A U.S.-based merchant account provider headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada, CardSmart Merchant Services was established in 1989 with expertise in serving restaurants and retail businesses. Even though it caters to all business types, small and medium-sized companies are its specialty. The provider is a verified ISO/MSP of WoodForest National Bank and Wells Fargo Bank, reselling the payment gateway services of eProcessing Network.
CardSmart Merchant Services caters to various industries, including electronics, gas stations, SEO and SEM services, moving companies, and retail stores. MOTO, e-commerce, mobile, wholesale, and MLM merchants are some of the company’s regular clients. The provider promises a lower processing fee and helps consumers grow their business significantly while saving for potential opportunities.
The company’s tech-savvy features and effective mobile and e-commerce solutions enable merchants to offer multi-payment acceptance to their customers with the convenience of paying anywhere. The contract comprises a unique set of services to match a company’s requirements. Below is a thorough CardSmart Merchant Services review listing out all the pros and cons of choosing the provider as your payment facilitator to help merchants decide if it is suitable for their business;
Products and Expertise
The provider has partnered with several organizations to provide the best online and mobile payment solutions allowing users to accept all major credit and debit card brands. Retail Management Hero, Clover, and pcAmerica are the renowned companies servicing POS solutions for CardSmart.
The company offers smart credit card terminals and payment gateway through Authorize.Net and Shift4 and facilitates EMV-compatible equipment to secure card payments. Consumers are provided a cash discount program, gift cards, and check services. They can access the company’s mobile payments app to enhance customer convenience.
Point of Sale System
Merchants are offered a variety of POS systems to choose from, depending on their requirements, to manage their back-office activities efficiently. The pcAmerica, Clover, and RMH POS solutions are designed for retail businesses, whereas restaurants, bars, and other hospitality businesses can benefit from the Vivid and Aldelo POS.
The company facilitates valuable features in its POS system, including inventory and table management, reporting and analytics, online ordering, and employee scheduling. Consumers can design, edit, and customize the receipts, labels, and reports to match their brand’s theme, change the color scheme of the graphical user interface, and audit trail reports. The provider offers multi-language and dynamic pricing support and allows merchants to suspend transactions to entertain multiple customers without wasting time.
Credit Card Terminals
According to the CardSmart Merchant Services reviews, the provider offers Clover Flex, Clover Mini, and PAX A920 credit card terminals to process in-person and mobile payments. Merchants can process contactless payments and take their business anywhere with the handheld terminal. The company enables users to secure data in the cloud and offers end-to-end encrypting to avoid potential fraud.
Consumers can optimize the inventory, split checks, and build dynamic floor plans. They can automatically apply taxes to each item, access the customer engagement tools, and print out the shipping labels and receipts with the high-speed thermal printer.
Online Payment Solutions
The company’s all-in-one payment gateways through Authorize.Net and Shift4Shop enable users to grow their online business by offering e-check services and digital payment acceptance, including Visa Click to Pay, ApplePay, and PayPal. With CardSmart’s real-time AI-driven fraud protection tools, consumers can decline and prevent future chargebacks.
Merchants can track offline and online sales, get notified when the stocks drop, and organize the online dashboard to enhance efficiency. The provider also facilitates customer relationship management technology (CRM) and return management authorization (RMA) to help businesses communicate with customers and save fulfillment costs for declined payments.
CardSmart Merchant Services Fees and Contract
CardSmart binds its clients to a three-year contract with a tiered pricing plan and an undisclosed early cancelation fee. The provider does not offer information about its rates and agreement intricacies. However, based on some CardSmart Merchant Services reviews cited online, merchants pay a per-transaction rate of 1.19% to 4.99% for swiped and keyed-in payments.
In addition to the company’s average transaction rates, consumers pay a $0.05 payment gateway and an $8 to $10 monthly fee depending on the eProcessing network’s rate for the POS system. The provider does not disclose the rest of its charges.
Merchants are offered domestic phone support during business hours, and an offshore tech support number is available 24/7. A contact form and an email address are mentioned on the official website. However, these options are not entirely dedicated to customer support. The company also provides a knowledge base for its clients.
Marketing and Sales Practices
As evident from the CardSmart Merchant Services reviews, the provider uses a combination of telemarketing and independent sales organizations to market its brand. Hiring ISOs has aroused many complaints against the company, and merchants are unsatisfied with the irresponsible sales team. Moreover, the provider does not disclose all the necessary information and hides details from its consumers. A third-party statement audit would be wise for merchants to detect any hidden charges they may face in the future.
CardSmart Merchant Services Reviews and Concerns
Being a small-scale service provider, the company does not have many complaints against it as it manages to keep the negative reviews from reaching the public. It is evident from the lack of positive reviews that the reason behind the company’s low complaint rate can be that merchants do not prefer posting their experiences online.
The most commonly cited complaints against CardSmart include high rates, unexpected charges, irresponsible sales agents, and an unresponsive customer service team. Consumers are dissatisfied and frustrated about the provider not disclosing its rates and trying to scam new merchants.
Better Business Bureau Report
The company does not have a worth-mentioning FTC report or lawsuit against it. Moreover, it is not accredited by Better Business Bureau and does not display any rating by the review platform. There are no formal or informal negative reviews against CardSmart on BBB. Although, a BBB rating is not enough to prove a provider’s excellence.
CardSmart Merchant Services Loopholes
Maintaining a low complaint volume can be a positive sign when choosing a payment facilitator. However, in today’s fast-moving world, even small-scale businesses can find ways to avoid negative publicity and criticism, but these ways are not always morally right.
Based on the few CardSmart Merchant Services review cited on consumer protection websites, the sales agents practice unethical marketing tactics and try to force merchants into signing up with the company. The provider lacks price transparency and does not offer adequate customer support. Here are the most common complaints against CardSmart;
The company does not offer transparency to its clients and fails to disclose its virtual terminal rates, ETF, and PCI compliance fees. Its equipment lease terms are a mystery, and merchants are not clarified about the online processing rates. CardSmart does not mention that consumers will pay the additional eProcessing Network rates for the transactions processed through its POS. Unrevealed fees can cause serious trouble for merchants after signing the contract.
Irresponsible Sales Team
The provider’s sales team has received the maximum number of complaints because of its unethical approach to attracting new clients. CardSmart Merchant Services reviews show that the telesales representatives keep calling people, asking them to upgrade to the company’s merchant account but fail to answer any questions. The sales team schedules meetings but avoids putting their promises into writing, wasting merchants’ time. The company does not send any email confirmation indicating that the agents make false claims.
Inadequate Customer Support
CardSmart only reserves a general phone support line and an email address for its clients. These options are limited and inadequate to rate the company as a reliable payment facilitator for its customer service. Merchants are not offered any live chat option for quick assistance and are not assisted by a dedicated account manager to help them through the process. The company’s consumer service is below average and needs significant improvement.
Multiple complaints show merchants are deprived of honest quotes and forced to pay unexpected charges after signing up with the company. They are dealt with unspecified fees that keep surprising them on their monthly statements. Since the provider does not clarify anything, unexpected charges cause distrust among its clients and disturb their budget. Charging unclarified fees is a huge drawback and an obvious red flag when choosing a payment facilitator.
As deduced from this CardSmart Merchant Services review, the company can be a decent payment facilitator if merchants carefully examine its contract terms and gather all the necessary information before signing up. The provider manages an impressive low complaint rate, but consumers should clear all the bases before deciding. They are advised to negotiate the rates and ensure they are offered price transparency. Instead of trusting the sales agents, they should try keeping everything in writing in case they are being dodged.
Indecisive consumers are advised to look for a service provider they can trust without a doubt and can hand over their business without worrying. They should hire a third-party audit to eliminate hidden fees and ensure they are not paying for more than they are served.