The Best Bad Credit Merchant Account Providers

February 10, 2022

If you thought bad credit scores only made it tough to take out loans, you’re in for an unpleasant surprise. A bad credit score can categorize your business as high risk, making a partnership with your company unfavorable in the sight of merchant acquirers. For you, this places serious limitations on the kinds of payment options you can provide your buyers.

Opening a merchant account when you’re in the high-risk category can be a struggle. Fortunately, there are several popular providers that offer their services specifically to hard-to-place merchants – even those with particularly low credit scores. Here are three of the best bad credit merchant account providers worth checking out.

Payment Cloud

There’s a reason why Payment Cloud has been around for so long. These guys are as hands-on as a merchant account provider can get, providing their customers a truly tailored experience during the application and underwriting process. Their ‘scrubbing’ technique allows them to identify red flags in your application to help you implement solutions and increase your chances of approval.

Known for their openness to working with hard-to-place merchants, Payment Cloud makes it easier for their clients to get their whole system up and running by offering payment processing and web hosting solutions through their partners. This means that when you send an application, you have the option to get the whole package so your website and payment solutions are fully integrated and ready to function.


Another thing that makes Payment Cloud such a good choice for merchants with bad credit is the fact that they offer intensive follow-up and customer support. These guys are invested in your future and they do what they can to help you succeed. With their prompt assistance and thorough aftersales care, they can help you mitigate risks and protect your credit score from further damage.

Soar Payments

Their free application and account set up service is perhaps the first thing about Soar Payments that entices potential merchant partners. But once you look beyond that initial benefit, it’s clear to see that there’s a whole lot more to Soar Payments than just an opening freebie.


These guys are well-known among bad credit merchants because of their unrivalled transparency that makes it easier for applicants to get a better understanding of where they stand and what they can expect during the process. To be exact, Soar Payments tells you exactly the credit score you should have relative to your industry to get approved for an account.

Offering assistance and support for a number of well-known payment gateways, Soar Payments is also especially detailed when it comes to the underwriting process. So, while they might give you an idea as to the kind of credit score you should have, they do their homework and carefully evaluate clients through their polished process that aims to provide your account the best service and solutions.

eMerchant Broker

The thing about eMerchant Broker is that they almost never turn anyone down. That means you can expect to get your application approved even if you’ve got one of the lowest credit scores in the industry. The trade-off? Higher fees, long contracts, and steep early termination penalties, of course. But if you’re out of options and you’re dying to get approved, these guys won’t disappoint.


Do note though that there’s a lot more to eMerchant Broker than just being relatively more open to high-risk merchants. Their exceptional customer support solutions provide merchants with prompt service that resolves payment processing issues before they take a toll on revenue. If you take the time to read reviews about them online, you’ll also notice that there are very few complaints about the service that eMerchant Broker provides.

And if that isn’t enough to make you think about signing up with this provider, eMerchant Broker provides the whole nine yards — offering solutions and tools that work to improve security, mitigate chargebacks and fraud, and enhance convenience for both you and your customers with their fully integrated range of services.

Why are Bad Credit Merchants High Risk?

There are a lot of payment obligations when you open up a merchant account. Things like monthly and annual fees, processing fees, reserve fees, penalties, chargebacks, interchange fees, and more can accumulate into a significant amount that makes merchant account maintenance a costly endeavor.



Since banks are conservative by nature, they want to make sure that their partner merchants are capable of meeting these financial obligations lest they end up taking the brunt and shouldering all of the fees and penalties themselves.

There are a number of things that can affect your credit score, including:

  • Brand-new first-time business
  • Prior bankruptcy
  • Outstanding judgement by a civil or criminal court
  • Outstanding loans
  • Poor loan repayment history

Choosing the Best Bad Credit Merchant Account Provider

These days, high risk merchant account providers aren’t anything new. In fact, there are loads of providers out there hoping to take on your hard-to-place business. But not all of them are worthy of your partnership. Here’s what you might want to look for when choosing a bad credit merchant account provider:

  • Reasonable fees – The last thing you’d want to do as a bad credit merchant is to fail paying for the fees and charges in your contract. This can further damage your score and freeze your merchant account.
  • Reserve option – A rolling reserve takes a portion of your revenue and sets it aside in a subaccount. This reserve serves the purpose of an emergency fund that your acquirer can use to pay for penalties or charges you incur. Unused funds are disbursed back into your account after a period of time.
  • Reputation – You’re going to want to work with a provider that has experience working with bad credit merchants. Seasoned acquirers and payment processors can provide the right tools, solutions, and assistance necessary not only to grow a bad credit business, but to improve your score in the long run.

The Best Bad Credit Merchant Account Providers

Don’t let your bad credit get in the way of you opening up a merchant account. Check out our vetted choices for the best bad credit merchant account providers and find a partner financial institution that can help you make your way out of your credit woes and move your business to brighter days.



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