Intuit Merchant Services: an Alternative

Intuit merchant services are a great way to accept credit card payments inside QuickBooks.  From any of four stages inside QuickBooks–Sales Order, Sales Receipt, Invoice, and Received Payments–you can accept payments directly inside the program, so you don’t have to schedule time at the end of the day to go through a stack of invoices and enter all of your payments once again.  The work’s already done for you!  It’s an ideal solution for MOTO (mail order/telephone order) businesses, eCommerce businesses, and even retail businesses that see many customers per day.  But, Intuit merchant services come with strings attached, and they seem to leave many merchants struggling in vain to find an alternative to their processing method.  Some even elect to process outside QuickBooks simply to avoid paying the extra expense.

Why so expensive?

Intuit merchant services benefits greatly from using a three-tiered pricing structure for most of its customers.  Essentially, this lumps all 350+ types of credit cards into just three categories, each of which are assigned a single price.  The price isn’t even close to an average cost, however; it’s always on the higher side, always padded with a markup, so the processor employing that fee structure stands to make a good chunk of change.  But, it’s simple, so it seems to be better.  The Intuit merchant services tiers look like this:

This category is reserved for debit cards. Regulated debit cards are always quite cheap for a processor to accept, just 0.05%. That means if you accept a $10,000 transaction, it costs the processor just $5. However, Intuit merchant services charges around 1.5%–sometimes as high as 1.69%–for those transactions. For the same $10,000 transaction on a debit card, Intuit would charge $169. At worst, that’s a 3280% percent price increase.

You’ll find consumer-type rewards cards here. These are a bit pricier to take than debit cards, in the neighborhood of 1%-1.5%. For a $10,000 transaction at 1.5%, your processor would charge you $150 plus a nominal markup. However, Intuit merchant services prices those cards at about 2.5%, sometimes as high as 2.69%. That means for the same $10,000 transaction, Intuit would charge $269. At worst, that’s a 79% increase.
This slot is for business-type, corporate-type, and government-type purchasing cards. These are the most expensive kinds of credit cards to accept, usually around 1.9%-2.6%. So, for a $10,000 transaction, you might pay $260. Intuit merchant services charges a premium for these cards, anywhere from 3.4-3.96%. Worst case scenario: you pay $396; that’s a 52% price increase.

With pricing like that, it’s easy to see why so many search for an Intuit merchant services alternative.  For reference, the names of the tiers don’t correspond to anything–they’re completely fabricated categories.  It seems appropriate to mention at this point that Intuit is not the originator of the three-tiered pricing structure; they’re just following a very successful pricing format proven over the years.

intuit merchant services

The Alternative to Intuit Merchant Services

Pricing is clearly an issue for merchants who want to use a QuickBooks credit card integration, so Century Business Solutions hopes to counteract that concern with a module of its own.  Century’s processing module gives users the same functionality as the module Intuit provides to their own customers.  As with Intuit’s module, clients using Century’s module can accept credit card payments at any (or all) of these four sales stages:

  • Sales Order
  • Sales Receipt
  • Invoice
  • Received Payments

Upon receipt of the payment, Century’s QuickBooks credit card processing module marks the corresponding invoice as paid and makes the appropriate notations in Accounts Receivable (AR) and the General Ledger (GL).  There’s no work to do at the end of the day as the module takes care of all of it for you.  But, the module makes payments easier even before the end of the day.

For example, your current credit card procedure might look like this:

  1. Walk over to the physical credit card terminal.
  2. Key customer’s credit card information into terminal.
  3. Keep your receipt, print out a paper invoice, and staple the two together. Keep a pile of these stapled invoices.
  4. At the end of the day, make sure the amounts you charged the customers’ credit card correspond to the numbers inside QuickBooks.
  5. Mark all unpaid invoices as paid.

Whereas, with Century’s integrated QuickBooks solution, it would look more like this:

  1. Key customers’ credit card information into QuickBooks. Invoices are marked as paid automatically.

intuit merchant services

Are there any downsides?

None at all.  The reason Century’s integration is much cheaper than Intuit merchant service theirs is so we have a competitive advantage, especially in the B2B realm, with businesses accepting a good number of purchasing and spending cards.  The idea is that we can drum up business rather quickly by offering the gift of better pricing and convenience to merchants.  After all, many merchant services providers can offer to lower prices.  They can even promise you superior service and a household name to boot.  But, hardly any of these processors or companies can give you more time in your day by simplifying your existing procedures.

Century offers these items to its merchants as a package:

  1. FREE QuickBooks credit card processing module – a true Intuit merchant services alternative, at no charge.
  2. Guaranteed lower base costs on business-type credit cards, corporate credit cards, and government purchasing cards.
  3. No FEES on: installation and any necessary upgrades
  4. FREE in-house customer support team based in Irvine, CA, available 24/7. Calls are never outsourced.
  5. Chargeback management Services at NO Costs: in the event of a chargeback, we notify you via email and phone and advise on the best course of action.
  6. Only ONE bank account debit per month
  7. Only ONE processing statement per month (as long as you accept less than $1,000,000 in American Express volume).
  8. Our virtual gateway, which makes running reports and searching for past transactions a snap–perfect for audits, too.
  9. Mobile apps, which make on-the-go transactions and trade show purchases a snap.

How to get started or apply:

You can use the sidebar to your right or the button below to request a walkthrough of our credit card processing module.  We’ll prepare a savings comparison for you so you know exactly what the pricing difference will look like for you.  There’s no obligation at all to switch–and savings are guaranteed.