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Merchant Account 101: What is the Difference Between Swiped and Keyed?

Posted by Brooke Tajer on Jul 28, 2015 9:00:00 AM

merchant-account-swiped-keyedIf you’re running a business and in the market to provide your customers with flexible payment options and credit card processing, there are important things to know when you’re looking for a merchant account provider.

First, understand that there are two merchant account types – “swiped” and “keyed.”

A “swiped” account refers to face-to-face interaction with the customer where the business conducts credit card processing by swiping credit cards through credit card machines or terminals. Many retail, restaurant, hotel/lodging and even wireless merchants fall under the swiped category as all these industries process credit cards through physical credit cards equipment.

A “keyed” account is a merchant account where card processing is taken online through ecommerce or over the phone/mail order and the credit card is not physically present during the transaction.

Analyze your business needs. Do your merchant service needs call for a swiped or keyed account? Or both? Click here to read more about how your type of business can benefit from having a merchant account with North American Bancard.