Pirates or Partner – You Choose

Black Swan Commerce - Pirate vs. Partner

Written by Kim Dickerman, PCIP

Published: October 2, 2020

Ill-Gotten Booty or Value Add??


Five Challenges Associated with Electronic Payments:


  1. Electronic Payments are no longer optional. Not long ago, credit/debit payments were considered and marketed as an optional customer convenience. According to Visa, Inc’s Form 10-K, September 30, 2019, “ We are accelerating efforts to move approximately $17 trillion in consumer spending and $15-20 trillion of B2B spending still done in cash and check to cards and digital credentials on the Visa network.” Bye-bye to cash and check transactions!


  1. Electronic Payments are complex, the technologies, security standards, and compliance requirements must continue to evolve and change. Your right, it is not easy. The Transaction Ecosystem includes layer upon layer of service providers beginning with the card companies, issuing banks, acquiring banks, processing platforms, debit networks, payment gateways, and many other technologies, security, and compliance entities required for card-present, card not present, mail order telephone orders, e-commerce, mobile payments, business-to-business, person-to-person, etc. You are probably getting my point, and you haven’t even started on your own network’s firewall, switches, point-of-sale, physical and data security, and the necessary business applications. Is your head spinning yet? The computing power of the next generation computers will render today’s toughest encryption and security useless. How can you expect to acquire the broad expertise needed to do this well?


  1. Electronic Payments do not treat all legal businesses equally. Because of the high-risk profile created by adding e-commerce sales to your business, you may have just become a “high-risk” merchant without changing what you sell. The footprint for what makes a high-risk merchant is quite big. High-risk merchants have a whole nether layer of issues that need to be addressed.


  1. Banks and Service Providers with predatory billing practices. Needing the banks, vendors, and service providers required for your payments solution maybe confusing but generally isn’t the problem. The problem comes when none of the providers will step up and take responsibility for the problem leaving you with the situational cost but without options. There are actions that you can take to protect your business and profitability – We hope to have that conversation with you.


  1. Merchants are left to fend for themselves. The frustration is warranted. I’ve yet to meet a merchant that has any experience with the payment industry that is frustrated by the fees and confusion… Wanting, wishing, and hoping that they will find a partner willing to live and fight from their foxhole, they try again and again to find the anti-merchant business practices systemic.

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