National Retail Solutions (NRS) is committed to providing small businesses with the resources they need to effectively facilitate sales, leading to satisfied customers and continuous growth. One of these resources is NRS Pay, our credit card payment processing service. Credit card processing is an essential capability for businesses today, but figuring out how to deliver on customers’ expectation for this service can be difficult for some small businesses. NRS makes it easy and affordable with NRS Pay.
What Is NRS Pay?Paying with a credit card may seem as straightforward as paying in cash, but it’s not. Whereas cash payments only involve the customer and the merchant, credit card payments involve the customer, the merchant, a credit card network, an issuing bank and a credit card processor. NRS Pay is a credit card processor offering low rate credit card processing. If you don’t currently accept credit and debit card payments at your business, then you may not be familiar with how credit card processing works. From the customer’s perspective, it’s as simple as swiping the card, confirming the payment and receiving the receipt. The whole process only takes a matter of seconds. The process should also appear simple from the merchant’s perspective, but a lot goes on behind the scenes to make this transaction possible. This is where credit card processing comes in. Businesses can only accept credit card payments if they have the proper hardware for swiping, inserting or tapping cards and a credit card processing service. The credit card processing service is a third party that handles the steps that make it possible for swiping a plastic card to result in a bill for the customer and money in your bank account. For each transaction, a small percentage goes to the processing company to cover the fees involved in credit card processing.
How Does NRS Pay Work?So, how does this process work? Credit card processing is a complicated ordeal, but NRS Pay makes it simple and convenient for both customers and merchants. Let’s start with the basics. Credit cards are issued to consumers through banks. The bank that issued your customer a credit card is known as the issuing bank in the world of credit card processing. Even though credit cards come from banks, these cards are also associated with credit card networks, also called credit card associations, the most prominent of which are Visa and Mastercard, followed by American Express and Discover. Your bank is known as the acquiring bank. These various players need a facilitator to aid in the transfer of funds from a customer’s account to your bank account. This facilitator role belongs to the payment processor, also known as the merchant service provider (MSP) — in this case, NRS Pay. NRS Pay sets payments in motion and ensures that all steps are completed so you get paid right away. Now let’s take a look at the steps involved in credit card processing with NRS Pay:
1. AuthorizationTo initiate the process, you need a credit card reader that is integrated with your point-of-sale (POS) system and serviced by an MSP like NRS Pay. When a customer inserts their credit card into the reader, the machine sends the information contained in the card to the credit card network. After receiving the card information, the credit card association sends the information on to the issuing bank.
2. AuthenticationThe issuing bank plays the essential role of quickly checking for potential fraud and determining whether the customer is authorized to make the sale or whether the sale should be declined. The card reader will signal to the customer that the transaction was successful or not based on what the issuing bank determines. Once the transaction has been authenticated, the cardholder’s issuing bank will add the purchase amount to the cardholder’s account.
3. Clearing and SettlementYour payment terminal keeps track of all of your approved transactions and holds onto them before sending them off in a batch to the MSP, typically at the conclusion of each business day. The processor sends this information on to the credit card network, and the network sends off each individual transaction to customers’ issuing banks. Funds bounce around among the different players once more so everyone can deduct the necessary fees before the money posts to your account.
Service FeesCredit card networks require a small assessment fee for each transaction. Issuing banks receive interchange fees for their service. These fees are consistent from bank to bank since they are set by the credit card associations. Credit card processing companies also take a fee for their service of facilitating the process. From your perspective as the merchant, you will see one amount deducted from the money posted to your bank account. NRS Pay will let you know what this deduction is for each transaction. This amount goes to cover all the fees, so NRS Pay will only keep a fraction of that fee, known as the discount rate. Don’t hesitate to ask questions about fees and how they are determined. NRS is committed to transparency and fair fees for all our services, including NRS Pay. With NRS Pay, you can choose from two pricing models:
- Flat rate: One option that works for any business is to pay a flat rate of 2.49% plus $0.10 for every transaction. This covers all the fees taken out by the banks and credit card networks, as well as by NRS Pay. This makes NRS Pay one of the cheapest credit card processing services for small businesses.
- Custom rate: Another option for businesses who process over $10,000 a month in credit card transactions is to set a custom rate. NRS Pay can work with you to determine the best rate that will cover all the fixed fees, as well as the discount fee, and help you save money. You can request a free quote if you’re interested in what this rate might look like for your business.
What Are the Advantages of Using NRS Pay?So, why should you add credit card processing through NRS Pay to your business? When you partner with NRS Pay, you cash in on some valuable benefits:
1. You Can Accept All Popular Payment TypesWhen your payment processing capabilities are limited, you risk losing business from some customers. The preferred method of payment for most shoppers is a credit card, followed by a debit card. You want to deliver on customers’ preferences and expectations to pay with a card. With NRS Pay, you can accept both credit and debit cards, as well as EBT payments, eWIC payments and the up-and-coming mobile wallet payments from Apple and Android. You can even convert checks into digital payments with NRS Pay. This means that, no matter how your customers prefer to pay, you can accept their payment and will never have to turn down a sale due to payment processing limitations.
2. You Can Access Your Funds QuicklyWith some MSPs, you may have to wait multiple days after a transaction before the money is posted to your account. But with NRS Pay, you’ll typically receive your money within 24 hours. This means the amount in your account will be kept up-to-date so you always know how you’re doing rather than wondering how much should actually be in your account if it weren’t for all those pending payments. When funds make it to your bank account quickly, your business can enjoy a steadier cash flow.
3. Fees Are Affordable and StraightforwardWe already talked about the fees involved with credit card processing. Since there are so many players involved, it’s no wonder that fees can seem a bit complicated. From your perspective as the merchant, however, the fee you pay to process credit cards should always be clear and straightforward. With NRS Pay, processing fees are transparent and fair so you don’t have to worry about paying unfairly marked-up charges for every credit card transaction. Instead, you can benefit from accepting credit cards in your business without losing too much of your profits to inflated fees.
4. Your and Your Customers’ Data Is Kept SecureYour bank account information and your customers’ account information should always be kept secure. NRS places a high priority on maintaining your and your customers’ financial security. We’re aware of common risks for small businesses and will help prevent issues of fraud and security breaches. Another way we prioritize security is by providing credit card readers for chip cards, meaning they are equipped to accept EMV chip cards. These cards are designed to be far more secure than older credit cards, so having a machine that can capitalize on this added security is a huge plus. If you don’t have an EMV chip reader and you encounter a security issue, your business could be liable.
5. Payment Processing Is Compatible With the POS+You should have a modern POS system to facilitate credit card transactions. Some merchants struggle to piece together different pieces of equipment and integrate them to work together. You can avoid this hassle and take advantage of cutting-edge sales technology by using the POS+ from NRS. The POS+ is an all-in-one POS system, meaning all the hardware and software you need to facilitate sales are seamlessly integrated into one system. This includes your EMV card reader, as well as a touchscreen terminal, customer-facing screen, cash drawer, receipt printer and barcode scanner. With the POS+, you’ll also gain valuable features like inventory management, store statistics, an automated customer loyalty program and more.
6. You Have Access to Excellent Customer SupportCustomer service is a critical component of any company you choose to partner with, but it’s especially important when it comes to choosing an MSP. With NRS, our team will take care of setting up your hardware and software so you can start strong. We’re also committed to providing assistance as you figure out how to use your new system. We’ll be here to answer any questions along the way and help you solve any potential problems that come up right away so your business never misses a beat. When you want to partner with a caring and responsive MSP, choose National Retail Solutions.
What Stores and Businesses Can Use NRS Pay?Any business can partner with NRS as its merchant service provider, but we specialize in working with small businesses. Some MSPs are used to working with large companies that process a high volume of sales every day. You want to work with a small business credit card processing service, preferably one that is familiar with your industry in particular so they understand the everyday challenges of running a small business. NRS Pay understands small businesses, and we provide solutions to enable your small business to accept credit cards and offer a fully modern checkout experience for customers and management tools to help your business succeed. Some examples of small businesses that can benefit from using credit card processing from NRS include:
- Convenience stores
- Liquor stores
- Tobacco stores and vape shops
- Grocery stores
- Retail stores
- Dollar stores
- Produce stands
- Meat markets
- Beauty salons