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Merchant services exist to help businesses process credit card payments. You might know them by the name “credit card processors.”
Regardless of what you call them, choosing the best merchant service isn’t easy. The “best” one is the one that is right for your specific business, and each of the following services offers particular features that may work for one company, but not for yours.
That’s why, in this guide, I’m catering to each type of business and finding the right merchant service for your needs.
The Top 6 Merchant Services:
How to Choose The Best Merchant Services For You
Before we get into the best merchant services, we need to understand the criteria used to make these decisions. Keep all of the following factors in mind as you read through the reviews.
Processing Rates/Monthly Fees
It’s all about the money, and credit card processing is not as simple as you think. You have to weigh the pros and cons with each gateway; otherwise, you can end up paying way more than you planned.
We need to look at the processing rates first. To get a lower processing rate, you usually have to pay a higher monthly fee. If you’re processing payments at high volume, it’s worth it for you to pay the higher fee because your volume will make up for it.
On the other side, if you’re not processing a lot of payments, having a higher transaction fee won’t hurt you as much as a high monthly fee would.
Flat-rate processing is a simple solution for small businesses, but interchange pricing is generally more affordable.
You want to look at what the payment processor offers in addition to credit card processing. Do they offer free POS systems, hardware, mobile payments, integrations, etc? Some merchant services even offer consulting, customer loyalty features, and invoicing tools.
Sometimes the “extra benefits” you get from a merchant service provider can outweigh some of the negatives.
The Type of Merchant Service Account
There are two primary types of accounts, one is an aggregator (or middleman), and one is an ISO (or independent sales organization). Let’s compare the two and see why it’s important to understand the difference.
These are middlemen working in between the business and the bank, offering an easy payment processing solution for businesses. Square is an example of this, and while they make it easier, they usually have higher fees and transaction costs.
Payment Depot is an example of an ISO, and while they usually have a more strict acceptance policy, they offer lower rates and user-friendly software compared to a direct processor.
One of the most important factors to consider is, “how will this integrate with my current systems”?
Your payment processor should never get in the way or cause your conversion rates to decrease; it should complement your current process or even enhance it. Make sure you choose something that will easily integrate into your business without requiring too many changes or adjustments.
The Different Types of Merchant Services
After much research and careful consideration, these are my top six merchant services for both in-person and online sales.
#1. Square – The Best For Transparent Pricing/Fees
- No monthly fee
- Transparent processing
- Free card reader
- Great added features
- No ACH payment processing
- Higher fees than desired
Square is popular for its credit card processing and POS systems, but it offers much more. It hosts features such as the “Card on File” feature, allowing users to store customer card information that works great for repeat customers trying to accumulate loyalty points and rewards of that nature.
The processor also doesn’t have a monthly fee, and while Square’s features might not be as advanced as some of the other payment processors we’re talking about, for a POS without a monthly fee, you can’t beat the value.
The one thing that stands out most to me is the transaction costs and how they vary whether you’re doing business in person or online.
For in-person sales, expect to pay 2.6% and $0.10 per transaction. For online transactions, it’ll cost you 2.9% and $0.30 per transaction. There are other instances, such as:
- Virtual terminal transactions
- Card-on-file transactions
- And card-not-present transactions
These will cost 3.5% and $0.15 per transaction.
Based on these numbers, Square is not the most affordable flat-rate processor, but the transparency makes it easier for you to understand what the rates are and how they’ll impact your processing based on volume and price.
- Dedicated account manager
- Free account setup
- Free card terminal (with fees)
- Confusing ownership
- Little information regarding price
Flagship Merchant Services cut the tape in 2001 and was acquired by iPayment in 2012. Now, they primarily resell iPayment, so keep that in mind.
This company was one of the first to offer free account setup without any application or fees and real month-to-month contracts. They operate tens of thousands of merchants, and they have a strong reputation.
Since they’re not a direct processor, most of their merchant accounts are set up through iPayment. iPayment uses First Data as their processor, and it can get confusing trying to figure out who is processing what through what service.
For retailers, Flagship does offer a free credit card terminal, but you’re responsible for paying account fees and insurance on that terminal to keep it up and running.
For ecommerce, they offer either Authorize.net for processing and integration of an online cart onto your site.
One thing that was a little frustrating about Flagship is trying to find information on their rates. If you go to their website, you’ll see that you need to fill out a form to get any info about what they charge.
I’d like to see more transparency, but you may end up with a more catered package deal with this strategy.
My favorite feature is that you get a single line of contact with the company when you purchase a gateway; they act as account managers. If you ever have a problem, you contact that specific person, and this isn’t a feature I’ve ever seen with any other merchant service.
#3. Helcim – The Best For Small Business
- Limited fees
- Fees based on volume
- Free online store software
- Limited integrations
- $199 for the card reader
If you’re a small business owner, Helcim might appeal to you. With this service, you’re able to process credit and debit cards online and in person. You can also do some of the following:
- Set up recurring payments
- Send invoices
- Collect payments
With a Helcim card reader, you can accept all major cards, including Amex plus Google Pay, Apple Pay, and JCB.
Helcim charges $20 per month with transaction fees based on volume. They don’t have any contracts or cancellation fees, and they’ll wave your monthly fee if you don’t process any payments.
Overall, Helcim is affordable but much more for in-person payments than they are online. Here’s a quick breakdown of their pricing structure:
- Monthly Volume: $0 – $25,000
- In-Person: 0.3% + 8 cents (+ interchange)
- Online: 0.5% + 25 cents (+ interchange)
- Monthly Volume: $25,001 – $50,000
- In-Person: 0.25% + 7 cents (+ interchange)
- Online: 0.45% + 20 cents (+ interchange)
- Monthly Volume: $50,001 – $100,000
- In-Person: 0.2% + 7 cents (+ interchange)
- Online: 0.4% + 20 cents (+ interchange)
- Monthly Volume: $100,001 – $250,000
- In-Person: 0.18% + 6 cents (+ interchange)
- Online: 0.35% + 15 cents (+ interchange)
Helcim offers nice features for those of you looking to integrate this payment gateway into your online store. You can add a checkout to your site for invoicing and customer registration while also accepting recurring subscriptions.
#4. Payment Depot – The Best For Established Businesses
- No contract processing
- Competitive rates
- Easy to integrate online
- Best for high-volume business
- Application process
Payment Depot uses a membership pricing model, making it simpler to understand but can sometimes result in you paying higher fees. Thankfully, Payment Depot’s rates are pretty competitive, and they include interchange-plus pricing for both online, in-person, and mobile payments.
This strategy actually makes Payment Depot one of the most affordable payment processors for established businesses that are doing a certain amount of volume.
Payment Depot accepts all major cards and contactless Apple Pay and Google Pay as well. You get next-day funding and integration with POS systems as well as ecommerce platforms such as:
I don’t think this is one of the best merchant services for small businesses because of how they structure their pricing. The transaction fees go down as you pay a higher monthly fee, and they seemingly force you to increase your plan because of strict processing limits.
Here’s a breakdown of their pricing:
- Fee: $49
- Transaction Fee: $0.15
- Monthly Limit: $25,000
- Fee: $79
- Transaction Fee: $0.10
- Monthly Limit: $75,000
- Fee: $99
- Transaction Fee: $0.07
- Monthly Limit: $150,000
- Fee: $199
- Transaction Fee: $0.05
- Monthly Limit: Unlimited
So, as you can see – if you’re doing high volume, it would make the most sense to upgrade to the most expensive plan for the lowest transaction fees.
#5. Fattmerchant – Best For Subscription-Based Businesses
- Simple pricing
- Omni software
- A solid choice for subscription businesses
- Higher monthly fees
- Transaction fees are relatively standard
Fattmerchant is set up a lot like many of the payment processors. As you increase your monthly fee, your transaction fees go down. They offer Omni, which is where you’ll do your invoicing, payments, and reporting. The service is incredibly user-friendly, great for beginners, and it comes included with your monthly fee.
While Fattmerchant is a great choice for budget-conscious business owners, it’s also a great option for subscription-based businesses. If you’re selling monthly coaching packages, agency services, or counseling, you’ll benefit from Fattmerchant’s structure.
The processor accepts all major cards, including ACH, invoicing, Text2Pay, and more. Same day funding is available, and you get a free iOS and Android POS app and Bluetooth card readers that you can use on the go.
They have two pricing plans:
- Fee: $99
- Annual Limit: $500,000
- Card-Present Fee: $0.08 + Interchange
- Card-Not-Present: $0.15 + Interchange
- ACH Transaction Fee: $0.25
- Fee: $199
- Annual Limit: $5,000,000
- Card-Present Fee: $0.06 + Interchange
- Card-Not-Present: $0.12 + Interchange
- ACH Transaction Fee: $0.25
Fattmerchant has a higher monthly fee than some others, but the company says that is how they keep their transaction fees down.
#6. Stripe – Best For Online Payment Processing
- Allows you to grow
- Reasonable pricing
- Great solution for online businesses
- Complicated setup
- May require developers
If your business runs entirely online, Stripe is your best choice. It’s made specifically for ecommerce and internet business, and tons of startups and Fortune 500 companies trust Stripe.
The company offers sophisticated software and APIs that allow online store owners to customize their checkout experience. You can use the pre-built integrations to connect a Stripe checkout right away and then customize it as you go along.
That’s one of the main reasons why I love Stripe; it’s a payment processor that grows with you and allows you to change it as your business needs change.
With all of these features and moving parts comes complications. It’s not the easiest to set up, and if you plan on utilizing the many benefits of Stripe, you’ll likely need a developer to handle it for you.
Stripe offers a “pay as you go” strategy without monthly fees and transparent transaction fees across the board.
- Online: 2.9% and $0.30
- In-Person: 2.7% and $0.05
- International: Add 1% per transaction
- ACH Direct: 0.8% maxed at $5.00 per transaction
- ACH Credit: $1.00 per transaction
You can use all major credit and debit cards plus ACH, WeChat Pay, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and much more. Expect to wait two business days for deposits or pay a one percent fee to get instant deposits.
Stripe integrates with WordPress, Magento, Squarespace, 3DCart, Zoho, Big Cartel, and more.
So, by this point, you should know which of these merchant services is right for you. They all have their pros and cons, and you should choose according to the type of business you own.
Square is an overall solid solution for all businesses, but the transaction fees are a bit high, and scalability is lacking.
I’m also a big fan of Helcim because they allow you to grow with your processor by increasing the monthly payment as your volume needs increase.
Regardless of which choice you make, keep the important factors in mind and choose carefully, so you don’t regret your decision down the road.
How Using Emotional Marketing in Content Can Help Drive Way More Sales
Whether you care to admit it or not, the decisions you make today will be driven by your emotions. In emotional marketing, we talk a lot about using psychological triggers to get customers to click, convert, engage, etc.
“By leveraging common psychological triggers all people have,” you might hear, “you can drive more sales.”
While it may feel like we make decisions with our minds, using logic and reasoning, the “mental triggers” we hear about are tied more to emotion than anything else.
Case in point, Antonio Damasio spent time studying individuals with damage to the area of the brain where emotions were generated and processed.
While these subjects functioned just like anyone else, they couldn’t feel emotion.
The other thing they had in common was they all had trouble with making decisions.
Even simple decisions about what to eat proved difficult.
While they could describe what they should be doing using logic and reason, most decisions couldn’t be settled with simple rationale.
Without emotion, they weren’t able to make a choice.
This is supported by data from Gerard Zaltman, author of “How Customers Think: Essential Insights into the Mind of the Market.”
Zaltman found that 95% of cognition happens beyond our conscious brain, instead coming from our subconscious, emotional brain.
Emotions are an X factor you can’t control, but you can’t afford to ignore them in your content marketing.
Why is Emotion Marketing so Effective?
When you make an emotional connection with your audience, it’s incredibly easy to steer them to the desired outcome.
You’ve formed an emotional bond, however brief and fleeting, that makes them open to ideas and suggestions. It creates a certain level of trust that’s virtually impossible to artificially manifest.
Rob Walker and Joshua Glen found firsthand what an emotional connection can do.
In one experiment, they bought hundreds of items from thrift stores and similar locations — all cheaply priced.
The duo wanted to see if they could sell the products using an emotional connection through the power of stories alone.
With 200 writers on board, they generated fictional stories for the products and used those stories to sell the thrift store items at auction on eBay.
They raised just under $8,000, which was a profit of approximately 2,700%.
And they did it all using that emotional connection through storytelling.
That’s not to say there isn’t a place for the logical or the rational in decision making.
This is where marketers often leverage the theory of dual processing in psychological marketing.
The theory holds that the brain processes thoughts and decisions on two levels.
The first level is that of emotion, which processes automatically, unconsciously, and provides a rapid response when we need it with virtually no effort.
The second level is the more deliberate and conscious thought process, where we handle decisions with reason and logic. It happens far slower than the emotional response.
In most cases, we fire back with a ready response from our emotions and then try to consciously rationalize it.
Think about some big-brand rivalries and preferences will surface in your mind.
How do you feel when you look at this major brand comparison?
Here’s another common one that has people divided, sometimes within the same family:
And then there’s this brand rivalry we know all too well.
In each of these, you likely have an opinion almost instantly about which you prefer, but it’s not because you have a logical reason.
It’s typically tied to emotion and/or experience; how you feel using their products, or how the brands left you feeling after an experience or reading a news article.
The brain then tries to rationalize that emotional response.
For example, your emotional response goes straight to Coke and then your brain works to rationalize the decision by deciding that it tastes better in a can, it’s fizzier, has a stronger bite than Pepsi, etc.
So, while you might feel like you’re making a rational choice about your beverage, it’s really just an emotional one.
The most successful marketers know how to lean on the emotional over logic in order to make their content draw in the audience.
That’s why nearly a third of marketers report significant profit gains when running emotional campaigns, but the number of successful campaigns dips if you introduce logic into the marketing.
And those results get sliced in half when marketers switch to logic over emotion.
Emotion Marketing Doesn’t Guarantee Successful Engagement
We experience a laundry list of emotions every day.
Is it really as simple as leveraging some emotion to make content more effective?
Yes and no.
Emotion is certainly important, but there are also other factors like timing, exposure, the format of the content, how it’s presented, who produced or shared it, etc.
Despite understanding the role emotion plays in content, we still haven’t quite perfected a formula for what makes content go viral.
Though we’ve gotten pretty close.
Brands have long tried to inflate the consumer’s emotional response through manufactured content; some met with great success.
The videos profile a person around the world who uses Intel’s technology to create new experiences and build new technology that makes a difference in the world.
Like 13-year-old Shubham Banerrjee, who used Intel’s technology to build an affordable Braille printer.
And of course, some companies try to leverage emotion and create viral campaigns that just don’t take off.
CIO reported a number of failed viral marketing campaigns, such as “Walmarting Across America.”
In this blog, two average Americans travel across the country visiting Walmart locations, reporting their interactions on a blog along the way.
After countless upbeat entries about how people loved working for the company, it was discovered that the trip was paid for by Walmart and the entire thing was a campaign created and managed by the company’s PR firm.
That didn’t receive a warm reception from the blogosphere, which deemed the content to be a “flog” or fake blog.
Which Emotions Attract the Most Marketing Engagement in Content?
Many emotions fuel our behaviors and our decisions, especially our purchase decisions.
Some more than others — especially when they’re authentic.
A study was done by Buzzsumo analyzing the top 10,000 most-shared articles on the web. Those articles were then mapped to emotions to see which emotions had the greatest influence on content.
The most popular:
- Awe (25%)
- Laughter (17%)
- Amusement (15%)
Conversely, the least popular were sadness and anger, totaling just 7% of the content that was most shared.
Two researchers at Wharton also wanted to dig deeper into virally shared content to find commonalities and better understand what makes that content spread.
What they found was the emotional element, and some very specific results tied to emotions.
- Content is far more likely to be shared when it makes people feel good or it creates positive feelings such as leaving them entertained.
- Facts or data that shock people or leave them in awe were more likely to be shared.
- Instilling fear or anxiety pushes engagement higher, from comments being posted to content being shared.
- People most commonly shared content that incited anger, leaving comments as well.
While some emotions are more likely to engage than others, every audience is different. What drives one to action may do very little for another.
This modern adaptation of Robert Plutchik’s Wheel of Emotion, illustrated by CopyPress, shows the range under eight primary emotions: joy, trust, fear, surprise, sadness, disgust, anger, and anticipation.
For content to be widely shared and have an impact on your audience, it needs to leverage one or more of these emotions.
The proof is on the web, not only in the statistics I shared above, but also in the popularity of user communities that regularly share content.
Just look at Reddit and some of the most popular subreddits by subscriber count. Each can be tied back to emotions (some more obviously than others) like anticipation, awe, joy, and more.
Here’s how some of those emotions can play into the engagement with your audience:
Anxiety May Cause Uncertainty For Customers
You don’t want your audience to make bad decisions. Bad decisions can lead to buyer’s remorse, which can paint your brand and the overall experience in a negative light.
But it can be helpful if you leave the audience a bit more open to influence.
A Berkeley study revealed that anxiety can be linked to difficulty in using information around us to make decisions. When we experience uncertainty, it becomes harder to make decisions and our judgment is clouded.
Still, anxiety can also spur people to act as a result of that uncertainty.
Take a two-year study by Wharton Ph.D. student Alison Wood Brooks and a Harvard Business School professor.
They found that upon increasing the anxiety of certain subjects with video footage, 90% of the “anxious” participants opted to seek advice and were more likely to take it.
Only 72% of the participants in a neutral state, who viewed a different video, sought advice.
Capture the Focus of Your Emotional Marketing Audience With Awe
Awe is comparable to wonder, but it doesn’t always fall under the umbrella of joy or humor.
It’s intended to captivate the audience and keep them riveted.
You often see this kind of hook in headlines that seem so earth-shatteringly significant that no one in their right mind would want to miss it.
Here’s a good example of that kind of awe used in content when Dropbox first launched.
Co-founder Drew Houston submitted his product to the website Digg, hoping to get some visibility from the social bookmarking site. That headline helped significantly.
Another great example of using Awe to capture attention is a video produced by Texas Armoring Corporation.
To emphasize the quality of the company’s bullet-resistant glass, the CEO crouched behind one of TAC’s glass panels while several rounds were fired at it from an AK-47.
Awe can impact decision making as much as anxiety.
A study from Stanford University found that people experiencing awe are more focused on the present and less distracted by other things in life. They also tend to be more giving of their time.
When you have their attention and their focus, they’re more likely to have time to rationalize a decision.
Drive People to Action With Laughter and Joy Through Emotional Marketing
While joy and laughter can have their lines blurred, they’re really two different emotions when it comes to your content.
Because while laughter often leads to joy, not everything that is joyful is laugh-out-loud funny.
Still, next to awe, joy, laughter, and amusement were the highest contributors to social sharing and engagement in the above studies.
That influence goes all the way back to early childhood.
As babies, out first emotional action not long after being born is to respond to the smile of our parents with our own smile.
Per psychoanalyst Donald Winnicott, joy and amusement are hardwired into us from birth.
His studies tell us that our innate desire for joy increases when it’s shared. That’s the nature of the “social smile.”
That explains why these feelings or emotions are such huge drivers behind the virality of content. Happiness, overall, is a huge driver for content sharing.
In fact, Jonah Berger’s study of the most-shared articles in the New York Times (around 7,000 articles) revealed the same kind of results around emotion.
The more positive the article, the more likely it was to go viral.
Brands have worked “joy marketing” into their strategies for decades, aiming to make their audience feel warm, comfortable, and happy.
That’s the intent of campaigns like P&G’s highly successful and viral “Thank You, Mom” campaigns that are injected with a lot of emotion (especially joy) when celebrating the strength of mothers.
Joy can take a lot of forms, though, and it doesn’t have to be commercially intended to elicit a direct sale.
Look at what Beringer Vineyards did with influencer marketing.
Russian Instagram sensations Murad and Nataly Osmann built a following of more than 4.5 million people with photos featuring them holding hands at locations around the globe during their world travels.
They attached the hashtag #FollowMeTo on those posts.
The couple teamed up with Beringer Vineyards to create some images meant to inspire joy, love, and of course the sense of adventure the couple already shared with their hashtag.
Immediate Gains in Emotional Marketing From Anger
Anger may be perceived as a negative emotion by some, but it can have positive influences as well as positive outcomes when leveraged in the right way.
A leading researcher in the study of anger, Dr. Carol Tavris, draws a parallel between anger and how it impacted society over the years.
Women’s suffrage, for example, developed from anger and frustration.
Anger can be empowering for the individual, bringing a sense of clarity and positive-forward momentum. It gives people a feeling of direction and control according to a study from Carnegie Mellon.
In the previously mentioned study on content shares in the New York Times, negatively perceived emotions like anger are equally associated with the virality of content.
In fact, Berger’s study of the New York Times content found that content which incites feelings of frustration or anger is 34% more likely to be featured on the Time’s most emailed list than the average article.
Now, I’m not suggesting that you deliberately create controversy by taking shots at readers or picking fights.
The key with using anger in content is to frame an issue that incites anger or frustration in a way that’s constructive.
You have to be thought-provoking and engaging.
This interactive graph from the New York Times is an example of how content can lead to frustration and anger over economic or societal issues.
This piece of content is simple, yet it provokes engagement as well as thought when results are revealed in comparison to what an individual perceives to be the truth.
Using the Right Emotional Marketing Words in Content
The difference between logic and emotion in content comes down to the words we use and how we position statements and information.
When creating copy and content, you have to be acutely aware of whether you’re taking a rational or emotional approach to the information you’re sharing.
You need to think about the response you want to elicit to help guide your content development to make the right kind of psychological and emotional connection with your audience.
The context of your copy can remain the same.
By changing the words you use, however, you can make content appeal more to the emotions of the audience and prospective customer.
The simplest approach to finding the right high-emotion words takes only three steps:
- Think about the action you want your audience to take when they read your content.
- Decide what kind of emotional state will drive that action. What would make them do what you want them to do?
- Choose emotionally persuasive words appropriate to the action and the emotion.
What you’ll find in researching the right words is that emotionally persuasive and impactful words tend to be abrupt. It’s the short, concise, basic words that appeal most to our emotions over our intellect.
Just look at this list from the Persuasion Revolution.
The majority of this emotionally weighted list (and there are over 350 items) is made up of shorter words.
The rational mind, on the other hand, tends to associate with longer and more complex words.
You Can’t Assume When it Comes to Emotional Marketing
It’s not easy to make that emotional connection with your audience. You have to know them.
Like anything else in marketing, your decisions and the content you create needs to be based on data. In this case, that data is your audience research.
That same research that tells you what topics to create, where your audience spends their time, and the content they prefer to view, can clue you into how to make that emotional connection.
You just need to expand your buyer personas.
In this case, you want to build up the psychological profile of your audience. You can achieve this by asking the right questions to help steer your content research and production.
- What do they find humorous?
- What are the pain points that frustrate them?
- What topics make them angry?
- What are common problems they speak about?
- What kind of content is being shared that clearly pleases them or brings joy?
Your research could turn up a common topic or theme that appears frequently in the content they read and share.
For example, you might discover that a certain segment or demographic in your audience has a strong affinity to family values, or health and wellness.
Turn that into a content campaign that shares the feel-good side of your company.
Delve into the family life of your employees, how your company supports the work/life balance, or better health initiatives.
Google is well known for its company structure, promoting flexible schedules, support of family time, personal projects, and a focus on work/life balance.
The company often shares behind-the-scenes images (visual content) showing off employees enjoying what they do. Here’s an example from Google Sydney’s offices:
That can influence a positive emotional response toward the brand when targeted segments see that content.
Emotional Marketing Works in the B2B Process
Don’t get caught up with the dated idea that emotion is only applicable to consumer-focused businesses.
Emotional marketing has its place in the B2B world as well.
You may be dealing with a longer buying process between one or more organizations, but the decisions are still made (and fueled by) people who are absolutely driven by emotion.
That includes emotions like:
- Awe: over what a solution is capable of and feeling empowered to bring that solution to the workplace.
- Anticipation: in finding a piece of the puzzle in a product or service that will help the company achieve its next goal or milestone.
- Fear: in purchase decisions that could reflect on the individual, resulting in a personal risk associated with a B2B purchase.
- Joy: in knowing that a B2B purchase is likely to lead to a positive outcome that will reflect positively on the individual.
Emotion absolutely influences B2B purchases, and in some cases, emotion matters even more than logic and reason.
You hold a great deal of influence with your audience when you’re able to tap into their emotions.
Once you understand your audience, you can better determine their emotional state.
From there, make the decision about whether you need to influence and exploit emotions that are already present, or if you want to create or give rise to emotions the audience wasn’t initially expecting or experiencing.
Even the most (seemingly) rational decisions are influenced by emotion — and that applies to everyone.
When you learn how to leverage that emotion in your content, you will see increases in engagement, social action, and conversions within your funnel.
How do you use emotion in your content and copy?
Gaensel Energy Group Announces Acquisition of Powerful Business Solutions Platform for Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) with over $8M in Annual Revenues
Salt Lake City, Utah, November 23, 2020 – OTC PR WIRE – Gaensel Energy, Inc., (OTC PINK: GEGR) (“the Company”, “GEGR”), a diversified Holding Company, announces today the acquisition of Suite 110 SRL, https://www.suitecentodieci.it/, providing dynamic solutions for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), with annual revenues in excess of $8,000,000 USD.
Suite 110 SRL that provides an all-in-one CRM management, sales and marketing system, encrypted cloud storage for secure documents, project management, invoicing and accounting, warehouse, logistics and inventory optimization, connectivity for multi-bank and cash management, and a number of other features that provide businesses with a platform that streamlines operations in one secure platform.
Our founder and Director Helmut Gaensel states, “This is one of a number of active acquisition targets we have and continue to be negotiating and today we are pleased to have finalized the acquisition of this additional Company. Our management team has identified a number of companies and Intellectual Property ripe for acquisition and expansion as a result of the pandemic.”
“The premier application in Suite 110’s products is its CRM software. CRM is used to manage current customers and provide a pipeline of marketing outreach to future customers. The market for CRM software has demonstrated continued growth over the last decade with players like Salesforce, Zoho, Oracle and Microsoft, and is expected to grow exponentially over the next decade.”
Previously, CRM has been majorly adopted by large enterprises only, but due to an explosion of pay-per-use SaaS (Software-as-a-Service), CRMs are quickly becoming a necessity for small businesses globally, and GEGR’s Suite 110 intends to capture an impactful market share with its unique platform for SMEs, saving them a significant amount of time and money, increasing market opportunities, and eliminating HR, inventory and accounting headaches, all in one platform.”
Mr. Gaensel adds, “Our Management Team and Directors are thrilled to have officially closed on Suite 110 and anticipate additional acquisition announcements as we close out 2020, with reasonable anticipation of over $200,000,000 USD in contracted revenues with thanks to our diversified holding model, and positioned for an additional $764M USD in revenues by end of January 2021 with thanks to our recently acquired General Contractor Petit Chateau and its financial contracts already approved by Italy’s Agenzia Entrate (equivalent of the U.S. IRS).”
CRM INDUSTRY SNAPSHOT:
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software Market Demand, Growth, Opportunities and Analysis Of Top Key Player Forecast To 2024.
The global market for customer relationship management (CRM) software should grow from $48.5 billion in 2019 to $85.8 billion by 2024 with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.1% for the period of 2019-2024.
- CRM software is now the biggest software market in the world and the growth isn’t slowing down. In fact, CRM is now expected to reach more than $80 billion in revenues by 2024.
- One of the key factors behind the growth of CRM is accessibility. Companies want access to customer data in real-time, with mobile and cloud solutions leading the way.
- From customer service and email marketing to personalization, companies now expect to be able to connect platforms and technologies with customer data, in order to provide a more personalized experience.
This press release includes “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of U.S. federal securities laws. Words such as “expect,” “estimate,” “project,” “budget,” “forecast,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “plan,” “may,” “will,” “could,” “should,” “believes,” “predicts,” “potential,” “continue” and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements involve significant risks and uncertainties that could cause the actual results to differ materially from the expected results and, consequently, you should not rely on these forward-looking statements as predictions of future events. These forward-looking statements and factors that may cause such differences include, without limitation inability to enter into a definitive agreement with respect to the proposed transaction or to complete the transactions contemplated by the non-binding term sheet, matters discovered by the parties as they complete their respective due diligence investigation of the other. Other factors include the possibility that the proposed transaction does not close, including due to the failure to receive required security holder approvals, or the failure of other closing conditions. The foregoing list of factors is not exclusive. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance upon any forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date made.
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The 11 Best Dropshipping Tools
Dropshipping is a popular method for building an e-commerce empire. The challenge is, there are tons of people out there trying to do the same thing. So, how do you get a competitive edge? By using dropshipping tools to get the most out of your dropshipping business.
This post covers the basics of dropshipping and the 11 best dropshipping tools to maximize this fulfillment method’s benefits while minimizing the drawbacks.
What is Dropshipping?
Dropshipping is a fulfillment method that allows e-commerce stores to sell products without storing or maintaining stock.
Using the dropshipping model, your store markets a third-party’s (a wholesaler or manufacturer) products. When someone places an order from your site, you buy the product from a third-party, who then sends the product directly to your customer.
You don’t have to worry about logistics, and the difference between the price you sell at and the price you buy at is your profit.
This model is popular (in fact, 23% of online sales are fulfilled through dropshipping) because it allows e-commerce businesses to focus on what they do best, marketing and selling products without worrying about logistic issues.
What are the Benefits of Dropshipping?
One of the major benefits of dropshipping is starting an e-commerce store with low start-up costs. You can create the framework for a great online store with relatively little investment.
The issue is, you’ve still got to invest in and warehouse stock — unless you use dropshipping.
Dropshipping limits startup costs while allowing e-commerce stores to offer a wide range of items to customers.
By working with a third party, you can quickly set up your online store and tap into a wide selection of high-quality products from suppliers around the world.
The benefits of this are:
- Low overhead costs: No need to pay for stock, warehousing, or employees to fulfill orders
- A wider selection of products: Choose from an endless list of suppliers.
- Expanded shipping capabilities: You’re working with businesses with years of experience shipping items around the world.
- Easy to scale: You don’t have to worry about stock. No matter how many orders you have coming in, you’re always able to fulfill them.
- Focus on your strengths: Concentrate on where your competitive advantage is – making sales.
- Location independence: Your stock doesn’t tie you down because you don’t own any.
These benefits sound pretty great, right?
As you might expect, there are also some drawbacks to dropshipping. The most apparent negative to dropshipping is lower profit margins. Companies that buy in bulk can save money, but buying one item at a time can be more costly.
Although you’re in control of your pricing (you can lower and raise prices as you like), you’ll have to keep your prices in line with your competition. And, because there are few barriers to starting an e-commerce business with a dropshipping model, there’s lots of competition out there.
Here are some challenges to consider with dropshipping:
- Customization and branding: You’re selling someone else’s products, so it can be harder to develop a strong brand.
- You’re reliant on a third-party: If they mess up, then in your customer’s eyes, you’ve messed up.
- Understanding costs: If you’re working with lots of different suppliers, it can be complicated to work out your profit margins when shipping is factored in.
Whether dropshipping is an effective strategy will depend on your business needs. If you’re ready to take on the stiff competition and aren’t reliant on branding to sell your products, then dropshipping could be a viable option.
What Dropshipping Tools Should I Use?
As you can see, there are plenty of benefits to using dropshipping as your fulfillment method, but there are some drawbacks as well.
These dropshipping tools can help you run a successful dropshipping business.
Shopify is the biggest e-commerce platform out there, and it’s one of the quickest and easiest ways to get your store up and running.
Shopify isn’t so much a dropshipping tool as the starting point for creating your store, so it’s important to feel comfortable with it. To ensure Shopify is right for your business, you can test out a 14-day free trial.
Once you’ve decided to build your store on Shopify, you have the following pricing options:
- Basic Shopify – $29/mo
- Shopify – $79/mo
- Advanced Shopify – $299/mo
You will still have to pay for your website hosting (here are some recommendations) which can be factored into Shopify’s price.
Whatever your goals, Shopify has a plan to suit your business needs and allows you to make the most of their customer support and a wide range of helpful plugins.
Oberlo is a Shopify app that links you to a large market of suppliers, allowing you to choose from a huge range of products and sync them to your website in seconds.
Their free starter package allows you to sell up to 500 products a month, so it’s an ideal way to dip your toe into dropshipping.
If you see good results, you can upgrade to the basic package for $29.90 a month, allowing you to sell more products and benefit from enhanced order tracking.
You can also choose the pro package for $79.90 a month, which allows you up to 30,000 sales.
If you already have a website that runs on WordPress, or you want a cheaper alternative to Shopify, then try WooCommerce. It’s a free plugin that can turn your WordPress website into an e-commerce store.
WordPress powers around 35% of the web, so you know you’re in safe hands with this platform, and the WooCommerce plugin allows you to give it powerful e-commerce capabilities.
Already have an e-commerce store set up? Spocket is one of the best dropshipping tools to connect you with suppliers from around the world.
Spocket integrates with Shopify, WooCommerce, Wix, BigCommerce, and AliScraper. It offers a free trial which allows you to view their catalog, but to truly benefit from this tool, you need one of the paid plans:
- Starter: Sell up to 25 unique products – $24/month
- Pro: Sell up to 250 unique products – $49/mo
- Empire: Sell up to 1,000 unique products – $99/mo
With many suppliers based in the US and Europe, Spocket is an excellent dropshipping tool for stores that value fast, easy fulfillment.
AutoDS is an all-in-one dropshipping tool for e-commerce stores that plugs into both Shopify and eBay. With AutoDS, you can automate processes like stock monitoring, optimizing pricing, updating tracking numbers, collecting social proof, and much more.
This dropshipping tool takes a lot of the busy work out of running your store and gives you more time to focus on boosting your sales.
One of the great things about AutoDS is they offer a vast range of packages designed to suit your business. They start at $6.33 a month for basic stores but can accommodate stores with up to 100,000 products.
Dropified connects you with suppliers and automates your dropshipping processes. With integrations for e-commerce platforms such as Shopify, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, GrooveKart, and CommerceHQ, it aims to give you all the dropshipping tools you need to run a successful business.
With lots of helpful automation, Dropified is ideal for sellers looking to develop their custom brand. They offer two distinct pricing structures:
- Import: $14/mo
- Private Label On-Demand: $168/mo
This dropshipping tool price might seem costly, but the ability to use private labels helps you overcome one of the most significant drawbacks of dropshipping – difficulty establishing your brand.
SaleHoo is a directory of wholesale companies and a great dropshipping tool for market research. Their annual plan gives you full access to the directory for $67, or you can choose a lifetime plan for $127. Those prices make it an affordable tool to research the market and find the best suppliers.
There’s also the option to upgrade to full automation, and you can get lifetime access to the SaleHoo education program for $47.
With so many apps helping you run your business, you might be wondering how to coordinate them all. The answer is Zapier.
Zapier automates workflows across different apps, which reduces manual work. For example, when you receive an order on Shopify, Zapier can instruct MailChimp to add that customer to your monthly newsletter and create an invoice through Invoice Ninja.
With a free lifetime plan that allows you to create 5 “zaps,” Zapier is one of those dropshipping tools you’ve got to try. If you find it significantly streamlines your store, then there are many plans to choose from.
AliDropship connects you to suppliers. However, there’s one big difference — with AliDropship there are no monthly fees. Instead, you make a one-time payment of $89 for a lifetime subscription.
You can also have AliDropship create you a website for a one-time price of $299, making it a viable alternative to Shopify. You will have to pay for your monthly hosting, but this option is about as quick and easy as it comes in terms of getting started with dropshipping.
For sellers looking for a fast, convenient way to get into dropshipping, AliDropship is an ideal option.
While many of the dropshipping tools on this list offer important insights about customers and traffic, some of the most important metrics can be found in your Google Analytics dashboard. All the data you need to know about your store is in your analytics for free.
There’s no need to pay for extra website analytics if you know how to make the most of Google Analytics, and this is the reason why it’s one of the most powerful dropshipping tools.
Track your visitors, understand where your traffic comes from, what content works well, and how to boost your store’s all-round performance by making use of the data that’s available to you.
If you’re dropshipping through eBay, then Chili-Hunter is a handy market research tool. Use it to discover new trends, find the most profitable items to sell, and get insight into your store’s performance and your competitors.
This dropshipping tool provides vital information to maximize your profits, and the best part is it comes in one simple plan.
You can choose either a monthly membership for $39.99 per month or a yearly membership for $16.66/mo.
With Chilli-Hunter, you can find the best products to dropship and boost your business’s performance in seconds.
One of the biggest challenges with dropshipping is maintaining workable margins. To do this, you need your e-commerce store to be as streamline as possible so you can adapt to changing markets and build up a large volume of sales.
To scale your business, look for ways to automate areas such as marketing, order processing, and product selection. This is where dropshipping tools come in handy.
While you will need to pay the monthly subscription fees for the right dropshipping tools, the return on investment can be immense.
How do you use dropshipping tools to give your store the edge?
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