How to get the lowest card machine transaction fee rates

If you’re accepting card payments, you’re bound to incur a card transaction fee on every sale. This is a fee imposed on banks by Visa and Mastercard or similar card associations but you may have noticed that many service providers also charge a minimum turnover fee (a fee based on achieving a defined amount of turnover per month), a minimum swipe fee (a fee charged on any transactions below a certain amount e.g. R50) or a settlement fee (a fee charged to settle funds to your bank account).

Then you may also have noticed that some service providers charge a fixed transaction fee plus a rand amount per sale e.g. R2 whereas others charge a transaction fee based on a set turnover sliding scale. It’s enough to confuse any business owner and often the perceived lowest fixed card transaction fee may have so many hidden fees attached to it that it ends up costing the most.

So, what do you need to look out for and how do you get the most out of the deal to pay the lowest transaction fees?

Transaction fee sliding scale

When you are a growing business with a small turnover, look for merchant service providers who offer a sliding scale transaction fee rate or who can beat or match existing rates or other quotes. It’s common to have higher transaction rates when you have stayed with one service provider for many years and it may just be time to review. Perhaps your turnover has increased and you qualify for a lowered fee or perhaps you’ve got multiple businesses or devices under separate merchant accounts or providers and joining these together can help you qualify for better rates.
As your business grows, and turnover increases, ensure that your transaction fees can keep going lower. See if we can beat or match your existing rates here: rate calculator
TIP: Put as many card transactions though on your device as possible, in order to increase your turnover on the device and lower your transaction fee rates.

Get a free Pocket Pro when your turnover is over R15, 000 pm get deal


Minimum turnover

Look out for any additional fees that will add to your monthly costs.
If you choose a package with minimum turnover fees, ensure that you put through as many cards on that device as possible to ensure you cover the minimum amount and to not be charged any penalty fees.
Should you not reach your target 2 or 3 months in a row, consider changing your package or device with no minimum turnover expectation.

Settlement fees

Some merchant service providers charge an additional settlement fee every day that you transact or when they send the funds to your bank account and this can lead to unexpected monthly expenses.
If you require daily settlements as your sales occur, look for a service provider that does not charge to settle you.

Minimum Swipe Fees

There are various service providers who charge additional amounts if you transact below R100 or below R50 per sale. If your sales amounts are generally smaller (food stalls, sweet shops, etc) then why should you have to pay more to swipe small? We’ve seen these fees go as high as R3 per swipe on top of the fee per transaction you’ll be looking at around R4.5 on a R50 transaction! There are no extra costs imposed by banks for this functionality so why should you have to pay anything more than the actual transaction fee? We recommend opting for a service provider who does not charge this.

Reward Programs

Keep an eye out for deals that offer rewards when certain requirements are met but make sure that you don’t pay additional fees to get these rewards unless the sums add up to you getting more out of it than spending on it.

#DidYouKnow WAPPoint regularly has specials where merchants are encouraged to process a minimum turnover in return for a discounted rental rate at no additional costs to the merchant.  Enquire here

We do not believe in adding hidden costs and offer a transaction sliding scale rate that allows you to grow your business without penalties.

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