You’ve made a big investment to become an acupuncturist. But you never expected to pay all these acupuncture practice credit card processing fees.To become a board-certified acupuncture and Oriental medicine (AOM) practitioner, you have to first complete a 3- or 4-year master’s degree. Then, you must pass a national certification exam and apply for state licensure. Once you set up a practice, which costs money, you’ll have a range of expenses to cover. Average overhead costs for medical practices, including acupuncture practices, range between 60% and 70% of gross revenues, according to industry research.From student loan payments to insurance premiums to acupuncture office expenses, you may feel like you continually have your wallet open. And that you can’t entirely focus on what matters: Running a successful acupuncture practice and helping your patients live healthier, more fulfilling lives. Here’s the good news: You can quickly reduce any financial stress or anxiety you may be experiencing. Take a look at your acupuncture credit card payment processing fees and ask yourself: Do I really have to pay such high fees to my merchant service provider (MSP)?The short answer is: You don’t! Here’s how acupuncturists can lower their payment processing fees and keep more cash for their practice.

How much are acupuncture payment processing fees?

Average credit card payment processing rates for acupuncture practices can vary. The chart below shows average rates by network, according to research from ValuePenguin.

Average credit card processing fees

A survey of acupuncturists who run their own practice would probably reveal more complex fee structures than a set rate per transactions. Certain merchant service providers (MSPs) may have acupuncturists on multi-tiered plans, with monthly fees and hidden surcharges. Why do MSPs do this to acupuncturists? Most acupuncturists focus on caring for their patients and improving their treatment services. Shopping for lower fees is difficult to make time for. So, MSPs charge what they can—for as long as they can. While paying a small fee per transaction may not seem like a big deal, it could actually cost your acupuncture office thousands of dollars per year.

How many acupuncture patients are paying with a credit card?

First, let’s consider what percentage of your acupuncture office’s revenue comes from credit card transactions. The Federal Reserve Bank finds that credit cards are used for 21% of transactions overall. This number has been rising in recent years.

Share of instrument payment usage per year

Moreover, credit cards are more common with larger transactions. 26% of consumers use credit cards for purchases between $50-$99 (the typical purchase at an acupuncture clinic).

Payment instrument usage by purchase amount

If patients have a larger transaction, they’re simply more likely to use a credit card. Keep this in mind! Fees for an acupuncture session typically range from $75–$95, but may be more or less at your practice. Some patients may have insurance that covers acupuncture treatment as well, but they’ll still have a deductible to meet and/or copay. So, a good portion of your patients will opt to pay with a credit card.Additionally, many acupuncture patients like to prepay for multiple visits (because there’s a discount). If a patient signs up for 10 sessions at a cost of $600, the chances of swiping a credit card are even higher. Given that your largest patient bills may be paid with a credit card, it’s possible that 50–60% of your revenue could come from credit card transactions. After all, the average value of a noncash transaction is $112, compared to $22 for a cash transaction.

How much are payment processing fees costing you?

Let’s put this into real numbers. If your acupuncture clinic brings in $220,000 per year in revenue and you have a total of $130,000 in expenses, you have $90,000 in gross income for yourself. You may be satisfied with that. $90,000 per year slightly exceeds the average income for acupuncturists, according to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics. But what if you’re paying a whopping 3% in total fees to your MSP? Considering the service you provide, 60% of your revenue could come from credit card transactions. That means the following:

  • If you generate $220,000 per year in revenue, that’s $132,000 in revenue from credit card transactions.
  • If you’re paying 3% to your MSP every time, that’s $3,960 in acupuncture payment processing fees each year.
  • If you got rid of those acupuncture credit card processing fees, your gross income could jump from $90,000 to $93,960. That’s a salary increase of 4.4%!

As you can see, it pays to take a closer look at what your MSP charges you for each transaction. Over a decade, it could put $40,000 or more back into your pocket. Just think of what you could do with all that extra money! You could:

  • Take a better vacation
  • Upgrade your acupuncture office
  • Expand your acupuncture business
  • Save more for retirement or your children’s education
  • Give more to charity

The reality is: You deserve that money you’re earning as a professional acupuncturist. The MSP doesn’t. And you should take steps to eliminate those fees you’re paying.

What fees are involved in acupuncture payment processing?

As an acupuncturist, you’re busy. So you undoubtedly want a hassle-free way to eliminate these credit card fees at your acupuncture clinic. Before you shop for the best credit card processing providers, understand the industry lacks regulations. Third-party credit card processors can charge high fees without repercussions. And they can implement opaque fee structures. To avoid high acupuncture payment processing fees, ask your MSP about:

  • Total fees: Get the effective rate (average total of all your fees). Know what the pass-through rate, interchange fees, and assessment fees are individually and as a total.
  • Note: The pass-through rate is paid by your MSP to the card-issuing bank; the interchange fee is paid to your card-issuing bank; and the assessment fee is paid to the card brand.
  • Cancellation fees: Your MSP should waive cancellation fees. Insist on it, as there’s no reason to charge this.
  • Patient refunds: If you have to refund a patient, your MSP should refund some of the payment processing fees. Don’t let this money be held from you.
  • Rate increases: These simply shouldn’t exist, especially since acupuncture payment processing fees are a percentage of the total transaction.

Eliminate acupuncture credit card processing fees with a cash discount program

What if there was a way to still accept credit cards and reduce processing fees?Yes, there is! It’s called a cash discount program.A cash discount program utilizes a unique credit card fee structure that empowers patients to select the most affordable and convenient payment method. The surcharge structure is designed to reduce your processing fees as much as possible. Cash discount programs are 100% legal and compliant, and ensure you can optimize savings on acupuncture payment processing fees. It’s a win-win for both you, the acupuncturist, and your patients. Wish to learn more about how a cash discount program can benefit your acupuncture clinic? At NadaPayments, we can set one up for you in just a few days. Click the link below or call +1 (929) 293-1800. We’re ready to help you.

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