I used ClickBank exclusively for the first three years I was online. It was easy to set up, the initial cost was minimal, and they had a great reputation.
ClickBank charges you a percentage of the sale price of an item plus a $1.00 per transaction for any sale you make through their service. This can be higher than having an actual Merchant Account/
The disadvantage of working with ClickBank is that you are limited to just digital products.
In having my own merchant account, I save over 5% as well as having a cheaper per transaction fee. That is a huge difference. Also, the money is directly deposited into my bank account within two to three days. It’s a really big benefit to be able to get your money faster.
There are other costs when setting up a merchant account. You can pay upwards of $195 for the setup fee on a merchant account, but in the long run, the savings of having your own are huge and I recommend that you look into that.
Another benefit of having your own merchant account is if you have a retail business and accept cards in your store, your processing fee is only less because the actual card is present.
When you set up your merchant account, be very careful that you classify it properly. That includes what kind of volume you expect to run through, what your high ticket price will be, your average ticket sales, etc.
If you start doing business outside the parameters you set up with your merchant account, you can get into problems. I can attest to that. I have quite a story about losing $2.1 million dollars with a merchant account.
You want to pick a merchant account company who understands the Internet marketing community. Because the companies change their fees and policies I will not recommend any particular company at this time.
When classifying what you sell, you should have a very generic description for the type of products you market. I recommend something such as “online digital products” so that kind of covers everything, at least for digital type products. Be as generic as possible, so it’s not going to lock you into a specific product.
You don’t want to say you sell teddy bears because if you sell teddy bears one day, and you want to sell an eBook the next, your merchant account can come back and say you’re not approved to sell eBooks. Therefore, they can hold your money. That’s how it works, like it or not.
Whenever you see your business volume start to increase dramatically, you want to call your merchant account and let them know that you are having a good week, a good month or a good year, etc.
Tell them, “I just want to let you know that we’re having a lot of sales coming through, and you’ll be seeing more volume from us in the future.”
Always let them know what’s going on and get whatever you talk about in writing from the person you are talking to. If they agree to do something, you have to get it in writing in order to protect yourself.
You always want to assume that you’re building a case for the worst possible scenario. So, get everything documented from your merchant account.
Play by their rules so you will be the one winning in the end. You want to establish a mutually beneficial relationship with your merchant account provider so you can lay the groundwork for a long and solid partnership.
A good alternative to having your own Merchant Account is, Stripe.com .