I reluctantly entered the field of credit card processing (merchant processing) about 10 years ago.  I say reluctantly because even then credit card processing reps had a bad reputation…ranking up there with used car salespersons and life insurance salespersons…no offence intended.

I decided that I could still maintain my dignity and keep my moral compass pointing in the right direction so I agreed to join a large processor.  All was good for a while.  I was making very good money and I had great benefits.  But I am a learner.  I yearn for information. I have to be an expert at whatever I am doing.  I have to understand it inside and out.

My employer was not teaching me so I started digging.  I found something called interchange plus pricing.  It seemed like it would be a great selling point so I asked permission to start selling using this model instead of the “bundled pricing” model my employer required us all to use.  Well, that did not go over very well.  I was told no and when I pressed I was told it is not nearly as profitable.

Around the same time my employer started doing massive rate hikes affecting all of my clients…some of which I had just signed up.  When I asked why they did this, I was told my accounts were not profitable.  My next step was to run an analysis on a large portion of my portfolio using their old pricing, interchange plus pricing and the new pricing after the rate hikes.  What did I find you may ask?  I found that the accounts were very profitable under the old pricing.  Not only that, but I also found that we could reduce their rates and still be profitable.  I decided to bring this to the attention of some executives.  That did not go well.

I decided it was time to move on.  I had asked around and it turned out everyone I spoke to within the credit card processing industry was concerned with one thing…themselves and their riches.  After a short break (about 3 months) I decided to go back into credit card processing, but on my terms.  I decided that there has to be someone who will advocate for business owners in the credit card processing industry. I felt that I could still make a fair wage while offering great rates, service and not holding people hostage with contracts.

Well it turns out I was right.  No, I don’t make as much as most other reps in the business of credit card processing, but I do well enough and I still have an unbroken moral compass and my dignity…and I can sleep at night.  Now I am trying to spend more time educating people about credit card processing so they can make better decisions and not get into bad situations with expensive outcomes.

That is why I founded Merchant Owl.  You see, I love owls.  I see them as noble and wise.  One day, not long ago I was trying to figure out a catchy name for my business and I thought to myself, if I were an animal, what would I want to be (a game I play with my kids sometimes) and I thought an owl because they are intelligent and noble…not to mention they look really cool and they can fly!  Welcome to my blog.  Stay posted and get ready to learn about merchant processing.



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