Wells Fargo introduces card processing service for small businesses

Source: Wells Fargo

As credit and debit card payments become increasingly popular methods of payment for consumers, expanding payment acceptance options beyond cash and checks gives small business owners an opportunity to grow sales and improve cash flow. In an industry first, Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC) now offers Wells Fargo Merchant Checking (Merchant Checking), combining the convenience of a full-service business checking account with fast and secure credit and debit card processing at a flat, low discount rate.

Merchant Checking allows small business owners to begin accepting credit and debit card payments and have access to funds as soon as the next business day in the associated business checking account - simultaneously meeting two core business needs.

Available at a flat rate of 1.99% plus $.30 for all signature-based Visa and MasterCard transactions, Merchant Checking provides a simple pricing structure applicable to all card types, including rewards cards, as well as for both keyed and swiped transactions. With this pricing structure, Merchant Checking offers more predictability and cost controls, easier and more manageable account statements, and improved efficiency. The product is ideal for smaller businesses accepting in person card payments, such as nail salons, dry cleaners and doctors' offices.

"As the industry moves toward electronic payments, small business owners need to offer their customers convenient and secure payment solutions," said Debra Rossi, executive vice president and general manager of Wells Fargo Merchant Services. "Wells Fargo's new Merchant Checking package product provides small business owners with an all-in-one solution that is secure, simple and affordable to help them remain competitive and manage cash flow in today's environment."

According to a 2006 American Bankers Association study, credit and debit cards are now consumers' preferred method of payment, while cash and checks account for less than half of consumers' monthly payments. Other industry research indicates that by accepting card payments, small business owners can potentially increase revenues by as much as 23 percent.

"As America's number one small business lender, Wells Fargo is committed to developing products and services to help small businesses succeed financially," said Rebecca Macieira-Kaufmann, executive vice president and head of Wells Fargo's Small Business Segment. "Acquiring and retaining customers is critical to small businesses. Merchant Checking provides small business owners the ability to expand their customer reach by offering a selection of payment options that are convenient for their customers and improve their cash flow."

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