What is Required to Become a Payment Services Provider?

The requirements to become a payment services provider can seem daunting at first glance, but when taken one step at a time, and with competent and experience help along the way, it’s not impossible. Many other companies have gone down this road before, and yours can as well.
If you’ve been in business for a few years, it’s only natural to consider the possibility of cutting your costs and improving your processing by become a payment provider, but you should be warned that there will be challenges. Some of the challenges include: compliance, building relationship, governmental regulations, and budgeting. All of these and more need to be considered.
Here are some of the biggest obstacles you’ll encounter and estimates of how much each is likely to cost.
Establishing relationships with acquirers – This could be the most important factor to your success in providing payment services. Acquirers can take their time getting around to your needs. With a little persistence, though, you’ll make the connections you need. Establishing the integrations can run as high as $15,000 and take some time, but showing the acquirer that you are serious and approaching the relationship properly can pave the way.
Compliance – Fraud is a very serious issue. To be certain that you’re doing everything you need to do to prevent it, you have to establish a PCI (Payment Card Industry) compliant platform for your system. You don’t have to create your own, you can use one from a company such as firehost. A PCI audit runs about $25,000 and is required to be done on your infrastructure and your policies and procedures. The cost for a hosted PCI compliant server can run $3,000 or more. If you prefer to host it yourself, you’ll have to maintain a dedicated data center.
Tokenization – Credit card tokenization is required to minimize your PCI scope. This requires special hardware, or can be done by a third party.
Registration – Fees must be paid every year to the credit card companies (Visa, Mastercard, and others). This doesn’t require any real action beyond paying the fees, but you do need to factor in this cost.
Gateway Software – Payment gateway software is the crux of your payment processing, and some options are better than others. Licensing a full-features gateway can range from $50,000 to $250,000. This will be your biggest expense, but a good gateway will simplify the whole project.
Certifications – Finally, you have to be able to connect your gateway to the processors that are supported by your acquirers, one more cost that must be accounted for in your budget.
If you’re prepared to manage each of these issues, you’ll find yourself well-prepared to act as a payment facilitator. The process is not a simple one, but neither are many other parts of running a business. It doesn’t have to be difficult for a company that has taken sufficient time to prepare.
The experts at PayVisors are experienced in guiding companies down the path to becoming payment service providers. Let us help you, too.
To talk to someone about how we can facilitate the process and minimize many of the challenges you will encounter, call us today. We’ll help you become a payment services provider as quickly as possible with a minimum of hassle.