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How to Avoid Credit Card Processing Downgrades

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Most merchants are billed under a 3-tiered pricing schedule. Merchant Services refer to a downgrade as to when a merchant processes a card that has a higher cost associated with it than standard consumer cards. Actions or lack of can also cause downgrades regardless of the card type. It is important to know what will cause downgrades to save your business the most money possible. You cannot always prevent downgrades, but this article will guide you in the right way to avoid as many as possible.

Retail / Swiped Accounts

Qualified Rate - is charged when all of the following occur:
  1. Credit card is swiped
  2. Standard consumer credit card is used
  3. The transaction is settled or batched out within 24 hours
Mid-Qualified Rate - is charged when any of the following occur:
  1. The credit card is manually entered or keyed in and AVS information supplied
  2. A reward card is used
Non-Qualified Rate - is charged when any of the following occur:
  1. Credit card is manually entered or keyed without any AVS info
  2. A Corporate, business or government credit card is used
  3. A MasterCard WorldElite rewards card is used
  4. An authorization is made, but not captured until after 24 hours
  5. The transaction is not settled or batched out within 24 hours
Internet or Keyed Accounts - such as an Internet Merchant Account

Qualified Rate - is charged when all of the following occur:
  1. Standard consumer credit card is used
  2. All required information is entered including AVS
  3. The transaction is settled or batched within 24 hours
Mid-Qualified Rate - is charged when any of the following occur:
  1. A reward card is used
Non-Qualified Rate - is charged when any of the following occur:
  1. Any of the required information is not entered
  2. A Corporate, business or government credit card is used
  3. A MasterCard WorldElite rewards card is used
  4. An authorization is made, but not captured until after 24 hours
  5. The transaction is not settled or batched out within 24 hours

Credit Card Processing Articles
  1. Why Should you Accept Credit Cards?
  2. The Different Types of Merchant Accounts
  3. How to Avoid Credit Card Processing Downgrades
  4. Merchant Account Responsibilities
  5. The Different Types of Credit Card Machines
  6. What is a Merchant Account?
  7. Why Avoid Credit Card Terminal Leases?
  8. 3 Ways to Save Money on Credit Card Processing
  9. Credit Card Processing Checklist
  10. Pros & Cons of Credit Card Processing
  11. What to Expect in Your Monthly Statement
  12. The History of Credit Card Processing
  13. Recent History & Future of Credit Card Processing
  14. The Different Organizations of Merchant Services
  15. The Glory Details of Disputes, Retrievals & Chargebacks
  16. Understand All the Risk with Merchant Services
  17. Factors & Guidelines to Merchant Service Underwriting
  18. The Life Cycle of a Credit Card Transaction



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