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Posted: by Bronte

Risk Mitigation Tools & Payment Processing for Tech Support Merchants

The global Tech Support and IT Services market is considered one of the most consistent and growing sections of the economy since inception. With advancements in technology and automation, more businesses are popping up to inform about and fix issues surrounding it. Unfortunately, along with the rise of its popularity there is also a rise in fraud and scams surrounding it. Up nearly 25%, fraudulency makes all legitimate businesses in the tech support industry seem high risk to customers, credit card processing companies, and banks. The result of this is harder application terms and higher fees. But there is also good news, a few payment processors are capable of handling accounts such as these. With the proper guidance, regulations, and risk mitigation, they can get your tech support business up and running in no time.

Tech Support and IT is Hard to Place

Banks view different business types with different levels of risk. In this case, tech support and IT have a relatively high risk factor on the scale. The issues of rampant fraud and high chargeback rates cause this hesitancy.

Fraud

This has become so common that as many as 6 out of 10 consumers experienced a tech support scam in 2018, according to Microsoft. Pop-ups are the most common type of tech support and IT scheme according to Microsoft’s research, followed closely by software downloads, and redirects. These statistics are high, but not nearly as high as it was the year before. Dropping 5 points since 2016, the amount of money and time lost because of these types of attempts has gone down. Unfortunately, this statistic is still extremely large and acquiring banks view it as a potential loss.

tech support agents

Chargebacks

Operating in this industry, since it doesn’t deal in physical products, often has a higher chargeback ratio than other businesses. The standard ratio that most companies are held to is 2%. Reasons that companies show chargebacks is mainly due to fraudulency or poor customer service. In order to calculate your ratio, divide the number of initiated chargebacks by the number of total monthly transactions. In most cases, even if you dispute and win the chargeback, this initiation still counts toward your ratio. This means that even the most legitimate businesses can be in violation of the accepted ratio and be shut down.

The only real way to ensure the success of your business against fraudulency and chargebacks is to mitigate your exposure to them.

Risk Mitigation in your Tech Support and IT Business

Implement fraud prevention tactics through your bank and payment processor in order to detect and prevent these things. From there, be aware of your gateway and stay on top of the latest procedures. Seems easy enough. But it takes finesse to reduce the risk of chargebacks in your tech support business.

A chargeback starts with an unsatisfied customer who reaches out to their bank to get a refund for the services you provided. This situation comes about in three possible ways:

1. The customer couldn’t find or didn’t look for your contact information to inform you

In this situation, you have limited control. Providing your follow-up contact information after delivering services is step one. Make sure that you have it easily accessible for anyone searching. Also, supply multiple forms of communication: phone number, email, and chat. Customers don’t want to waste a lot of time on the phone getting a small issue resolved. Other issues are more complicated and require more than an email to be solved.

man on laptop

2. The customer talked to you but was not satisfied and/ or didn’t get the refund they were requesting

Even though you may be able to talk a customer back to satisfaction, it isn’t likely to work very often. And many times after customers receive a partial refund, they still choose to enact a chargeback through their bank for the remainder of the purchase amount. So when in doubt just give the refund before the situation escalates. Also consider offering a discount on future services so that you can attempt to retain a valuable customer.

3. The customer is dealing in fraud and is using this to get free services

Unfortunately this is the case in any industry and there isn’t much anyone can do about it. It is always better to factor this into your ratio before it happens to stay on the safe side.

More Techniques to Keep a Low Chargeback Ratio

Send confirmation and satisfaction emails.

This way you stay on the customers’ mind and have a better chance to catch a possible chargeback before it happens. This is one of the easiest ways to automate risk mitigation tactics in your tech support merchant account without much trouble.

Setup dispute alerts.

Typically there is a 72 hour window to refund a customer, after the initial claim to their bank has been made, which will prevent the chargeback from going through. Business owners don’t have access to these disputes normally, so you will need to subscribe to a third-party service or contact your payment processor for information about this.

Process more Transactions.

Breaking apart your services into more manageable transactions actually decreases the danger of chargebacks for two reasons: people are less concerned about a $20 charge than a $200 one and banks don’t escalate as quickly with lower transaction amounts. An example of this is instead of running one transaction with the fix and post-fix software, try processing the fix in one receipt and the software in another. Just be sure to inform the customer before charging their card twice, or this tactic could lead to even more chargebacks than before.

Female tech support consulting

Tech Support Payment Processing

As computers remain a part of personal and business lives, there is a huge demand for knowledgeable tech support and IT merchants. Being able to provide quality service and seamless payment processing will be an invaluable resource to your tech support account. And even though businesses such as these are considered high risk, there are still resources out there to help you thrive. Providing a high risk virtual terminal so that your customers can pay with their credit card will be a huge value-add for your business. But to be able to do this, you will need to find a payment processor that not only knows your business but that also has the infrastructure in place to be able to support you.

Seek out a processor with a multitude of software integrations, PCI compliance, and a secure online payment gateway for your customers to use.

What you’ll Need To Get Started

To begin the process in applying for high risk credit card processing account, you should have a few things on hand:

  • ID/ Driver’s License
  • Bank Letter
  • Voided Check
  • 3 months of Business or Personal Bank Statements
  • Social Security Number/ Employee Identification Number (EIN)

Approval time depends almost entirely on how long it takes to compile and send over information. Make it easy on yourself and have it all ready to go before they ask.