Account Types
Account Types

When it comes to credit card processing, there are a number of routes you can choose to go if you wish to offer it in your store, restaurant, or place of business. You can go with the standard route, and opt to offer it at your cash registers and front counters. You can try out the virtual system, turning your website into an online store and new sales venue for your business. Or you can even consider mobile options, which let you accept credit card processing on the go. Not sure which is best for you? See below to learn more about card processing account types and how to choose the right one for your brand.


Types of Card Processing Accounts

When it comes to credit card processing, you have three major account types from which to choose from: standard, wireless, and virtual.


Here’s how each one works:

  • Standard merchant account – This is your traditional type of account. It allows you to accept credit card processing in your brick and mortar location, usually at the front counter, near the cash register, or somewhere else in the checkout process. You can also use it for central and handheld point-of-sale systems through the store or restaurant.
  • Wireless merchant account – This type of account is the newest to hit the payment market, taking advantage of the increasing popularity of smartphones and tablets. With a wireless merchant account, you can turn these devices into bona fide card processing solutions. Using a simple card swiper that plugs into a headphone jack, an easy-to-use application, and a web-enabled phone or tablet, this system allows you to accept credit card processing anywhere in the world. It’s great for service providers that are always on the go or businesses that want to expand their offerings to new, off-site venues.
  • Virtual merchant account – A virtual merchant account is used to accept credit cards online – through your website. If you’ve already got a brick and mortar location, this type of account can be used as an add-on, allowing you to turn your website into an online store and opening up a brand new sales venue for your products and services. If you’re just starting out, a virtual merchant account can provide you with a great way to start making sales without too much overhead investment.


Although all three account types offer the same thing (credit card processing), each provides a different set of benefits and opportunities for your business. You may opt to use just one or, depending on your company, you could see advantages by using all three simultaneously.


How to Choose Your Card Processing Account Types

Deciding which account types to use can be difficult – especially if you’re just starting out. If you’re not sure where to start, consider these factors when evaluating card processing account types:

  • Your products. Are you products best sold in a physical, in-store location? Is it a viable option to sell them online or on-the-go? If they’re easy to ship, a virtual account may be a great option. If not, you may want to go with a standard account or a wireless one.
  • Your customers. What are your customers like? Are they local? Would customers from far away like to buy your products? If your products are in demand in faraway places, using a virtual account to sell them online may be a good idea. You could also go with wireless processing, and take your products and services on the road.
  • Your future plans and goals. Are you looking to expand in the future? Do you want to open up new sales venues? Do you want to grow your business? A standard merchant account is great for the status quo, but if you want to start venturing into other opportunities, a virtual or wireless merchant account may be a better option.


Need help deciding between account types? Contact Total Apps today. We’ll help you determine the best possible way to accept credit card processing at your company.

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