What is ACH processing?
ACH processing is a method of electronic payment where funds are transferred between accounts. ACH stands for the Automated Clearing House. ACH processing can also be referred to as EFT, or electronic funds transfer.
How is ACH different from an eCheck?
ACH processing is very similar to eChecks, or electronic checks. In ACH processing, funds are transferred from one bank account to another via either debit or credit. An eCheck is simply the electronic method of payment via a check in a one-time method. Both processes utilize routing and account numbers.
What can I use ACH processing for?
ACH processing is great for recurring payments, such as memberships, billing and subscriptions. ACH is used in many industries, including healthcare, government, utility providers and property management. Gyms and other programs that require dues often find ACH processing to be especially helpful.
Can I process only ACH transactions and not credit cards?
Certainly, you can. You are able to set up a merchant account only for ACH processing, just as you can with eChecks.
What are the costs for processing payments?
ACH processing costs just 25¢ per transaction. Feel free to stop by our Pricing page for more information or contact us at 866.378.0001 and email@example.com.
Credit card processing
What is a merchant account?
A merchant account is a special account designed specifically for processing electronic payments, such as credit/debit cards and eChecks. For more explanation, read our blog post.
Why should I set up a merchant account?
Any merchant who wants to accept payments electronically, including both credit cards and ACH, must establish a merchant account. Accepting credit cards makes shopping more convenient for customers and allows them to make purchases more efficiently and securely. Businesses that accept credit cards gain credibility and can instantly verify payments to eliminate the risk of bad transactions.
How soon can I start processing payments?
Once your merchant account has been approved and enrolled, you can begin processing payments immediately.
How long will it take for my application to be approved?
Most applications receive approval within 3-5 business days.
What are the costs for processing payments?
We’re glad you asked! We have two packages for credit card processing, Starter and Merchant+. We can also implement a custom Enterprise package for merchants with larger volumes. Feel free to stop by our Pricing page for more information. Don’t hesitate to give us a shout if you still have questions. Reach us at 866.378.0001 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can I use my current credit card terminal?
Most likely. Forte works with many pre-existing POS terminals. In the rare instance we cannot make it work, we will do everything we can to find you a great device that fits your needs and is competitively priced.
What types of credit cards can I accept?
You can accept all major credit and debit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, Diners and JCB.
What is EMV smart chip technology?
EMV chip cards contain embedded microprocessors that provide additional security features, as well as other application capabilities that are not possible with traditional magnetic stripe cards.
When will the funds settle into my bank account?
Funds will appear in your bank account within 3-4 business days.
Are the authorizations provided in real-time?
You bet. Authorizations happen instantly.
Can the funds be deposited into any bank account?
Funds will be deposited into any business banking account.
What is a chargeback?
A credit card chargeback is a dispute that a cardholder has filed with the card-issuing bank. For more details and tips, read our blog post on chargebacks.
What businesses do you work with?
Forte works with businesses and organization of all sizes.
How safe and secure is Forte?
Forte is dedicated to protecting the confidentiality and integrity of your customers’ information by providing the highest levels of security. We are certified as fully compliant with the PCI DSS. The PCI DSS covers 12 major categories of information security, including network design, data storage, intrusion monitoring and the use of security-aware IT policies. Our compliance meets and exceeds these industry standards as an integral part of our commitment to end-to-end security. For more information about PCI compliance, stop by our PCI page or visit our blog post.
Can a merchant outside of the U.S. sign up?
We accept merchant account applications for businesses owned by U.S. or Canadian citizens or public companies with a U.S. or Canadian presence.
What is an eCheck?
An eCheck is an electronic check. This allows customers to pay by check using the same routing and account numbers found on a traditional paper check. The payment is processed electronically using the ACH network.
Can I just accept eChecks and not credit cards?
Of course! You can set up a merchant account with Forte for any type or combination of payments. For powerful protection against returned items, we also offer comprehensive fraud prevention products like Forte Verify and Check Recovery for eCheck and ACH processing. Feel free to check them out at www.forte.net/check-verification and www.forte.net/check-recovery.
Can I continue to use my current merchant service provider and just use your services for eChecks?
Yes, we can set up a merchant account for your business to accept eCheck transactions while you continue to use your existing merchant service provider.
What are the costs for processing payments?
eChecks are included with any of our packages. With our Starter package, ACH/eCheck processing only costs 25¢ a transaction. To learn more about the Select+ interchange plus rates, give us a shout. Feel free to stop by our Pricing page for more information or contact us at 866.378.0001 and email@example.com.
Do you process consumer and business checks?
Yes, Forte processes most consumer and business checks.
Do you offer same day settlement?
We sure do.
Do you know if the funds are available when processing an eCheck?
In most instances, you will know if funds are available within 2 days after processing an eCheck.
When will I be notified that the funds have been successfully withdrawn from my customer’s bank account?
You will be notified within 1-2 days after the transaction is processed.
How and when will I be notified if an item is returned?
You will be notified via email within 1-2 days after the transaction is processed of any returned items.
Do you guarantee checks?
We do not guarantee checks. However, we do offer Forte Verify. This powerful product can decrease NSF items by up to 50%, and it costs less than guarantee services. For more information, visit www.forte.net/check-verification.
What is mobile payment?
Mobile payment allows credit, debit and eCheck payments to be made from a mobile device or tablet computer. A mobile card reader attaches to most smartphones and tablets, so you can take POS (point of sale) payment from anywhere. Simply download the mobile app and start processing.
Where is your mobile app located?
Our app can be found in the Apple App Store.
Does it cost anything to download the app?
Nope. Our app is completely free to download and use.
What phones are compatible with the app?
Currently, our application is compatible with iOS operation systems, including the iPhone, iPod and iPad.
Can I accept credit and debit cards?
Yep! You can process both credit and debit cards with our mobile card reader.
Can I accept electronic checks?
Yes, feel free to accept eChecks.
What type of device do I need to use to swipe someone’s card?
You will need to use our mobile card reader, MagTek’s iDynamo. The iDynamo is a reliable, durable and professional grade reader with layers of protection not offered by other readers. You can find out more about the iDynamo on MagTek’s website.
Can I send the customer a text confirming their payment?
Sure, you can send text confirmations.
Do I need a Forte merchant account to use Forte Verify?
You will need a merchant account with us, but it doesn’t require credit card or ACH processing. All you need to do is apply, and we’ll set one up once you’re approved.
Can I use Forte Verify on paper checks?
You sure can. Forte Verify can verify bank account numbers before you accept a paper check.
Do I need any special equipment?
Absolutely not. Forte Verify uses our web-based Virtual Terminal, which requires nothing but an internet connection.
Is Forte Verify a guarantee service?
Forte Verify is not a guarantee service. However, this powerful product can decrease NSF items by up to 50%, and it costs less than guarantee services. Forte Verify provides you with an informed decision on the bank account information and its probability to clear transactions, but it won’t cover the face value like a guarantee service does.
How much does Forte Verify cost?
You can add Forte Verify to an existing merchant account (or use it as a stand-alone product) for just 25¢ per transaction.
Do I need a Forte merchant account to use Checkout?
Yes, you will need one. But it’s easy to get! Simply cruise over to our pricing page to get started.
What if I already have a merchant account somewhere else, can I add Checkout to it?
As long as we are certified with the provider, it’s no problem at all. We’re certified with First Data Nashville, Global East, Elavon, TSYS and Vantiv.
How much does Checkout cost?
You can use Checkout for free with any Forte merchant account. That’s a super deal.
What do I need to integrate Checkout onto my website?
Take a look at www.forte.net/developers for tips and tricks on integration.
Can Checkout be used at the point of sale (POS)?
Checkout excels at eCommerce. But you can integrate Checkout with your POS system. Just ask, and we’ll help you get it rolling.
Can Checkout help with PCI compliance?
You bet. Checkout loves to help reduce your scope.
Do I need a Forte merchant account to use Direct Recovery?
You sure do. Submit an application for Direct Recovery, and we’ll set one up once you’re approved.
How much does Direct Recovery cost?
You can use Direct Recovery for free. It’s offered to Forte merchants at absolutely no cost.
Do I need both Forte Verify and Direct Recovery?
For even more check protection, you can bundle the two together. Forte Verify validates the bank account information at the point of capture, while Direct Recovery will attempt to re-collect items returned due to non-sufficient funds (NSF). Since Direct Recovery can be added at no extra cost, it certainly doesn’t hurt to have both in your back pocket. However, you can always opt for just one separately. We don’t mind!
How long does it take to recover an NSF item?
It varies. You’re allowed a total of three presentments to the bank. The first time, when it is returned due to NSF, counts as one. The other two presentments will be intelligently chosen using Direct Recovery’s smart re-presentment logic, which ups your odds of success compared to random presentments. While not set in stone, these two presentments are typically completed within a two-week time period.
What happens if the NSF item is not recovered?
If an item is not successfully recovered with Direct Recovery, it will be voided in the ACH processing system. If you still want to collect it, you’ll have to use another collection process or service.
Can I attempt to collect on an old check that was returned due to NSF?
Checks over 180 days old are not eligible for collection, but you can try with checks that fall before this cut-off.
What is a virtual terminal?
A virtual terminal is an online platform for processing electronic payments, credit cards and all verification services. It also allows you to manually enter transactions that are processed by phone or by mail, and it includes extensive reporting and functionality to help you manage your transactions. For more information regarding virtual terminals, see our blog post.
How many users can the Virtual Terminal support?
Each Virtual Terminal account comes standard with system administration capabilities. You can set up an unlimited number of users, each with their own limits for security, access and transaction processing. Users can log into the system from multiple locations worldwide, or they can be locked down to a single location.
Is it a requirement to have a special operating system or browser to use the Virtual Terminal?
Nope. You don’t have to use any certain browser or operating system to utilize the Virtual Terminal.
How long do users remain logged into the Virtual Terminal?
To comply with PCI standards, the Virtual Terminal will log users out after 7 minutes of inactive use.
Does the Virtual Terminal work with any type of hardware to swipe credit cards or enter checks?
The Virtual Terminal works with MagTek card readers and VeriFone check readers.
Does the Virtual Terminal support printers? If so, what type?
Receipts can be printed to any laser printer that is connected to your PC. Additionally, we support the Star TSP100 POS Printer.
Does every user have access to all of the functionality of the Virtual Terminal, or can certain levels of security be set up?
Each user can be assigned different limits for security, access and transaction processing.
Can I export reports? If so, what formats are available?
You bet you can. Our real-time reports can be exported to PDF, Word, Excel, CSV and a variety of other formats. All report data is encrypted and stored at Forte’s state-of-the-art data center.
How long is the data in the Virtual Terminal available to our office?
There is no expiration date on your data. Feel free to access it whenever you like.
Can I rebrand the Virtual Terminal?
Yes, we offer a private label option for merchants who desire a branded solution.
Does the Virtual Terminal allow me to schedule a payment?
Of course! You can process a single payment one time or set up recurring payments. Our recurring billing solution works with credit cards, debit cards and ACH/eCheck transactions. Scheduling automatic payments can save you time and money, lower your risk and boost profits and customer loyalty.
How do I view my account information?
The Virtual Terminal allows you to easily view your account information. Simply sign on.
How will my company name appear on my customer’s bill?
Your “doing business as” (DBA) name will appear on your customer’s bill, along with your business telephone number. There is space for up to 25 characters on a customer’s bill.
What is a payment gateway?
A payment gateway is a secure portal that connects to your company’s online shopping cart or terminal. It transmits customer payment information to the payment processor for authorization and settlement. All Internet merchant accounts require a secure payment gateway in order to process transactions. Forte’s Payment Gateway supports single transactions and recurring billing functions, allowing merchants to process sales (debits), refunds (credits), authorizations, funds capturing and verification. For more information regarding payment gateways, see our blog post.
How can I use your gateway with my business software?
Our payment gateway is compatible with most existing platforms. Our outstanding integration team would be happy to work with you and help identify the most effective integration path for your business.
If I have a current merchant service provider, can I still use your services and how?
You sure can. We’re certified to work with several processing networks: TSYS, Elavon, First Data-Nashville, Global East, and Vantiv. Your business will have access to all of our services regardless of the processor you have chosen. Our system will communicate with your current provider to authorize transactions, and our insightful reports will provide you with the details of all processed transactions.
Does your gateway offer reporting and, if so, what types of reports can you provide?
Yes, we offer a comprehensive suite of reports through our Virtual Terminal. Report data is automatically updated in real-time for instant payment intelligence. All data is stored at our secure data center. Reports can be exported into a variety of formats, including PDF, Word, Excel and CSV.
What additional services does your gateway provide, i.e. web services, batch processing, tokenization, etc.?
We provide all processing services including single/recurring transactions, batch processing, tokenization, processing via the use of web services and much more. Check out our documentation at www.forte.net/devdocs
How can I view your documentation?
Swing by www.forte.net/devdocs. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, don’t hesitate to give us a shout.
Will you provide me with a test account?
Of course! You can request a test/sandbox account from our developer’s website.
Does your payment gateway offer fraud protection to help avoid chargebacks?
Yes, we utilize CVV and CVV2 settings, as well as address verification, to help assist with reducing chargebacks. For more details and merchant tips on chargebacks, read our blog post.
What is bill presentment?
Bill presentment is a way that bills can be both presented and paid online. You simply send us a file of outstanding bills, and your customers can look up what they owe and pay right from your website. We host the records. Our bill presentment service also offers additional features like business rules and shopping carts. We’ll even send you a payment file the day after payments are made for easy uploading.
Are there specific programs or software that I need to use BillPayIt?
No, there is nothing special that you need.
What invoice information is available electronically?
If you want to display certain information in the bill that is presented, send it on over! We can include information like the due date, the minimum amount due, penalties or interest, the full amount due, and the location address – just to name a few. The file format and fields you can deliver to us are listed right here: https://www.forte.net/devdocs/bill%20pay/bp_product_overview.htm.
How often can a file be uploaded?
A file can be uploaded as often as you would like.
Can multiple files be uploaded each day?
Yes, you can upload as many files as you would like to throughout the course of the day.
Can multiple people get the email notification once a file is uploaded?
Currently, only one email address is supported. We recommended using a group email address so that multiple people can receive the notification.
Can paid bills show up if they are sent and there is no balance?
Yes, paid bills can be displayed. They will be displayed with no amount due.
Can Forte display a PDF of the invoice?
You bet! Just send us the link to where the PDF is stored, and we’ll make it happen.
Can you limit your search criteria to an ‘exact match’?
Yes, we sure can. If you’d like to have your customer enter exact information, such as the specific invoice number or name associated with their bill, fret not. We can easily set this up.
Can I provide the information that appears in the text box on the landing page?
Feel free to provide us with any helpful extra tidbits you’d like to have in the text box. For example, you might want to tell your customers where to find the invoice number located on their statement. Here’s a great place to do that.
Do you support an IVR system with bill presentment?
Absolutely! Our IVR system works seamlessly with BillPayIt. Your customers will enter the invoice number into their touch-tone phone, and the IVR will look up their bill, tell them the amount owed, and accept IVR payments just like it would online.
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