Thursday, June 30, 2011
This environment is a haven for innovation and creativity. New uses for mobile technology are introduced on a daily basis. One area that there is a ton of activity, and much more to come is the mobile payment processing. Credit card acceptance through mobile devices is expected to skyrocket to $1 billion by 2014!!! Take a look at this article on the topic: Mobile Payments Take Hold Around The World.
We are very excited about our mobile strategy. iTransaX for iPhone has been out for over a year now, with great results. Our Android app will be introduced within a matter of days. But that is just the start. We have many exciting mobile related offerings to come. Our goal is to help everybody easily accept credit card and ACH / e-check payments through any mobile technology. Watch this space for more to come!
Saturday, June 25, 2011
Lasso is a technology used by many FileMaker developers to build a web based front end. With the new Lasso Tag included in the FleXport ToolKit, Lasso developers can easilya dd credit card acceptance to their application.
"Combining our Lasso Tag, our FileMaker plug-in, and our PHP integration examples, we are an ideal partner for any FileMaker developer looking to add credit card or ACH acceptance to their application," explains Matthew J. Schwartz, President of NELiX TransaX.
The NELiX TransaX FleXPort Toolkit includes documentation, example integrations and modules for:
- VB.NET 1.1
- VB.NET 2.0
- Classic ASP
- Microsoft Access
- 4D/4th Dimension
"With this release of FleXport, " adds Adam O'Hare, Vice President of NELiX TransaX, " we also have a major upgrade to our QuickBooks module."
Information about NELiX TransaX can be found at http://www.nelixtransax.com/
Information on NELiX TransaX FleXPort can be found at http://www.transaxdevelopers.com/flexport
Monday, June 20, 2011
Version 6.0 of our QuickBooks module has been released! Here are the new features:
- There is better “clairvoyance” in the drop down menus throughout the system.
- Users can now add a new customer on the fly when creating a sales receipt
- Users can now add a new customer on the fly when adding / updating vault records.
- Users can now filter batches by invoice transaction date.
- Users can now filter batches by invoice due date.
- Users can now set the system up to “auto mark” invoices to be e-mailed after running a transaction.
- Users can now set the system up to record the transaction description on the receive payment record.
- And best of all - a new Bill Pay Module!
- users can now pay a vendor by ACH
- users can record that vendor in the vault
- users can run a “batch” bill pay to pay all vaulted vendors with open bills!
Thursday, June 16, 2011
We want to help software developers easily integrate points of payment everywhere! The TransaX FleXport toolkit is a suite of tools for software developers using many different platforms. We have now added Android Developers into that mix! Our new Android FleXport component is a library that can be used by Android Developers.
Easily add points of payment to your Android app. Accept payments easily in games, shopping apps, subscription apps, music apps, etc. Using our technology, you can create easy one click purchases, allowing customers to pay with billing info already on file.
If you are an Android developer that builds custom apps for your customers, and you use our technology for your payment processing needs, you can sign up for our agent program and build an additional income stream.
More information on Android payment processing integration.
Get our Android virtual terminal app here!
Download TransaX FleXport
Accept credit card (Mastercard, Visa, Discover, AMEX, etc) and ACH (E-check / EFT) on your Android Mobile device. Send e-mail receipts and issue refunds. It's easy to accept payments on the go with TransaX Mobile.
With mobile technologies on the rise at an amazing pace, and everybody moving faster and faster, new options for payment processing continue to pop up. TransaX Mobile, the new Android app from NELiX TransaX, is our first offering in the Android marketplace. The iTransaX app - our iPhone offering has had amazing success, and we are even more excited about TransaX Mobile. We have many enhancements planned. Keep an eye on http://www.nelixtransax.com/ for updates!
Follow this link from your Android device to install TransaX Mobile.
More information on TransaX Mobile for Android
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
While almost all businesses today accept credit cards, the vast majority of business owners don't truly understand how a credit card transaction works, the different cost structures, the PCI compliance aspect, or the automation options available. The goal of this article is to help make the complicated world of credit card processing more transparent.
It seems simple enough – hand a business your credit card, they hand over your purchase, and a couple of days later they have your money and you're enjoying your latest toy. What that situation doesn't show you are the 8 other companies which make it possible. Not counting the Consumer and the Merchant, all of the following companies have a hand in processing a single credit card sale:
- Issuing Bank – The financial institution from which the Consumer obtained their credit or debit card. If you have a Chase credit or debit card for instance, then Chase is your Issuing Bank
- Acquiring Bank – The financial institution which authorized and allows a business to accept payments via credit or debit card
- Front End Processor – The communication network between the Merchant and the Acquiring Bank
- Back End Processor – The interbank communication network which allows the Issuing Bank and Acquiring Bank to exchange transaction data
- Card Association or Payment Brand – Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, or similar association of financial institutions which oversee and operate the credit and debit card solutions provided by the Issuing Banks. The applicable Association's logo appears on the credit or debit card
- Point of Sale System – Point of Sale (POS) systems are typically used by retail merchants for processing card present, face-to-face transactions. This usually involves hardware like a computer, cash drawer, card readers, pin pad, and more. Sometimes, it's just a simple credit card terminal
- Payment Gateway – A payment gateway is the software equivalent of a hardware terminal. Its how Internet merchants and almost any merchant using software like QuickBooks submit transactions to the Acquiring Bank for processing
- ISO/MSP – Banks don't actually sell any merchant accounts directly. They sell merchant services exclusively through Independent Sales Organizations or Merchant Services Providers (ISO/MSP) which is Visa's terminology and MasterCard's terminology respectively. Some banks own an ISO/MSP which makes it appear as though they are selling merchant services themselves
So how does it all work? A transaction happens in milliseconds, but it's a big loop. To illustrate how a typical transaction works, let's say a merchant uses the NELiX TransaX QuickBooks Module to process their credit card sales. The process would flow like this:
- The NELiX TransaX QuickBooks Module "builds" the transaction by pulling invoice information out of QuickBooks such as the dollar amount, shipping address, etc. The merchant then either hand keys the credit card information or swipes the card to get it automatically. QuickBooks is the POS in this situation.
- When the merchant clicks "Submit" to process the transaction, the NELiX TransaX module posts the transaction to the TransaX Payment Gateway.
- The TransaX Payment Gateway submits the transaction to the Acquiring bank through the Front End Processor.
- The Acquiring Bank identifies the Issuing Bank based on card number and forwards the transaction data to them over the Bank End Processor.
- Once the Issuing Bank receives the transaction data, it either approves or declines the sale based on a variety of criteria. The Issuing Bank then sends the response back to the Acquiring Bank via the Back End Processor.
- Finally, the Acquiring Bank sends the transaction response back through the Front End Processor to the TransaX Gateway. The TransaX Gateway communicates the result to the TransaX QuickBooks module. If it's successful, invoices are marked as 'Paid' and the merchant is done. If the transaction failed, they can check the reason why and choose what to do next.
And all of that happens in about 2 seconds. Perhaps a picture would help explain better. This is how Visa itself explains it:
To make all of this happen, the Card Associations have created a complex pricing structure called "Interchange". Interchange is comprised of nearly 500 different transaction types based on the industry of the merchant, type of card, and method of card acceptance. The cost for a transaction varies depending on which line item of Interchange you hit. As an example, a typical rewards card where the cardholder earns airline miles or other incentives is much more expensive to process than a regular debit card.
The Card Associations has also created several different pricing structures. Some structures are designed with fixed costs to be easier to understand, but can be more expensive overall. Other pricing structures can be more cost-effective, but are much more difficult to understand. The fees collected from the merchant are divided by all of the aforementioned processing parties. The Issuing Bank gets the lion's share, around 90% of the Interchange cost. The remaining pennies are divided by the Acquiring Bank, Processing Network, Card Associations and ISOs. There are also outside costs associated with Payment Gateways, Terminals or Point of Sale equipment.
Aside from the costs, Payment Card Industry (PCI) Compliance is a growing security consideration. PCI Compliance is about meeting the Data Security Standards for protecting cardholder data. Merchants agree to adhere to PCI Standards when they sign up for a merchant account and the Card Associations enforce it. If there is a breach with loss of credit card numbers, there can be fines of tens of thousands of dollars per incident, especially if it is shown that the merchant was not PCI compliant. The best way to make sure a merchant is compliant is to not store cardholder information at all. If you are not storing credit card numbers, then obviously you don't have to worry about them being stolen which is the biggest danger. Many Payment Gateways, for example the NELiX TransaX Payment Gateway, allow you to store the cardholder data inside the Payment Gateway, instead of locally. You then use a "token" to reference the billing information whenever you need it. This addresses the majority of the PCI compliance concerns and reduces the possibility of card data theft.
One of the greatest trends in the credit card acceptance world today is the increasing automation and use of technology. Because of the Payment Gateway, which is a software based tool rather than a hardware based tool like swipe terminals, further automation and innovation pops up every day. With new social payments tools, mobile payments, and other emerging technologies, it's easier and easier for people to exchange money. Even within software applications like QuickBooks, automation is more possible than ever. With tools like the NELiX TransaX QuickBooks Module, automation can be added to accept ACH / E-check payments, run credit card transactions in a batch, sync transactions that occurred on your website, send payments to vendors, and more.
There's more information in each of these subjects that can be truly covered here. Hopefully, this has provided some insight into credit card processes, cost structures, security, and automation.
If you'd like to learn more, we encourage you to contact NELiX TransaX at 866-513-1547 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday, June 11, 2011
Some time ago, NELiX TransaX partnered with Right Networks to bring payment processing services and additional QuickBooks automation to their customers. Right Networks is one of largest provider of hosted back office solutions. One of their main offerrings is hosted QuickBooks soluitons.
Right Networks is endorsed by Intuit for their quality services. You can read more about Intuit's endorsement of Right Networks here.
Recently, NELiX TransaX provided an article for the monthly Right Networks Newsletter discussion the credit card transaction and how it works. I'll post the full article here later, but for now, you can read the article on the Right Networks website.