So, you have probably done many studies about CBD and are interested in getting started. Most likely, you know where to source the products and how to meet the country’s regulatory requirements.
The next logical step would be micro-business planning. It would be about deciding where to sell, how to sell, setting up the sales platform, and more.
Many would like to have a dedicated online store for their products. However, it is generally not very challenging, as setting up an online store using different platforms is pretty simple and does not cost much. There are many options here, from WooCommerce to Shopify, and all are pretty simple ways of getting started.
However, when people start setting up the online store, many may suddenly hit the wall as they realize that most payment processors are not ready to accept payments for CBD products. It is true that CBD is legal. Nonetheless, regulations are still evolving.
In addition, many payment processing services consider CBD business as a high-risk business, quite like pornography, dating, or online gambling. Thus, they are not ready to manage payments of CBD companies.
The payment processor is a third party, a financial institute, that can process or accept payments via various means like debit and credit cards. Then, after taking their small commission or service charges, they transfer the rest of the amount into your business account.
How To Choose a CBD Payment Processor?
As mentioned, most payment processing gateways still regard CBD as a high-risk business. It is true that CBD is now entirely legal in most parts of the world. However, the problem is with the continually changing legal environment.
Some of the reputed payment processors worry that they might also get into trouble for not following specific regulations. Thus, they prefer to stay away from high-risk businesses like CBD, pharmaceuticals, online dating, or gambling.
The problem is not only in the unclear legal framework or regulatory hurdles, but experience shows that people buying such products are also more likely to engage in fraudulent activities.
Thus, not every payment processing company would be ready to work with CBD merchants. However, here are some things to know when opening a merchant account with payment processing companies.
Must be ready to process high-risk transactions
When you start your business, make clear to the payment processing company that they are ready to process CBD-related transactions. Generally, these are companies with much experience in processing high-risk transactions and experience working with websites that provide services like online dating, gaming, travel services, and more.
Here it is vital, to be honest about your products. The Internet is full of information when someone working with low-risk products like selling gift cards also decided to start selling CBD products. And suddenly, they realized that their account got suspended as their payment processing company would not work with CBD products.
Easy to integrate with common platforms
Once you have found the right kind of company that is ready to work with CBD products, another thing to look at is that their services must be easy to integrate with the most common platforms.
So, let’s say that if you have a WordPress website with a WooCommerce store, then the software solution provided by the company must be easy to set up and should not pose any challenges. Otherwise, you may need to spend lots of money on setup costs and may also experience frequent problems.
This factor only counts if you are planning to have an offline store. In such a case, you would also need POS system integration. Though most payment processing companies may provide this service, however pay extra attention to the quality of software, ease of use, and reporting functions. Therefore, even if you are not planning to have an offline store, it is good to have a payment processor that provides this option, just in case your plans change in the future.
Low transaction fees
Let’s be honest, most payment processors working with high-risk businesses have higher fees. For example, they may charge a hefty upfront fee and massive commissions for processing every transaction. Thus, try to learn about all the service fees, including setup, statement, terminal, monthly or annual charges, and more.
Of course, it is also essential to understand how they charge a fee. Generally, most good payment processing companies would just deduct a small percentage from each transaction. This is quite a convenient option for beginners, as you are paying from the profit and not out of pocket.
Does PayPal Process CBD Payments?
No, PayPal does not handle CBD payments. If you have other stores and have been working with PayPal, be very clear about it.
There are many cases when people did not know about it, just because they have been working for PayPal for so long and have been using PayPal as a payment processor for years. But, when they started selling CBD products, they got into trouble.
Using PayPal for CBD may result in account suspension, or the company may hold funds for a large amount of time. For example, there are reports when PayPal held the funds for six months or more!
Are There Any High-Risk Payment Processors for CBD?
Yes, there are many. Things are now much better than they used to be even a decade back. There is not considerable competition in the financial sector. Thus, tens of companies, banks, and other organizations provide payment processing services. Therefore, one must carefully understand the pros and cons of each payment processing company.
Which Is the Best CBD Payment Processor for Me?
Though there are many payment processors, here are a few of the better ones known to work with CBD sellers.
One of the oldest payment processing companies was founded way back in 1988 and thus has been in the business from quite an early day of eCommerce. Over the years, their tools have become much better and easy to integrate with many custom features. They also provide excellent customer support. The only downside is that they might be a bit slow to respond to queries.
It is quite a dynamic and fast-growing company, with many reputed customers. Therefore, they are a good choice for more extensive platforms as they have excellent experience in handling large clients. Moreover, they support different kinds of credit and debit cards. However, on the downside, they have a small monthly fee for their services, which is apart from a small fee per transaction.
It is a company that prides itself as a provider of high-risk merchant accounts. They are ready to work with different industries, from porn, and gaming, to CBD, without any issues. For them working with regulated products like CBD is not an issue. It means that they have a fast account approval process.
Last but the most reputed payment processor in this list is Easy Pay Direct. It is quite an old company, established in the year 2000. They have experience in working with both high-risk clients and large, well-established eCommerce stores. They are handling the business transactions of many reputed CBD companies.
Thus, Easy Pay Direct has quite a good software solution that can handle all kinds of transactions with almost zero complaints. They have one of the best payment gateways in the industry. However, it also means that they have some setup fees and descent monthly fees, along with high processing rates.
Surely, the above list is not comprehensive, and many more payment processors can work with the CBD industry. Moreover, the CBD industry is not risky compared to online gaming, dating websites, etc. Therefore, though most of them would be able to handle financial transactions securely, nonetheless, one should choose any payment processors after due diligence.
If you have any questions regarding payment processing for CBD products, we would be glad to help you with it.