If you are a merchant or business owner with experience in credit card payment processing, you will already know how draining this type of payment can be in terms of business expenses.
Every time a customer makes a credit card payment to your business, you are charged a processing fee of between 3% and 4% of the purchase. Over time, the monetary losses caused by these fees can be detrimental to businesses.
This is why more merchants are implementing cash discount programs today than ever before!
Cash discount programs provide an incentive for customers to pay with cash or a check instead of by card, allowing you to minimize your payment processing fees, get faster access to your funds, reduce reversed transactions, and potentially encourage more people to visit your business!
Before you can implement a cash discount program, though, you will need to choose the best payment processor for cash discounts. That’s where this article comes in.
We’re going to be recommending and reviewing 3 amazing cash discount program providers for merchants that will help your business to grow and make more profits in no time!
We’re also going to be walking you through the process of choosing the best cash discount program provider for your business and answering a few important questions about cash discounts!
The Best Cash Discount Programs For Merchants
One payment processing provider that offers a competitive cash discount program for merchants is Moonlight Payments.
This company has helped businesses to survive the pandemic by leading them through the process of implementing business strategies (including cash discounts) to increase profits as well as brand visibility.
Moonlight Payments has partnerships with 30 leading banks, meaning that the company is highly efficient and is easily able to get deals for customers. Because it works with so many banks, the services provided by Moonlight Payments are widely compatible.
One of the major advantages of using Moonlight Payments is that it is particularly useful for hybrid ‘bricks and clicks’ businesses that operate both in person and online.
Businesses like these need a flexible payment provider that will offer a cash discount program for in-person sales while also taking care of the e-commerce side of the business.
If your business is in the restaurant, health and wellness, retail, or mobile industry, you’re in luck, because these are the industries that Moonlight Payments specializes in.
As you can see, this is a very diverse range of specializations, which is convenient for business owners but also demonstrates how knowledgeable the professionals at Moonlight Payments are.
Speaking of knowledge, if you ever have a question or a problem about your payments, Moonlight Payments will connect you to an experienced professional who will answer all of your queries instead of someone who is new to customer service and will have to transfer your call to someone else.
If you’re a relatively new business or an existing business looking for new ways to get the word out about your brand, Moonlight Payments also has the tools to help you in this area.
Moonlight Payments can provide a range of digital products to enhance your business’s online and in-person presence, leading to even more profits on top of what the cash discount program will earn you.
- Partnered with 30 leading banks – Widely compatible
- Supports e-commerce – Perfect for online and offline sales
- Specializes in a range of industries – Perfect for retail, restaurant, health, and mobile businesses
- Direct communication with experts – Highly professional customer service
- Brand-building services – Offers digital products for brand recognition
If you’re looking for an affordable payment processing service with a beneficial cash discount program and numerous other benefits for merchants and customers, MiCamp Solutions might be the best option for your business.
MiCamp Solutions offers 0% credit card processing for a fixed (and affordable) monthly fee. This means that by creating an account with MiCamp Solutions, you can get rid of all of your costly credit card processing fees.
But that’s not all! In addition to providing a cash discount program for customers paying with cash, the company also provides discounts for debit card users.
This means that you’ll be providing an incentive for many more people to buy from your business, instead of just customers who want to pay with cash.
On top of that, there’s no minimum purchase and the system accepts contactless payments, so MiCamp Solutions is very convenient from the customer’s perspective.
You can use MiCamp Solutions with any other platform, and it’s compatible with many payment devices, so incorporating MiCamp Solutions into the daily running of your business won’t cause you any unnecessary stress.
However, if you ever want to cancel your MiCamp Solutions subscription, you will need to pay a fairly high cancellation fee, which can be frustrating after you have put effort into making money for your business.
- Unlimited 0% credit card processing – Massive savings
- Fixed monthly fee – Consistent and affordable
- Debit card discounts – Incentive for customers
- Compatible with any platform – User-friendly
- No minimum purchase – Designed for customer convenience
- High cancellation fee – Difficult to change providers
BMO Harris is a high-risk credit card processing provider. The company issues high-risk merchant accounts to businesses without forcing business owners to go through the difficult process of obtaining a merchant account through the traditional pathways.
One of the drawbacks to high-risk merchant accounts, especially those that offer cash discount programs, is the fact that funds have to sit in the account for some time before all the processing fees can be deducted.
However, with BMO Harris, you get to enjoy fast processing times for easier access to your funds.
Additionally, this payment processor provides protection against chargebacks, so you won’t have to worry about the fees that chargebacks can incur for your business.
One of the most important things to look for in a merchant account provider, whether cash discounts are offered or not, is security features. BMO Harris provides state-of-the-art security that massively lowers your risk of having to deal with fraudulent payments through your business.
You can also rest assured that BMO Harris is PCI-compliant, so legal concerns won’t keep you awake at night with this provider.
It is important to remember that this is a payment processing service aimed specifically at high-risk businesses, however.
You can still use this service if you’re a medium or low-risk business, but the costs are higher for these business types, so if you own a business that isn’t high-risk, you might be better off choosing a different provider.
- PCI-compliant – 100% legal
- Fast processing times – Quick access to funds
- Protects against chargebacks – Minimizes chargeback fees
- Innovative security features – Low risk of fraud
- Higher fees for low-risk businesses – Not the best choice for all businesses
Choosing A Cash Discount Program For Your Business
As you can see from our top 3 recommended payment providers for cash discount programs, these programs aren’t all the same. They offer different, unique benefits, and they also have their own sets of drawbacks.
That means that before you choose a cash discount program for your business, you’ll need to think about which one is likely to be the best fit.
When we were looking for the best cash discount payment providers for merchants, we prioritized the following factors, and we think you should, too!
1. Does It Accommodate Cash Discounts?
This might seem like it should go without saying, but you’d be surprised at how many merchants assume that most payment processors and point of service (POS) systems accommodate cash discount programs as a rule.
If you want to implement a cash discount program in your business, you’ll need to look specifically for programs that offer cash discounts.
Additionally, some providers that do offer cash discount options are fairly limited, meaning that their automatic options for price reductions and discounts aren’t very flexible.
Ideally, you will want to avoid inflexibility when it comes to your cash discounts so that you can implement discounts that result in affordable, competitive pricing for your specific business model and that can be built around your existing processing costs.
2. What Is The Overall Cost?
You will also want to consider the overall cost of your processing program for your business.
Of course, since your payment processing program will offer cash discounts, the hope is that you will be able to save money in the long term.
However, it is important to consider these savings in the context of the additional costs of implementing a cash discount program. This includes monthly fees as well as the cost of set-up, cancellation fees, and PCI compliance fees.
Some payment service providers make an effort to minimize additional costs by reducing chargeback fees and removing credit card processing fees. However, you may come across hidden charges in the form of cancellation fees, for example.
That’s why it’s so important to make sure you understand all the potential costs you might incur through implementing a cash discount program so that you can make an informed decision about whether this is really the best step for your business.
3. Is It Secure And Legal?
As a business owner, it is your responsibility to ensure the security of both your business and your customers when it comes to payments. For this reason, we recommend investing in a cash discount program with a provider that offers high-level security features.
Security features from a payment service provider might include a payment gateway to conceal a customer’s payment information or detection services that help to prevent fraud and identity theft.
These are very important because they ensure that your customers can feel safe doing business with you, and they also help to protect you from legal implications.
Speaking of legal implications, please check that the cash discount program you choose is PCI-compliant. PCI compliance means that a provider meets all the necessary security standards.
If your program is not PCI-compliant, you could find yourself in trouble with the law because your cash discount program may not be legal, so this is vital information to have before you begin the process of signing up.
4. What Transactions Does It Facilitate?
You’re reading this article because you’re looking for a payment provider that will enable you to offer a cash discount to your customers. However, it’s also crucial to look at the different payment methods and transaction types that each provider facilitates.
For example, does the provider support e-commerce? What kinds of credit and debit cards does it accept? What are the fees for different payment methods?
We talked about the importance of calculating the total costs earlier in this guide, but the costs of different payment methods specifically will be a factor in deciding whether a provider’s services fit with your business.
5. Are There Any Additional Benefits?
At the moment, you’re probably focused on the money your business could save by implementing a cash discount program, but there are definitely some other benefits to consider when opening a merchant account with any of the above providers.
For example, some providers will offer extra digital services to expand your brand in the e-commerce world.
Services like this will be especially useful if you’re operating a ‘bricks and clicks’ business because your in-person retail will benefit from the cash discount program while your online presence will be improved by the additional features.
Other potential benefits of payment providers that provide cash discount programs for merchants include chargeback protection, waived processing fees,
Cash Discounts Programs For Merchants: What You Need To Know
What Is A Cash Discount Offer Program?
A cash discount offer program is a way for businesses to incentivize their customers to pay with cash rather than using plastic. This is done by offering them a discounted price if they use cash instead of a card.
For example, let’s say your store offers a 2% discount to all customers who pay with cash. Someone paying for a $100 item with a debit card would pay the full $100, while someone paying with cash or a check would get $2 off their purchase, for a total of $98.
When you offer a cash discount program like this, it encourages your customers to pay with cash because they know they’ll save money.
This also benefits you because unlike with credit card payments, you won’t have to pay a credit card processing fee, and you’ll have faster access to your funds.
What Are Cash Discount Merchant Services?
Cash Discount Merchant Services programs are designed for businesses that accept tips for employees, such as bars or restaurants.
A cash discount merchant services program involves subtracting any additional charges incurred by a customer paying for a credit card out of the gratuity amount entered by the customer into the card machine.
Say, for example, some customers pay $150 for a meal. In addition to paying for the cost of the meal, the customers also leave a 15% tip for the server, which comes to $22.50. However, the cost of the credit card transaction for the merchant is 3%.
In this case, 3% is deducted from both the original amount and the tip. That’s $4.50 deducted from the original total and $0.68 from the tip, which goes to the processor. The employee will receive the amended tip amount of $21.82 and the merchant will receive $145.50.
Why Do Companies Offer A Cash Discount?
There are several reasons why companies offer a cash discount.
First, they want to encourage people to pay with cash. If someone pays with cash, there’s less risk of fraud since there’s no credit card number on file, which means that the merchant won’t have to risk involvement in cases of identity theft.
Second, they don’t have to charge an extra fee to process a credit card transaction. This saves the company money in the long-term, as long as the discount offered to customers who choose to pay with cash is less than the charges for credit card transaction processing.
Third, when customers know that they can get a discount if they pay with cash, instead of being surcharged for paying by card, they are more likely to want to do business with a company.
Those customers who can’t or don’t want to pay with cash can still pay by card without having to deal with any extra charges on top of the posted price.
That means they won’t have a problem continuing to visit the business because there is no change in the prices they were already paying. On the other hand, customers who do want to pay with cash will have more incentive to purchase products from the business.
What Is The Difference Between Surcharge And Cash Discount?
Many merchants are reluctant to implement a cash discount program into the running of their business because they are worried that they may be accused of surcharging their customers.
Surcharging means that a business places an additional fee on transactions made by card to deter customers from making card payments.
While surcharging is not illegal in the United States in the same way as it is in the United Kingdom, there are still restrictions on this practice in 10 U.S. states, including California, Texas, and Florida.
Surcharging is not the same as a cash discount program, though. A cash discount is an incentive, in the form of a discount on the posted price, for customers to pay with cash or a check.
A surcharge is an additional fee on top of the posted price for customers who choose to pay by card, and it acts as a deterrent. You can see why a cash discount program seems like a much more customer-friendly business practice than surcharging!
How Do You Implement A Cash Discount Program?
You may have decided that a cash discount program is the way forward for your business, but do you understand how to implement one?
If you don’t implement your business’s cash discount program correctly, you could find yourself in legal trouble, so it’s very important to know the rules before setting up your new payment program.
In addition to creating a merchant account with a cash discount payment processor, you will need to do the following things to make sure that your cash discount program is legal:
1. Put clear and accurate signage at the required locations to let customers know that they can get a discount of a certain amount if they pay with cash.
2. Display the discount on the customer’s receipt in a way that is clearly readable.
3. Make sure to offer the discount verbally as well. This ensures that there can be no disputes if a customer has not seen the signs.
What States Have No Cash Discount?
Cash discounts are legal all over the United States, in all 50 states, so there are no U.S. states that don’t offer cash discounts as a rule.
With that being said, surcharges are illegal in the U.S. states of New York, Texas, Oklahoma, Maine, Colorado, Kansas, Florida, Massachusetts, Connecticut, California, and Puerto Rico.
Since it’s easy for a cash discount program to turn into surcharging with a simple mathematical error, it’s important to have a strict and foolproof system in place if you’re planning to offer your customers a cash discount in any of these states.
The best cash discount program merchant account providers are Moonlight Payments, MiCamp Solutions, and BMO Harris.
All of these cash discount programs are PCI-compliant and do not involve surcharging, so they can be implemented in any U.S. state without legal repercussions. Your customers will benefit from your new cash discount program and your business will thrive as a result!
Remember to calculate the total monthly cost of each program and weigh it up against your existing business budget to ensure that your chosen cash discount merchant account provider is the best choice for your business.
Learn more about cash discounting and how it all works in our merchant processing directory.
Paul Martinez is the founder of EcomSidekick.com. He is an expert in the areas of finance, real estate, eCommerce, traffic and conversion.
Join him on EcomSidekick.com to learn how to improve your financial life and excel in these areas. Before starting this media site, Paul built from scratch and managed two multi-million dollar companies. One in the real estate sector and one in the eCommerce sector.