Adult entertainment is an ever-growing market. Valued at a little less than $1B, the industry is a thriving opportunity for business owners and workers in search of a profitable venture. And since most of these services have been migrated to online platforms, it pays to have the best adult merchant account to streamline payments.
Being a high-risk industry, merchants in the adult industry might not quite as easily find financial partners that are ready and willing to take them on board. Nonetheless, there are some merchant account providers who are up for the challenge – and here are three of the best.
If you’re in search of the best adult merchant account, then you’re likely to encounter Payment Cloud more than once during your hunt. As one of the most trusted merchant account providers available, Payment Cloud has serviced hundreds of popular high-risk merchants.
Supporting all the most well-known sectors in the adult entertainment industry — except escort services — Payment Cloud’s features are specifically tailored to meet the needs of web-based adult entertainment service providers. They also provide strong fraud and chargeback protection and prevention which should come in handy to protect your account.
What’s truly convenient about partnering up with Payment Cloud is that they provide a complete package. They work together with web hosting services so you can get a merchant account, payment processing, and web hosting in one discounted package. Plus, they also perform a process called scrubbing to increase your chances of approval.
Another one of the best adult merchant account providers is Durango. Now, they might not have been around for as long as Payment Cloud and their client portfolio might not be as extensive, but that doesn’t prevent them from being a top choice. The reason? Their comparatively lower prices.
While they don’t disclose the cost of their services on their website, many of those who have tried their merchant account service claim that Durango offers their solutions at a significantly lower cost than their competition. Despite that, the fullness of their security and chargeback protection features makes them a formidable choice.
Other reasons why Durango Merchant Services might be a good choice for your adult business is because of their dedicated account manager for customer support. This helps guarantee that all of their merchant partners are given prompt and ready assistance in case they run into any merchant account and payment processing hiccups.
If you find yourself in one of the riskier sectors of the adult entertainment industry, then eMerchant Broker might be able to help. Unlike other merchant service providers that try to avoid merchants dealing with escort services, eMerchant Broker accepts partnerships with even the hardest-to-place partners that come up to their doors.
However, there is a trade-off. In order to increase their risk appetite, eMerchant Broker charges slightly higher fees and drafts longer contracts with steep early termination fees. Nonetheless, if you’re operating in a sector of the adult products and services industry that might not have a lot of options, these minor drawbacks are a small price to pay.
Ultimately, eMerchant Broker is a trusted provider that’s dealt with countless adult businesses during their time. And because they’re big on customer support, you can expect to get impressively prompt assistance when you need it most.
What is it about adult merchants that make them high risk? Well, there are several things about adult product and service providers that might make them a little harder to place than other merchants.
When services are paid for and fulfilled online through card-not-present transactions, there’s an increased risk of fraud. Why so? Well, paying for services through card-not-present transactions only requires that you key in the information as shown on the card. If anyone were to steal a card or even just capture the details on its front and back, then they could potentially use the funds in the corresponding account to pay for products and services online.
Of course, there’s also the risk of money laundering. Unscrupulous merchants hoping to sanitize illicit funds can pass these payments through a seemingly legitimate business offering services instead of products to incorporate the ill-gotten amount into their cashflow.
A chargeback happens when a customer heads straight to the card issuer to reverse a transaction. Sometimes, it’s because of fraud or the unauthorized use of the card in question. But other times, it’s friendly fraud. That is — the customer actually paid for the transaction and actually availed the services, but doesn’t want them reflected on their account for obvious reasons.
For this reason, legitimate clients will file for a chargeback just to have their cake and eat it too. And while this might seem unfair for honest merchants trying to make a living, financial institutions will almost always grant chargebacks because of its intended purpose to protect the buyer. The worst part? There’s no way to stop it — unless you’re working with a merchant account provider with the right tools.
There are certain laws that only apply to merchants in the adult entertainment industry, and these may affect the way you do business. For instance, in some states, it’s necessary that all performers have government issued ID in your records. Another law imposes the necessity for age verification for clients who visit your website.
While these might not seem like much, they complicate the process for merchant service providers. And because many of the traditional providers prefer easy, cookie-cutter solutions, variations like these can be inconvenient for them to accommodate.
Traditional financial institutions want to maintain an air of professionalism and decency, so working with certain merchants might taint that image. While adult entertainment providers and adult product merchants are legal, the stigma that surrounds the industry may make traditional, conservative merchant account providers think twice about a partnership.
While it might be a challenge to find a merchant account service provider that’s ready and willing to take on your high-risk adult business, that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. These vetted providers are the best adult merchant account providers you’re likely to find, and their tailored services can match your specific needs to streamline payments and bolster your growth.