How to Start an Authorized Payment Center

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Authorized payment centers accept payments for cell phones, electric companies, water companies, credit cards, and a host of other companies. The center works as a middle-man; taking the payment from a customer, processing it on-site, and making sure the payment goes through. Before becoming an authorized payment center, you must go through a long application process and have the funds to do the job.

Look for companies that process payments to multiple companies and give your company the option to do so, such as Phone Oracle or EmpaSys Walk-In Money Solutions. These services provide the necessary hardware that enables you take-in payments for major companies.

Read more about the process, giving you the knowledge to answer any questions your customers might have. Most systems work by processing the payment within two days, but others may take up to five days to fully process the payment. In the case of money transfers or prepaid cash loads, it typically happens within one day.

Request the paperwork from the provider. Some sites give you the option to fill out the paperwork and application online. The application covers questions about your current store, location, average sales, and what you currently sell. Complete the application and mail it back.

Install the computer, processing equipment, and software into your store. The equipment lets you connect to the network of the company and request the payment. You need the customer’s name, account number, and payment information, including a checking account and routing number if the customer pays with a check.

Hang the authorized payment center signs around your store, letting customers know that you now accept payments. Provide information on what type of services you accept and complete, including money transfers, credit card payments, and cell phone payments.

Tips & Warnings

  • You may find it easier to contact individual cell phone companies and other companies about the authorized payment center program and apply through one company at a time.
  • Keep in mind that you do not earn money for accepting payments for others. You must charge a small fee to customers, but the entire payment goes to the head company. The idea is to increase your own sales by allowing other people's customers to make payments at your store.

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