What’s the Cost of Not Monitoring Your Cost of Acceptance?

Every major retailer accepts credit card payments across the varied channels that consumers use to shop.  With this acceptance comes myriad processing fees, ranging from direct and understandable, like a per transaction fee, to fees described with esoteric acronyms on merchant funding statements that only the most experienced experts on the acquirer team can explain. Since payment processing fees can be one of the most significant expenses a retailer has, how can you stay on top of your cost of acceptance and ensure margins aren’t eroding in an increasingly challenging macroeconomic environment?    

Erika Curtis, Lead at W. Capra Consulting Group, shared, “Payments and treasury teams are already involved in nearly every major initiative plus management of the day-to-day operations.  Increasing and changing fee structures from both your acquirer and from card brands semi-annually, new additions to your card payment acceptance stack, and countless other changes added to the scope of monitoring your cost of acceptance can be a very daunting task.  Having a third party like W. Capra to help you monitor these costs, offer education and knowledge and even architecture changes can be vital to keeping these costs in check.”

You don’t know what you don’t know

With endless payment data applications in 2024, it’s unreasonable for any individual within a retailer to not seek outside help and verification.  Curtis elaborated, “We do not operate like most organizations who will do a cost of acceptance analysis; the savings we find are your savings and we live to help merchants succeed.  Furthermore, we offer education, knowledge and full technological expertise to help you tackle these challenges, not just a data algorithm for review of your processing statements.  For instance, many acquirers do not readily inform merchants that you can test a new payment product in QA to see its impact on interchange and flow through to costs–this is beyond just a testing lens, and actually offers quite the financial safeguard.”

Seems complicated – where do I get started?

At W. Capra, we work with a wide range of clients on their cost of acceptance interchange analysis, Network fees and optimization.  Curtis added, “We have some clients who are champing at the bit to get us to do an analysis twice annually after Visa and MasterCard announce their changes to make sure they aren’t missing anything, even if they have teams tasked with this review.  We also have many clients who need help from the initial analysis all the way through to architectural recommendations and implementation.  Realistically, it’s a lot like going to get some regular maintenance work done on your vehicle– you may have a major repair at one point, but if you get your oil changed and tires rotated quarterly, you can keep the Lilliputian from become Brobdingnagian.  For instance, considering how the increase for Mastercard  assessments, account inquiry fees, partial auth or transaction integrity programs  will impact your cost of acceptance will be vital.” 

Erika Curtis cares deeply about leading W. Capra clients in reducing their cost of payment acceptance and corresponding impacts. For further discussion, contact Erika Curtis at [email protected]

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