Common Terms Related to Retail Merchant Services

03/28/2014 09:59

Whether your business is a one person establishment or large retail store, the benefits of retail merchant services are numerous. Deciding to implement retail merchant services can help your business prosper by allowing your customers the ultimate in payment convenience. 


When setting up a retail merchant services account for the first time, there are some terms you should become familiar with in order to get the most out of your service. You will see these terms when making transactions, looking over retail merchant account reports, and when troubleshooting any issues that may occur. 


Common Retail Merchant Service Terminology


Authorization Code: This code is usually a six or seven digit number which appears on transactions that were sent through your terminal. This code can help merchants and banks identify certain transactions and their result; therefore, they should be kept for future reference if a transaction issue does arise.


AVS: AVS refers to address verification service. When processing a sale, the merchant may sometimes be prompted to enter a street address or zip code of the cardholder for verification purposes. If the address or zip does not correlate with the information provided by the customer, there may be a problem executing the transaction.


Batch Processing: Batching or batch processing refers to the pay out of a batch of transactions at once. At the end of the day, most merchants batch out their total sales; which finalizes the transactions and begins the process of settling the out for deposit in the business bank account.


CVV: This refers to the three digit code on the back of a credit card which further verifies that the card is present at your location during a dial-in or call-in sale. CVV stands for "card verification value."


Chargeback: A chargeback can occur if a credit card holder disputes a sale that occurred at your location. If a dispute of sale is issued by a cardholder, the funds will be withdrawn from your business bank account. Typically, a merchant has ten days to respond to the chargeback in an effort to settle the dispute, otherwise the funds will not be returned to the merchant. 


Knowing these terms can help your successfully navigate retail merchant services account. As a general rule of thumb, always ask your provider to explain how their individual retail merchant services work, how to read and interpret statements, and how to handle issues related to fraud.