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How Retail Processing Works - Tips on Setting Up Your Retail Merchant Account


Although retail merchant accounts are the most straight forward types of merchant accounts, you still will want to educate yourself on how to set up the account. Follow the tips below and you'll avoid some of the possible pitfalls of setting up a retail account. Give yourself enough time: While it's true that most merchant accounts can be set up in a day or two, it does sometimes take longer. It's a good idea to start thinking about setting up a merchant account at least a few weeks before you plan on using it. While you will probably be pleasantly surprised about how quickly you get set up, nothing could be more nerve wracking than waiting for the delivery of your credit card terminal on your businesses opening day. You will have plenty of other challenges in those last few days before you open your doors.
  1. The merchant slides the customer's card through the credit card terminal and enters the amount. The terminal dials a toll-free number and connects to MSG's processor for authorization. Once the terminal has connected it will send the credit card information and amount of the purchase.

  2. MSG's processor will then pass that information onto the bank that issued the credit card. The issuing bank will then check to see if the card is valid and see if the amount requested is available on the card and set aside the amount of the purchase for the merchant.

  3. The issuing bank will send back an approval number or a decline message to MSG's processor.

  4. The information will be passed back to the credit card terminal which will print a receipt for the customer to sign if the card is approved. It will take approximately 12-15 seconds to complete steps 1-4.

  5. At the end of the day the merchant may manually "settle" their terminal which will begin transaction. In most cases MSG can automatically settle the transactions at a specified settlement process is initiated the funds will be transferred from the card issuing bank a electronically deposit them into the merchant's checking account. It typically takes two time of the original transaction for the funds to reach the merchant's checking account.
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