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American Express - do You?

Discussion in 'Picture Framing Business Issues' started by echavez123, Aug 7, 2010.

  1. HB

    HB SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

  2. HB

    HB SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Amex is a flat rate (at least in canada)2.0% for us

    All the others - depends on the client - there are several tiers - and you won't know which tier till you get billed.
    Can be 1.4% but could also be 2.5%. Except with AMEX, on top of that you will have other fees - billing fees , processing fees etc. Mine works out on avg. to be 1.9% , all charges in except machine rental.

    The only other fee you may have with AMEX is a couple bucks for a statement fee, which you can also get online.
  3. nikfrz

    nikfrz SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    This is AMEX's own words. 2.89% plus a .10 trax fee. There are no tiers like V/MC. A merchant that accepts a black card is charged the same fee as a regular amex card, unlike V/MC. Fees are also not different according to region.

    There is also no statement fee if you go paperless.

    The processors have no control over AMEX fee structure and cannot add a percentage to the fee, unlike V/MC.

    I dont know if any of you have been charged a V/MC fee as high as 5%. I know that I have, and I was shocked when I got my statement. And the customer responsible for that 5% fee, first whipped out his AMEX, which I had to decline.
  4. Ylva

    Ylva SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Yes, my past statement had a MC with 5% charge.....one of those corporate thingies I assume.
  5. HB

    HB SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer


    Amex is a flat rate (at least in canada)3.0% for us
  6. nikfrz

    nikfrz SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I just got my merchant statement yesterday. Not one single charge was discounted at the base rate. The fees range from 2.0% to 2.69%. One single charge had a fee at 3.15%, and I know it was from a govt charge card.

    What I cant understand is why anyone here isnt screaming bloody murder about V/MC convulted fee schedule. When a customer hands you a V or MC, you may know that it's a reward card, but you dont know what kind of rewards card it is, or what fee you are going to be charged until statement time.

    At least with AMEX, you know exactly what fee you are being charged with every swipe.
  7. HB

    HB SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    True, the only problem is you know its more!!
  8. GhostFramer

    GhostFramer MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    I have always taken AMX so I dont know if I would have lost an order because of not having it. Many of my big ticket and company sales are AMX so i have always thought it worth accepting. I do agree that the fees and time get to get the money can cause headaches.
  9. pwalters

    pwalters SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    For those that feel that time to get paid is an issue or causes headaches - I'm assuming that there are some cash flow challenges that Amex's payment schedule is causing? We run at a pretty decent volume and there is money coming in regularly so if Amex takes 4 days or so to fulfill it doesn't impact us. So I don't see that as a challenge, but perhaps if we were living and dying by that payment I could see it. Otherwise, what's the harm in them using our $$ for a few more days than the others?
  10. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Just took one today. Husband came in and bought his wife a surprise on his AmEx, she came in earlier and bought him something on her Discover... Gladly take both cards, rarely see either card, but for days like today I am glad I take them.:)
  11. GhostFramer

    GhostFramer MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    I guess I didnt phrase that the best by saying headache. Since you asked what the harm is... how about giving them an interest free loan that we get to pay them to use. Thanks for assuming that my not liking paying higher fees and getting paid later to mean that we have cash flow problems.
  12. pwalters

    pwalters SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Sorry GhostFramer. Don't mean to assume anything but to be honest, whenever you choose to accept any credit card you must understand that you are choosing to allow a vendor to use your money in an intrest free manner for some period of time. Sorry if I offended, but for those that are complaining about the fee difference as a reason to not take Amex, I get their complaint to a certain degree but if one of the primary reasons to not take it revolves around the extra 2-3 days that they take to pay, I have to wonder why that's a reason. Cash flow issues were the first thing I thought of.

    I apologize for any percieved slight. The good news is that it's a dry heat.
  13. Dave

    Dave SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Paul... it is only good business sense to have control of your money and AMEX does take longer to process sales and put it into your account.

    If you don't think AMEX factors in the value of using your money and everybody else's money by utilizing that float then you don't understand finance! BIG BUCKS are being made everyday on float. I'm sure it is factored in big time in their financial business plans.

    I've always found it amazing that I can go to the Marathon gas station, fill up my tank and pay for it with a debit card and return to work, go online and check my account and see the money already taken out that I just spent. However, if I process a CC or debit card sale the money doesn't hit my bank for 1-3 days or possibly more days when processing AMEX!

    There must be some reason for that but I just can't understand why?


    Here's a very interesting read on the subject:

  14. pwalters

    pwalters SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I absolutely get the idea of the float and that it's always a good thing to have your hands on your money, but considering that many people on the thread are suggesting that they see higher average tickets attached to Amex vs other providers and (in our case) Amex takes 2 days longer to fulfill, I just don't see the delay as a HUGE interference with my business.
  15. Kirstie

    Kirstie PFG, Picture Framing God

    I had a customer pay me with AMEX today. She lives in Austraila and was surprised that we did not add on a fee for AMEX transactions. Is this really done in Australia?

    We take all major credit cards. And yes, our average AMEX tickets are significantly higher than MC/Visa/Discover. Corporate often pays with AMEX.
  16. Harry FKA Harry

    Harry FKA Harry CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    Why would anyone not accept Amex as a payment method? Makes no sense to me.

    An extra day of them holding your money? Big deal. It's called the cost of doing business.

    The extra point they take and the small monthly fee? Big deal. It's called the cost of doing business. Add .10% to your pricing and make up the difference each month.

    The additional cost for me to take an Amex over MC/V on any given month is minimal. For the conveneince to my customer, the bigger tickets, and corporate work Amex helps provide, its well worth every cent. The cost of doing business.

    As a consumer who has both Amex and MC there are times when I want to use Amex for particualar reasons. If I know I can't use it somewhere, I will shop where I can. We would be foolish to think our customers are any different.

    Make it as easy as possible for people to give you their money. It's hard enough to do business these days, why make it harder?
  17. PaulSF

    PaulSF PFG, Picture Framing God

    There was an article in the WSJ today about small businesses that refuse to take credit cards because of the fees. One was a steakhouse in Brooklyn, and they could probably get by with an ATM fee in the lobby.

    But then there was a supplier of lighting, and they mentioned that they don't take debit cards at all, and had over $500,000 in credit card fees last year, so were thinking about not taking credit cards anymore. Ridiculous. First of all, the fees on debit cards are far lower than for credit cards, and especially so for big-ticket purchases like this company is selling. Second, if their credit card fees are $500,000/year, even if their rate is 5% they are a company with $10 million in sales. Probably more than that. And they would certainly have the leverage to get their cc fees under 2% with that volume.
  18. snafu

    snafu MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    AMEX doesn't charge extra for hand keying the card.
    All the others charge significantly more for hand keying you end up paying more than the AMEX fee.

  19. pwalters

    pwalters SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    If you are hand keying, make sure that you get a physical copy of the card for the customer to sign. Hand key with Amex and not have a copy of the card and if the customer challenges you will absolutely lose.
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