Does Your Business Use ACH Payment Processing?

ACH (Automated Clearing House) is a payment processing method that every business should utilize. Transactions are completed electronically, allowing merchants to deduct amounts owed directly from a customer’s bank account.

What Happens When I Receive an ACH Payment?

ACH payments are favored by vendors because they save time and do not come with interchange fees. No documents or check numbers have to be exchanged. It’s a straightforward process that’s secure. What happens when you receive an ACH payment?

  1. First, preauthorized permission is provided by the customer in a verbal, written, or electronic format. This allows the merchant to process the transaction.
  2. Next, a batch file transmission, virtual terminal, or payment gateway is used to convert the payment into an ACH transaction that is sent to the payment processor.
  3. The processor presents the transaction to the customer’s financial institution to debit the funds.
  4. The ACH payment process usually takes anywhere from three to seven days to complete. Recent changes made by the National Automated Clearing House Association (NACHA) have introduced same-day payments.

The Benefits of Using ACH Payment Processing

More businesses are discovering the benefits of using ACH payment processing. The system connects the vast majority of financial institutions operating in the United States. As the world of ecommerce expands, so does the reach of ACH processing. Those who introduce this payment method find that:

  • It is more convenient than processing paper checks
  • It’s cost-effective making it a viable payment option
  • Businesses can reduce the cost of postage and envelopes
  • It can be set up to deduct recurring payments automatically
  • It’s secure and reliable, preventing the theft of checks or credit cards

Why Should My Business Use ACH Payment Processing?

It can be challenging to keep up with changes in the financial industry. As a business owner, it’s vital to know what’s available to you to better serve your customer base. If you do not currently offer ACH payments, now is the time to look into it. You could be missing out on valuable benefits and more business. Why should you start accepting ACH payments?

  • Same-Day Payments Exist, and Customers Love It

Most customers prefer to have debits deducted from their bank account as soon as possible. It’s much easier to keep track of balances when you don’t have transactions in limbo, already processing but still not deducted.

Same-day ACH payments were rolled out in September 2016. It started with credits and transactions of under $25,000 between U.S. banks. Phase two was introduced the same month the following year and expanded the program to allow merchants to withdraw funds the same day. Phase three went into effect in March of this year and requires banks to deposit ACH funds by 5 pm the same day.

  • A More Affordable Payment Processing Option for Any Business

Credit cards are convenient but come with fees. ACH costs less for the merchant. There are fees for transactions. However, businesses do not have to pay interchange fees. Interchange fees are the amount paid by the acquiring bank to the issuing bank for the transaction. This makes up the majority of credit card processing costs.

  • ACH Payments are Secure for Customers and Merchants

Security is a big concern for businesses and customers these days. Technology makes life easier, but it also presents opportunities for thieves. While there is no 100% safe form of payment, ACH transactions come with protections like merchant-specific registration, micro validation, and encryption.

How Do I Start Accepting ACH Payment

Getting started with ACH processing is easy with the help of South West POS Technologies. Contact us today to learn more about fees, benefits, and setting up this in-demand payment method.

Stay Organized and Exceed Customer Expectations with Harbortouch Reservations

Many restaurants offer reservations. This service is convenient for customers but adds work for employees. If your staff cannot find a reservation when a call-ahead party arrives, it could start the entire interaction off on the wrong foot. Harbortouch Reservations is designed to ensure that everyone who makes a reservation enjoys a hassle-free visit.

How Does Harbortouch Reservations Work?

Instead of pen and paper or using a separate system, you can switch to the streamlined features of Harbortouch. Your data is gathered together in one place – including reservations. Staff can manually manage and enter customer details quickly and with less searching. The interface is designed for maximum efficiency. Online booking is supported so that customers can make a reservation on their own without calling.

Upcoming reservations can be viewed on a monthly calendar. Staff can narrow down the list to a specific night. Find out who is waiting for a table or who will arrive soon. Table layouts are also built in so employees can figure out which tables are open at a glance.

Instead of shouting names in a crowded lobby or waiting area, you can rely on Harbortouch Reservations to send a text message alert to let the patron when their seats are available. This also presents an opportunity to build a customer database that can save time and help you provide better service to repeat patrons.

The Benefits of Taking Reservations

When managed effectively, reservations can increase your profits and customer satisfaction. Why should you consider giving Harbortouch Reservations a try?

  • Increase efficiency that can lead to more table turns each business day
  • Improved customer convenience, especially for bigger parties
  • Saves the customer the time it takes to make a phone call when booking online
  • Better control over reservations can prevent overbooking
  • Gathers data to help you make decisions about your business
  • Accept reservations for future dates, even when your business is closed
  • Cut down on wait times through better reservation management
  • Find out if parties are celebrating an event before they arrive, so employees are prepared

Start Taking Reservations Now with Harbortouch POS System

Reservations is a feature that comes with the Harbortouch POS system. You can manage all aspects of your business within one platform. Minimize the workload for staff and never miss an opportunity to make a sale. The system is equipped with modern features and a user-friendly interface. There’s no extra fee for using Reservations when you switch to Harbortouch.

How much business is your restaurant missing by not taking online reservations? Many people use the internet to access local businesses. Become one of your community’s preferred establishments by incorporating advanced technology into your operation. Contact us today to learn more about how Harbortouch Reservations can help your business grow.

Harbortouch Brings You Faster Delivery Orders with Integrated Caller ID

Harbortouch POS offers integrated caller ID that will change the way you handle delivery orders. Businesses in the food service industry are always searching for ways to improve the customer experience. This is especially true when working in saturated markets with lots of competition. Make your company the brand locals prefer with the help of integrated caller ID.

Customer Information Available the Instant You Pick Up

Years ago, all customer information had to be gathered every time an order was placed. That was the case whether you were speaking to a new or repeat patron. Now, you can make the ordering process as hassle-free as possible with caller ID.

As soon as you pick up the phone, the system will display details about the caller. Profiles for existing customers will be instantly retrieved, so you have them ready to go. If a new customer is on the line, you can easily create a profile for them in a matter of seconds.

Faster Delivery Service Thanks to the Phones

Caller ID is an effective way to shave seconds or more off of your order taking average. The faster your employees work, the more customers you can serve. Harbortouch POS makes it possible to do this without lowering quality or accuracy.

When a repeat customer calls, your employee can review their information. This will eliminate the need to write down addresses, phone numbers, and names. It also gives the employee a snapshot of the customer’s history. They can suggest items the customer likes or identify potential upselling opportunities when those items are on sale.

New customer orders take a little more time, but not much. The system provides all the spaces needed to record important data, like names and addresses. This is easier (and less wasteful) than using pen and paper. The next time your new customer calls in, their experience will be streamlined thanks to their built-in profile.

How does fast ordering with caller ID benefit your business?

  • Improves order accuracy compared to handwritten tickets
  • Builds a searchable customer database with order history
  • Increases overall customer satisfaction
  • Increases employee efficiency
  • Reduces paper waste

Caller ID Integration with Harbortouch POS

Harbortouch POS makes it easy to integrate caller ID into your system.  We provide the equipment, and you decide which station needs it. That way, areas that do not take phone orders will not be affected. Each station can operate normally and with all the tools and information needed to give your customers the best experience possible.

We currently offer three options with integrated caller ID. Chose from two, four, or eight lines, depending on your projected call volume. Small businesses may only need two lines while busier establishments can opt for eight.

Contact us today to learn more about integrated caller ID and other profit-boosting features included with Harbortouch’s point of sale system.

Need a High Risk Merchant Account for a Collection Agency? We Can Help!

Debt collection agencies need a reliable credit card processor. This service is hard to find due to the way banks view the recovery business. Some turn to platforms like Paypal or Stripe, which can work. However, you are in danger of chargebacks and monthly limits that could trigger a freeze on your account.

Why Are Collection Agencies Considered High-Risk Merchants?

The primary reason for the high-risk label placed on debt collectors is chargebacks. This industry sees a high number of this type of activity. Another issue lies with regulations. There are a lot of rules that come with debt recovery, and some firms do not operate by them. This can lead to legal problems that tarnish the reputation of the industry as a whole.

Let Us Introduce You to Instabill for Debt Collectors

We have partnered with merchant service provider Instabill to bring you reliable options for your business. Enjoy all the benefits you need to build a profitable business with less risk. Our partnership will bring you:

  • Secure Global Payment Processing

Get fast, secure payment processing that works almost anywhere. Instabill maintains a network of acquiring banks that lets them offer merchant services for a wide range of industries across the globe.

  • Accept Many Forms of Payment

Make it easier for debtors to pay what they owe by accepting more forms of payment. Instabill accepts all major credit card brands as well as Discover, Electron, Diners Club, China UnionPay, and JCB.

  • Better Fraud Protection

Fraud protection is essential in the debt collection industry. Merchant accounts are protected using a number of methods including MaxMind Fraud Protection, Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificates, 3D secure payment processing, and refund and chargeback mitigation.

Is My Collection Agency Eligible for a Merchant Account?

Instabill is an effective solution for different agencies. You may be eligible for a full-featured merchant account. See below for eligibility details.

  • Offshore Collection Agencies

Startup offshore collection agencies are approved on a case-by-case basis. Three months of business banking statements or a business bank letter are required. Instabill will also accept three months of personal banking statements.

If you are an established offshore debt collector, you will need to provide three to six months of payment processing history and statements. The statements must include the company name, total sales, returns, refunds, and chargebacks.

  • Domestic Collection Agencies

Domestic debt collection agencies must provide a valid owners identification, completed application, bank business letter or voided check, documents of incorporation, and at least three months of business banking statements.

Virtual terminal and check solutions are also available from Instabill. You will be required to provide a valid ID, articles of association, voided check or business bank letter, and the completed application.

Apply for Your Collection Agency Merchant Account Today

Getting approval for a merchant account may be easier than you think. Contact us by phone at (619) 202-4862 today to learn more or begin the application process.

7 Harbortouch Checkout Benefits for Your Retail Business

Harbortouch Checkout combines modern technology with your business’ point of sale. This is a vital stage in your customer’s experience. They expect speed, accuracy, and convenience. Checkout provides all of those things by supporting your staff with easy-to-access information, quick functions, and a reliable system. Why should you consider installing Harbortouch Checkout in your store?

  1. Reports Are Automatically Compiled

There’s no need to write down or type out data for the day. Harbortouch Checkout keeps track of all transactions and activities. The system automatically stores and compiles data so you can generate meaningful reports that help you sell more.

  1. Hybrid Cloud System Protects Your Data

What would you do if something happened to your business’ computer system? With Harbortouch Checkout, you don’t have to do anything. Hybrid cloud technology ensures that your data is safe no matter what happens to the hardware at your store. Redundant backups prevent a loss of the information that keeps your business running.

  1. Makes Time Clock and Shift Scheduling Simple

Harbortouch handles much more than checkout. Schedule shifts and manage time clock punches digitally. It’s all built-in, so you don’t have to juggle a second system. Doing it through your POS improves accuracy and saves time when calculating payroll.

  1. Discount Products the Way You Want To

Entice customers by offering special promotions and discounts. Harbortouch Checkout is equipped to handle deals for your customers. Provide an automatic discount or set a time and date to encourage customers to shop during specific hours or periods.

  1. Track Commissions for Accurate Payouts

If you pay your employees commissions, then you’ll love Harbortouch. The system is designed to handle this type of payment. Each sale is recorded. Commissions are determined based on the information you provide. Make sure everyone gets their fair share and track the overall success of your sales team.

  1. Supports Loyalty Programs That Customers Love

Customers love loyalty programs. Harbortouch Checkout supports these incentives so you can encourage repeat business. Provide reward points that add up to special savings, gifts, and more. You choose the threshold so that you know you’re selling enough to cover the offer and profit. You get more sales that are tracked in detail, and your customers feel appreciated!

  1. Know Your Inventory without Constant Counting

Long ago, the only way to keep track of inventory was to count it by hand and manually write down the totals. Harbortouch helps you stay on top of stock with automatic tracking. Input your stock levels, and the system will track the ebb and flow of your inventory. It will also provide notifications when you are low on an item so you can reorder before stock runs out.

Find Out What Harbortouch Checkout Can Do For Your Retail Business

Are you ready to find out how Harbortouch Checkout can help your business thrive? The POS system provides ways to increase sales and customer satisfaction while making it easier to run your operation. Contact us today to learn more or request a 30 day trial.

What Will Tableside Do for Your Restaurant?: 5 Reasons to Give Harbortouch a Try

Tableside iPad ordering is now available with Harbortouch POS. This technology is designed to increase efficiency, accuracy, and customer satisfaction. It saves employees’ time and allows your operation to run smoothly. Why should you try Harbortouch’s Tableside ordering system?

  • Customer Orders Are Placed Faster to Decrease Wait Times

As soon as customers enter your business, the timer begins. Patrons want to get seated and served quickly. They may not be in a hurry, but they will notice if there are delays. Tableside can help you increase speed with faster order taking. Staff can enter detailed orders that are sent to the kitchen instantly. This can shave minutes off of the process which will add up on a day-to-day basis.

  • Staff Can Spend More Time on the Floor with Your Customers

Tableside lets your staff focus on customer service rather than back-end activities. This also nurtures a relaxed, comfortable atmosphere in the dining room. Orders are sent wirelessly, so your staff wastes less time traveling between tables or tables and the register or kitchen. They can invest more time in ensuring that your patrons are happy during their visit.

  • More Customers Can Be Served in Less Time with the Same Staff

You can make more money by serving more customers in less time, all without hiring more staff. Tableside trims down your average order time. That means your employees can get to more tables each day. Faster ordering means patrons get their food sooner and depart earlier, increasing your table turns.

  • Increase Revenue with Pre-seating Drink or Appetizer Orders

Why wait until customers are seated to start generating revenue? Tableside will give your host or hostess the power to take orders while guests wait for their tables. Offer appetizers or drinks to get them started. Customers will love the five-star treatment and will be more likely to spend more during each visit.

  • Strengthen Your Image as a Modern, Up-to-Date Establishment

Strengthen your image as a modern, up-to-date establishment in your community. Tableside ordering with iPads looks sleek and is an attractive addition to your business. Customers will feel confident that they are getting the best service when they see efficiency and technology at work. It shows that you are willing to invest in your establishment and can invigorate the look and feel of your business.

Try Tableside by Harbortouch POS Today

Tableside iPad ordering by Harbortouch is available now for your restaurant, café, bar, or other hospitality business. We combine high-quality equipment with a user-friendly interface and reliable system that can do it all. Tableside can handle the tasks your staff must complete daily, like:

  • Creating and voiding tickets
  • Removing and voiding items
  • Quantity changes
  • Special requests
  • Quantity allocation
  • Custom table names and numbers
  • And much more

Contact us today to find out if Tableside by Harbortouch POS is the best option for your business.

It Is Possible to Get a Merchant Account for a Marijuana Dispensary

The cannabis industry is trying to stabilize itself, but it’s managed to gain a foothold. With the legality of it all still in question in many places, plus the risk that comes with a fledgling business, there are many factors that make banks worry. It’s not easy to take what was previously a black market operation and turn it into a legitimate endeavor. The good news is that there are ways to establish your marijuana dispensary with the payment options and protections that other companies rely on daily.

Why Are Marijuana Dispensaries Considered High-Risk?

Bringing marijuana to the light of the legal business world presents several challenges. Many financial institutions are reluctant to provide merchant account services due to the high level of risk. Their concerns include:

  • Changing laws that vary from one state to the next
  • Dispensaries could become a desirable target for burglars and scam artists
  • The stigma of operating in an industry that was previously part of the black market
  • If raided, the federal government could seize property used as collateral

Acceptance of the marijuana industry is growing, but banks are slow to get on board. Business owners are looking for ways to incorporate more financial services into their dispensaries. Some companies are stepping up and offering solutions, like South West POS Technologies. We have partnered with American Verification Processing Solutions (AVPS) to bring payment processing to high-risk businesses like those in the marijuana industry.

What Are the Benefits of Accepting Credit Card Payments for Marijuana Purchases?

Some dispensary owners have opted to keep things simple and accept cash only. This can work, but it will limit your customer base and open you up to many risks. Debit and credit cards are common in today’s society. Some people refuse to carry cash, even for small transactions. That means you will be eliminating those people from your pool of potential customers.

Counting and handling cash also creates the potential for employee mistakes. Missing money is difficult to track, and human error could hurt your profits. With payment processing services, exact amounts and related information are stored electronically, so you know it’s accurate and accessible. Not only does this greatly reduce human error, but can also increase efficiency.

While it is not impossible to steal financial information off of a computer, it is much easier for the common thief to run off with a handful of your hard-earned cash. Tracking down a criminal is much harder when they have money in-hand. Payment processing services will allow you to keep less cash in your dispensary at a time. Fewer dollars on the premises means less potential loss should someone break in.

Start Accepting Credit Card Payments Today

Credit card payments are secure, easier to count, and convenient for customers. Give your marijuana dispensary all the POS tools it needs to keep profits growing. Contact us today to learn more about our high-risk merchant account services.

Harbortouch Elite POS System Makes EMV Chip Payment Processing Easy

EMV chip cards are the preferred payment method in the United States, Europe, Malaysia, United Kingdom, and many other countries throughout the world. Small businesses that haven’t switched are missing out on potential sales as well as security features that protect you and your customers.

Benefits of EMV Payments

According to a Javelin Strategy & Research report, approximately 15.4 million consumers fell victim to identity theft in 2016. That was a 16% increase from 2015, making it the highest year for fraud that the firm recorded since 2004. In an effort to help stem the tide of unauthorized card use, banks have moved to EMV technology.

Traditional magnetic stripe cards contained information that is permanently recorded and unchangeable. If a magnetic card was stolen, the sensitive data stored on it could be used to make purchases. They were also more susceptible to counterfeiting.

EMV chips work differently. The little metallic square on the card is actually a functional computer chip. This chip will generate a unique transaction code each time it is used. The code cannot be used again. This prevents card duplication. While the system won’t completely stop theft and data breaches, it will make it much more difficult for criminals to make a profit.

What Do You Get with Harbortouch Elite POS System?

The Harbortouch Elite POS system brings you best-in-class solutions that include chip card payment processing. Retailers, restaurants, and bars can offer a better customer experience with streamlined transactions that take less time and provide advanced security protection. What else do you get with this powerful point of sale system?

  • Reduce errors and shrinkage through better recordkeeping and less human error
  • Spend less time totaling sales or calculating payroll with Harbortouch’s reports
  • High-end hardware that can stand up to the demands of any business environment
  • Hybrid cloud technology that lets the system continue working even when offline
  • Professional installation by a certified technician
  • 24-hour customer support plus comprehensive training

Accept the Cards Your Customers Prefer

Consumers must feel confident in your business before they are willing to complete transactions. The first step is accepting the cards that they prefer with the most recent payment processing technology. HaborTouch Elite POS works with all major credit and debit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover. Contact us today to find out how you can start accepting EMV chip card payments.

Am I A High Risk Merchant?: What to Do If Your Business is High Risk

Running a high-risk business can be tough. The label applies to companies that meet certain criteria that make lending or payment processing a risky endeavor. Every business owner should know whether or not they are considered a high risk before making any financial or operational decisions or applying for credit or loans.

What Is a High-Risk Business?

A bank or merchant account provider will review a number of aspects of your business to determine whether or not it should be considered high risk. The two major factors including the industry you work in and the likeliness of financial failure. The latter would include things like:

  • A new business with little credit card processing history
  • A business with a high number of chargebacks
  • A business that lost a previous merchant account due to chargebacks
  • A business that operates in countries with a high chargeback risk
  • A business with a poor credit history

5 Common High-Risk Businesses

Even if your business has a great credit history and an acceptable number of chargebacks, you could still be labeled a high risk due to your industry. Those that attract a high number of legal restrictions or commercial disputes often fall into this category. For example, after the subprime crisis, the construction industry was viewed as high risk. Banks became reluctant to offer merchant account services due to the volatility of the market. Other common high-risk businesses include:

  • Marijuana dispensaries and tobacco sellers – Many merchant processors avoid these types of sellers, especially those in the marijuana industry. It’s currently considered a legal grey area which could put the business at risk.
  • Airlines – Payment processors often avoid airlines because they have a high rate of refunds and cancellations.
  • Nightclubs and bars – Many nightclubs and bars do not accept credit cards because of elevated risk. This occurs because these venues often encounter legal problems related to underage patrons or unruly behavior.
  • Guns and weapons dealers – Guns and weapons dealers automatically come with a high level of liability, making them less attractive to a payment processor.
  • Adult industry – This industry is almost always labeled high risk because businesses operating within it often shut down which can lead to major losses. There are also many laws and regulations related to serving an adult industry business.

Where Can I Find Payment Processing for My High-Risk Business?

If you own or plan to open a high-risk business, there are options available. South West POS Technologies offers high-risk merchant services that include cash advances, chargeback protection, ACH processing, and data security. Contact us today to learn more about our high-risk business accounts.