While not considered a high-risk industry, the Tobacco Industry is sometimes treated as such by some merchant processors. Part of the reason for this is due to the vulnerability of chargebacks experienced by the industry through online sales. Because online sales are harder to validate accurate identification, online retailers often are subject to a high rate of chargebacks. A chargeback occurs when a credit-card provider holds retailers accountable for losses from disputed or fraudulent purchases. No matter how exclusive your line of cigars and tobacco products might be or how upscale your clientele is, you are still considered a high-risk account if you are an online retailer. Of course, the more chargebacks you have, the higher your risk rating. But simply the act of selling cigars or tobacco online can be enough to label you as high-risk.

Whether you’re a brick-and-mortar retailer, an e-commerce merchant, or you sell products both on and offline, some credit card processors will try to capitalize on the perception of your industry and charge exorbitant rates and fees. Sometimes these rates can change without notice, making it harder for you to plan other operations and expenses.

Finding the lowest processing rates for your business requires understanding the processing industry and time to do your due diligence. Here are some tips on what to look for:

  • Ensure that processors offering low rates, are not in reality, offering low introductory rates that can increase after a few months or after the first year. That information is often included in a disclaimer on the bottom of the processor’s website or sometimes buried in your contract’s small print.
  • Ensure you know the current chargeback rates and how much higher the rates can get if your rates can increase.
  • And, of course, what level of service are you getting for what you’re paying? Are you getting prompt 24/7 support, or do you send a request and hope they respond?

As you try to navigate the myriad of merchant processing options, some institutions make it their business to advance the agendas and champion your industry’s causes. One example in the Tobacco Industry is The Premium Cigar Association(PCA), the leading authority, and advocate for the premium cigar and pipe retailer industry. It is the largest, most active, and longest-running trade association representing and assisting premium tobacco retailers, manufacturers, and industry partners. The PCA has also been looking into ways to help its members get lower processing rates combined with high-quality service. After careful consideration, The Premium Cigar Association(PCA) chose to partner with Premium Tobacco Payment Processing(PTP) as an option to help its members. By selecting a solution recommended or approved by an industry association, you will benefit as the association fights to protect their industry retailers’ profits and rights while ensuring continued protection of their ability to process payments.

As a Premium Cigar Association partner, Premium Tobacco Payment Processing(PTP) aims to offer the lowest processing rates for the industry, with rates and fees guaranteed never to increase. And, they never lock you into a contract or charge a cancellation fee. Their mission is to exceed customer expectations by simplifying payment processing solutions, building strong client relations, providing service you can count on, and delivering maximum value. As a proud partner of the Premium Cigar Association, PTP always negotiates the best payment processing rates for all PCA members. If you are ready to change processors or would like a free audit of your existing processor, call Premium Tobacco Payment Processing at (321) 972-9838.

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