Tuesday , March 28, 2023

Agility and the MLS: Maintaining Relevance in a Changing Market

Michael Nardy, Founder and CEO



Working through the challenges of the market, today’s MLS need to be as agile as ever, often changing their marketing approach, sales pitch, and even reevaluating verticals they tackle in order to stay competitive. Recently, the growth of Surcharging and Cash Discount programs have caused merchants to focus on the opportunity to pass card processing expenses onto their customers. While these programs can create a competitive landscape for the MLS, they should not look at these programs as a panacea to solve their own portfolio’s growing attrition and margin compression, but rather a chance to educate and engage their merchants.

The goal of the MLS, ISO and Agent salesperson in the merchant services industry has always been twofold; to remain relevant in the market and translate that relevance into a larger, more stable residual. The best MLS tailors a processing program specific to their merchant’s needs, including a wide variety of services, pricing plans, technologies, and perhaps programs such as Surcharging and Cash Discounting.

It is important to remember that Surcharging has certain requirements that must be observed, and it is essential to find the right partner that can assist with the registration and card brand requirements. Additionally, the idea of Cash Discounting might attract your merchant and, given their particular industry or customer demographic, may or may not be the perfect solution to their business needs.

Electronic Payments has spent nearly 20 years building and perfecting tools and programs for the MLS and ISO channels, and has seen first-hand the growth of over 1,000 successful partners. Notes from these success stories are as varied as the individuals behind them. Some agents have perfected an integrated omnichannel approach, leading with a combination of new payment and POS technologies. Others have grown through the value or money-saving model, competing against a current offering by lowering a client’s processing costs. Still, others have gained a deep knowledge and understanding of the myriad card brand rules and offer programs that benefit from enhanced Interchange qualification, such as Level III processing and similar Interchange Optimization programs.

While many of these programs are new or en vogue, the point of any competitive ISO or MLS is to not take a one-sized fits all approach as it relates to pricing and technology in your merchant program offering. Find and align with a company that shares your values, develops and markets new and cutting-edge technology, and supports the countless pricing and processing plan options in the market. As a payment processing consultant, you are well positioned to develop programs that satisfy your interests, as well as those of your merchants and their valued customers.

Connect with Keith Ashcraft, Director of Corporate Recruiting, to learn more about how Electronic Payments can grow your ISO.

800-966-5520, ext. 223 | keith@electronicpayments.com

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