Is Your Payment Processor Paying You Correctly?

If you’re anything like me, you work extremely hard to sign new merchants and to give them the best service possible. You answer merchant calls on nights and weekends to make sure their credit card processing runs smoothly for them. For all of these efforts and partnership, are you being paid correctly by your payment processor?

I’ve spoken to many colleagues in this industry who are never quite sure if their compensation and/or residuals are correct. I’ve also had that unsettling feeling myself, and I certainly didn’t like it. I want to spend my time signing more merchant relationships, which ultimately leads to building my residual stream – not battling with my credit card processing company to make sure I get paid what I have earned.

Do you have a problem with inaccurate residuals? It’s quite possible that you might if these scenarios sound familiar.

  • You often wonder if your monthly residual payment is accurate.
  • You don’t know how your residual is calculated.
  • Your residual report consists of a merchant name and a dollar amount, with no supporting details.
  • You have to spend hours each month investigating, guessing and fixing residual and compensation errors.
  • Your residual commission is often adjusted for “true ups” that are difficult to verify, which in turn costs time and money because you’re not out selling.

If you answered “yes” to one or more of the statements above, then you may not be getting the full benefit of your hard work from your payments provider. Before you partner with a new payment processor, find out how they calculate and pay your residual commissions and the nature of their residual reporting detail provided to you. After all, full disclosure is imperative not only to a merchant who has a right to know what they pay in fees, but also to the sales representative who has a right to know what they earn in compensation.

Here’s my checklist of what to look for so that you can verify the income you receive from your credit card processing company:

  • Residual reports should include a detailed breakdown of income and expenses for each merchant.
  • Residual reports should also be available in an Excel format so that you can do you own analysis to verify the calculations, compare merchants, calculate your own metrics, etc.
  • You should have the ability to compare residuals across merchants and over time, preferably in a visual/graphical form.
  • You should have the ability to see what was billed to the merchant (e.g., the merchant statement) to verify that your merchants were billed accurately.
  • You should have easy access to historical residual reports – preferably online – in case you need to go back and double check a previous month.

I encourage you to stop wasting your time and money by “spinning your wheels” with vague vanilla reporting from your payment processor that is on a “need to know” basis. You have the choice to work with a partner that provides accurate residual reporting and I have come full circle to be part of an organization that you can truly rely on for reporting and disclosure the way it was designed for a sales organization. After many years in the industry, I learned to stop putting my trust into everyone else and decided to see for myself what true report tracking was all about. You will be much more successful – and happier – for it.

Are you frustrated by incomplete or inaccurate residuals? I’d like to hear about your experiences.

About Author

Jeff Fortney

Jeff Fortney

VP, ISO Channel Management

Jeff Fortney has 25 years of experience in payments, with a focus on helping ISOs and agents grow their portfolio. His experience encompasses all forms of payments. He has served on various industry committees and boards and is also an author in various trade publications. He and his wife of 40 years live in Plano, TX.

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