Facts About Gun-Friendly Credit Card Processing
If you’re in the business of selling firearms, you’re aware of the public and private requirements that govern how you can run your business.
These regulations impact everything, including:
- The type of personal information you’re required to keep on file with the government.
- Special licenses you must have (i.e. Federal Firearms License or “FFL”).
- The distribution of products purchased online.
- Your company’s eligibility to accept credit card payments.
People who sell guns typically want to be able to give customers the option of paying for firearms and ammunition with a credit card.
This is because the products gun dealers sell most often are in a much higher price bracket than other retail product types.
Some customers aren’t going to be able to pay for an entire purchase up-front. So it’s important for firearm merchants to be able to offer them some other alternative for making on-demand purchases.
Even so, it isn’t always easy to find a gun-friendly credit card processor to work with.
In part, this is due to gun and ammo dealerships – and the firearms industry, in general – falling into the high risk bracket when it comes to taking credit cards. And not all credit card processors like to work with business owners in high risk industries such as firearms and gambling.
The payment card industry labels some business owners as “high risk” because their industry or business model makes them more likely to endure chargebacks and disputed payments.
However, finding a good gun-friendly credit card processing provider and getting set up with a firearms merchant services account doesn’t have to be complicated at all.
You simply need to find a merchant services partner that is already experienced in supporting high-risk merchant services accounts — such as Easy Pay Direct!
Once you’ve done that, you’ll work closely with them as they walk you and your application through a few short steps to get your account approved for processing high-risk transactions.
How Should a Gun Merchant Prepare to Find a Firearms-Friendly Credit Card Processing Provider?
In short, getting set up for a gun-friendly credit card processing account is easy!
However, it is important for you to know there are some merchant services providers that offer instant approval to online gunbrokers, without ever looking at a business or its products.
Unfortunately, this can be terribly risky for firearms dealers because these vendors are also well known for freezing funds and canceling accounts without notifying a merchant — especially if they see transactions for high-risk merchandise.
As you can imagine, this is very frustrating for the merchant.
And while these providers might seem like gun-friendly credit card processors on the surface, they really don’t specialize in supporting high-risk businesses.
Working with a qualified high-risk merchant services provider like Easy Pay Direct always pays off for brokers of firearms and ammo.
Getting Approved for Firearm Friendly Credit Card Processing
Easy Pay Direct is skilled at helping gun dealers through the application approval process. So if you provide them with the basic business details and documents they need, your gun-friendly credit card processing account can be set up easily and quickly.
Easy Pay Direct boasts the highest approval rating in the payment card industry!
It’s also good to have some idea of how much business you will be processing through your gun-friendly account, and how it breaks down by sales channel.
For example, if you will be processing more business online than you will over the counter, or you will only be selling firearms online and utilizing another FFL-authorized storefront to hand off your merchandise to the customer, it’s good to share this information with your merchant services provider.
This is important, as any transaction done over the internet holds a higher element of risk. Why? Because if they aren’t in front of a human sales clerk, it’s more difficult to prove the buyer and the credit card they are using are valid.
Online merchants also tend to have more customer disputes (also called chargebacks) than merchants that sell exclusively over the counter.
Therefore, since you will have to provide a breakdown of your business activity when you apply for a gun-friendly merchant services account, it’s a good idea to estimate what your expected sales activity will be ahead of time.
This will help to keep your application approval process as streamlined as possible.
The merchant services provider you decide to work with will review this information to figure out the credit card processing solutions and pricing structure that are the best fit for your firearms business.
Other Things to Think About
A firearms dealer that mostly sells their guns and ammo inventory online will need to work with a provider that also offers a highly secure online gateway solution, like Easy Pay Direct.
Ideally, they will also be able to offer the ecommerce business some type of online shopping cart integration services.
Easy Pay Direct integrates with nearly every shopping cart on the planet!
“Shopping cart integration” is an important feature that links the shopping cart with the gun-friendly online credit card processing account the merchant will be using.
A merchant services provider who is qualified to support an FFL or gun and ammo merchant will also want to know other basic information about your business during the application process. This includes:
- How you plan to sell and deliver your products.
- The types of electronic payment you’d like to accept.
- Documents proving you are a qualified gun dealer.
Having this information up front helps your provider decide early on if there could be any potential issues to address when getting approved for a gun-friendly credit card processing account.
Additionally, a good merchant services provider that is committed to doing the right thing will help you determine if any of your non-firearm sales could be eligible for lower transaction costs.
Since it’s not uncommon for gun dealers to also sell non-regulated merchandise, this can help save money for your business over time.
How to Select the Right Firearms-Friendly Credit Card Processing Provider
Now that you’ve gathered all the information about your business in one place, it’s time to find the right firearms-friendly credit card processing provider.
They can make it easy for your gunbroker business to set up the payment acceptance options it needs to become even more successful.
And while the process to set up a gun merchant account might seem complex, it all boils down to this:
- Tell us how you’re accepting payments
- Be open to underwriting
- Gather all required documentation
- Submit your application
As you research, you’ll find many alternatives for firearms processing solutions online.
In fact, it can be difficult to tell the difference between what all these providers offer when clicking through pages on a website.
Additionally, since many of the big-brand processors and mainstream payment aggregators do not support gun and ammo merchants, weeding your way through the sea of lesser-known merchant processing businesses can be a little discouraging.
As a small business owner, it’s unlikely you have the time to sift through every processing provider’s website you find online.
This is where understanding what to look for is worth its weight in gold!
So what should you look for?
By following these simple points, you are guaranteed to find a good processor that will make it easy to set up a high-risk gun merchant account for accepting credit and debit card payments:
- Eliminate providers without high-risk services. Weed out all providers that have no obvious experience with high-risk business types. Even if you call them, they might talk a good game. But rest assured, they have no idea what it takes to get a gun and ammo merchant business like yours approved to accept credit cards. Don’t waste valuable time. Cut them from the list.
- Look at supported business types. If firearms aren’t mentioned on the homepage or under the industries they support, they likely have zero experience working with gun merchants. It also means your application will likely be denied. Yet another waste of your valuable time.
- Compare. Anyone left on the list can easily be compared side-by-side. A simple chart with businesses down the left column and must-have features across the top will make it a cinch to add checkmarks.
It’s always a good idea to identify the gun-friendly ecommerce and payment options every merchant services provider can offer you. You never know when something attention-worthy will stand out.
For example, some of these businesses offer shopping cart integration services.
Others will have a list of pre-integrated online shopping cart solutions already saved in a library.
If your gun dealer shopping cart or business software is on that list, it means you can have a plug-and-play ecommerce gun store as soon as you are approved for a firearms-friendly credit card processing account.
And it almost guarantees your merchant account will be approved!
Online gun, ammo, and accessory dealers also need to pay close attention to online gateway features and customer service offerings when selecting a gun-friendly credit card merchant services account provider. We’ll talk more about this below.
What Makes a Gun-Friendly Credit Card Processing Provider Stand Out?
Since your business model is considered higher risk in the merchant services industry, you want to make sure you will have the most protection from fraud and uncertainty that you can get through a payment processing provider.
You’ll also want to note if a prospective merchant account provider offers special tools and services that will identify potential fraud on your website. As discussed before, this is critical, because the incidence of chargebacks can shut down your merchant account without notice, regardless of how gun-friendly it may be.
Educating your staff can help them recognize an illegal buyer from a legitimate one. That’s another service you want from your online merchant services provider.
When they have years of experience in the payments industry supporting other companies like yours, expert coaching and guidance can often be the difference between maintaining an open or frozen merchant services account.
Built-in fail-safes are another feature to look for.
For example, are you able to set up more than one merchant account with the processor? If so, are there rules on using these accounts? What are the benefits?
Not only will Easy Pay Direct set up multiple accounts for you, but we’ll distribute funds evenly between them with our patent-pending Load Balancing Technology.
These are critical questions to ask a provider before signing on because these are the types of fail-safes that will keep your business running when encountering risky situations.
By default, high-risk firearms merchants are more vulnerable to having their merchant processing account frozen or shut down, simply because there is more legal sensitivity associated with the product.
If a transaction appears too risky and/or you get a customer chargeback, you might need to divert transactions through a different account temporarily, or even into the long-term.
To this point, one of the most unique features of Easy Pay Direct’s proprietary gateway is its ability to automatically route transactions across multiple merchant accounts.
And while this may sound like a mundane or unnecessary feature, we feel it is a must-have for any high-risk ecommerce gun merchant that needs the protection of keeping an online firearms store operating without unexpected interruptions.
This is one stand-out feature of Easy Pay Direct’s ability to manage high-risk, gun-friendly credit card processing accounts in a unique way that keeps them open for business consistently.
Choose a Credit Card Processing Provider That is Invested in Helping Your Gun and Ammo Business Grow!
Now that you know what steps to take to evaluate gun-friendly credit card processing providers, you’re ready to complete a merchant services account application.
Some providers offer online application options to make it easier for you to provide all the information they need to review, approve, and set up your firearms-friendly credit card processing account.
Whether you submit an online application or decide you’d rather go through a manual application process, your most important objective will be choosing the gun-friendly merchant services provider that offers your firearms business the most protection and flexibility.
Of course, it’s also important to feel confident about their expertise and ability to make the application process easy for you.
If you are interested in learning more about all the features and benefits Easy Pay Direct can offer your gun dealership, or you’re just curious about how to set up an online merchant account, our representatives at Easy Pay Direct are here to help. Alternatively, if you’re ready to apply for an Easy Pay Direct gun-friendly credit card processing account, we’re standing by to help you get approved!
We’re also well versed in underwriting and supporting high-risk business models, including firearm merchants, through our proprietary gateway technology.
The Easy Pay Direct gateway is also able to automatically distribute your transaction volume across multiple merchant services accounts to reduce the risk for your business.
Call us at 800.805.4949 or reach out to us online anytime!