20 July 2009

3 Best Ways of Opening a Merchant Account for a Successful Middle East Business

To open a merchant account even if you are in the Middle East, you need to first decide whether to go for a local merchant account or an offshore account.  Next, canvass and compare merchant account providers based on their features, fees, and conditions.  Lastly, decide which one best fits the needs of your business and follow certain provider instructions for application.

A merchant account facility allows your online business to grow.    Through acceptance of credit cards and its other added services, it enables you to cater more local and international clients.  Here are some simple steps to guide you in opening a merchant account even if you are situated in the Middle East:

Choose whether you should go local or offshore

Before you start to compare providers, you need to think first if a local or international merchant account is more suitable for your online business.  Think about the fees and other conditions that go with each type of merchant account.  If you choose to go local, your fees will be lower compared to international accounts since it involves less processing, but with certain limitations.  This type of account allows you to accept only your local currency.  International customers can purchase but the currency conversion will be reflected only when their credit card bill arrives.  An offshore merchant account, on the other hand, allows you to accept multiple currencies, but for higher monthly fees.  This may not be suitable for you if your business is new or small as it eats up your profits or sales.  If you apply for an offshore account, there could be tax benefits, thus lowering your expenses.  There could also be other conditions that govern its home country.  Another factor you need to consider is the stability of your country.  If it is economically unstable, you may consider applying for an offshore account to avoid getting your account frozen in times of crisis.  Choose a stable offshore institution from a more stable country to avoid future problems and losses.

Canvass and compare merchant account providers

Now that you have decided to get either local or international merchant account, can start browsing merchant account providers.  It is always advisable to compare before you choose in order to come up with what's best for you and your clients.  Compare all the important factors that comprise them, such as the basic and added features, the fees, and their contract with you.  Research company feedback and reviews in order to get the most of what you will be paying for.

Select your provider and follow their instructions for application

After carefully comparing, select the best merchant account provider that suits your needs and follow their instructions for application.  Applying for an international merchant account will further be advised to incorporate in the home country of the bank once your application has been approved.  After this, the processing of your application will then be completed.

In our fast-paced Internet business world, it has become a necessity to open a merchant account in order to increase your sales.  It is the manner of choosing your merchant account that matters most in making your business more profitable and more efficient for you and your customers.

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