best merchant suggestions since you are more likely to get an honest review of the merchant and what they provide.
Get a List of Your Business Requirements
Finally, before you start requesting quotes, it’s a good idea to get a clear idea of the services that you are going to need from your merchant. It’s a wise idea to sit down and decide on everything that you need and everything that you might want too. Once you sign up with a merchant, you’ll need to be prepared to answer a series of questions about your business, so that they can get a clearer picture of your processing needs before they can provide you with a quote.
Accepting card payments is the minimum standard expected for restaurants today, so of course, you want to provide this service to your customers. But, keep these key points in mind before you decide on a merchant.