Phil Hinke's background is engineering. However, he has been in the credit card processing industry since 1994. His experiences ranges from being a salesperson to a senior vice president at one of the largest merchant account providers. He now runs MerchantFeeSavers, an educational and consulting service, and MLS Advocate, an unbiased savings-analysis-service for merchants.
He educates merchants, provides free statement audits, and helps merchants get the best processing value by negotiating with their current providers or by providing a blind bid for the merchant's processing.
Contact Phil at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit MerchantFeeSavers.
Sales over the next three months will be crucial to the profitability of many ecommerce merchants. Credit card processing costs over this timeframe will affect ... Read More »
This article is mainly for brick-and-mortar merchants, regarding the October 1, 2015 fraud-liability rule changes and misleading sales tactics surrounding the changes.
The new rules are causing a ... Read More »
I presented a Practical Ecommerce webinar last month on lowering merchant processing costs. I’ve received several questions since then regarding my views on processing statements. ... Read More »
The fact that some credit card providers periodically sneak in cost increases to their merchants isn’t new. The providers often do this with a notice ... Read More »
This is a follow-up to two topics I addressed previously on credit card processing: EMV chip cards and the American Express OptBlue program.
I described earlier this ... Read More »
This article is mostly for brick-and-mortar retailers, as the October 2015 rule changes, which I discussed in "Part 1," are specific to card-present merchants. Read More »
This article is mainly for brick-and-mortar retailers. The upcoming October 2015 rule changes regarding EMV-enabled credit cards are specific to card-presentRead More »
Business-to-business merchants often overpay for credit card processing. There are many reasons for this, but one of the main ones is they choose a merchant ... Read More »
All ecommerce merchants should take the time to review their processing statements this month before the holiday shopping season begins. Merchants need to check for ... Read More »
September 22, 2014 • Phil Hinke
In “American Express OptBlue Program May Reduce Processing Cost,” my article in July, I explained how the new OptBlue program could reduce processing rates for ... Read More »
In “American Express OptBlue Program May Reduce Processing Cost,” my article last month, I explained American Express’s new program called OptBlue. This program should lower ... Read More »
American Express recently came out with a new program called OptBlue, where the final processing rates and fees paid by the merchant are set by ... Read More »
I want to thank Practical Ecommerce readers for their comments on my last article series, “How to Identify Dubious Credit Card Processing Fees.” I also ... Read More »
Editor’s Note: This is “Part 3” of a three-part series. “Part 1” and “Part 2” we published previously.
The purpose of this series is to ... Read More »
Editor’s Note: This is “Part 2” of a three-part series. “Part 1” we published last month.
The purpose of this series is to identify dubious ... Read More »
Editor’s Note: This is “Part 1” of a three-part series.
My article last month, “Credit Card Provider Sued for Deceptive Tactics,” generated questions from merchants regarding the suit, ... Read More »
Heartland Payment Systems, one of the largest credit card providers in the U.S., stated in a press release that it has filed a federal lawsuit ... Read More »
Last month, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York approved a settlement in a class-action lawsuit between merchants (as plaintiffs) and Visa, ... Read More »
Editor’s Note: This is part two of a two-part series. The first installment, “Feds Eyeing Credit Card Processing Industry?,” we published last month.
In “Feds Eyeing ... Read More »
Editor’s Note: This is part one of a two-part series.
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission included merchant account providers in two separate lawsuits it filed against ... Read More »
Now is a good time for merchants to start noting how their provider is handling card company fee changes as well as any future rate ... Read More »
September 19, 2013 • Phil Hinke
I have addressed the importance of understanding credit card processing statements in previous articles. However, I’ve recently seen statements with little or minimal detail that ... Read More »
On July 31, 2013 U.S. District Judge Richard Leon sided with retailers and rejected the debit interchange rate cap set by Federal Reserve under the ... Read More »
Merchants periodically send me their credit card processing agreements after they have negotiated new pricing with their existing provider or when changing providers.
Usually, I find that the merchant has done a good job of negotiating rates and monthly fees. However, some of the peri...
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If you have been reading my articles, you know I do not believe business owners should give their credit card merchant statements to competing providers. Merchant statements disclose the pricing that competitors need to win over the account at the highest possible profit to them.
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Visa, MasterCard, and Discover generally change rates and terms in April and October. However, they can make changes at other times during the year, as will happen this year. Unfortunately, over the years, some providers have taken advantage of these changes by increasing their rates an...
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Editor's Note: Contributor Phil Hinke is a veteran of the credit card processing industry. He now consults with merchants to help lower their processing costs, believing the credit card industry is often unfair to them. His latest article, below, addresses misconceptions with interchang...
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Editor's Note: Contributor Phil Hinke is a veteran of the credit card processing industry. He now consults with merchants to help lower their processing costs, believing the credit card industry is often unfair to them. His latest article, below, addresses how merchants should react to ...
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I was a keynote speaker at a recent meeting of U.S. and Canadian merchants. Whenever I present, I invite merchants to bring their processing statements and their merchant contracts so I can audit them afterwards. Before starting, I always ask each merchant how often he audits his statem...
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In November 2012, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York preliminarily approved a proposed settlement agreement with Visa and MasterCard. As part of the settlement, Visa and MasterCard were required to allow merchants to charge for certain credit card transactions ...
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