Can sole proprietors accept credit card payments?
The answer is absolutely yes. But you have to be aware of payment processing fees. Because they’ll hurt your bottom line.
For instance, let’s say you’re a professional organizer. You’ve undergone lots of training and spent money marketing your services. You even got a mobile credit card processor to make payments easier for your clients. But after getting a steady flow of clients, you discover one thing: You’re not earning as much as you’d like as a sole proprietor. To earn more, you could increase your prices, but that may lead to fewer clients. Fortunately, there is another option.
You could get rid of credit card processing fees.
In fact, if you stopped those fees, you could boost your profits as a professional organizer by $2,000 to $5,000 per year. Yes, you read that right!
But wait! How can you eliminate credit card processing fees?
In this article, we’ll show you how self-employed individuals can get free credit card processing and begin earning more (and living better).
Why you need the best credit card processing for sole proprietors
Let’s go back to the example of the professional organizer. Let’s say you’re a sole proprietor and do good business tidying and arranging offices, homes, and retail spaces. Each year, you see roughly 200 clients and earn an average of $500 per client. That means you have revenue of $100,000 per year. After expenses, you have $60,000 left as your own income. That’s about 15% more than the average salary of a professional organizer (PayScale).
You have all the reason to be happy with that sort of pay. However, you could be doing much better as a professional organizer.
And all you have to do is stop paying credit card transaction fees…
As consumer data from Statista shows, 40% of people prefer to swipe the plastic.
Moreover, credit card usage rates increase as the value of the transaction goes up, according to Federal Reserve research. So, if you accept credit cards for your professional organization services, it’s possible 60% of your revenue comes from credit card transactions.
If you have $100,000 in revenue from your professional organizer services, that means $60,000 is subject to fees! So, how much are credit card processing fees?
After adding in the merchant service provider markup, chances are you’ll pay more than 3% on average. If you pay an average fee of 4% on average across that $60,000 in revenue, that means you pay $2,400 in fees!
Now, imagine if you could make that $2,400 in fees go away. Poof! It’s gone…
Your income would jump from $60,000 to $62,400. That’s a salary increase of 4%! And all you had to do was get better credit card processing.
Think of all that you could do with that extra $2,400. You could save more for retirement, take a nicer vacation, or put money away for your child’s education. You could even expand your business and achieve greater success as a professional organizer.
The point is this: You earned that money. You don’t have to give 3% or more to payment processing companies. You can take home 100% of your revenue!
Motivated to look for better credit card processing for sole proprietors yet?
Let’s discuss how self-employed people can get the best credit card processing. Here’s the good news: It’s not that complicated.
It actually involves two easy steps…
Step 1: Find the best payment processor for sole proprietors such as professional organizers, tutors, and artists
To find the best merchant service provider (MSP) for professional organizers, tutors, artists, and other self-employed workers, do the following:
- Narrow your selection to MSPs that offer pass-through pricing (and avoid tiered pricing). Here’s why:
- Generally, pass-through pricing is not only more affordable, but the fees are made clear as they’re passed directly to your business.
- With tiered pricing, transactions get categorized as ‘qualified’, ‘mid-qualified’, or ‘non-qualified’, and it’s not always clear how a client’s payment gets classified in a certain category. You often end up paying the higher fee ranges, which makes tiered pricing both confusing and more expensive.
- Select a few MSPs with a good combination of low fees, quality software and hardware, good customer service, and experience with sole proprietors like professional organizers. Here’s what you should look for with processing fees:
- Interchange fee: The card-issuing bank charges this.
- Network fee: The card network charges this.
- Assessment fee: The card-issuing brand charges this.
- MSP markup: The payment processing company charges this in the form of per-transaction fees, 24/7 support fees, PCI compliance fees, software subscription fees, and other charges.
- Negotiate the MSP markup. While you can’t negotiate what you pay Visa or Mastercard, you can negotiate with payment processing companies to lower their markup. We’ve seen sole proprietors cut 5-10% off the MSP markup, which could save you hundreds, if not thousands, per year.
After doing all that, you should know which payment processing company to choose. There are many good credit card processing companies that serve sole proprietors. You just have to shop for the best ones and negotiate!
Step 2: Implement a cash discount program at your sole proprietorship
Now, you may think: Even with the best credit card processing for sole proprietors, I still have to pay fees. So, how can I get rid of payment processing fees altogether?
Here’s how to close the gap: Implement a cash discount program. As the term suggests, cash discount programs give clients a discount for paying in cash.
For instance, if you’re a professional organizer and use NadaPayments’ cash discount program, your clients could get up to 3.95% off by paying in cash. If they pay with a card for your professional organization services, they pay the standard price (which accounts for payment processing fees). Since the credit card price offsets fees, this means you don’t lose any money to payment processing fees as a professional organizer.
Thanks to the Dodd-Frank Act, sole proprietors can implement cash discount programs. It’s completely legal! And it’s quite easy to do.
Interested in a cash discount program? At NadaPayments, we’re ready to help sole proprietors get the best credit card processing. Contact us at +1 (929) 293-1800 or click the link below.