Previously I’ve outlined reasons for kicking your old “knuckle buster” (or manual credit card swiper) to the curb and upgrading to a newer credit card processing technology. In keeping with the theme, let’s check out another high tech advancement that’ll rock your world by saving time, effort & money!

Managing a merchant account used to require file cabinets full of manila folders and you sifting through date-coded piles of receipts; a painfully slow and inefficient process.

But now, with the advent of online e-merchant access, the tools are at your fingertips to quickly and efficiently do just about anything that used be manual and tedious. Even better, the technology is mature and user interfaces well refined, so you don’t need to be a computer wizard to take full advantage of all the features that you get.

Let’s take a look at the 7 benefits of hopping on the e-merchant bandwagon:

1. Easy access to your lifetime archive of statements

Everything is stored online for you, so you can start to seriously consider getting rid of your filing cabinets, because you’re not going to need them anymore!

While it’s great being able to look over your accounts occasionally to do a little spring cleaning or to make sure there haven’t been any blatant ripoffs that slipped you by, it’s generally the cranky customer filing a dispute for a charge 6 months ago who causes the most trouble.

With a manual system, you’re in a world of hurt, and you’ve gotta sift through all of your receipts by hand to find out what happened and whether your customer is living in a fantasy land or not.

With an online account, you do a quick search and that bad boy comes straight up. It literally takes about 10 seconds depending on the user interface. Gold.

It’s a true joy not having to worry about finding the right statement when you need it, and it’s even better having all that extra leg room from the extra floor space where your filing cabinets used to be!

2. Find out where your money is, right now

With real time batch viewing you won’t have to wait for weeks (like the good old days) to find out if a particular transaction was successfully performed. Find out how much you’re being paid, whenever you need to know.

And the real beauty here is that you can quickly and easily see the progress of both current and recently entered transactions. Your business will be ahead of the curve and offer superior customer service by shortening the time frame between payment and product delivery.

We all like being ahead of the curve, right?

3. What card did they pay with again

Ever wished you could get an itemized report, with a quick rundown of which cards were used by which customers? With your e-merchant account this is a piece of cake. Never wonder again if it was Visa, MC, Discover, or AMEX, as it’s all laid out for you, right there on the screen.

This is vital information as each credit card company is different, and presents different protocols for managing chargebacks, dealing with disputes, etc. Knowing ahead of time which provider you’ll be dealing with is a big win.

4. All your goods are under lock down

Don’t want hackers sneaking in to take a peek at your vital business information?

There’s nothing to worry about as e-merchant accounts are kept safe and sound under the lock and key of advanced password protection, encryption, and online security blocks.

Hard copies and receipts in your office can be susceptible to theft. And what’s worse is that in the unfortunate event of a fire, “poof” it’s all gone. Online storage of important records is without question the way to go.

5. It’s like your own private eye for fraud detection

If fraud detection and risk management are your game, then that box is ticked as well.

Managing your online emerchant account allows you to receive notification emails when a new dispute enters into the system. These e-alerts also assist in the detection of fraudulent purchases and/or chargebacks.

Probably the greatest benefit here is that your business will save a lot of money by reducing the number of “no reply” chargebacks you incur. A “no reply” chargeback is when a credit card provider automatically annuls a customer’s purchase because you did not dispute their claim within the designated time frame (usually 21-days).

What happens here is that instead of contacting you directly to ask for a charge to be reversed, the customer calls their card provider and makes the request from the back end.

While providers are legally required to contact you prior to issuing the chargeback, often the information gets lost in the shuffle and chargebacks are processed without your knowledge.

Nobody’s going to pull the wool over your eyes with your e-merchant risk management services on the case.

6. Find a needle in a haystack

Want to give yourself a migraine?

Try sifting through authorizations, receipts, settled transactions, batches and account statements when trying to find one specific tiny tidbit of information.

Pass on the Excedrin and use the powerful search engine applications provided by your e-merchant account. Rapidly pare down data by making specific queries based on detailed criteria. Search by card number, authorization code, dollar amount and more.

An added benefit here is that transaction processing tokenization removes the need for you to store credit card information locally for future research.

7. There are just too many transactions

If your business works on heavy volume and small margins, then managing your cash flow on a daily basis is core.

Sorting through hundreds or even thousands of transactions when your end-of-the-month statement arrives is not the best way to keep your thumb on the pulse of your cash flow. In fact, it might just be the worst.

Daily cash flow statements are a whiz when you log into your online e-merchant account.

Get online now

At this point I feel like I should run out and get another e-merchant account just because they’re so handy!

If I have yet to sell you on the concept of managing your merchant banking online with e-merchant access, and you need a bit more info just give me a call and I’ll talk your ear off about how it all works, and how to get it set up the quickest and easiest way.

Welcome to the new world!