Tag Archives: credit card payments

Proper Transaction Documentation for Manual Sale

Completed carbon manual imprint sales slip must be included with every manually keyed-in transaction

Example of a fully executed manual sales slip

Manually keyed-in transactions processed by non-internet/non-MoTo (Mail Order/Telephone Order) type Retail Merchants must be accompanied by a completed carbon manual imprint sales slip. The sales slip must be run through a “knuckle-buster”/manual imprinter and must be signed by the cardholder.

Information on sales slip must include:

  1. Imprint of card number
  2. Signature
  3. Date
  4. Amount of item(s) purchased
  5. Authorization code
  6. Description of item(s) sold
  7. Sales tax
  8. Grand total

How To Process a Partial Authorization

Note: A Partial Authorization message will only appear during a sale when the card swiped does not have enough funds available to complete the entire sale and the Issuer approves a partial payment.

Reverse the transaction if customer decides they do not want partial payment authorized on the card that was being used.

STEP 1
Press ENTER to confirm. Your screen will display:

Amount Due $X.XX
PARTIAL APPROVAL

STEP 2
Advise customer of amount due and ask for another form of payment.

STEP 3
The receipt prints out. It will look like the following sample:

Receipt showing a partial authorization

Will Social Media and Pay Per Click Ads Signal The End of Print Advertising?

The cost of a 1/8 page ad in a local business paper is $765 (give or take a hundred bucks).

That’s $765 for a 5”x2” splash of ink, buried deeply inside the bowels of a newspaper.

How many times can you run this tiny print ad before you go broke? How can you measure the ad’s effectiveness? You don’t even know where the ad will appear until it’s printed!

Print advertising is expensive and difficult to track. Yet so many companies rely on it because it’s “the way we’ve always done it” (and they have the money to spend). Yet they’re probably not getting the most bang for their buck.

After reading this article, you’ll know how to outsmart the “big guys” when it comes to pre-testing and tracking your advertising’s effectiveness.

The secret method to both testing print ads before they run and deploying a successful marketing campaign spending about one-sixteenth (or less) of what you’d have spent if you went with print alone is to…

Test your ad copy and artwork before it prints with Google AdWords and Facebook ads!

Google AdWords

Have you ever heard of Google AdWords? If not, Google it! Or go to http://adwords.google.com. If you need to create an account with Google, do it. When you perform a search using Google, those ads you see off to the right of your results – and sometimes above them – are all Google AdWords Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising . Check out Google’s support site for detailed how-to information.

By spending some time writing headlines and copy in their AdWords space, you can see EXACTLY how effective certain words are by how many times someone has “clicked through.” It’s completely measurable from within Google’s interface. And instead of paying $700, you can start with as much (or as little) money in your AdWords account as you feel comfortable with. A click generally costs anywhere between $.05 and $20 depending on how popular your keyword is. Create a few campaigns using different keyword combinations and see which perform best.

Think your keyword is expensive? Check out Google’s Top 20 Most Expensive Keywords. Insurance ranks #1 at $54.91 per click!

Google AdWords accounts for 65% of the PPC industry. However, you can’t effectively test IMAGES in these ads. Images won’t show up on the Google search page, only on partner “display network” sites, and setting those up is a whole separate article.

Facebook Ads

The other way to affordably test copy and artwork pre-print is to do exactly the same thing using Facebook PPC advertising. Their platform allows you to write a headline, ad copy AND upload an image. Try out different pictures, colors, calls-to-action and see what works best. Keep in mind the image is VERY small, so be sure to pick a clear, clean image. Use images with people’s faces – they yield more clicks than those without.

A caveat with advertising on Facebook is that unless your content is “share worthy,” it’s not likely to be very effective. Your ad has got to get someone’s attention and drive them to click or “like” your ad. This takes some trial and error before you find the perfect mix.

B2B advertising on Facebook is difficult because the bulk of Facebook folks are on the site for personal use. Still, testing your ad on the mega social media site is a great way to test copy and design for a fraction of the price.

So is print advertising going the way of the Dodo?
As long as printed magazines and newspapers remain in circulation, advertising in those mediums will remain an important tool in every marketer’s arsenal. However, smart businesses will TEST their message’s effectiveness using the methods I’ve outlined above before spending big money. I predict this shift in advertising will result in smarter advertising: fewer bad ads, more creative, engaging headlines and better targeted ads overall.

So be smart, save money, see better results.

To get weekly tips on how to better manage your business’s social media presence along with helpful SMB marketing advice and payments industry news, “LIKE” Velocity Merchant Services on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/getvms

 

5 Easy Ways to Get Started With Social Media for Your Business

With 350+ social media sites available to you today, it’s really a lot to wrap your head around. You’re probably asking yourself a lot of questions, like:

  • What sites should my business have a presence on?
  • How do I get my page set up?
  • How much time should I spend each day on social media?
  • Is it really worth my time?

Depending on your industry and your customers, investing your time into a social media strategy will reward you with a big payoff – in time.

Before we get started, one of the keys to understanding the effectiveness of building and maintaining your social media strategy is that it’s not some magical button you just push. You can’t set up your company’s Facebook page and then all of a sudden customers start calling you.

The purpose of social media is to BUILD RELATIONSHIPS over time, where you become a trusted, fun, informative voice in your industry for them to “tune into,” almost like setting a preset station on your car radio. Keep that golden rule in mind as you work on executing your social media strategy.

TIP #1: Pick 1 Site and FOCUS Your Efforts

You’re just one person – you can’t adequately maintain Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Yelp, YouTube, and Google+ all at once. Sure, if you’re a Fortune 500, you have a team of social media strategists updating all those sites for you full-time! But in reality, if you try to stay on top of every social media site at once, THAT would become your full-time job…and you’ve got a business to run!

Create either a Facebook business page or a LinkedIn profile page linked to your LinkedIn company page. Twitter is popular, but it requires a lot more constant daily content in order to keep fresh. Whichever you choose, make that page your business’s one-stop shop.

TIP #2: Post Something Fresh Each Day

There’s nothing worse than arriving on a business’s Facebook page and seeing it hasn’t been updated for 4 months. It gives the impression that you either aren’t active, are inept at this whole “new-fangled technology thing” or that you might have gone out of business. If you can’t dedicate yourself to updating your page frequently – at least once a week – it’s better not to have a page at all. Having fresh content really helps you connect with your followers. Posting frequently gets your name in front of the eyes of your customers every day. Even if they’re not looking to buy your stuff today, they might be ready tomorrow. You’ve got to be there to remind them.

Take 15 minutes each day to get things moving on your page. Start taking pictures of your office or store. Introduce new members of your team. Start a “customer of the week” program. Ask for feedback from your followers. Engagement opportunities are endless, which brings us to…

TIP #3: Share Engaging, Relevant Content

Content is king. One mistake I made when getting started updating the ole company Facebook page was thinking I needed to create brand new content every time I wanted to share information with our followers. THAT was overwhelming! Until I realized that I was already spending a lot of time reading articles and news about things that affect small businesses.

Now when I read something cool, I share it on our page! Consider your primary customers: what would help them? What would they be interested in reading? Whatever it is, share it on your page. Over time, you become a great resource to them for interesting, helpful stuff!

For example, a local dog obedience business I follow shares news about dog training best practices, top dog foods, overcoming behavioral issues and dogs available at the local shelter. Because I’m interested in those things (and I’m a customer of hers), I follow and read those updates and it positions her as someone who’s really involved in her industry. You can engage your customers in this way, as long as you can figure out what they want to see.

TIP #4: Social Networking – Offline

I JUST learned this one, and it’s really effective for B2B relationships. In order for this to be really easy, you’ve got to join your local chamber of commerce. They have all these networking events where you meet TONS of prospects, and get OODLES of leads. Once you’ve got their cards, go find them on LinkedIn or Facebook. Write them a quick note so they remember you, then FRIEND or FOLLOW them. They’ll be happy to build their own networks, and they’ll especially appreciate the “Like” on their business page. Plus it makes you look like you “get it” – you know, this whole social media thing.

TIP #5: Ask Questions. Post Offers.

What you really want to do is find ways to get your followers to ENGAGE with you. Ask their opinion of something, or ask them what they think of the ProBowl coming before the SuperBowl. You’re able to start a CONVERSATION this way, and it helps you appear more human than just “some company online.” Posting offers does this, too, but it elicits a direct response from your reader. Try posting a $10 Off coupon as your status message and see what kind of traffic it drives to your business.

To get weekly tips on how to better manage your business’s social media presence along with helpful SMB marketing advice and payments industry news, “LIKE” Velocity Merchant Services on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/getvms

As Illinois’ leading credit card payments processor for small to medium-sized businesses, Velocity Merchant Services is dedicated to providing business owners with all the tools they need to run their company better. By the way…find out how you can save 30% or more on your credit card payments processing THIS MONTH by visiting Velocity Merchant Services ASAP!