How CNP Merchants can Better Process Visa & MasterCard

9. Merchant Accounts and Reporting:

Cash is the life’s-blood of your business. Maximizing revenues means little, however, if there’s no competent means to account for your success. Payment processors, especially those operating some of the older platforms, are notorious for stagnant, hard-to-understand paper reports. What’s worse, these less-than-ideal reports are usually provided on a monthly basis, weekly at most. In today’s world of technological innovation, merchants should expect nothing less than real-time, Web-based reporting. At a minimum, these reports should include summary and detail reports surrounding: 1) authorization successes, 2) authorization failures (with reason codes), 3) sales and refunds, 4) Interchange qualifications (downgrades), 5) chargebacks, 6) fees from all of the players, and 7) merchant submissions and corresponding bank deposit reconciliations. Ideally, all of these reports should be exportable in .xls or .csv format. Given a proper reporting system, it should take a clerk from a medium sized company no more than 90 minutes to fully reconcile a month’s worth of credit card activity.