3 Cheap Credit Card Processors for Small Merchants

Wednesday, June 1st, 2022

Since Credit Card processing firms often have different pricing frameworks, no single provider can be identified as the least inexpensive for all business ventures. Instead, the cheapest option will depend on the industry, transaction size, and sales volume.

Before selecting any firm, ensure you determine the ideal credit card processing firm for your specific business needs. For example, which tools and capabilities do you need? Do you intend to accept payments online, in-person, or both? Do you require a dedicated merchant account?

Square: Ideal for processing mobile payments 

Square is one of the cheapest credit card processing solutions with free POS software, clear flat-rate pricing, and a free mobile card reader. Businesses may also go for POS software paid plans for restaurants or retail to access more features. In addition, merchants may use this service provider to accept other payments, including online and in-person. 


  • The E-commerce cost of a transaction is 2.9% and $0.30 per transaction.
  • Card-not-present cost of transactions 3.5% and $0.15 per transaction
  • Swipe, tap, and dip in-person transactions cost 2.6% and $0.10 per transaction.


  • Lacks monthly subscription charge.
  • Free POS software and mobile card reader.
  • Square has no activation, termination, chargeback, or refund fees. 
  • No PCI compliance charge.


  • Do not work with those in the high-risk merchant industries.
  • It is a bit more expensive than the interchange-plus pricing model for some merchants.
  • You need a Paid POS plan to access 24/7 live customer service.

Payline Data: ideal for the high-risk merchant industry

With two different plan offers, one for e-commerce merchants and the other for physical store retailers. Although paying for both will not be a viable option, Payline data is the cheapest for businesses requiring one plan. Additionally, this company offers accounts for high-risk merchants involved in online gaming, tobacco, adult subscription, etc.


  • In-person transaction plan: Interchange and 0.2% and $0.10 per transaction and $10 per month.
  • Online transaction plan: Interchange and 0.4% and $0.20 per transaction and $20 per month.


  • The first month is Free.
  • Payline offers payment options for high-risk industry merchant accounts.
  • No PCI compliance fees.
  • No termination or long-term contract fees.


  • Payline offers no 24/7 phone support to their merchants. 
  • This company comes with a minimum monthly charge of $25 in processing fees.

Helcim: offers ideal volume discounts

Helcim is a great choice for small business owners who won’t need monthly subscription fees and low rates. In addition, it has a cost-effective interchange-plus fee structure, ideal for business ventures with high sales volume. 

Helcim’s volume discounts are applied as the amount you process increases. Moreover, pricing information is easy to find on their website.


  • For in-person payments, charges are interchange and 0.3% and 0.08 per transaction for merchants with $25,000 or less in card transactions per month.
  • For online or keyed payments, charges are interchange and 0.5% and $0.25 per transaction for merchants with $25,000 or less in card transactions per month.


  • No termination or long-term contract fees.
  • No setup and monthly subscription fees.
  • No PCI compliance payments.
  • Processing rates reduce after your venture processes more than $25,000 in monthly payments.


  • Will not work with high-risk industry merchant accounts.
  • Lacks 24/7 support.

Final thought

You may narrow down your choice through these requirements, then identify which company offers the cheapest payment processing package for your specific business.

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