4 Ways to Lower Your Rate when Processing Credit Cards

At Midwest BankCentre, we know that you have a lot of choices for the products and services that power your business. That’s why we work hard every day to make sure we are partnering with companies that will help us RISE TOGETHER™ with our valued business customers.

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Just because there are over 1,000 different rates, and numerous factors that impact the cost of accepting any given credit card, doesn’t mean you are helpless in reducing your costs. There are definitely best practices that can help you reduce costs, and improve your bottom line. 

Here are 4 ways to lower your rate when processing credit cards.


2. Data, Data, Data 

If you operate in a card-not-present world (e-commerce or mail/telephone orders), the more customer information you can provide, the lower your rate will be. 

With every transaction, providing the AVS information, which is the customers’ street address and zip code, will help qualify your transactions at the lowest possible rate. Even greater savings can be achieved with Level III interchange. This is unique to business and purchasing cards. 

Lowering the rate to this level requires a substantial amount of data to be submitted, usually from a specialized gateway like the one offered by BASYS Processing.

3. Settlement Times 

Setting your terminal up for auto-settlement is a quick update to any piece of equipment and can help improve your situation immediately. 

Many merchants have not been taught that leaving transactions un-settled in a terminal for more than 24 hours actually makes those transactions cost more! 

Except for very unusual circumstances, your processor should set your equipment to auto settle at the same time every day.

4. Right Tool for the Job 

While the credit card terminal is still the standard means to accept a card payment, there are numerous other solutions, frequently unique to an industry. 

There are systems designed to accept credit cards specifically for e-commerce businesses, and systems that are designed just for restaurants. Other systems are designed to operate in a business-to-business (B2B) environment, or for companies whose primary sales are recurring monthly payments. 

Just because the terminal you’ve been using for the last 5 years technically works, that doesn’t mean it’s the best fit for you right now. 

We recommend continually working with your credit card processor to learn what options are available to you, and ensure you’re using the solution that can offer you the lowest rate qualifications and other helpful functionalities.

Stay Engaged

While these are some general ways you can lower your rate and control your costs, the most important thing is to stay engaged. Just because you’ve always paid certain fees, doesn’t mean those are fees you should still be paying.

To learn more about how Midwest BankCentre’s partnership with BASYS® Processing can empower your business to thrive, please call us at (314) 631-5500. At Midwest BankCentre, we Rise Together™.


BASYS Processing is one of those partners. A family owned credit-card processor, BASYS is committed to delivering competitive pricing and personalized customer service to make all of your credit-card transactions easy and seamless.

To make your credit-card processing as cost-effective as possible, BASYS is pleased to present blog posts like this one, which help you sort out the over 1200 separate interchange rates available in the credit-card processing market. 

When you ask BASYS “What rate do you offer?” they are ready to explain the many factors that affect the actual cost of accepting payment with a credit card – things like your industry, the customer’s card type, your processing method, and the amount of settlement time you require. 

1. Swipe or Dip 

If you have a customer in front of you, swiping or dipping the card will get you a lower rate than manually keying in the same card. Interchange rates are closely related to risk – the more risk a transaction holds, typically the more expensive it is. 

By keying in a card manually, the card brands (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express) see that as card-not-present. Any time a card is considered to be away from the point of sale, higher risk is implied, thus a higher cost for that transaction. 

Long story short: if you can see the whites of their eyes, swipe or dip the card. Do everything you can to avoid manually keying in a transaction

Midwest BankCentre believes that thriving businesses are essential to a community’s health and development, and our partners at BASYS Processing would be happy to provide you with a FREE SAVINGS ANALYSIS to show you how they can drive down your rates, ensure you are using a processing system that is the best fit for your business, and improve your overall credit card processing experience. Call Midwest BankCentre today at (314) 631-5500.