UniversalPay Review

Overview

UniversalPay offers businesses a credit card processing service without any added transaction fees. It does this by passing all charges on to the customer in the form of a “convenience fee.” Therefore, participating businesses can offer customers 2 payment options: pay by cash, PayPal or another non-credit card option, and save on fees; or pay by credit card, with an extra fee for the convenience this provides them. It caters to the types of businesses considered high-risk by traditional banks and payment processors, and it promises to get clients set up and accepting credit cards within 24-48 hours of applying.

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Ideal For

  • Business considered high-risk by traditional financial institutions and payment processors, such as online gaming, fantasy sports, and multi-level marketing companies.
  • Businesses that usually have a high rate of chargebacks, such as telemarketing firms.
  • Startups in Ecommerce and other industries that need to get started without set-up fees.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Approves 99% of applicants
  • No set-up fees, processing or transaction fees charged to company
  • Flat rates for all major credit cards
  • Accepts the types of companies that would usually be considered too “high-risk” for many other payment processors
  • Member of Electronic Transactions Association and PCI Security Standards Council

Cons

  • Doesn’t cater to low-risk companies that are able to secure better terms with traditional credit card processors
  • Some customers may be deterred when they see the convenience fee at the checkout
  • Website doesn’t give much information about pricing, application process and requirements

What’s on Offer

  • Integration with 175+ payment gateways
  • Accept credit card payments by calling a toll-free number
  • Compatible with SyncPay by QuickBooks
  • Tracks all charges online
  • Dedicated account manager
  • Multiple currencies
  • Chargeback prevention
  • Partners program with weekly payments and flexible underwriting

Ease of Use

UniversalPay promises to get applicants approved and processing credit cards in 24-48 hours. Its website is vague on information about the basic requirements, but to get started you can either call or fill out a simple form online. You’ll be required to give the following information to get your application started: name, company name, type of business, contact details, and requested monthly processing volume.

What’s Unique About UniversalPay?

UniversalPay stands out for its commitment to accepting businesses from certain types of industries considered too high-risk by traditional merchant-services providers. The other unique thing about UniversalPay is that partners can use a toll-free number to process customers’ credit cards. This feature comes in handy for businesses that work from the field, as it doesn’t require them to lease merchant equipment or use a gateway on the internet.

This is the full list of companies UniversalPay says it can especially cater to:

  • Startups
  • Travel
  • Fantasy sports
  • Collection agencies
  • Online gaming
  • Telemarketing
  • Nutraceuticals
  • Multi-level marketing (MLM)
  • Hemp oil
  • Ecommerce

For example, many banks consider start-ups to be high-risk because most of them fail within the first couple of years. UniversalPay promises to overlook these risks and give startups the chance to process credit cards within as little as 24-48 hours.

As another example, fantasy sports companies often struggle to get approval from traditional banks because of their large credit-card processing volumes and the risk of chargebacks. UniversalPay offers to handle the underwriting, risk, funding, and support in-house to prevent the potential issues that can often arise for fantasy sports companies.

It also caters to the types of business that don’t fit traditional models, such as hemp oil businesses – which are always at risk of having their payment processor shut down their account. UniversalPay states that it understands the risks of companies such as hemp-oil sellers, and says it is committed to keeping these types of businesses running without fear of suddenly not being able to accept credit cards.

Customer Support

New applicants can reach UniversalPay by phone during regular business hours or by email. Customers are given a dedicated account manager as part of UniversalPay’s service. Agents are employed by parent company Accept by Phone, which has been around for 14 years and has positive online testimonials.

Pricing (Software and Hardware)

In order to get started, you will need to fill out a few details about yourself and your business – but you won’t have to provide any sensitive information at the beginning. Prices can vary a little depending on your business’s specific needs and circumstances, and therefore UniversalPay doesn’t offer any pricing information before you apply or speak to one of its agents.

Bottom Line

UniversalPay was created to ensure that the types of businesses deemed too “high-risk” by traditional financial institutions have a way of accepting credit card payments. It offers small businesses and startups in industries such as fantasy sports, online gaming, telemarketing, and hemp oil some distinct advantages: a commitment to offering them a permanent credit card processing solution without the fear of having their account suddenly shut down; easy setup within 24-48 hours, and no transaction fees on the seller.

About UniversalPay

UniversalPay is a new service from Accept by Phone, which was founded by Kevin Cross in Ohio in 2004. Cross founded Accept by Phone because he saw a void in the merchant industry – namely, that it was far too expensive for small or mobile businesses to accept credit cards. His solution was to accept credit cards by phone, bypassing recurring monthly fees, annual fees, cancellation fees, and the equipment cost of a traditional merchant count, among other things. With UniversalPay, the company now offers a solution for startups, Ecommerce businesses, telemarketing, online gaming, and fantasy sports firms that might otherwise find it too difficult to be accepted as a client of one of the traditional players in the merchant industry.

Physical Address

UniversalPay, a division of Accept by Phone, Inc.

8000 Walton Parkway Suite 200

New Albany, OH 43054

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