Dharma Merchant Services Review

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Date Established
2007
Location
San Francisco, CA

Highlights:

  • Excellent customer support
  • Ethical business practices and sales transparency
  • Great for non-profit companies
  • Interchange-plus pricing offered
  • No early termination fee
  • No annual fee
  • No monthly minimum
  • No setup fee
  • No PCI compliance fee

Overview:

The word dharma has many meanings in eastern cultures and spiritual beliefs. It denotes a sort of universal justice, righteous behavior, or steadfastness on a correct path in life. At first I felt that a merchant services provider appropriating a lotus blossom for their logo (a sacred symbol in Buddhism) and a weighty word like “dharma” for their company name might be disrespecting these essential spiritual elements – soiling them with the grimy muck of the credit card processing industry – like putting a giant arm-flailing inflatable Jesus on the lawn of a used car lot. After learning more about Dharma Merchant Services (DMS), however, the appropriation seems, well… appropriate.

The sacred lotus symbolizes a beauty and purity that, while rooted in pond mud and murky water, rises into the air on a strong stalk and blooms with so many clean, delicate petals. Likewise, Dharma Merchant Services – while sticking to a just, righteous path – transcends the putrid filth of the industry standard to bloom as something uniquely wonderful and enlightened.

Okay, okay, enough of the metaphorical mumbo jumbo. It’s just hard to avoid waxing poetical when faced with reviewing a company as perfect as Dharma, especially when I’m so used to raking through the pond muck, so to speak. Founded in 2007 by Jeff Marcous (former regional manger for Cardservice International, then SVP of Sales and Marketing at Authorize.Net) along with his daughter Alexia Marcous, Dharma flawlessly combines industry know-how with endlessly ethical business practices to cater to small businesses and non-profits. The duo created DMS to bring their philosophical convictions together with their knack for business, proving the two need not be mutually exclusive.

Dharma has, hands down, the absolute best advertising and sales transparency I’ve seen anywhere in the industry. They only use interchange-plus pricing, and they have no early termination fees, no annual fees, no monthly minimums, no application fees, and no added PCI compliance fees. I’m not sure how they manage to make any money, especially considering that they dedicate 50% of their net profits to charity. No one is getting filthy rich here. The people at Dharma make an honest living, and live with respect and integrity. And did I mention that they’re a certified green business and B-corp? I mean, come on. These people simply rock!

I can’t say enough good things about this business. If I were to create my own merchant services establishment, it would look a lot like this. I recommend them to you with absolutely no hesitation. The only thing to be aware of is that Dharma does not set up low volume accounts. So if you process less than $10K monthly in cards, you will be referred to Flint Mobile. We really love Flint too, so there’s nothing wrong with going that route if you have a lower monthly card payment volume.

Dharma Merchant Services is at least a 5.5 star business. But our ratings only go up to 5 stars… so we’ll have to stick to that.

Read the full review for more details, or just cut to the chase and sign up with them. You’ll never look back.

Get Started With Dharma Merchant Services

Products and Services:

Dharma Merchant Services provides a no-nonsense shopping experience for their merchants. They offer everything you need, and nothing you don’t. Check it out:

  • Merchant accounts: As far as I can tell, Dharma uses Select Bankcard, Priority Payments, and Moneris Merchant Services for their processing. While some of these processors might not give you a great deal if you tried to set up your own account with them, Dharma has negotiated excellent deals, and they all provide outstanding service for Dharma’s merchants in return.
  • Gateway/virtual terminal: Dharma now uses Authorize.Net as their primary gateway provider, but you can integrate other gateways if you choose. If you sign on with Authorize.Net Dharma will provider you with a free mobile card reader, a nice bonus. Non-profits get about $25 off their gateway setup fee. Check out this page for a complete list of features.
  • Credit card machine sales: Another testament to Dharma’s transparency, they fully disclose the prices and associated costs of the terminals they offer, encouraging you to buy instead of lease. If you can’t afford to buy your terminal outright, they’ll even set you up with a payment plan. (Almost no one else in the industry is doing this.) They’ll also reprogram your existing terminal for a $100 fee, but you might want to consider buying a new EMV-capable terminal.
  • Mobile/low-volume processing: Formerly called “Dharma Lite,” DMS provides a good option for low-volume merchants via their partner Flint, which I am also a big fan of. (A perfect example of how they go out of their way to save you money.) This service utilizes your phone’s camera to scan cards, so no swiper is needed. If you want to process through your full-service Dharma merchant account, they also sell smartphone/tablet swipers.
  • Fundraising services: Dharma specializes in services for non-profit organizations, from everyday donations to online crowd-funding events. They’ll set you up with clean, professional donations pages for web and mobile, as well as event registration services. The costs here are a bit more than regular processing, of course, but they beat the industry standard for sure, offering very reasonable pricing with optional add-ons. Check it out.
  • A warm, fuzzy feeling inside: Free with every account, Dharma offers a distinct tingle of satisfaction and restored faith in humanity. With excellent prices, sustainable business practices, and unbridled generosity, you’ll find yourself slipping into a calm, tranquil, meditative state while reading your processing statement each month.

Fees and Rates:

Dharma Merchant Service provides the ideal fee and rate structure, offering interchange-plus and only interchange-plus. They even feature a page called “Tiered Pricing: Just Say No.” (I almost choked on my coffee when I saw that.) Most processors don’t even disclose that cost-plus pricing exists! And almost all providers will try to set you up with tiered pricing. Furthermore, instead of setting you up with a $2,000 third-party lease for your credit card machine, they encourage you to buy one outright for as little as $230, and disclose all prices and fees front and center. If you already own one, they’ll reprogram your existing terminal for a $100 fee, but you may want to consider a new EMV-capable terminal, which will be necessary by the end of 2015 anyway. If you already have an EMV-capable terminal, you can probably get a free reprogramming.

Flint Mobile 

Here’s an excellent example of how Dharma is trying to save you money, not make money for itself. I’ve called dozen of different processors for review purposes, often explaining that I only need to process $1,500 per month (to see how they treat low volume merchants). Sales agents usually pitch me overkill plans that are not at all cost effective for a small merchant. Dharma is different. The first service they’ll reach for is also the one that produces the smallest amount of profits for them – mobile processing through their partner Flint. For merchants processing less than $2,000 per month, with transactions of $1,000 or less, this makes the most financial sense.

  • 1.95% for debit cards
  • 2.95% for credit cards (and keyed in debit)
  • No other fees whatsoever

This is a pay-as-you-go, no commitment service like PayPal Here. The difference is that instead of swiping cards with an attachment, you just use your phone camera to snap a picture of the card. It doesn’t get much more convenient than that. You should note that in this case, you don’t get your own unique merchant account. You share one with thousands of other merchants. This can translate to a greater likelihood for account holds and freezes if you start processing “high risk” transactions (such as high ticket prices or high weekly volumes).

Standard Merchant Accounts

If you need something more robust than offered through Flint, you can get your own, unique merchant account through Dharma. All accounts come with:

  • No early termination fee
  • No annual fee
  • No application fee
  • No additional PCI compliance fee
  • No monthly minimums

1. Retail

  • $15 monthly fee
  • 0.25% (above actual cost)
  • $0.10 per transaction (above actual cost)

2. eCommerce

  • $15 monthly fee
  • 0.35% (above actual cost)
  • $0.15 per transaction (above actual cost)

3. Non-profit

Non-profit rates and fees for retail accounts are currently the same as for-profit retail accounts. For non-profit ecommerce accounts, however, you will see a discount:

  • 0.30% (above actual cost)
  • $0.15 per transaction (above actual cost)

Other fees:

Dharma discloses a few other incidental fees, all of which you’d have to pay with any provider.

  • Late processing fee
  • Insufficient funds fee
  • Chargeback fee
  • Address Verification fee for some key-entered transactions ($0.05)
  • PCI Non-compliance fee if you don’t complete compliance program.
  • Account closure fee ($25) is to cover the expense of keeping your records on file for six months, which they are required to do.
  • FANF fee, which is paid directly to Visa and is required with all processors. Dharma doesn’t make money on this.

You should also note that if you need a gateway, it comes at an additional cost, including setup fees, monthly fees, and per transaction fees. For non-profits, Authorize.Net gateway setup fees are $75 instead of $99. There is also an additional $0.05 transaction fee alongside a $20 monthly fee. As a perk you’ll get a free mobile card reader when you set up an Authorize.Net gateway, which just about covers the entire set up cost.

Contract Length and Early Termination Fee:

Dharma has never charged an early termination fee, making your account with them a month-to-month agreement. Make sure to cancel your account as per the instructions in your contract, though, or else they’ll continue taking monthly fees from your bank account.

While they don’t charge an early termination fee, Dharma does charge a $25 account closure fee, which I consider a fair practice. Basically, their margins are so slim that they will charge you directly for the cost of keeping your account on file for six months after closure, which they are required to do.

We have a $25 account closure fee to help defray our costs (accounts are kept “on file” for six months, incurring fees) but you’re free to leave whenever you please.

This is a fee that I actually like. You see, all providers have this cost. The difference is that other providers will make up for it by charging you higher rates and more fees during the life of your contract. As you can imagine, they usually error on the side of caution and get overpaid in the process. Dharma adds transparency to this process by giving it to you straight.

Sales and Advertising Transparency:

I love how easy Dharma Merchant Services makes my life. I’m usually faced with hours of sorting through a mess of sales gimmicks and conflicting information for sales agents, along with upset merchants all weighing in with their two cents. Not with Dharma. They provide exhaustive (yet expertly organized) listings of fees, rates and other account considerations. Even if you’re feeling completely lost, they provide a great Get Guidance page to help you get your bearing in the search for merchant service.

I absolutely love their many comparison charts. After a while on their site, it’s easy to forget that they are trying to sell you something. The whole experience feels more like a helping hand than a sales pitch.

My one complaint here would be that they do not disclose their $25 account closure fee in bold print. Yes, it’s there, and their sales agents will almost definitely disclose it to you, but it wouldn’t hurt to put this information in plain sight – for the sake of transparency.

Customer Service and Technical Support:

While I love to see 24/7/365 support offered in-house, I also find that this kind of service rarely lives up to my expectations. Dharma compromises in this case. They’ll provide absolutely superb in-house support from extraordinarily knowledgeable and supportive staff during business hours, 8:00am – 5:00pm Pacific Time. For support that falls outside of this time frame, they will direct you to the appropriate party, depending on the issue and what processor they have you set up with.

They have an absolutely outstanding FAQ (one of the best written I’ve ever seen), along with other excellent article like this one. All of the information they provide is truly useful and accurate, and overall quite impressive to me.

I’m also glad to see that they very clearly explain why funding holds happen, and offer to arbitrate for you directly instead of leaving you to talk to the processor:

Funding holds can be caused for many different reasons, such as processing outside of your account parameters, processing a larger than normal transaction, your Website not being Compliant, or legitimate fraud. By reaching out to Dharma, we can facilitate a conversation with your processing bank to ensure the speediest resolution possible. Funding issues are only resolvable during regular business hours, and we recommend letting Dharma resolve funding issues on your behalf.

Overall, I’m entirely satisfied with Dharma’s support system. I’ll take quality over quantity (value over volume) any day.

Negative Reviews and Complaints:

This is a first. I cannot locate a single complaint or even neutral review of Dharma Merchant Services. They have a truly spotless reputation. Congratulations, Dharma!

They have an A rating with the BBB, and have had ZERO complaints in the past three years (which is the entire time they’ve had a BBB profile). Ironically, the BBB rates businesses with high volumes of resolved complaints as A+ businesses, but will only give DMS an “A” despite their immaculate reputation. Thanks BBB…

If I had to come up with a qualm myself, it would be the expense of gateway setup and gateway monthly fees. While I think that Dharma charges completely fair rates for these services (they charge exactly the recommended amount for an Authorize.Net gateway), you can find much less expensive options elsewhere. For instance, CDGcommerce (5 stars) offers a free Quantum gateway with no setup fees and no monthly fees.

So that’s something to consider if you’re an ecommerce business on a very tight budget, but it in no way sways my overall opinion of DMS.

Positive Reviews and Testimonials:

Here, we have the absolute opposite of the complaints section. I don’t even know where to start with showing you all of the praise Dharma garners. Just look at our own comments section. Literally every comment is positive. Here are a few excerpts from our authenticated reviews, coming from merchants we have verified as actual customers of Dharma Merchant Services:

I’d have to say, being in the customer service business all of my career, that I can recognize and appreciate good service when I see it. Dharma went above and beyond to get us started and we are extremely happy with the products and services they offer.

(Link)

I have used dozens upon dozens of various merchant services and Dharma is by far (by a long, long far and wide far) the best company of its kind I have ever worked with.

(Link)

My company has worked with Dharma for two years. I can’t say enough about their rates, customer service and business model. They always answer the phone and reply to emails quickly. If I had my way all of my vendors would be as easy to work with as Dharma.

(Link)

Their rates are really good too. I had an account through another provider and no one had been able to beat the rates I was paying, until Jeff looked at my account. So I switched too and since then, I continue to be very happy with the services I’ve been receiving. I can’t recommend them more highly. I know the scale only goes up to five, but I’d give them a six.

(Link)

…And that’s just on our site. Look around and you’ll find even more. Even Yelp users, who are notoriously harsh in my experience, have given DMS a perfect score. Feel free to check out Dharma’s fully-disclosed (first/last name plus business name) testimonials from businesses and non-profits while you’re at it.

Final Verdict:

What else can I say? Dharma Merchant Services is simply among the best of the best when it comes to honesty and integrity. They provide quality service and excellent prices. With such amazing services and sales practices, it’s no wonder that Dharma comes in as an absolute favorite merchant account provider. They have excellent connections in the industry and seem to get the most out of their partnerships. For low-volume merchants (under $10K monthly in card payments), you should head on over to Flint Mobile instead. Dharma refers all low-volume merchants to Flint.

A breath of fresh air in a smoggy industry, DMS does a great job of saving merchant money and providing a headache-free processing experience. Six years is plenty of time to cultivate a reputation, and Dharma Merchant Services has performed flawlessly during that time. I have every reason to believe that they will continue to do so for many years to come. The fact that they also care about community, social responsibility and the environment – and put their money where their mouth is – well, that’s just the icing on the cake, isn’t it? So go ahead and sign up with them already! You’ll get a great deal – and can even brag to your friends about being socially and environmentally conscious.

Congratulations Dharma, you’re a 5 star establishment.

Tom DeSimone

Tom DeSimone

Tom loves asking tough questions and getting straight answers, so he has a lot of fun calling payment processors for Merchant Maverick to cut through their smoke and mirrors and find the real deals. He has run a full-time editorial business from his home in New York’s Hudson Valley since 2010 and could not imagine a better job. When not busy writing and keeping credit processors honest, Tom enjoys backpacking in the mountains.
Tom DeSimone
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154 Comments

    Matt

    Would you do a review on a payment processing company called BluePay.com Thanks!

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    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    Amad Ebrahimi

    Matt,

    We have a review of BluePay here…http://www.merchantmaverick.com/reviews/bluepay-processing-review/

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    Vinh P.

    Hi Tom,

    I own a small electonic cigarette shop for over a year in a half and is averageing over $10,000. using Square. Months after months I’ve been searching for a merchant that deals in retail and commerce and I’m getting confused with all the rates and regulations from all different companies. I’m also looking for a POS that doesn’t charge me up the ying yang. I hope with your expertise you can guide me through the process.

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    Ku'uipo

    We are a New Microbrewery in California. We are looking at processing over $20,000 a month. Looking at the average tasting room transaction $16-20. Even more on Keg sales and deposits. We have been looking at many companies, POS system, Credit/Debit Card machine, Clover, Micros, Harbortouch and more. We just got a email for Dhamra. But we had a sit down with Wells Fargo Bank. My brain is about to explode with information. One thing I like about Dhamra is no complaints. Wow. Pacific Islander Beer Company

    Rating55555

    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    Amad Ebrahimi

    Ku’uipo,

    I just sent you an email about the POS system. As for merchant account, Dharma is a great option. We recently launched a tool that will help you narrow your options, if you’d like to give it a try.

    Take care,
    Amad

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    K Anne

    Really appreciate the info offered here. I have a small seasonal travel business, currently not accepting credit cards, primarily because have not found a company that caters to seasonal activity (would only be processing fees in April-July. Amounts are hefty–$2 K to $8 K. I don-t want a terminal, just an easy way for clients to pay that doesn’t require a complicated system. Thank you.

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    Amad Ebrahimi

    K Anne,

    We recently launched a tool to help our readers find the right merchant account for their business. Please give it a try and let us know what you think.

    Take care,
    Amad

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    Mike Cong

    Hi Tom,

    Thank you for all of your reviews. I am running a small restaurant with monthly sale from $45k ~$60k and currently using Alpha Card service to process card payment. the cost of using Alpha Card is getting higher every month (nearly 2k in monthly fee for all Visa/Master/Discover and Amex plus other rental fees). I am looking to change my merchant provider, what is your suggestion between CDG, Helcim and Dharma? Thank you.

    Mike

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Mike,

    Sorry for the delay. All three have great service. For your business Dharma would be the top choice, followed by Helcim. Just make sure that it is compatible with your current POS system. Both of them are compatible with most systems, but it’s always worth asking. Either way, you should be paying significantly less after you switch.

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    Mike Cong

    Hi Tom ,

    Thank you for your reply. Do you think paymentdepot with its flat rate fee is better than the Interchange-plus pricing from Dharma?

    Thanks

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Mike,

    I’m going to send you a quick email for some more info.

    -Tom

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    Tina

    I have just recently closed my account with First Data and have been looking for a new card processor. I have talked to numerous salespeople for several months before coming across your reviews about different merchant services. I really like what I have read about Dharma and Helcim but I am not sure which is the best fit for me or if either one is a good fit. I am a small retail business. I sell chainsaw carvings but also small gift items so my products will range from $1.99 to several thousand dollars. My average sale for gift items is about $20 – $30 and the average price for carvings are about $100 – $300. But with the economy like it is and my products being luxury items that people can do without, it is mostly $20- $30 items selling. I also offer layaway so even if an expensive item sells a lot of time they will put it on layaway and make partial payments on the item. I am seasonal with most of my business in the summer months. I am in a vacation location so when the kids are in school from mid August to mid May, my business is very slow. In the winter, I will only open on the warmer days when people may be visiting the area and sometimes close in Jan and Feb depending on the weather. In the summer months I may process $2,000 – $3,000 per month but the rest of the year it is under $1,000 per month. But 90% of my customers pay with a credit or debit card. I don’t have a smartphone or a reliable tablet to use so I would want to do it on a terminal. Since I don’t process at least $10,000 per month it doesn’t sound like Dharma would be a good fit. So I was thinking about Helcim. Would either one be a good fit for me. I haven’t been able to take cards since February and my season is fasting approaching. Meanwhile I have been loosing sells from not having a terminal. Any input would be greatly appreciated.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi again Tina,

    Just saw this previous comment. I 100% think that Helcim would be a great option for you. Thanks again for the comment on the Helcim review.

    -Tom

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    Tina

    Thanks Tom
    I did call them both today (Dharma and Helcim) before I received your reply and I was leaning towards Helcim. Then I got your e-mail saying that you 100% thought Helcim was right. Thanks for getting back to me and giving your opinion. I feel better knowing that I was on the right track. Thanks for helping me make the decision.

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    Kevin

    Hi Tom,

    I run an IT company in CT (a Managed Services Provider of MSP). We sell hardware, software and services to our clients. We have been using Authorize.net and Commerce Bank Systems. The fees are hard to understand, all over the place and its getting expensive. Wanted your thoughts on who might be a good fit to switch to based on the following services our clients pay us for;
    Hardware & Software – from hundreds of dollars per month up to around $20k occaisionally
    Services – clients pay us a set monthly fee to take care of all of there problems with computers, applications, etc – hundreds to around $3-$4k per month depending on the client.
    We currently key in all transactions when clients call in to pay their bills. No need for swipe. We do plan on changing our website so clients can pay via link on site.

    Any thoughts on who might be a good fit for us would be great.

    Signed

    “Trapped in a Tier”

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    Tom DeSimone

    Glad to help.

    The simplest solution will be to switch merchant account providers while keeping the Authorize.Net gateway. This is especially true if you currently have customers set up with recurring billing. If you change gateways, all of the recurring bills will have to be re-entered and re-authorized. Most of the fees come from the merchant account and not the gateway, so you can significantly decrease overall cost without switching the gateway in most cases.

    The good news here is that Authoize.Net is compatible with just about every payment processor. If you think you’ll consistently be doing $10K+ per month and you’d like to continue to use the Authorize.Net gateway, I’d suggest checking out Dharma. If you’d consider changing gateways and would like to save a little more, consider CDGcommerce. They will set you up with a gateway at no additional fee.

    Hope this helps. Good luck.
    -Tom

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    jerron

    I have a collection agency and of course im having problems getting a decent merchant,ive never had complaints or a charge back who would your recommend

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jerron,

    Check out Durango Merchant Services or Payline Data. They both set up “high-risk” accounts with fair rates and fees.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    chandan kumar singh

    hi tom can you suggest any merchant for tech support business and its available for INDIA .
    pleased mail me schandan8@gmail.com

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi,

    Send us a message about this and we’ll get back to you. You can also check out this article for information about Indian tech support merchant accounts.

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    Russell Foy

    Hi Tom,
    Very helpful postings and comments, thanks for making this information available.

    I am looking for a merchant services company to recommend to my customers. SotalCloud is an Online Video Platform (OVP) and we help video content owners create a “Netflix” like experience, to further monetize their video content.

    I am looking for a company that can meet the needs of most of my clients. They charge a monthly subscription, or transaction fees for VOD and live feeds. The charges at between 1.99-29.99, with some PPV events that might be up to 69.99

    We make their content available world wide, so need options for multiple currencies, and to work with transactions outside USA and Canada

    Many of my clients are not technical, and looking for a company that has a complete and simple sign up process, secure, easy to manage, and simple accounting (no hidden charges or complicated billing.) Customer support access and one of your “5 star” vendors.

    Finally, a fair and competitive pricing model

    Sorry for lengthy post, trying to give you data to help narrow down recommendations

    Thanks again for the blog and any advice you can provide

    Regards,

    Russell Foy
    SotalCloud Inc
    russell@sotalcloud.com

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Russell,

    Have you checked out Braintree? That will be the absolute simplest, most flexible option for this application. Depending on how the integration is executed a web developer might be needed, but it depends. Check them out.

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    autumn k

    I currently process through B of A and I am tired of using them and they have terrible customer service. My CC sales avergae 25k to 60k a month, depending on season. Do you think Dharma would be a good fit for my small business? thanks

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Autumn,

    I hear you about issues with BofA’s payment processing (BofA MS). We hear a lot of complaints about them. Based on the info you’ve provided, I think Dharma could be a good fit. The only businesses I don’t recommend Dharma to are low volume businesses, but for your volume Dharma would be an appropriate selection. And their customer service is about a million times better than Bank of America Merchant Services.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Reggie

    I just opened my company but it’s hard to find a merchant company that deals with high risk companies. Brain tree made me change my 1-7 year subscription memberships to only 1 year and pay pal denied me a virtual terminal. I have two parts of my company that uses monthly membership billing for members as well as published company books. my company will have tickets as low as $12.50 and as high as 4k an average ticket would be between 1500-2500 ideally though. But our monthly cc transactions could range from 50k-70k. What merchant provider would be best for my company.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Reggie,

    Check out Payline Data. They do a great job with high-risk companies. If it doesn’t work out there, another good option is Durango Merchant Services. If neither works out, come back and we can try to figure out another option.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Debra

    Hello Tom,
    I am in the process of selecting a new merchant service provider. My business is a salon and spa, in business since 2001. Currently I have Chase as my merchant service. 90% of our transactions are swiped, 10% are through our website. The business does roughly $100,000 annually. Can you suggest a compatible company with interchange rate structure

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Debra,

    Aside from Dharma (who wants a $10K per month estimated card volume) our other preferred providers can all handle this kind of account well and at a similar cost. Helcim and CDGcommerce would be two good options to consider. Both offer interchange-plus with no junk fees or hidden fees, and both work well with swiped and e-commerce transactions. No monthly minimum fees, no minimum volumes.

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    Daryl

    Great review Tom. One thing I didn’t see though was how they process American Express. We are doing 500k+ a month with a low volume of charges and out of that about half is American Express due mostly to their high limits. Also didn’t see if they offer next day deposits.

    Cheers.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Daryl,

    Amex pricing is in a state of transition now. Previously Amex pricing was fixed and controlled only by American Express. But now they started using a system called OptBlue, which works more like the pricing structure used by Visa and Mastercard, i.e. a “wholesale” price offered to the processor, who in turn adds a markup in the form of interchange-plus or a tiered plan. While the pricing still depends on your business type (as it always has), the fact that this opens the door for cost-plus pricing on Amex transactions is great news for business owners. Dharma offers this pricing system, and you can read more about it in this article they posted about OptBlue.

    Dharma does offer next-day funding for many businesses, but it depends on your business type. If you give them a call, they’ll be glad to talk to you about it before signing.

    Hope this helps! Good luck. And feel free to shoot us a request if you need more help choosing.

    -Tom

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    Jim

    My wife is setting up a new brick and mortar flowershop. I have been reading through your reviews and my mind is a mess. We are anticipating sales over 10K a month but being a new business that is not guaranteed. Dharma sounds like a great business to deal with but I see they partner with Moneris. Why not deal directly with Moneris? Also I am not sure what POS software to go with that would integrate well with the different payment processors. Too many questions!!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jim,

    Thanks for writing in.

    If you are on the fence about the $10K monthly in card payments, you should talk to Dharma directly via a phone call to see if they will be a good fit or not. The major benefits of dealing with a company like Dharma instead of directly with the processor are as follows:

  1. No negotiation required / custom contract: Dharma has already negotiated with the processors themselves in order to create a fair contract and fee schedule. If you go directly to the processor, you’re on your own. It also opens you up to the possibility of dealing with an unscrupulous or poorly trained sales rep.
  2. Customer service directly through Dharma: Instead of having to get on the phone with the processor’s customer service for every issue, many questions and issues can be resolved directly through Dharma’s support system. Dharma’s representatives are WAY more responsive and pleasant to deal with than Moneris’s. Sometimes you may have to get in touch with the processor directly, but much less often.
  3. More possibilities: If you call Moneris, you are only dealing with Moneris. When you deal with Dharma, they can find the best solution for your needs, whether it’s Moneris or someone else.
  4. The POS question is slightly trickier to answer. But, for the most part, compatibility isn’t a big issue. Even if the default set up that the processor offers won’t work with a particular POS, there is usually a workaround. But with that said, it would be good to select the POS you want first, and then consider payment processing. This will help you to keep your options open in the POS arena. Check out our POS reviews for some good options. If you’d like some more help choosing, submit this form and we can help.

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    Laurel Reverie

    We were quoted 1% higher than anything listed on their website. At a rate of 3.95% they were not competitive at all.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Laurel,

    I’m surprised to hear that. Didn’t they give you an interchange-plus quote? Do you mean that your effective rate (when accounting for all fees) was 3.95%?

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    Marjorie Shovlin

    I have been using Dharma Merchant Services for credit card processing for my acupuncture practice for almost 3 years now. They are an outstanding company. When I was researching potential credit card processors, my experience with DMS was the complete opposite of my experience with the other 3 or 4 companies I looked at closely. They were up front with all of the information I needed to make an informed decision, and they explained things in a way that made sense. I have been extremely satisfied with their service. In addition to everything being exactly as promised when I signed up, they are very helpful whenever I have a question or need help with something, which is not often because everything works so smoothly and logically. I highly recommend Dharma, and I am very grateful that I found them. As others have said, if I could give them more than 5 stars, I would!

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    Paul Dixon

    Tom – Lots of great information on this site. Thanks! I volunteer at a local American Legion and we need to update our POS system and merchant service. We are a non profit. We currently have legacy hardware with a local POS provider. Our POS provider only allows us to use one merchant service provider, Pivotal Payments. We would like to look at a cloud based system with one POS in our lounge and an additional printer for our kitchen. We are firewalled and can go hardwired or WIFI. We 10K to 12K consistently a month in credit card transactions. Dharma sounds great , but would this be our best solution?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Paul,

    Glad you’ve found our reviews helpful! Dharma can set you up with a major processor and gateway combo that should work with the vast majority of POS systems. The only way to know what the compatibility situation will be is to first select the POS you want to use. Check out our cloud-based POS reviews, and if you need more help choosing submit this form and we’ll get in touch!

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    Blake

    Hey Tom

    I’m starting a service based cleaning business in 4 months and I’m looking at merchant options. All of my transactions that are paid with a card will be mobile as I will always be at the customers place of business. I will start off with very few transactions but plan to have around $10k a month by the end of the first year. I’m looking at what would be best for the type of business I have and I appreciate your expertise and reviews. What would you suggest? Thank you!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Blake,

    I good starting place for a new business with mobile transactions would be Flint. They offer basic functionality and lack some of the capabilities of other systems, but for most businesses like your it’s a perfect solution. Check out the review and see if you think you can get by with their offering. Down the line you may decide to upgrade to a different service, but it’s nice to start out with something like Flint.

    For a secondary option, consider PayLine Data. It will likely be a little bit more expensive, but there are some additional capabilities included.

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    anonymous

    Hi Tom.
    For a healthcare provider starting a business and looking for a merchant account, what do you suggest? It’s frustrating to call these companies and not get straight answers about the fees. The virtual option would be nice as to allow clients to make monthly payments for their care without the staff having to swipe a card. Any suggestions?

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    Tom DeSimone

    This will depend on your volume to some extent, and what tools you’d find useful. Any of our preferred providers will be able to set you up with a virtual terminal so that you can accept payments over the phone. Most of them can also give you the ability to set up recurring payments, in case you have any clients that will pay the same amount every month. Dharma is great, but your volume might not be high enough to make them the best option. You should check out PayJunction and Helcim. PayJunction has a bunch of features you might find useful, and Helcim is just an overall cost-effective and reliable provider.

    Hope this helps. Good luck!
    -Tom

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    Jim

    Hi Tom,
    I run a retail business processing 80k-120k in credit card sales per month. My average sales amount is $375. I have recently started to review what seemed to be a good merchant rate. After trying to educate myself on fees and charges I am not so sure anymore. Does Dharma offer volume discount? Or can you suggest anyone else? Thanks

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jim,

    Absolutely. Dharma can review your recent processing statements and give you a competitive customized interchange-plus rate quote based on your volume and transaction types. At your volume, you will qualify for something lower than their advertised baseline rate. Most (or all) of our favorite providers will be willing to provide lower rates for higher volume merchants. If you’d like some more help, submit this form and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

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    claudia

    Hi Tom,

    My husband and I currently own a small automotive shop. We currently have our merchant services with Bank of America but are looking to switch. Our monthly credit card amounts range from 5K-8K. Do you believe that Dharma would be a good fit or do you recommend any other for a small business such as the one we have? Thanks!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Claudia,

    Dharma is great, but for your particular volume and business type my first recommendation would be to check out Helcim. They offer a very cost-effective solution along with great customer service and fair contract terms.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    nina

    Tom
    I just took time and breath since my hotel is seasonal and look on statement from the fist date. I’m shocked by fees and expenses that are absolutely not categories for what. I called them but looked like we playing a game cat and mouse. It is my fault that I let go so long.
    But this not what I want to write about. I made for several days a research and got two company from a huge pool of them. I think I like there pricing and business practicing of two of them.
    The fist one is Fattmerchant.com and Dharma Merchant Services.
    Which one will be better for my business. I have a small seasonal hotel for almost 10 years. Most of tractions are swept, monthly average about $45.000. I hope, I not missed anything that help you give me a dissent answer. Thank you Nina

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Nina,

    We haven’t formally reviewed Fattmerchant yet, but from what I’ve seen they look like a good company. As a point of comparison, you might also want to check out Payment Depot, which has a similar pricing system.

    Dharma would be a good option for you. And they offer seasonal downtime, so you won’t have to pay for the months your account is not in use. If you choose Fattmerchant, make sure they can do this as well.

    I think you’re on the right track. If you need more help, submit this form and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Chris Farrisi

    We have been using Dharma for about 3 months now. After reading the review here I decided to give them a shot, but I am now regret my decision. The interchange-plus rates in addition to countless fees (that no one here mentions) have driven my processing rate up to over 4%. In addition, Dharma is charging me $20/mos for a PCI non-compliance fee…huh? Needless to say we are now making arrangements to switch processors, and throw caution to the wind for anyone considering to use their service.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Chris,

    I’m surprised to hear that. I’ve spoken to many of Dharma’s customers and for businesses with a volume of over $10K per month, it’s usually a great deal. The non-compliance fee can be avoided by completing the PCI questionnaire. If you contact Dharma about this, they can help you to do it. If you have a moment, could you let us know what other fees you are being charged? There are some fees that are passed along to you from the card networks (all providers charge these fees), but I haven’t seen Dharma charge junk fees for profit, so I’d be interested to hear about your experience.

    Dharma’s customer service is generally outstanding, so you might also consider asking them to review your rates if you think your account was not set up in a cost-effective manner based on your volume and processing habits.

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    Nancy G

    This is an amazing review…unfortunately my POS provider does not integrate with them. Is there a way around this?

    According to your reviews, the merchant providers they do use start at 4 Stars :(

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Nancy,

    Have you talked to Dharma directly about this? They use a number of different processors to set up accounts, so they can integrate with most major POS systems. So if you have not already, reach out to them at sales@dharmams.com or call at (866) 615-5157. If they can’t get you set up with your POS, let me know what POS you use and I’ll give you some other options.

    Best,
    Tom

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    Nancy G

    Hi Tom ~

    Thanks for getting back to me ~ we are looking at the Revel system. Currently use POS Lavu and Mercury, but always open to other options…

    Nancy

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Nancy,

    Revel has good compatibility too, since the USAePay gateway is a popular one. If you submit this form we can help you figure out how to approach this!

    -Tom

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi again Nancy,

    I just saw your comment on the POS Lavu review. You’ll be able to use Dharma with POS Lavu by utilizing one of Lavu’s supported gateways (listed here). Dharma uses Authorize.Net primarily (which is supported), but they will allow you to keep your current gateway if desired. (You can switch processors without switching gateways.) You also have the option of opening a new separate gateway account. If you depend on other integrations, you should try to use a “preferred” gateway to make sure all/most integrations are compatible.

    Hope this helps!
    Tom

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    dennis

    Thank you for all of the useful information here. Your review of Dharma has me thinking that this seems like just the sort of company that we like to do business with but with our unusual circumstances, not sure if it is the best fit. We are a small greenhouse grower producing flowering plants. We sell to the general public only 3 months out of the year and nearly all of our cc transactions would occur during that time. Though we’ve been in business for over 20 years, we’ve never accepted credit cards. We do about 150K in business during those 3 months but have no idea how much of that will be through credit cards. Our average ticket is about $90. Your thoughts?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Dennis,

    Thanks for reading! All of our favorite providers, Dharma included, will allow you to have seasonal downtime. This will allow you to avoid paying fees during months you know you will be inactive. Beyond that, as long as you will be processing over $10K in card payment transactions, Dharma will suit you just fine. They can be a little pricey for ecommerce business sometimes, but retail accounts like the one you’ll need are always very fairly priced at Dharma. Plus their customer service is exceptional and their business model is commendable. Hard to beat that.

    So I’d say check out Dharma first. If for some reason they can’t get you set up (your lack of processing history may be a factor), then come back and we’ll figure something else out. Or if you’d like more help you can submit this form and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

    Good luck!
    Tom

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    dennis

    Thank you Tom

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    Bill

    Tom,

    I’m sorry, but your high rating of this company is flawed. I called their “sister” company, Flint, and kept getting disconnected. Their phone system is terrible.

    As for Dharma, they don’t even have a phone number to call. Everything is apparently done via e-mail. Call me old fashioned, but a lot less gets misunderstood via direct verbal transactions.

    If a company can’t or won’t have customer service readily available, and initial on hold time, before getting disconnected is over 5 minutes, those are companies that business people should run from, not to.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Bill,

    I completely agree with you that being able to talk to a live person during account sign up is critical, and that data accuracy during this process is essential. This is actually a big part of why we hold Dharma in such high esteem.

    It should be noted that Flint is a completely separate company from Dharma, and the customer support Flint offers (while much better than most mobile processors), does not live up to the same standard as Dharma.

    Dharma’s application process starts online, but they have extremely reliable service reps available by phone, and are glad to handle the entire process via phone. They have the pre-application primarily online in order to streamline the process and avoid miscommunications of critical information (self-entered spelling and data is much more reliable and accurate than verbally communicated data).

    If you go to the application page, you’ll see their sales phone number listed. [It’s (866) 615-5157.]

    I hope this helps, and I’m confident that you’ll have a much better experience with Dharma’s phone support than you had with Flint.

    Take care and let us know how it goes. If you need additional help choosing the best provider, submit this form and we’ll get in touch with you ASAP.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Todd

    Hi Tom,

    I am looking to switch to a new merchant services provider. Currently on Bank of America. I do roughly 30-35k per month in card transactions. I have two offices, so about 16-17k per month in each. I would say 80% of our transactions are over the phone. Currently, including equipment leases and tiered pricing, I’m paying 850-950 per month! Can you recommend a good provider for me? I’ve looked at your 5-star ones and can’t decide which would be the best. I need 2-terminals (EMV ready and Apple Pay if possible) — one for each office. Want to buy the terminals.

    Thanks,
    Todd

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    Amad Ebrahimi

    Apologies for the delay on this Todd,

    Any of our top rated guys would be a great choice for what you’re looking for. I just sent you an email to discuss further.

    Best,
    Amad

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    Samantha

    Tom,
    first let me say I LOVE your honest reviews. I am seeking help with what merchant service provider would best fit my needs. I currently have an account using Ipayment/First data. Words can not express my dislike for them in MANY areas! I have been processing with them for about 5 years. I have a MOTO account. Most all of my transactions are keyed or our clients go online to our shopping cart and process their payments. I use Volusion and Authorized.net. I love Volusion and Authorize.net but Ipayment/First data are becoming to much to deal with. When my account was started several years ago I had a monthly average of 5K. I surpassed that years ago. My monthly average is now and has been for a very long time of 7k up to 20k depending on the months and my daily tickets can range from as low as 21.50 for a single permit or has high as sometime 2,500 if setting up 3 or 4 trucks for a company to run all 48 states. I know this might sound strange but I process State and Federal Permits and DOT compliance filings for trucking companies and owner ops. I think I am what is called High risk because of the MOTO. In the renewal months it is very likely that we will process 17-20k easily. During the non renewal months and just bringing on new clients if a slow month then we at least process between 5-10k. Who would you recommend for a moto high risk provider that will allow me to process tickets up to at least 2,500 if need be and 20k Monthly? At this point I am ready to try anyone but Ipayment/First data.
    Thank you so much.
    Sam

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Samantha,

    Thanks for checking out our site. Glad to help! You are in a good position to switch. Staying with Volusion and Authorize.Net still leaves you with a ton of great options. There’s no need to stick with First Data. As long as you stay with the Authorize.net gateway, you’ll be able to keep all of the stored payment info and existing recurring payments (if you have these) without having to regather it all.

    For a high-risk account like yours, my go-to provider is Payline Data. One of their specialties is high-risk accounts, and beyond that they are incredibly honest, helpful, and easy to work with. There shouldn’t be a problem if you choose to stay with Authorize.Net, but they might suggest that you switch to their gateway to save you money. Their gateway features an Authorize.Net emulator, which makes changing over exceptionally easy. So that’s something to think about and talk to Payline about.

    If Payline ends up not being right for you, come back and we’ll figure something else out.

    Good luck!
    -Tom

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    Samantha

    Thanks so much Tom! I will check them out!

    Sam

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    Vernon

    Hello Tom,
    We are a new business and have no idea of what are monthly volume of credit card transactions will be. I have been doing some shopping and have negotiated some great numbers from looking at others and from where I started but I am just still not sure whom to use. We are a commercial embroidery business and I will need a Mobile Account with card reader for phone or tablet and a ecommerce Website account.
    I have negotiated as low as .20% + interchange and .10 cents per transaction for both accounts with one company on here that did have some not so good reviews.
    Just need some guidance and suggestions before I sign on the dotted line.. Have any recommendations… I see that Dharma is highly recommended but looks like they have a monthly minimum amount 1k + etc. and I just don’t know how much in CC we will be doing.
    Please help..
    Thank you

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Vernon,

    0.20% + $0.10 over interchange is a perfectly reasonable quote, especially considering it will cover your ecommerce and mobile sales. It’s actually on the low side, so be on the look out for other fees. Be careful that there is no monthly minimum fee on your account. Hopefully your monthly fee is between $10 and $25, preferably with no additional fees for PCI compliance, no additional gateway fees, and no early termination fee.

    Even good companies can end up with a few bad reviews and some dishonest agents, just be careful and make sure you read the imporant parts of your contract thoroughly. You may also consider asking your agent for references. If it doesn’t feel right to you, here’s what you can do. Get your rate/fee quote in writing, and then take the quote to a different provider. They will almost certainly be willing to match it to gain your business.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Tammy

    Tom,
    I appreciate you straight forward approach to reviewing the merchant account service providers. I would like some assistance on what would be best for us. We are a salvage company that sells used automotive parts. We have used a credit/debit card machine for about one year now and the charges are so hard to understand and some of them are from previous months that we don’t understand. We would like to change providers, currently we have $2000 to $2500 average monthly sales on the machine. We don’t do payments online. Currently we have First Data and how is the best way to proceed with termination of their services? I look forward to any of your suggestions or ideas. Thanks so Much!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Tammy,

    In your contract there are likely specific terms and instructions relating to termination. To get the most accurate information, you should refer to the contract. The section heading will probably have the word “termination” in it.

    But in terms of standard procedure, here’s how it works. Your initial contract term is probably for three years, at which point it will auto-renew for one year periods. There is likely an early termination fee attached to the contract, from $100 to $500. It sounds like you probably haven’t exhausted the initial contract term yet, so there is likely no way around the early termination fee. You can try to get it waived, but it’s unlikely that you will be able to.

    You will need to submit a written request for cancellation, preferably delivered by fax and/or certified mail. You can call customer service to see if they have a particular form they would like you to use. If they drag their feet in providing you with the form, just write up your own request. If your machine is on a non-cancelable lease (as First Data leases often are), DO NOT send it back. You will be charged for the remainder of the lease term either way, so you might as well continue to use the machine. Your new provider can reprogram it for you. If it is a cancelable rental, however, then you should return it upon request to avoid being charged for the value of the machine.

    Lastly, you will want to keep a close eye on your bank account. If they continue to draft fees from it, you should call customer service immediately.

    As for new providers for you, check out Helcim and Payline Data.

    Hope this helps!
    Tom

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    Karla

    Hi Tom,

    I am starting a consulting business and looking for a payment processing solution. I plan to be billing at least $5,000 monthly within the next 6 months on charges between $100 on up depending on the frequency. It will be mostly credit cards. I need the functionality to be able to key in their payment directly or send them a link via email where they can pay on their own. Also as I grow, I will need the functionality for recurring payments as well.

    Any thoughts on who you would recommend would be most helpful and love your site.

    Kind regards,
    Karla

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Karla,

    You might consider Payment Depot. They will give you access to a virtual terminal (for keying in payment from a computer or mobile web browser) as well as recurring payment and card info storage functionality at no additional cost. It’s a great company to grow with. As a comparison point, check out CDGcommerce, also a great company to work with.

    If you’re interested in e-invoicing, check out our invoicing software reviews.

    Hope this helps. Good luck!
    -Tom

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    Karla

    Thank you for the information. It’s very much appreciated!!

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    Dee

    Hello again Tom,

    I have a small Black Car transportation service. Currently using an outdated 3rd party processing company. I charge client’s cards (via) phone systems. I’m believe I am paying way too much per transaction and additional monthly fees. PCL fees alone are $99. per yr. and $15. per month, which goes up to $24.99 per month if not compliant..

    Which company would you recommend I utilize for business or review?

    Thanks in advance!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Dee,

    Sorry for the delay in reply. Have you checked out CDGcommerce? They provide a free gateway and virtual terminal (which sounds like maybe all you need) plus a low monthly fee and competitive rates. Dharma might end up being slightly more expensive for you, but they provide really exceptional service. As a third option, take a look at Payment Depot. Depending on your processing habits, they often produce great savings and really predictable fees.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Dannette

    I am looking at finding a new credit card processor. I currently have First Data but have had very poor customer service from them. I have USAepay gateway for my POS software system and have to keep that gateway. I also have an e-commerce website and have another First Data account that processes those credit cards. Do you have any recommendations for me?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Dannette,

    Our preferred providers will have no trouble letting you use your existing USAepay gateway and your current POS (but you should always ask your account rep to confirm this before signing up, just to be safe). Dharma is a great provider, so definitely check them out. You might also want to take a look at Payment Depot and Helcim.

    Good luck!
    -Tom

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    fateh chahal

    Hi Tom

    We are a Web development and Tech. support company from India. our customer base is in US only. Could you please confirm if Dharma provide services in India. or if you can suggest any other merchant account which can help us get best payment gateway like authorize.net or first data.

    Sincerely
    Fateh Chahal

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Fateh,

    Dharma will not be able to set up an account in India, but we can help connect you with someone who can. Send us a message and we’ll see if we can find a good solution for you.

    Take care,
    Tom

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    Jim

    Hi Tom,
    Like many I am very confused as to whom to pick to process credit card transactions.

    We would love to partner with dharma and find their ethical foundation to be right in line with ours. Unfortunately I do not think we will meet their $10,000/month processing requirement.

    Here is some information about who we are and what we are looking for.
    We have a website currently that is promoting our project, but has no products for sale at this time.
    We are looking to sell children’s books on a webpage.
    We need to be able to process domestic and international credit cards and PayPal.
    We are not a 501c3, but our profits from book sales will benefit a museum and children in South Africa.

    We would greatly appreciate your guidance in this matter.

    Thank you for your time and consideration…

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jim,

    You might consider Ethix Merchant Services or Payline Data. They both donate a portion of the proceeds from your account fees to charitable organizations, which is nice, plus both do a great job setting up accounts with honesty and integrity. PayPal processing fees will always be determined by PayPal, and the extent to which clean integration is possible will depend on how your website is set up. But one way or another, you’ll be able to accept all the payment types you mentioned with either of these providers.

    Let us know if you have any other questions!

    Best,
    Tom

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    vic

    is Darma available in Canada? if not who in Canada has similar open fair contracts?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Vic,

    Dharma does set up accounts in Canada, and we love their service. You can also check out Helcim if you’d like to compare.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    pleasuretickets

    Have a payment gateway with Authorize.net but need a merchant account for a business that is considered “high risk” (not sure why). Which one do you recommend?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi,

    You should definitely get in touch with Payline Data. They do excellent work with high risk accounts. If they can’t get you up and running let us know and we’ll figure something else out, but I’m pretty sure they’ll be able to set you up and give you a good deal.

    -Tom

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    Jenny Duong

    Hello Tom,

    I am starting a small retail shop and need help on finding a credit card processor as well as a pos system. This is my first time searching for pos systems and processor options so I am a but confused. Can you help?

    Thank you in advance!!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jenny,

    Got your email! I’ll be in touch with some ideas for your business.

    -Tom

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    sandra

    Hey Tom,

    Opening a cafe in LA , coffee and food, counter service while still running my catering business as well.
    Love to get your advice on a POS system and credit processing ?
    Thanks so much, Sandra

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Sandra,

    Thanks for checking out the reviews! I’ll send you an email with some options.

    -Tom

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    Jake

    Hi, we run a wholesale business and have just gone online and beginning to ship out some things across the country. We wish to start excepting credit cards to ease the worrying involved with giving stores 30 day terms and hoping we get a check in the mail from someone we have never dealt with. We probably will not be making that many transactions right away but certainly hope that our sales grow over the next short amount of time. Would you recommend Payment Depot for me? After reading your review of them and seeing there website I really like how they charge people and I would know exactly what it cost per transaction. One thing I will point out is that all of my transactions would need to be keyed through a virtual terminal if possible because I will be doing phone orders. No need to be able to swipe a card as I do not sell anything directly from our place of business. Thanks, and let me know what you think!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jake,

    Thanks for checking out our reviews. I’ll send you an email with some more information!

    -Tom

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    Dariana

    Hoping that you may be able to help me out a bit. I’ve been tasked with finding a new credit card processor for the business I work for (we’re currently using Square). We sell helicopter parts and perform maintenance for customers, so our charges can range from around $100 to several thousand per transaction. However, most of our transactions are paid through bank wire transfer or check, so we don’t accept credit cards on regular basis, only when there isn’t a more practical option for our customers. We may go months without a credit charge and then charge a service/parts invoice for $5,000 or so followed by inactivity again. Dharma sounds great, but it doesn’t make sense to go with a company that charges a monthly fee when we may not use it for several months and most pay-as-you-go processors (like Square or Flint) have transaction limits well below what one single charge from us would be. Not to mention the ~3% rates are not chump change for our transactions. Furthermore, from my research it seems like our frequent inactivity and high charges could easily be considered a high-risk business (despite over a decade in business and excellent credit). Do you have any suggestions for companies I should look at?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Dariana,

    That definitely is a tricky situation to find a processor for. I’ll send you an email with some more information so we can figure out the best solution for you.

    -Tom

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    Laurie

    HI there- thanks for all of the info! I am a plant expert- not a credit card processing expert and have found that the more I research, the more confused I become. Just enough information to be dangerous as they say! I have a nursery/garden center. We are a seasonal business and do $45,000 per month in cc sales in the busy season and sometimes as little as $500 per month in the winter. We take all credit cards and we often have a high volume of low ticket sales. Currently I am using PNC processing with a hardware lease from First Data. That lease expires in a few months. I can’t even read my processing statements they are so confusing. Would like to start clean- can you point me in the right direction?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Laurie,

    There’s so much information to sort through, it’s easy to get dizzy considering it all. But that’s what we’re here for! I’ll send you an email with some good options for your business.

    -Tom

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    dennis

    Hi Laurie, saw your post and as we are in a similar situation, I thought I’d hit you up for whatever information you might be willing to share with us. We are a small grower retailer.

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    John Wilson

    Hi, I have a small deli, I do anywhere from 3000-5000 a month in credit card sales, right now I use North American Bancard and my 3 years is up. They just charged me a $99.00 regulatory fee and I am not happy and want to change processors. Any suggestions would be great. Thanks, John

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi John,

    I’ll send you an email today with some good options! Be careful with your timing for the current contract ending. Most contracts will auto-renew, meaning that the processor can collect the early termination fee even after the initial term is up.

    -Tom

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    garry boyd

    in restaurant business for 20 yrs. we do approx 20000 to 25000 in card transaction per month. who would you reccomend?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Garry,

    Thanks for stopping by! I’m going to send you an email with some good options for your business.

    -Tom

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    John A

    hi Tom
    Tried flagship -worst customer service tried billing me for gateway authorize.net wich was never activated didn’t need it because I was using slim CD gateway. They told me after the sale they don’t support slim CD for reoccurring billing! How do I cancel this acct and do you recommend Dharma?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi John,

    That’s so frustrating! Gateway compatibility is a pain, and changing gateways is an even bigger pain. But at least your Flagship account shouldn’t have an early termination fee, so that’s a plus. You will definitely want to get the account closed as soon as possible though. If you haven’t already initiated the termination process, they may still charge you for another month of fees since generally 30 days notice is required. In some cases, they will waive the fees.

    To cancel you account, you’ll have to submit a written request for cancellation, preferably through fax. Contact their customer support to let them know that you would like to cancel the account. If they tell you that someone will call you back, make sure to stay on top of it. If you do not receive a callback by the end of the day, call again the next day.

    Please keep me posted about your progress. If you have trouble, I can help.

    Dharma could definitely be a good option for you. But you might run into the same gateway compatibility issue. Be sure to ask about this first and foremost. If they can’t help you, try CDGcommerce. If they can’t do it either, consider changing gateways.

    Good luck!
    Tom

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    Alisa

    I have been trying to get my sit going for over 2 yrs. Unfortunately there a lot of dishonest developers. The last one in May was using magento, and was not working on the site like he was suppose to be. I filed for a resolution with paypal requesting him to give me the work he had done, with a reasonable amount of the $1000 I had pd to him back to me for his time spent. He refused and escalated it to a claim. I didnt get any work, and of course not a dime back, because of paypals media policy. So I lost another 1000 through all of this.
    I have exhausted all my funds, and I am looking at a solution I can do myself very fast, to get some kind of income coming in. I am thinking of using Americommerce? Would you suggest the same?
    The other question is bout gateway, & merchant provider. I currently have Eureka Payments as merchant, which withdrawals my gateway USAepay fees monthly of $15.00. My merchant acct provider is Humboldt which charges me $25 a mth. I cant remember what my % will be when I finally get going.I think like 2.9% plus .30 per transaction. They have me with an average ticket of 50.00, and like 2000.00 max sales. I have asked them to change this average transaction, and cannot seem to get them to call me back. Again Ive been paying these fees, along with hosting for almost 3 yrs : ( What would your recommendation be? This is an adult novelty site(so high risk), with highest priced product $1500-2,000
    Thank you for any advice you can give me
    Lisa

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Alisa,

    High-risk accounts are tricky. My recommendation is to get in touch with Payline Data. They can set up accounts for most high-risk businesses, and can almost definitely get you a lower rate than you have right now. If they deny you, try Durango Merchant Services. They can set up accounts for just about any kind of business.

    In terms of how to best implement your sales on a website, preferably without a developer, that will depend to some extent on which merchant account/gateway provider you get. Talk to the people at Payline about this. They probably have a partner service that they can hook you up with without it costing an arm and a leg.

    Good luck. Let us know how it goes.

    -Tom

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    Eric

    Tom,

    Looking for the best credit card processing for weekly reoccurring billing and a.c.h drafts. HELP!!!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Eric,

    Got your email! Will be in touch shortly.

    -Tom

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    Mark

    Hi
    Great site!
    I have an Insurance agency in Los Angeles with 2 locations and my monthly average for each office is about $6000 – $8000 a month in credit card transactions. 80% is debt cards. I am currently using Bank of America Merchant Services and I feel that i am paying too much. Thank you in advance.

    P.S. I also own 2 f100 cc terminals.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Mark,

    Thanks for reading!

    If you are processing mostly debit cards, one of the most important things you can do to save money is use an interchange-plus pricing plan. Many debit cards are very inexpensive to process, and some providers substantially overcharge for this. Interchange-plus pricing helps to ensure you get a fair deal across the board. Dharma Merchant Services uses interchange-plus pricing and provides exceptional customer service. Their card-present plans are a particularly good value. Definitely consider doing business with them.

    If I can help you further, don’t hesitate to email me.

    Best,
    Tom

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    Chrystyna

    Hi – My husband’s biz averages about $8k monthly in credit card sales – a lot of Amex in there – and we have been using First Data, who just charged us an astronomical amount for November charges so it’s time to make a switch. We do not need bells and whistles, just safe, reliable processing at reasonable fees. Do you recommend Dharma for this?

    I just discovered this site, wish I’d known of it sooner!

    Thank you.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Chrystyna,

    Thanks for reading! I’m going to send you an email so we can figure out the best service for you.

    -Tom

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    Eli

    Tom,

    I am starting out on my own in the therapy business and looking for a payment processing solution. I will be processing $15-20K monthly, on charges between $100 and $200. It will be mostly credit cards. Most of the transactions are keyed in and recurring payments. Which processor would you recommend?

    Thanks,
    Eli

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Eli,

    Thanks for checking out our reviews! I’m going to send you a direct email in the next 24 hours to give you some insight on the best processing solutions for your business.

    Take care,
    Tom

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    Raj K basnet

    We are the handicraft manufacturing and trading company with the transaction volume of around 20k per month, We are located in Nepal. What is the best option you have for us?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Raj,

    Check out Durango Merchant Services.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    beasleygatez

    Hello Tom,

    I’m interested in signing up for dhrama merchant services. How long does it take to get up and running. I will only be doing face to face transactions

    Thanks

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi there,

    It usually takes 2-3 days after you submit all of the necessary paperwork to get the account up and running. In some circumstances it can be done in a day, but it’s safer to count on 2-3 days. The best way to expedite the process is to submit all of the necessary paperwork right away or as soon as they ask for it. To some extent it will also depend on the unique characteristics of your business. I can promise you, though, that they don’t drag their feet on this. They’ll get you set up as fast as humanly possible, but they will also make sure to take the time to get it done right the first time – which you will thank them for down the road.

    Let me know if I can help you with anything else!

    Best,
    Tom

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    Addie

    Hi Tom.

    I am using Intuit with Quickbooks. I like the ease of use (I never leave QB to process), but am spending a ton on fees.
    Rental transactions are small at around $100-$200. My sales average $2500-$3500 per transaction. I am averaging $39,000 per month.
    Any suggestions are so appreciated. There is so much information-it is overwhelming. :-)
    Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Addie,

    Thanks for reading! I’ll send you an email to outline some good options for you. A number of our preferred providers offer good QuickBooks integration. Although the processing experience won’t be as seamless as it is with the QB Payments service, you’ll definitely save on fees.

    Best,
    Tom

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    Khari Lane

    Hey Tom, I’ve been trying to find the best merchant service for my company. I am planning on teaching professional classes to students across the country with classes being about $300 a person. So If I teach 1000+ people in a month, Id be looking at upwards of $300k + in sales revenue each month. All my payments would be processed online. Im just starting a new website to get it all done. Is there a merchant you would recommend that would be able to help me process a high volume of people and also retain information of my students such as email addresses so I can potentially send my students more information and keep track of them? I just was about to start with square until square told me it wouldn’t be able to keep track of the information of my customers. And I’ve read reviews where they were a little shady with high volume merchants. I’m looking for a merchant that I can get off the ground running with as I am just starting up.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Khari,

    I’m going to send you an email. There’s a system I’m in the processes of reviewing right now that I think would be perfect for you.

    -Tom

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    Khari Lane

    Alright, I’m looking forward to your email. Please let me know as soon as you can. And if you can, can you do like a top 3 of what you would recommend? You gave high accolades to some of the businesses on this site and I didnt know if those would be good options either. Thank you for your time! You’re awesome!

    Khari

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    Jon Manor

    How about their acquiring bank?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jon,

    Since Dharma is not a direct processor, they use a number of different processors depending on the needs of the merchant. But all of your customer service would come directly from Dharma.

    -Tom

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    Brandye

    Hi Tom! I am so overwhelmed with all of the choices that are out there! Thank you for all your wonderful reviews and work.

    I have a consulting practice where fees are $2000-5000 est monthly PER CUSTOMER. For larger volumes, a locked in 1 fee [no hidden fees], low to no monthly fee, no set up or cancellation and friendly heart based staff that allot you an account member- where is best to go?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Brandye,

    Thanks for reading! I’m going to send you a direct email today so I can give you a thorough answer.

    Best,
    Tom

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    Alex

    Hello everyone at MM. Tom, maybe you can help me with your knowledge.

    I read your glowing review of Dharma with interest, as well as clicking through a few other reviews on MM. However, I’m having difficulty finding the right service to choose for my mom. She’s a counselor who provides services to people over the phone and in-person, and is even considering setting up something like Skype for internet-based counseling.

    She’s looking for a fair credit card merchant services provider who won’t charge an arm and a leg for her to take credit card/debit card payments.

    Most of her payments currently are in cash or check, but some clients are looking to pay with a card. I would imagine that once she is able to take card payments, some clients may change to paying by card rather than cash or check. Since some of them would be by phone, we can’t do just a swipe/picture based system on a mobile device. However, I can’t imagine transactions exceeding $1,000 per month, even in a great month, so Flint is looking like one of the better options, except I don’t see an option for keyed entries (unless I’m overlooking it.)

    Any knowledge shared is appreciated.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Alex,

    Flint may be her best bet in terms of value. You are correct in noticing that no keyed-entry option is available with Flint. (Technically you can key-in the card numbers, but you’ll still need a signature to process the transaction.) Instead they cover card-not-present transactions via online invoicing. This is included at no extra charge, and the fee is the same as it would be for scanned payments. Basically you ask for the client’s email address, and then they are sent an invoice with a payment button. The customer inputs his/her card info, and voila – payment complete. The Flint reporting software keeps track of the status of all invoices so you can see when they are paid.

    In most cases this is a good option for card-not-present transactions. If you are looking for a more conventional keyed-entry system that is reliable, you have to look outside of the mobile processing category. While some mobile processors offer it, it’s never very reliable.

    If Flint’s system doesn’t end up meeting your mom’s needs, you might consider checking out Forte Payments. While I don’t love everything about them, they do in fact offer an enormous number of features (including ACH payments and a virtual terminal, as well as mobile payments) under their no monthly fee plan. The downside is that rates are 2.9% + $0.25, but with a low volume this won’t make much of a difference.

    Let us know if we can help you further! Good luck.

    -Tom

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    Steve

    Thanks Tom to you and your team.

    Steve

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    Steve

    HI Tom, I am starting 2 businesses from home. 1) is a Concierge business and will have a website. Most of the time payments will be with Client present, except with some deposits that are needed and I would think $1000.00 max per job. I can deal with Visa and MasterCard only. 2) is a Photography business that I can sell pic’s from my website.

    Great website you have. Any thoughts?

    Steve

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Steve,

    You’ll probably have to open up two separate accounts because the businesses are so different (and thus will have different risk levels and transaction limits). To some extent, the best value for you will depend on your monthly card payment volume. Here are some thoughts:

    Dharma Merchant Services could work well for the concierge business. Especially since you might be dealing with large transactions, it’s nice to have a partner as helpful and responsive as Dharma to avoid/resolve any problems should they arise. They could also set you up for the photography website, but depending on your monthly volume they may not provide you with the best value on that end. If you expect a fairly low volume, I’d recommend that you check out a pay-as-you-go option (no monthly fees) for the online sales, such as Braintree Payments.

    Hope this helps. Let me know if I can help you further!

    Best,
    Tom

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    Tyler

    Hi Tom,
    I am brand new at this. I wrote a book I’m publishing myself and want to sell it on my website. Also would probably be looking at selling on the road at events, eventually.

    I have no idea which Merchant Services company would be best for me? I really don’t know how well this book will sell, so it’s hard to crunch numbers, but I do know I need something very economical as a result. Do you have any suggestions?

    Thank you for all you do! This site is extremely helpful!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Tyler,

    Glad to help!

    For the website sales end, my first recommendation would be Braintree Payments. They are entirely pay-as-you-go, which means no monthly fees. You only pay the processing rate. What’s even better is that they are currently doing a promotion that gives you your first $50K transactions at no charge. For small book sales, you could probably go for a long time without paying a dime. This includes both the payment gateway and the payment processing service. How you’ll integrate this into your website will depend on the specifics of your site, but in general it’s not too difficult.

    When you want to start selling on the road, I’d recommend that you set up a separate account with Flint Mobile, which is also pay-as-you-go.

    With this combination, you’ll have no monthly/annual/scheduled fees at all, and you’ll pay very low rates. I also find these two companies to be very reliable and easy to work with.

    Let us know if we can help you further!

    Best,
    Tom

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    Tyler

    Thank you so much Tom! I will check this out. I really appreciate your expertise and quick response!

    Peace!

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    Alex

    Hi,

    Thanks for the great reviews and information.
    I’m currently putting together a crowdfunding campaign for my product and am stumbling upon the payment processing world for the first time.
    I think quantum physics is easier!

    I wonder if you could point me in the right direction? My situation is as follows:
    I’m in Canada, but product will be sold globally and only online.
    Will most probably accept payments in US$, I have a $US account in Canada.

    I was thinking of using an open source crowdfunding code, to avoid the big percentages most sites charge. There’s only so many out there. So it seems i’m limited to pretty much Balanced, Stripe, Paypal or Amazon.
    After rummaging through your site i’ve picked Stripe.

    I’m wondering if there are any other alternatives?
    Maybe putting a cart on my site??

    Any info would be much appreciated!
    Thanks from Canada.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Alex,

    Based on the info you’ve provided, I would recommend Braintree Payments above all else. They have great features and great support, plus two really great things:

    1. Your first $50K in processing is free of charge. You process $50K, you keep $50K. After that, the rate is the same as Stripe. There is no time limit on this offer, so even if it takes you a year to hit the $50K mark you won’t be billed until after that.

    2. You can use the Braintree gateway with a different merchant account provider. So if you end up loving Braintree’s integration and gateway service, but later want to shop around for a different merchant account provider, you won’t have to integrate with a new gateway (which can be costly and a general headache). You’ll just have to pay their gateway-only fee.

    Good luck, and let me know if I can help further. Keep us posted!

    -Tom

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    Angela

    Hi Tom!
    I am very happy to have found this site. I am a Registered Massage Therapist in Ontario, Canada and am planning to work from home in the coming months. I anticipate to continue seeing about 20-25 clients per week, appr $7000 per month. I have been researching the most well known POS merchant companies and am extremely disappointed with the reviews. I am looking for a wired (wireless is okay but not necessary) device that accepts Visa, MC and debit. Which company would you recommend for someone like myself? Thanks in advance!!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Angela,

    Thanks for reading! Do you anticipate that all/most of the $7K monthly will be in debit/credit card transactions? The answer to that doesn’t necessarily change my recommendation, but coming up with this figure will help you during the application process.

    For Canadian accounts in general, I like both Helcim and Dharma Merchant Services. Helcim has $12 in monthly fees and will rent you a terminal for $16 per month, for a total of $30 per month in fees. Beyond that, they offer interchange-plus pricing with a very reasonable markup regardless of your monthly volume. I also like that they specialize in Canadian accounts.

    Dharma could end up being slightly more expensive for you (not far off though), but they are one of my all-around favorite providers so definitely worth your consideration too. Their customer service and sales team are extraordinarily pleasant and friendly, so don’t hesitate to get on the phone with them!

    Let me know if I can help your further.

    All the best,
    Tom

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    Dan D

    Wow! What a difference compared to some other merchant service providers. Reading nothing bu positive comments was a music to my ears. I’ll definitely check them out!

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    E. Karl S.

    Well, our mom and pop lodging business moved over to Dharma about 3 months ago from a past MM #1 that is no longer in that position and I must say we are thoroughly delighted with Dharma. Dharma is a value player, they are fair, straightforward and are pleasant in communications and that’s what all business’ need and should strive to be in their relationships with customers/clients. Don’t be fooled by cheap, as cheap gets what cheap gives and Dharma rises above such shell games and trickery. Bottom line: we saved money by switching to Dharma and after 15 years in business have finally found comfort with our move and new Dharma relationship.

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    Adam

    Tom, your reviews are extremely helpful.

    I have a pizza shop in the US and I’m looking for the best merchant. I can sell for $10~$12k a month and I close the business for 2 months during the summer.

    Could you please recommend something. Thank you so much!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Adam,

    Thank you for reading! Most good providers these days can provide seasonal downtime, where you won’t be charged your monthly fees for those scheduled months. If you already have a credit card machine, you’ll want a provider who will reprogram it for free (all of our favorites do), and if you don’t have one you’ll want a company who will either encourage you to buy one outright (maybe $300 if EMV-enabled, which you will probably want since it will be standard issue by next fall) or rent for a reasonable fee (say $80 per year). Beware of non-cancelable long-term leasing agreements. If you already have a POS system, you’ll want a provider who will be able to integrate with that system (for this, you’ll have to ask your sales reps, since there is often flexibility here).

    For a business of your size and type, Dharma Merchant Services and Helcim would both be great choices. Both have interchange-plus, no early termination fee, and will sell you a good terminal at reasonable prices. I have more experience with Dharma’s customer support, which I can tell you is truly exceptional. If you’re interested in reasonable EMV-enabled terminal rental, check out CDGcommerce, another favorite of mine. Depending on your average transaction size, Payment Depot might be worth checking out too.

    Please feel free to follow up if you have any other questions!

    Best,
    Tom

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    Ally

    Hi I live in Canada and am currently contract free but have a month to month basis with First Data. We originally set up with UNPS and when everything moved over to first data we went too. I am not unhappy with my service provider, they have been very good at reducing our rates but they have since moved all our deposits onto the 2 business days. which sometimes goes into 4-5 depending on the long weekends ect. Also they have since notified me that they are raising my non qualified rates again! which as 95% of all our transactions are non qualified it is getting a bit much. Also I was suckered into a 5 year non cancellable contract with another company and am at this time paying on 2 debit machines. My question is who do you recommend besides Helcim? I would really like to find someone that does next day deposits. Thank you

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Ally,

    Sorry to hear you’re stuck with a terminal lease! At least you’re still able to use the machine. One of the nice things about Dharma and Helcim is that they only use interchange-plus pricing, which means you don’t have to worry about non-qualified rates.

    I think it’s worth asking Dharma Merchant Services if their Canadian processor could offer next-day funding. It might depend on your business type and who you bank with for any processor, but it never hurts to ask. PayPal’s Canadian sector might also be able to accommodate you here, but I’m not 100% confident in their service.

    Overall though, I really like Helcim for most Canadian accounts, especially retail/card-present businesses. Their processor might accommodate a request for next-day funding. It’s worth asking!

    Good luck, and come back to let me know how the search is going!

    -Tom

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    Howard

    My wife and I started a non-profit business and did not understand the full scope of what we were getting into simply to accept donations online. We started with one company and their associated merchant gateway, but could not find compatible shopping carts, I had to program html and API’s to even attempt to get what we wanted working. Needless to say after three weeks of struggling with this we stumbled upon Dharma from reading these reviews on this website. When we made our initial call to Dharma we got a real person, not a machine. Not only a real person but the Vice President of the Company that walked us through everything we needed to do. Once we reviewed all the pricing and moved forward, we were taking donations in a matter of hours, not weeks. I’d have to say, being in the customer service business all of my career, that I can recognize and appreciate good service when I see it. Dharma went above and beyond to get us started and we are extremely happy with the products and services they offer. I recommend them highly for consideration as your Online Merchant Service Provider.

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    Dharam Khalsa

    5 Stars!!

    Here’s why:

    1. Half the rates of our previous provider
    2. cost-plus – the most transparent & consistent way of doing business as a merchant provider. I don’t have to wonder what Dharma’s margins are.
    3. Trace answers every question I can come up with thoroughly (email & phone)
    4. They donate 10% of profits to a charity of our choice
    5. They are local.
    6. The setup process was easy and timely for e-commerce and card-swipe.
    7. No Contract or early cancellation fee.

    Complaints: none.

    They saw the need for good business in an industry fraught with deception and greed. They created an exceptional business model and they are following through on their commitments to be green and keep their customers happy. I will and have recommended them to everyone.

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    Todd Lejnieks

    I have been in the restaurant business for 25 years and now am part owner of a family business, Chloe Fine Arts Gallery in San Francisco. I have used dozens upon dozens of various merchant services and Dharma is by far (by a long, long far and wide far) the best company of its kind I have ever worked with. The aforementioned Alexia is a joy to work with and I highly reccomend anyone and everyone to get on board with them ASAP!

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    Kevin McCracken

    I forgot to submit my rating

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    Kevin McCracken

    My company has worked with Dharma for two years. I can’t say enough about their rates, customer service and business model. They always answer the phone and reply to emails quickly. If I had my way all of my vendors would be as easy to work with as Dharma.

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    aaron

    Please put Dharma in the 5 star category on your compare page.

    Thanks for the site! I think I will try Dharma for my seasonal ski rental shop, I’ll be sure to post a review. I was already to go with CDGCommerce when I heard about Dharma FROM ANOTHER SITE!!! I then searched “Dharma review” which brought me back here. As a certified ski bum I am attracted to their “green” theme and their charity donation. Of course, their low rates and fast set up time ( I hope ) don’t hurt.

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    Merchant Maverick Admin

    Please put Dharma in the 5 star category on your compare page.

    Not sure I understand you here Aaron. Dharma is listed on my comparison page. I have been doing some edits to the page, so it’s possible that you landed on it mid-edit.

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    Lee

    After literally months of comparative analysis of different online merchant services companies and also discussions with Merchant Maverick we decided to go with Dharma. Alexia the VP was our initial contact & she’s been amazingly knowledgeable, patient and professional in our pre-approval process. We submitted out application today and will let you know how it turns out. So far everything has been perfect.

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    paul

    I just finished speaking with a representative about establishing new service. Talk about a great, knowledgeable person on the other end. I was transferred to the President of the Company, Jeff Marcous who was honest and quickly answered each of my questions with a complete response. Informative and extremely professional. Your review is very accurate.

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    seth

    This site is excellent, I don’t know how I’d be able to make a decision on this topic without it!

    I noticed Dharma now has a BBB profile:

    http://www.bbb.org/greater-san-francisco/business-reviews/credit-card-merchant-services/dharma-merchant-services-in-san-francisco-ca-358616

    Not sure how to tell if they have 3rd party security yet…

    keep up the good work!

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    The Merchant Maverick

    Thanks for the heads up Seth. I’ll update their review accordingly.

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    Steve Lillo

    I’ve been recommending Dharma merchant Service to our clients for about 2 years. I’ve worked with several other providers over time and before meeting Jeff, I’d generally be disappointed with how long it would take to get an account setup. Since working with Jeff and Dharma Merchant Services, every one of our clients that we’ve sent them has had a great experience. They’re very quick with getting new account up and they’re great to work with. And… they’re rates are really good too. I had an account through another provider and no one had been able to beat the rates I was paying, until Jeff looked at my account. So I switched too and since then, I continue to be very happy with the services I’ve been receiving. I can’t recommend them more highly. I know the scale only goes up to five, but I’d give them a six.

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    The Merchant Maverick

    Steve,

    Thanks for the great comment, and Dharma recommendation.

    I know the scale only goes up to five, but I’d give them a six.

    Maybe I’ll create a survey to see how many folks want to bump the rating system up to six instead of five. :)

    Thanks again!

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