To increase sales on your website, you must accept credit cards. To process credit cards, you could apply for a merchant account through your bank or other financial institution.
Sometimes, though, you would be further ahead to use the services of a credit card processor. This is especially true when you are first starting out and have more limited resources. In this way, you may process credit card transactions without the high front-end costs and requirements of a merchant account.
Here, then, are just a few ways of accepting credit cards without a merchant account. I personally use all of these vendors and can recommend them wholeheartedly.
If your product is downloadable (such as electronic books or software), you might consider ClickBank.com. For a $49.95 initial fee, you can process credit cards and on-line cheques for $1.00 per transaction plus 7.5% of sales.
You receive additional exposure through free listing on their website and through the search facilities of other websites.
As an added bonus, you have your own built-in affiliate program. You decide what commission (from 1% to 75%) you would like to pay your affiliates.
PayPal.com has no initial fees. For just 2.9% of sales and $ .30 per transaction (and sometimes less), you can receive money from anyone.
Also, you can pay others by credit card or chequing account without supplying your personal credit information to the payee. PayPal can be used to collect money from your auctions, website sales, or even from friends or clients.
2CheckOut.com (2CO) can handle both intangible and tangible products. For fees of 5.5% of sales and $0.45 per transaction, you can accept all major credit cards as well as online checks.
For this, you receive shopping cart, fraud detection, integration with third-party affiliate programs, multi-currency transactions, free on-line support, and more.
Incidentally, 2CheckOut.com has the same policy as ClickBank.com does with regard to sales taxes. Both companies take the position that you are selling your product to them and that they resell it to the final consumer. Thus, they claim that you are not subject to sales taxes on those sales.