By Mark & Donna Paz Kaufman, Partners, Paz & Associates
We thought we had been quite thorough in researching and comparing various payment processing companies several years ago when the company we had been dealing with was sold. The tipping point came when we received a monthly statement that showed we had given up 7% of our gross sales to our service provider…an unpleasant way to learn how hidden fees could quickly erase the loss-leader percentage being offered. We knew it was time to make a change.
From everything we have read about Costco as a corporation, as well as our own personal experiences, we know how thoroughly the products and services they offer are vetted. Their partnership with Elavon went a long way toward our decision to change credit card processors.
During our initial calls to learn more about Elavon, a customer care representative patiently answered every question we could think of, even when we kept asking, "What about this fee? And what about that fee?" She politely referred us to the Elavon application, and simply said, "We don't charge for that." After our experience with the other processor, we truly appreciated this level of transparency. We signed on with Elavon in June, and there is no question that we made the right decision.
In our consulting work with independent bookstores, we preach customer service as a competitive advantage, so we very much appreciate doing business with a company that seems to truly embrace the concept. From the first call to the subsequent follow-up calls to welcome us and check in to see how we’re doing, Elavon’s customer service has been tremendous. And, we estimate that our savings could reach approximately $1,200 per year.
There's a saying that "retail is a nickel-and-dime business," which is especially true for small, locally-owned mom-and-pop shops. The fact that small business owners can often find products and services they need from Costco for less than they could get from wholesalers or distributors makes a difference to us. Without hesitation, we recommend Costco/Elavon to businesses like ours.
Mark & Donna Paz Kaufman
Partners, Paz & Associates
The bookstore training and consulting group of Paz & Associates offers a variety of services to help open and effectively manage independent bookstores, including bookstore design and merchandising, staff development and training, inventory management, marketing, financial analysis and resources for both buyers and sellers.
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