A virtual terminal allows you to take credit cards and debits over the phone or in the mail. It also enables recurring payments, which can help balance cash flow, improve customer retention, and eliminate late-paying clients.
These CNP transactions can be processed through an integrated payment gateway that encrypts information and tokenizes it. This helps minimize PCI scope and liability while reducing transaction fees.
If you work with customers online or over the phone, virtual terminal credit card processing lets you take payment from them quickly. Rather than using a traditional card reader, you input the transaction information manually through a secure internet connection on any computer or smartphone.
Once you submit the payment information, the B2B payment platform’s gateway processes it using tokenization technology and end-to-end encryption to safeguard the data during its transmission through the card network. This removes your business’s personal account number (PAN) from the transaction information and replaces it with a unique alphanumeric ID, called a token, that is meaningless to anyone except the payment processor.
After the transaction is approved, the gateway sends an authorization response to the virtual terminal and settles the funds into your merchant account. Most virtual terminals then generate a digital receipt that can be sent to the customer via email or text, or printed for record keeping. Many virtual terminals can also support recurring payments.
Many virtual terminals allow merchants to offer recurring payments and subscription billing. This option saves credit card information on file for repeat customers so that transactions are automatically processed at an agreed-upon cadence, increasing cash flow and reducing accounts receivable risk.
This feature also works well for professional services providers like accountants, doctors and lawyers who take payment over the phone for medical bills, tax preparation or legal fees. Simply input the customer’s card and billing data into an online form that looks similar to a typical e-commerce checkout and send it to your virtual terminal credit card processor for payment authorization.
The virtual terminal allows you to access customer profiles and payment records at any time by logging into a secure web-based dashboard or a B2B payment gateway. Easily track and analyze payment reports, update billing customer information and more to help your business grow. All you need is a computer or smartphone with internet access.
If you sell goods and services online or by phone, virtual terminal credit card processing gives your business a quick and easy way to process payments. It also lets you handle recurring payments and save repeat consumer information for faster checkout.
Like traditional POS terminals, virtual card terminals transmit data through an integrated payment gateway. This secure connection uses end-to-end encryption to safeguard sensitive information during transit. Some virtual terminal providers also use tokenization, which replaces personal account numbers (PAN) with unique alphanumeric identifiers, called tokens, that are only meaningful to the payment processor.
When choosing a virtual card terminal provider, look beyond fees to find the best solution for your business needs. Ask a prospective provider about its pricing model, and review the schedule of charges and usage fees before making a final decision. A virtual terminal can save your business money on transaction fees and reduce the risk of fraud, but only if it’s configured properly for your needs.
With cutting-edge tokenization, end-to-end encryption, and PCI validation, virtual terminals are a modern, secure way to process payments. Many providers also offer two-factor authentication, allowing merchants to ensure only authorized personnel are granted access. In addition, virtual terminals can enable recurring payments and offer comprehensive transaction history, which is useful for bookkeeping, generating refunds, and analyzing sales data.
A virtual terminal enables the business to manually enter credit card information for a payment, which is then sent online to an integrated payment gateway. The transaction is then processed through that gateway to the acquiring bank for authorization. A virtual terminal is ideal for a variety of business types, including home-run organizations, remote workers, traveling salespeople, service-oriented businesses, and more. It can even be used to conduct card-not-present (CNP) transactions such as phone or mail orders, though these typically cost more due to the higher risk of fraud. Depending on the provider, there are different plans and fee structures to choose from.