General

Having FUN while you work!

If you’re a movie buff like I am, you’re probably familiar with the line from Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining where Jack Nicholson’s character types out several pages of the same sentence: All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. While the context in the movie is a bit eerie, Jack's comment is actually truer than you might think! I’ve also heard the old saying Work is not supposed to be fun ~ that’s why it’s called WORK. I humbly disagree ~ I believe th...

Read More
Guest Blogger: Shannon Fry 6/11/2018 Comments(0)

Make Your Life Easier: PICK THE RIGHT PARTNERS

There are so many things to do every day as a business owner so figuring out ways to MAKE OUR LIVES EASIER- just makes good sense! Whether it is finding the right products, the right staff or the right business partners- we really can make a difference in our crazy world, by making some great choices. Since we know a few things about being a GREAT business partner- here are a few things you need to REQUIRE when looking for a Credit Card Processing PARTNER! Integrity: Having a processor that will...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/4/2018 Comments(0)

We Will Never Forget: Thank You!

If you spend any time at all in front of a television set, you know that 3 day weekends are some of the best times to go shopping; according to the advertisers. As a credit card processing company, it is intriguing to see how companies draw business in and encourage people to make purchases but yesterday, I counted 8 commercials that discussed the outdoor barbeques, time spent with loved ones, boating and a myriad of other activities: without mentioning the REAL reason we have these three days...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/28/2018 Comments(0)

Selecting The Right Processing Type For Your Business

The credit card processing industry has never been more exciting than it is today! Change is around every corner. Government intervention, security concerns & mobile technology have altered the industry forever. So how does a business owner determine what solution is the right one for their business? That is where we come in! Our team is dedicated to helping merchants navigate the dicey waters of the Merchant Services Industry with great staff members and lots of great education! Here are so...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/21/2018 Comments(0)

The Art of Hospitality

There are few things that match the comfort of your own bed! So when travelling- there can be some trepidation surrounding your accommodations that is- unless you have friends that are truly gifted in the art of hospitality! Years ago, one of my very best friends and I found ourselves up in the wee hours discussing the little details that make staying with friends more entertaining. For example, do you ‘leave a light on’ like Tom Bodette? How about water in the room and should you le...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/7/2018 Comments(0)

Balancing Your Business & Personal Life: Get Out!

In his book ‘The One Thing’ Gary Keller mentions that a BALANCED life is a myth and I think that we all really know this instinctually. But there is a still, small voice that keeps calling us to be balanced - to make sure we are not spending too much time at the office or too much leisure time yes- that’s a thing . Being ‘balanced’ has a nice- even ring to it- ‘I am so balanced’ if you stand there for a minute and just close your eyes and repeat that sta...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/30/2018 Comments(0)

Tax Time!

Tax Day is the day on which individual income tax returns are due to the federal government. When the country was in its infancy, it struggled to raise funds from the 13 original states. The government collected the first income tax during the Civil War 1862 – 1872 to fund the war and its costs. Early taxes were based on assessments, not voluntary tax returns. They set a flat rate of 3 percent on incomes higher than $800. Over the next four years, Congress expanded the tax as members cut t...

Read More
Guest Blogger: Denise Walter 4/16/2018 Comments(0)

NO Signature Required? WHAT?

In our ever changing digital world, things are always changing. So it is no surprise that the way our cards are being accepted is changing as well. We are dipping the chip and using our watches and now we may not even be asked to sign the receipt! As of April 1st, 2018 - the card associations have elected to move away from requiring your signature. We thought it would be helpful for you to know how each card brand feels about this turn of events: Here is a quick recap of the statem...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/9/2018 Comments(0)

WATCH That Receipt! Partial Authorizations

U.S. merchants are prohibited from splitting credit card transactions, which they may be tempted to do when the total transaction amount exceeds the authorization limit stated in their processing agreements. In such scenarios, merchants would request multiple authorizations for portions of the total transaction amount, which would all be lower than the limit. We have advised you not to do that, because you will eventually be found out and pay the price for your misbehavior. Merchants are prohibi...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/2/2018 Comments(0)

Little Things Make a BIG Difference!

We have all experienced that 'little extra' that made a BIG difference! And while it is easy to see how those small measures impact our businesses, it is also very easy to overlook them while getting everything else done! Here are a few 'Little Things' that make a BIG Difference in the Merchant Services Industry- it is our hope that you will assess your current relationship and REQUIRE that your merchant services provider deliver BIG TIME on the Little Things! FULL DISCLOSURE: Fee structures var...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/26/2018 Comments(0)

Taking the RISK out of Credit Card Acceptance

Accepting credit cards can be an amazing tool and a double edged sword! Amazing because consumers who use credit cards, spend more money, more often than their cash paying counterparts. Sword-like because the various risk issues associated with card acceptance can cause business owners unwelcome stress. Let's look at a few of the ways we can minimize our exposure to the risks related to card acceptance. Proper Account Underwriting/SetUp/Maintenance One of the easiest ways to prevent stress and r...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/6/2018 Comments(0)

Using Recurring Donations to GROW Your Organization

There is a TON of competition in the market place for the discretionary dollars Non Profit Organizations need to attract. Businesses and consumers alike, are looking for the just the right cause to put these dollars to work and guess what else they are looking for? An EASY way to do it! Here are some reasons why making sure your potential donors have access to a RECURRING PAYMENT option can help your organization attract more donations on a more frequent basis! Donor Convenience: By allowi...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/5/2018 Comments(0)

Prepping For the New Year

Santa has finished his work- every name checked off the list and now it is your turn! As we stare down the remainder of 2017- it's time to do what business owners typically do several times per year: Review~Refocus~Refuel REVIEW Consider asking yourself these questions- we are talking business, but this also works personally!! Honest assessments and reviews will help you understand what went well and where improvements can be made. What worked this year? What did not work? Are there specific are...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/27/2017 Comments(0)

Leaving a Legacy With Your Business

How does what you do for work, make a difference in the world? I know very few business owners who have not pondered the answer to that question! All of the hard work, planning, competition, frustration the list goes on and on has got to be for something. So- have you considered what LEGACY you will leave with your business and your life's work? This month, we are taking a look at how we can make a long term difference in the world by being intentional about the Legacy we leave with our business...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/11/2017 Comments(0)

Happy Thanksgiving Week!

Thanksgiving is such a wonderful time to spend with Friends & Family. This week, our social media posts will be all about gratitude, thankfulness and the many blessings we have as individuals living in America. As you take the time to count your blessings this week, please remember to send out lots of prayers for those who cannot make it home for the Holidays and for those who stand guard over a grateful nation! We would like to take a moment to say THANK YOU to our soldiers past, present an...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/20/2017 Comments(0)

Time To Order Gift Cards

There are lots of great reasons to consider gift cards but here are a few of the most basic to consider as the holiday season gets ready to make its big debut! WHY ARE GIFT CARDS BETTER THAN GIFT CERTIFICATES? Gift Cards are secure, unlike gift certificates, so they can be placed on display to spur impulse buying. If the Gift Card value is not fully used, the balance remains on the card. Gift Cards are perfect for chained accounts think Saturday Markets, multiple locations ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/5/2017 Comments(0)

The #1 reason there are so many weak, insecure, low impact managers in leadership positions.

High impact leaders don't need a position or authority to make something happen. They only need a team. People want to follow real, authentic, highly influential leaders. This means they have influence far beyond their awarded authority. We respect authentic leaders because of who they are on the inside. Sure, many of these leaders have a position of authority. However, because they set it aside and lead with earned, authentic influence, they have established a high degree of moral authority whi...

Read More
Guest Blogger (Mack Story) 10/8/2017 Comments(0)

What to do about the Equifax Data Breach!

On September 7, 2017 Equifax Inc. announced a cybersecurity incident potentially impacting approximately 143 million U.S. consumers. Criminals exploited a U.S. website application vulnerability to gain access to certain files. Based on the company’s investigation, the unauthorized access occurred from mid-May through July 2017. Click here to read more on the incident and to keep yourself up to date. The FTC also recommends taking these steps: • Check your credit reports from Equifax,...

Read More
Kari Frabel 9/18/2017 Comments(0)

You Don't Have to Love What You Do...

Rohn: You Don’t Have to Love What You Do... ...but you have to love the opportunity. Jim Rohn September 20, 2015 You have to love what you do, that’s what people say. But that's not necessarily true. What is true is that you have to love the opportunity —the opportunity to build life, future, health, success and fortune. Knocking on someone’s door may not be something you love to do, but you love the opportunity of what might be behind it. A guy says, "I'm digging ditches...

Read More
Guest Blogger: Jim Rohn 9/5/2017 Comments(0)

Measuring, Managing & Monitoring For Success!

How do you know when you are a success? With so many different definitions and varied opinions, it can be difficult to determine. The truth is- YOU determine when you are a success! That sounds pretty easy but lets look at three definite tips to make sure you end up exactly where you want to go! So many times, people launch into business ventures or get a great idea and just 'roll' with it. Their outcome is not well thought out and therefore they end up exactly where they did not plan to go! How...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/29/2017 Comments(0)

Back To Basics

An executive is busy working in his home office when his 6-year-old son comes in and starts asking him to play. After much persistence followed by much frustration, the exec pulls out a magazine and opens it to a large fold-out map of the world. Pulling out the map, he cuts it into hundreds of tiny pieces and gives them to his son. here, son, after you put together this map of the world, then I’ll play with you. Knowing that a 6-year-old has no idea what a map of the world looks like, he a...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/21/2017 Comments(0)

Supporting Small Businesses

One of the great pleasures of our business is the fact that we get to work with so many small businesses across America. This past week, I had the privilege of spending some time installing new terminals for several of our merchants and I was once again reminded of WHY I love what we do here at TMC. THE HEARTBEAT OF COMMUNITIES Each of the business owners I worked with this past week reminded me that small businesses are the heartbeat of our communities. These are the places where you can go to ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/14/2017 Comments(0)

Lessons From the Sea

This past week I was able to spend a week in gorgeous Destin Florida. We attended a business workshop and enjoyed every minute. While we were busy learning about how to follow our dreams and create a powerful vision for our future, there were many takeaways that were worthy of sharing! TAKE TIME TO REFUEL: As business owners, we are usually going 100 miles per hour most days per week, month and throughout the year. I’ve spoken to many business owners who do not remember their last vacation...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/30/2017 Comments(0)

Under Pressure

Life is filled with opportunities to LIVE and LEARN! This past weekend, I was out on the back patio doing a little pressure washing. When I was done, I realized that I had done more than blow a little dirt off the back patio, I rediscovered the POWER of being UNDER PRESSURE! PURPOSE- There are so many things to be done in our lives and just like my pressure washing excursion, we simply have to determine what our purpose is. Without a game plan, we can end up at the end of the week, month or year...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/23/2017 Comments(0)

A Quick Conversation on Texting

It was not so many years ago that TEXTING was- well a little weird! Today, it feels like a major way to communicate. Even the credit card processing industry has been deeply impacted by texting. You can DONATE via text, MAKE a PAYMENT via text, get CONFIRMATION of payment via text and keep track of your spending via MESSAGE ALERTS using text messaging. While many of us know some COMMON texting acronyms LOL, ROTFL I thought we would have some fun today looking at some lesser known symbols and acr...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/16/2017 Comments(0)

Outsmarting an Outage

Having a great back up plan is good for most things! No one likes to find themselves stranded or unable to deal with a situation and finding yourself without the ability to accept payments from your customers is no exception! Last week, one of the top payment processors had an outage that lasted for several hours. For most businesses, not being able to take credit cards is a serious problem, so having a back up plan is a must! Outsmarting an Outage is as simple as 1.2.3! #1- KNOW WHAT TO DO ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/26/2017 Comments(0)

Handling the Closure of a Merchant Account

In a perfect world, every business would be profitable and only close when a happy owner decided to retire. In a perfect world, every ownership change would simply be a transfer of vendors to the next owner. In a perfect world, every merchant services provider would help new business owners honor their agreement with a previous processor. And, in a perfect world, every merchant would fulfill the terms of their merchant agreements. Unfortunately, we do not live in a perfect world; businesses clos...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/11/2017 Comments(0)

We Will Never Forget: Thank You!

If you spend any time at all in front of a television set, you know that 3 day weekends are some of the best times to go shopping; according to the advertisers. As a credit card processing company, it is intriguing to see how companies draw business in and encourage people to make purchases but yesterday, I counted 8 commercials that discussed the outdoor barbeques, time spent with loved ones, boating and a myriad of other activities: without mentioning the REAL reason we have these three days o...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/29/2017 Comments(0)

5 Myths of PCI Compliance

Years ago, when I thought of the word 'Compliance' it would conjur up memories of childhood rules or conforming to some rigid set of expectations. Even dictionary.com's definition harkens back to a time before credit card fraud completely altered the meaning. com·pli·ance [kuh m-plahy-uh ns] noun 1. the act of conforming, acquiescing, or yielding. 2. a tendency to yield readily to others, especially in a weak and subservient way. 3. conformity; accordance: in complianc...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/15/2017 Comments(0)

3 Things You Need To Know About Credit Card Processing

As complicated as the credit card processing industry can be, there are only 3 things you REALLY need to know. #1 Understand The Rates There are 500+ tiers of pricing, when you combine all credit/debit card types. It is important to familiarize yourself not only with the pricing but also how the pricing relates to your specific business. Card pricing rates vary based on card type and how the cards are processed. Take some time getting to know both VISA INTERCHANGE and MASTERCARD INTERCHANGE ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/23/2017 Comments(0)

Everybody's Broken

Everybody’s Broken is one of my favorite Bon Jovi songs- because it feels so true for me and maybe you can relate as well! As a business owner, I am blessed to be surrounded by team members and other business owners that are going through the same daily routines, struggles and situations that I go thru and listening to that song reminds me that I am not alone on this journey. This past Friday our team gathered for our weekly meeting and had a heart to heart conversation exploring some ques...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/15/2017 Comments(1)

Top Reasons For Accepting Credit Cards

Accepting credit cards is a necessity for most businesses today. The reasons we accept plastic from our customers can make all of the things that go on behind credit card processing; tolerable! Here are the top reasons why accepting credit cards from your clients just makes good business sense! Make the Payment Process Easy When you can make accepting a payment easier for your clients, you increase the possibility of building a repeat and referral based business. When your customers find the pay...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/10/2017 Comments(0)

Do I Need To Upgrade My Equipment?

Accepting credit cards has given lots of business owners incredible benefits! Getting Paid More Quickly Increasing Ticket Sizes Expanding Market Share ...just to name a few. But with the GOOD- there comes a little bad! We wanted to send a shout out to our merchants and FUTURE Merchants to let you know that we are approaching a season in the credit card processing industry that tends to bring out the WORST elements. Industry adjustments that call for rate increases and equipment...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/26/2017 Comments(0)

MASTERCARD 2 BIN SERIES

Welcome to the NEW MasterCards: 2 Series BIN It was bound to happen, the need for additional card numbers for the #2 card in the marketplace! Here are a few basic Questions and Answers regarding the new cards, the times frames and any penalties associated with not being able to accept the cards. Cards with 2-series BINs started being issued earlier this year 2017 . Timing Who's affected? What's happening? January 2017 and beyond All ecosystem parti...

Read More
Kari Frabel 3/20/2017 Comments(0)

My Credit Card is FLAT!

Has it happened to you yet? You order your replacement credit card and when it arrives in the mail- it looks totally different! This past week, our new Discover card arrived and when we opened the envelope, we were greeted by a FLAT credit card with no numbers and not even our name on the front of the card! Thinking there had been an error, I called the service department and soon found that my call was similar to the other calls the service rep was fielding that day! "Have you looked at ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/5/2017 Comments(0)

What's Your Vision?

Years ago, I was introduced to the POWER of writing down your goals and visualizing the way you want your life to play out. Ever since that time, I have enjoyed the exercise of creating a vision board that speaks to me, gives me hope and gives me a focus for the upcoming year. my home office vision board is pictured above For the past several years, my team has participated in this exercise at least one time and often twice per year! Hear are some of the benefits for putting together your ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/9/2017 Comments(0)

What's Your Back Up Plan?

Accepting credit cards is just a natural part of the check out process; so what happens when your processing system STOPS WORKING ? It was a busy Sunday morning at a popular coffee stand when the barista realized she had a problem -her credit card machine was not working. She called the number on the side of the terminal and reached a very friendly after hours technician who did some trouble shooting and found that the phone line was no longer working. Calls to the coffee house were ringing with...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/18/2016 Comments(0)

Balancing Work and Family

Going from being a full time Mom to working has been a huge change over the past 5 years. I have been able to balance my work life and my personal life by using some of the tips below. Work smarter. What kind of person are you? Are you a morning person or do you do your best work at night? If you get more done in the morning, perhaps you should focus on the important tasks earlier in the day while you are bright eyed and bushy tailed! If you are a night owl, you could use this time to plan the n...

Read More
Kari Frabel 12/12/2016 Comments(0)

Best Practices For 'Card Not Present' Merchants

Now that we are settled in to the EMV cards, the anticipation remains about credit card fraud and where it will increase as a result of the enhanced card present security. Most anticipate an increase in Card Not Present fraud. Accepting cards over the phone or via the internet can be a bit risky these days so it is important to take the necessary steps to protect your business when you do not have access to the card or the card holder! Visa has many tools to help merchants minimize the risks ass...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/5/2016 Comments(0)

Free Gifts For You & Your Business

I love surprises! It does not matter what the surprise is, how small it is or where it comes from- just the thought of a 'surprise' makes me smile! Well today, we have a surprise for you -a free gift- and it is the very BEST kind of gift: a gift that can have a lasting and positive impact in many areas of your life. As a Certified Ziglar Legacy trainer, I am blessed to be surrounded with great content and amazing people. Over the years, I've learned that a constant flow of positive content helps...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/28/2016 Comments(0)

To Resolve Conflict: Meet in the Middle

This past week our country elected a new President in what was certainly the roughest Presidential election I have ever participated in. Having two polarizing candidates makes it tough to decide which way to go and which way would result in GROWTH for the country. Some see lots of hope or turmoil as a result of our election; depending upon your point of view. The experience of the last several months made me think of Customer Service and the two opposing viewpoints that result in conflict, frust...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/14/2016 Comments(0)

Seeing the End From The Beginning

Ever heard these phrases before? Everything happens for a reason…. Things always work out for the best…. If I only knew then, what I know now…. These kinds of statements tend to be repeated years after a chance meeting or the overcoming of some great adversity and a sufficient amount of time has passed to see the end from the beginning . I believe those phrases because time and time again things just seem to work themselves out. A person I met by happenstance turns out to be in...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/7/2016 Comments(0)

The Power of Gratitude

Gratitude is one of those well used words that we tend to under apply! Since November is the official month of Gratitude, your team at TMC is working to step up our Attitude of Gratitude and we would LOVE to have you join us! At the bottom of the blog post today, you will have the opportunity to share your tips, quotes & stories related to gratitude and have a chance to win $100 just before Thanksgiving Day! Gratitude comes from the Latin word gratus, meaning pleasing or thankful,. Natio...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/1/2016 Comments(0)

Business Growth

At Total Merchant Concepts, we have the privilege of working with thousands of business owners across the country. The industries vary, the backgrounds of the owners vary and the credit card processing needs of the businesses we serve vary. But the need for GROWTH is the same for everyone. At TMC, we are committed to assisting the businesses we serve beyond their payment acceptance needs; we are committed to helping you GROW! Watch for news on our new tools for developing your staff, your busine...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/24/2016 Comments(0)

Lessons From My Hunting Trip

Dean and I have been married for 26 years and he has been a hunter the entire time. I’ve always enjoyed hunting season; the food preparation for the guys, the excitement of learning that my husband bagged his prize and the quiet time alone! This year, I decided to give the testosterone filled adventure a go and realized that there are many correlations between hunting and business! Here are my hunter inspired revelations! PREPARATION Before you can experience a successful hunt, you’ve got to be ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/17/2016 Comments(0)

Columbus Day FUN

While Columbus Day is a Federal Banking Holiday how that impacts your credit card process in a moment! , for many people it is just another Monday. We thought we would share a couple of entertaining and educational links so you could get up to speed on this very special day. But just like Mom always made us eat dinner before dessert- let's take a look at how Columbus Day and any banking holiday impacts your credit card processing deposits. Deposits you were expecting today, will not be delivered...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/10/2016 Comments(0)

One Size Does Not Fit All

I remember the first time I caught Tyler wearing his Dad's shoes- what a sweet moment. Little did I know that time would fly by and pretty soon that sweet child would be wearing shoes even larger than his Dad's size 12's! No- one size does not fit all and while that precious childhood memory is a great reminder of that fact, the improper fit for any business solution does not yield the same cheerful results. In fact, choosing a business solution that does not fit your business specifically, can ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/3/2016 Comments(0)

Business & the ER

When you are injured to the point of having to make a trip to the ER- things go pretty fast! Wouldn’t you like to know that the team taking care of you: KNEW the plan of action? Had all of the TOOLS they needed to patch you up? Were well trained to deal with the UNEXPECTED? CARED about the outcome & had the attitudes to prove it? When we treat our businesses and our jobs like they are as important as a trip to the ER, we get the kind of life changing results EARNED by that urgent focus. Our ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/26/2016 Comments(0)

Pre Flight (WORK) Check List

Our Son is now licensed to be a Commercial Airline pilot I am so very proud of Tyler and his efforts! . He has lots of hours and accreditations to add before he is flying the friendly skies- but HOW EXCITING to be a Pilot right? I wonder if we can use a little playful imagination and pretend that WE are pilots? What would that look like in our companies? Flight Preparation: In order to be prepared to fly- we have to add to our knowledge tool belt. Just like Tyler has been attending flight school...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/19/2016 Comments(0)

Time To Think About Gift Cards!

There are lots of great reasons to consider gift cards but here are a few of the most basic to consider as the holiday season gets ready to make its big debut! WHY ARE GIFT CARDS BETTER THAN GIFT CERTIFICATES? Gift Cards are secure, unlike gift certificates, so they can be placed on display to spur impulse buying. If the Gift Card value is not fully used, the balance remains on the card. Gift Cards are perfect for chained accounts think Saturday Markets, multiple locations . Gift Cards reduce th...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/29/2016 Comments(0)

The Role of Friendship in the Workplace

How many of us can truly say that we love our jobs? Is it the work itself that has so many workers dissatisfied with the hours spent at work? Or is it the environment? With over half of American workers expressing dissatisfaction with their work life, looking at how you can improve the atmosphere at work to boost the happiness quotient should be on the top of the list. Research shows that workers are happier in their jobs when they have friendships with co-workers. If you think about it, you typ...

Read More
Guest Blogger: Corey Gleason 8/22/2016 Comments(0)

Smart Phones and Tablets and Dongles: OH MY!

  Technology can be so confusing! Smart Phones and Tablets and Dongles OH MY! Here is a list of some of the most popular tools that help us accept plastic as a form of payment! Traditional Terminals: Terminals come in all shapes and sizes and have the ability to work with old fashioned analog phone lines or high speed connections. Newer models can accept chipped EMV credit cards and many have the ability to work in conjunction with NFC Near Field Communications technology think ApplePay . Transa...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/15/2016 Comments(0)

Social Media Stats

With so many options and directions to take with Social Media- we thought we would share a great resource we found on the Internet! Click on the picture below Have a wonderful week and we hope the stats give you some direction in your marketing efforts! Need help with your Social Media efforts? Reach out to us- we would be happy to help! HELP ME WITH SOCIAL MEDIA! ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/8/2016 Comments(0)

The PROS and CONS of Paperless Statements

At TMC, we have paper statements and paperless options available for you. Most of our processors have moved to a PAPERLESS default and only provide paper statements when requested. Enjoy this article by KRISTINA HALL and feel free to call and let us know your personal preference! 1-888-249-9919 Many industries have recently switched to the “going green” ideals of operating on a paperless system. According to PayItGreen.org, if 20 percent of American households switched from paper to electronic b...

Read More
Guest Blogger 7/25/2016 Comments(0)

From The Beginning

They say that a journey begins with a single step and that you cannot get where you're going unless you know where you are or where you come from. Well this week, our blog and our FaceBook posts will talk about the origins of our industry and how we find ourselves where we are today. WHERE DID TMC COME FROM: Our company was founded TWENTY years ago- after having a very difficult time finding anyone who seemed to care about our business and the ability to accept credit cards. We receive...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/11/2016 Comments(0)

Wherever You Are Be All There

Wherever You Are, Be There by Jim Rohn One of the major reasons why we fail to find happiness or to create a unique lifestyle is because we have not yet mastered the art of being. While we are home our thoughts are still absorbed with solving the challenges we face at the office. And when we are at the office we find ourselves worrying about problems at home. We go through the day without really listening to what others are saying to us. We may be hearing the words, but we aren't absorbing the m...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/27/2016 Comments(0)

Thinking For a Change

As June gets under way, the first half of 2016 is dwindling to a close! How has the first part of the year gone for you? Plans on track? Goals getting accomplished? Obstacles overcome? Feeling happy & accomplished? Time flies and if we are not careful- we could find ourselves at the end of the year wondering WHAT HAPPENED? Click on John Maxwell's book below to read some AMAZING insights on Thinking and how the process of taking the time to think can really make a difference!...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/6/2016 Comments(0)

Tips From a Friend

There are so many AMAZING resources available to grow our businesses, improve our teams and 'up our game' all together! This morning, we wanted to share one of our favorite places! Referrals are the lifeblood of our business at TMC and developing the skills and relationships necessary to have a healthy referral environment is a daily endeavor. We routinely turn to BILL CATES for advice and great tools! Check out the article he sent this morning and then visit his web site for more info! links be...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/23/2016 Comments(0)

Why PRICE Should NOT Be Your #1 Concern

Selecting a Merchant Services Partner for the RIGHT Reasons Lots of industries struggle with extreme competition. In some cases, there is so much competition that the impacted industry, products and services become somewhat ‘commoditized’. They are relegated to the long list of items and services providers who no longer care about your overall experience. Webster defines a commodity as: com·mod·i·ty noun \k?-'mä-d?-te\ : an economic good: as a product of agricultu...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/16/2016 Comments(0)

Above & Beyond Service

For nearly 10 years, I have been having the same wonderful woman take care of my toes! The time I spend with Jenny always reminds me of why LOVING what you do for work is so very important! She always has a smile and she always makes me feel as if my toes are the most important and most beautiful that she will work on that day. She is an artist and has bedazzled my toes with flowers, snowflakes, hearts and Seahawks- just to name a few. But she did something last week that reminded me of another ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/25/2016 Comments(0)

IRS Reporting Explained

With tax day behind us, it seemed appropriate to take a look at another tax issue that can cause fiscal harm to your business. Being aware of how reporting your merchant activity to the IRS can impact your business, will help you prevent the government from having a reason to dip into your account. Each year, processors are required to provide your business with a form 1099K. The form needs to be submitted with your annual business tax return. The only exceptions are for businesses whose process...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/18/2016 Comments(0)

Understanding the Fraud Liability Shift

For years there had been talk of the 'chipped' card and all of the added security it would bring. Those cards are now being circulated and the 'Fraud Liability Shift' that accompanies them is the topic of our blog. Why are EMV cards more secure? The magnetic stripes on traditional credit and debit cards store contain unchanging data. Whoever accesses that data gains the sensitive card and cardholder information necessary to make purchases. That makes traditional cards prime targets for counterfe...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/28/2016 Comments(0)

Giving Back: Your Company's Secret Power!

As a small-business owner, involvement in your community’s activities gives potential customers another reason to trust and select your business. Companies that encourage community involvement distinguish themselves from their competitors and can see many benefits, including: Loyal Customers Happier Employees Referral Opportunities Business owners can evaluate their business and employee strengths and select volunteer activities that draw upon those strengths. For example, TMC is a merchant serv...

Read More
Christina Suarez 3/20/2016 Comments(0)

American Express: With or Without It

One of the most successful advertisements of all time advised us to Never Leave Home Without It ! The American Express Card has long been regarded as a bit of a status indicator and for good reason. While many businesses across America choose NOT to accept American Express cards due to the higher percentage they charge business owners , American Express cardholders have some unique characteristics that most business owners might find intriguing! AMEX enjoys a leading market share in the lu...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/7/2016 Comments(0)

Three Keys to ELIMINATE Poor Service

Today, you can't visit a retail store, recreational event or restaurant without experiencing POOR SERVICE . We visited a restaurant this weekend and were excited to spend time with family and enjoy a wonderful Italian meal. I won't bore you with every detail but it was obvious that the owner of the company had lost touch with his own establishment. The experience was so disturbing, it made me think about what the man could do to deliver a more consistent experience, so all of his guests could en...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/29/2016 Comments(0)

Are You Compliant?

With all of the changes happening in the financial world these days, it pays to make sure your business is operating in a 'compliant' environment. Security, regulation and equipment issues need to be addressed to make sure your business is operating within the guidelines set forth by the card associations. Security: PCI Compliance has been mandated by the card associations and your business is required to have an annual certification. The process includes a questionnaire, requirements for a secu...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/22/2016 Comments(0)

Credit Card Processing Rules

There are times in life when you really SHOULD follow the rules! Accepting credit cards is DEFINITELY one of those time! The operating rules and regulations are designed to protect the card holders, the financial institutions and lastly- the merchant. When you are aware of the rules as a business owner, you help reduce your risk for having your money held by the processing companies and you play a large part in reducing credit card fraud. Since cash flow is such a critical part of being in busin...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/8/2016 Comments(0)

Let's Have FUN at Work!

If you’re a movie buff like I am, you’re probably familiar with the line from Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining where Jack Nicholson’s character types out several pages of the same sentence: All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. While the context in the movie is a bit eerie, Jack's comment is actually truer than you might think! I’ve also heard the old saying Work is not supposed to be fun ~ that’s why it’s called WORK. I humbly disagree ~ I believe ...

Read More
Guest Blogger: Shannon Fry 1/25/2016 Comments(0)

How Do I Market My Business?

  It looks like the New Year is well on it's way! Have you given much thought to how you will market your business this year? One of our primary focuses in 2016 is to help our merchants GROW THEIR BUSINESSES. You have the basics taken care of: Great Product or Service Competitive Pricing Customer Focused Back Office/Accounting Procedures Payment Acceptance including credit cards of course Now the fun begins- getting the customers to come to your location, visit your site, pick up the phone and m...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/11/2016 Comments(0)

Understanding Credit Card Fees

  The credit card processing industry has a very confusing set of rates & fees. It is our goal to help our merchants understand what fees are legitimate and what fees are superfluous. This article will address 2 legitimate fees and also offer some Best Practices. Visa Misuse of Authorization $0.045 per The Visa Misuse of Authorization Fee will be assessed to approved and partially-approved electronic authorizations that cannot be matched to a settled transaction within the following time fra...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/4/2016 Comments(0)

Happy New Year!

From our team to you and yours: Have a FANTASTIC New Year celebration this evening. We would like to share a few of our team's wishes with you: May 2016 by your strongest and most powerful year ever! I wish you health, happiness and abundance in 2016! Here's to new friendships, new challenges to overcome and new opportunities to shine! I hope you have your best year ever! May your heart be your guiding light and success be your victorious prize! Fun, Fun, Fun; that should do it! Take the time to...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/31/2015 Comments(0)

Be Careful What You Click On!

  Have you ever had your heart skip a beat after clicking on something, or opened an email attachment, initially thinking it was legit, but then realizing something doesn't smell right no pun intended ? Chances are that you, or someone you know, may have been a victim of an attempted email phishing scam. Over the years there have been various kinds, from erroneous UPS delivery notices, to web sites that are replicated so close to the real thing, that you would have a hard time believing it’s fak...

Read More
Guest Blogger: Bobby Gargari 12/28/2015 Comments(0)

Credit Cards ARE NOT Cash

Accepting credit cards is second nature for most businesses and we've become so used to taking the cards, that we sometimes forget that they are most certainly NOT the same as cash. Here are a few reminders: Credit cards cost more to take than cash- so if you can get your customers to pay with cash GO FOR IT! strange advice from a credit card processor but the right advice for any business Stay within your approved limits- accepting credit cards for more than you were approved for can cause prob...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/7/2015 Comments(0)

An Attitude of Gratitude

When you travel abroad, it wakes you up to the many advantages we have here in the United States of America! I was thinking of a 9 day trip out of the country and was touched, once again, by the overwhelming gratitude and joy of the Fijian people! They sing, dance, smile and are always quick with a greeting BULA! , no matter what they are doing. You would think that they were the richest people in the world; and when you visit their villages, you realize very quickly that their joyous spirit and...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/2/2015 Comments(0)

Should I Use Debit or Credit?

Choosing what card you will use can make a big difference especially if you are one of the millions of Americans who experience fraud! At TMC, we encourage you to make your online purchases and your overseas traveling purchases with a credit card that is NOT attached to your checking account. This minimizes your exposure to fraud. We also love what Clark Howard has to say about Debit versus Debit card useage! Be careful out there! By Clark Howard ClarkHoward.com Debit card account fraud is on th...

Read More
Guest Blogger 10/26/2015 Comments(0)

And Then Some

Doing just enough to 'get by' is a COSTLY way to do both business and LIFE! In the Merchant Services industry, we are pretty used to seeing that mediocre mantra played out every day by many of our competitors. Here are a few of the ways that our team delivers an And Then Some experience! STELLAR STAFF: There is simply no way to deliver an exceptional experience without a Stellar Staff! Take a few moments to Meet Our Team and NO- you can't have them . Working with individuals who dig in each day ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/19/2015 Comments(0)

Calculating Your ROI

  This past week we made the decision to close our office for a day and have our team attend the Live2Lead simulcast put on by John Maxwell. The event itself was a huge success however determining what the return on investment ROI was will be more difficult! With a product or service, the ROI is easy to calculate. You spent X number of dollars on a product, which resulted in increased sales or productivity. Comparing the sales numbers or productivity before and after the purchase of the product ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/11/2015 Comments(0)

USE CAUTION WHEN BUYING TERMINALS!

Last week we fielded TONS of phone calls regarding the Fraud Liability Shift and terminals. Here are a few things to consider this week! You are NOT out of 'compliance' just because you do not have an EMV reading terminal! You can decide when you upgrade and you do not have to be RUSHED. Some industries have higher 'Liability Shift' risks than others. Some industries do not have EMV solutions that can be used yet the platforms are busily working! BEWARE of terminal pricing on the internet! We ha...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/5/2015 Comments(0)

The Challenge

As we look towards the final quarter of 2015 Where does the time go? , we have an opportunity to finish the year off strong. By focusing on the things we have done so far and clearly defining what we have yet to accomplish, we can meet the challenge to be all we can be. Jim Rohn shared this amazing challenge with so many people and now we would like to share it with you! Have an AMAZING day! ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/28/2015 Comments(0)

7 Things About Labor Day

Labor Day is the celebration of the American Worker- TMC would like to send a BIG Thank You to each member of our staff for your dedication to service and excellence. We would would like to send a BIG Thank You to our merchants for allowing us to be of service and we would like to send a BIG Thank You to all of our referral partners for trusting us to be of service on your behalf. 1. What is Labor Day? Labor Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the first Monday in September that ce...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/7/2015 Comments(0)

Understanding Interchange

The pricing in the credit card processing world is complicated! So many terms and fees are bandied about that it is no wonder business owners are fed up with all things related to Merchant Services! In today's marketplace, percentage only options have gained a ton of ground because of the pricing and fee confusion our industry has created. This over simplification has lead to many businesses being overcharged again!! for the service of credit card acceptance. Our goal during this blog is to expl...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/29/2015 Comments(0)

EMV & NFC: What Do I Need To Know?

We have some exciting changes happening right now in the credit card processing industry. Sometimes, however, the initial excitement and information related to new technologies and in this case new card types can be quite confusing!! Here are some of the most common questions & answers related to both EMV and NFC so you can position yourself to make great, well informed decisions for your business! EMV Questions & Answers Q “What is EMV?” A EMV is the current global standard for payment ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/23/2015 Comments(0)

The POWER of a Testimonial

You may know how AMAZING your team and your service is, but telling your prospects yourself may not have the desired end result! The very best way to let your future customers know how fantastic you are, is to let your customers do the talking! Testimonials are POWERFUL tools when it comes to selling your products and services. Earning, collecting and using testimonials needs to be a STRENGTH in your business- here are some tips! EARNING: This may seem like a 'no brainer' but you need to decide ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/17/2015 Comments(0)

"Out of Office" Experience

  In a commercial world increasingly dominated by e- EVERYTHING email, emarketing, etc , event opportunities can provide face to face contact with existing clients as well as new prospects. No other promotional medium can deliver thousands of high quality sales opportunities in just a few days. There are lots of benefits for attending trade shows, industry related events and educational workshops. Consider adding an ‘out of the office’ experience for you and your team! We’ve listed some of the m...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/10/2015 Comments(0)

The Beauty of Leadership

When you own a company, there are lots of pressures and responsibilities that come with the Leadership role. So when moments come that highlight the benefits of leadership; they are truly worthy of sharing! Ongoing training and continued education is critically important for any growing business and I'm often amazed at how much I learn from the members of my team during our training sessions. While I am the leader, seeing the personal leadership developing in each member of my team is rewarding ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/27/2015 Comments(0)

We Work When the TEAM Works

Each Friday, our team spends some good, quality time together learning about elevated service techniques, personal development and the latest happenings in our industry. We find that investing in this TEAM time really makes a difference for each person on an individual basis as well as for the TMC team overall. This past week, we participated in an exercise that highlighted the need for a real TEAM thought process- WE PLAYED WITH LEGOS! Now before you think it was ALL fun and games, let me share...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/20/2015 Comments(0)

While I'm Away: A Business Owner's Guide to Taking a REAL Vacation

How many vacation days do you think the average business owner takes per year? Now before you answer, let's define VACATION. REALLY- press the button and HEAR the sound of Vacation!! vacation [vey-key-shuh n, vuh-] Listen Now noun a period of suspension of work, study, or other activity, usually used for rest, recreation, or travel; recess or holiday: School children are on vacation now. a part of the year, regularly set aside, when normal activities of lawcourts, legislatu...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/13/2015 Comments(0)

Why Singletasking is the New MultiTasking

Michelle is an amazing business leader with great ideas on productivity and book writing!   Check out her Singletasking blog below and her web site! http://www.michelleprince.com/     Multitasking is a thing of the past. The new trend is singletasking. What in the world is singletasking? It’s exactly what it sounds like: focusing your attention on a single task rather than trying to juggle several different tasks simultaneously. It wasn’t long ago when productivity experts were stressing the imp...

Read More
Michelle Prince 7/6/2015 Comments(0)

When is Enough- Enough?

  Have you ever had a situation where you knew you had reached the breaking point? Where ENOUGH was finally ENOUGH ? As a business owner, I can tell you that I have had several of those points over the years and I believe the way we chose to address them has made all the difference in the way our company operates today. In the world of Credit Card Processing there are a few areas that should simply cause any business owner to draw the Enough is Enough line: they are listed below for your conside...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/29/2015 Comments(0)

Decision: The First Step!

I was preparing our weekly postings for Facebook, when I saw Pines Coffee's posting inviting anyone on a 'medium difficulty' hike. It's a funny thing how making a conscious decision to do anything in any area of your life, generates opportunities! I had just finished writing down some personal goals about taking care of my physical health- what a coincidence Making changes in any area of our personal or business lives always begins with that FIRST STEP . Understanding the numbers in your busines...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/22/2015 Comments(0)

Getting Approved

Last week we received a call from a merchant asking for a new merchant account: their business was opening the following day. As a new business owner, they had been inundated with all of the things that have to happen to get the doors open and adding the credit card terminal had slipped their mind. When we mentioned an approval process- they were surprised. Why would they have to be approved to be able to accept cards? Let's find out! Whenever a business elects to accept credit cards as a form o...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/7/2015 Comments(0)

Why Personal Development is Critical For Success

Jim Rohn was an AMAZING teacher and this week, I wanted to share one of his articles that really made a profund difference in my life and the life of our team! Have an incredible week and enjoy your Personal Growth Journey! We generally change ourselves for one of two reasons: inspiration or desperation. Well, the late Jim Rohn aimed for the inspiration, always emphasizing the importance of taking responsibility for self-improvement and showing people how to reach for bigger, better lives. Who i...

Read More
Guest Blogger: Jim Rohn 6/1/2015 Comments(0)

Blooming Where You Are Planted!

  Over the years, I've been asked countless times why I am so passionate about credit card processing and my answer has always been the same; because I truly love what I do. But after a recent eye opening conversation with a member of my team, I was compelled to change my answer and write this blog on Blooming Where You Are Planted .   My employee was conflicted because I'm always saying that we need to 'love' what we do and guess what? She does not love credit card processing. The more I though...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/25/2015 Comments(0)

Problem Solving POWER

All businesses come with their share of unique challenges and problems! That's the bad news! The good news? You have readily available resources for finding the answers to most of them! You have PROBLEM SOLVING POWER on your team. Many times, we think we have to 'go it alone'. We have certain responsibilities accompanied by an ever present list of challenges and solving each one of them has always been looked at as the job of the OWNER. Well I have some news- some great news actually! BUSINESS O...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/18/2015 Comments(0)

A Day In the Life!

I remember thinking that small business ownership was going to work out a certain way - you know, the poolside margaritas and lots of money just flowing in from every place. It's safe to say that the daily life of an entrepreneur sometimes turns out differently than we expect! Here is a glimpse into a typical day- see if you can relate! If you still have a passion for your business like I do, you probably begin your day several hours before your team arrives at work unless you are lucky enough t...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/4/2015 Comments(0)

Staffing & The Seasons

It is amazing what a few SEASONS do to your train of thought- on most everything! I was listening to John Maxwell over the weekend and heard a lesson out of his book Leadership GOLD, that made me pull my car over. The lesson was related to staff members and the fact that you do not usually END a game with the same team you fielded at the beginning. I have to tell you that the message touched my heart and reminded me of the Seasons of Staffing. Here are the lessons I took from John Maxwell's mast...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/13/2015 Comments(0)

Accountability: Steps to Success!

Every week, our team spends some good quality time honing our skills, elevating our level of service and broadening our base of knowledge. These weekly meetings have become a great source of inspiration and our team routinely walks out of of each session with an ACCOUNTABILITY item or action step for the following week. In the past, I would state my accountability action and not give it much more thought; until the following week! Not surprisingly, many members of my team found themselves doing ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/31/2015 Comments(0)

Character Is Your Masterpiece to Build

March 23, 2015 Character Is Your Masterpiece to Build by Jim Rohn Could creating your character be likened to an artist creating a sculpture? I believe that character is not something that just happens by itself, any more than a chisel can create a work of art without the hand of an artist guiding it. In both instances, a conscious decision for a specific outcome has been made. A conscious process is at work. Character is the result of hundreds and hundreds of choices you make that gradually tur...

Read More
Guest Blogger 3/23/2015 Comments(0)

Weekly Motivation!

Sir Smiley here.....   Have you ever noticed that motivation is a DAILY job? It's not one of th ose 'get it done once' things, it is something that we have to work at all of the time! You might think that being a SMILEY makes my job easy but let me tell you- I have to work at it every day as well! OK- so when I look in the mirror- I am immediately reminded that I am HAPPY most of the time but even those optimistically minded among us, need to be sure to get daily doses of motivation! Here are a ...

Read More
Sir Smiley 3/16/2015 Comments(0)

EMV: A Video Overview

Understanding WHY EMV is being adopted here in the US as well as HOW it works is the first step in making sure you are properly educated on the changes happening to our cards and they way we use them!   Click on the picture above for a brief 2 minute video on EMV!   Let us know if you are ready to make the change to an EMV enable terminal or if you have any additional questions! GET MORE EMV INFO ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/9/2015 Comments(0)

Do It Like Disney!

It is impossible to spend time in Florida and not FEEL the impact of Disney! If you have never read up on the magic created by Walt Disney, I assure you you will find his story to be an absolute treasure of business lessons: check out this video! As Dreamers Do: Amazing Life of Walt Disney This week, our daily social media posts will feature a character from the wonderful world of Disney and a thought to help you with your business and HAVE MORE FUN doing business like Disney! One of the things ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/2/2015 Comments(0)

Maximize Results!

  Last weekend, I read the most AMAZING book. I was flying back from an event where Darren Hardy was the featured speaker and his message was powerful. The simple steps he outlines in his book have the power to transform your business and your personal life! Click on the image above to get your copy; after you take a moment to read the quick review below! The little things make all the difference! Rewiring our companies and our personal lives for maximized success is more about the little things...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/16/2015 Comments(0)

Got Security?

There is so much 'complicated' talk about security, compliance and all of the things we need to do to keep our personal information safe that sometimes we just need a little reminder of the BASICS. This week our team is reminding all of our merchants and future merchants about the basics of Merchant Account Security. Here are a few simple things that you and your team can do to keep your account secure! Don't Give Out Personal / Sensitive Information Unless you have a personal connection with so...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/2/2015 Comments(0)

Wally's Gift

Today, we say goodbye to a wonderful friend and a great American. Wallace L Tharp Wally was born August 21, 1921 and he passed away peacefully in his sleep on January 21, 2015. His 93 years were filled with all kinds of adventures, lots of love, wisdom and friendship. I met Wally 15 years ago and we became fast friends! When a 6' 4" regal gentleman addresses you and says, "Congratulations Madame Area Governor- you have just been elected to this Toastmaster's office so; is it a title or are you R...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/26/2015 Comments(0)

Controlling What I Can!

As business owners, we have lots to deal with every day and it is amazing how many of us I'm looking in a mirror right now try to change things we have no control over! In the MERCHANT SERVICES world, there are quite a few of those frustrating unchangeables!! Interchange rates, technology changes, confusing statements....the list could go on and on. Today, we wanted to highlight a few of the things YOU DO HAVE CONTROL over in the crazy world of Credit Card Processing! Excellent Service: As a bus...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/12/2015 Comments(0)

2015: A BRIGHT New Year!

  Welcome to the first full week of 2015! One of the greatest things about a New Year- is the feeling of a clean slate. Businesses have a fresh opportunity to deliver on their promises and set up some exciting goals for the upcoming year. At TMC, we have an exciting agenda planned for 2015. Part of our GROWTH plan for this New Year begins with helping the businesses we serve: GROW their businesses! Our Sir Smiley Campaign has been designed to let you tell everyone what you do and WHY you do it!!...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/4/2015 Comments(0)

Why I Believe In Christmas

We are just over a week away from Christmas! It is such a wonderful and beautiful time of year. At Total Merchant Concepts, we have been wishing our merchants and anyone who calls into our office a 'Merry Christmas' for 18 years . The responses we've received have always been heartwarming. People really do enjoy a heartfelt sentiment. Christmas has always been a special time so it is surprising to hear that some people make such an issue over wishing people a Merry Christmas. I 've even he...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/15/2014 Comments(0)

Understanding & Minimizing Chargebacks

Consumers have a TON of control in the marketplace. They can lift businesses up with their purchases and they can bring businesses down by withholding their spending. When a consumer elects to dispute a charge, it is called a CHARGEBACK and that action can have serious financial repercussions for businesses! Sometimes, a cardholder does not recognize a charge on their monthly credit card statement. In this instance, they can call their card company and request a copy of the receipt. In MOST case...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/8/2014 Comments(0)

Proper Use of Your Merchant Account

There are lots of ways cash flow can be affected in business. Let's make sure the way you are using your own merchant account is NOT one of them! When you first open your merchant account, you should be walked through some basic usage guidelines We have a 29 Step Installation Checklist here at TMC , to make sure you are using your account properly. Not adhering to some basic guidelines can cost you and your customers lots of frustration, time & money. Here are some ideas to assist you in mak...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/17/2014 Comments(0)

Start With the Foundation

Unless you want your business to suffer the fate of the two little pigs, we STRONGLY suggest making sure your FOUNDATION is strong! Creating a business founded on the principles that endure makes everything manageble. And lets face it, business ownership is riddled with obstacles, challenges and situations that really require a rock steady foundation. Here are a few foundational tools! START WITH YOUR CORE When you have a clear set of values for your company, it's like having a road map...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/6/2014 Comments(0)

5 Things To Know About Mobile Wallets

Hang on for an amazing technilogical ride! NO- we are not talking about flying cars but the payments industry is changing at a very exciting pace. Here are 5 Things To Know About Mobile Wallets ! 1. No pen or stylus required There are two ways to use your smart phone at checkout. The first involves loading a cloud-based mobile application. You then link the app to a bank or credit account and make payments by hitting a button on your phone. Starbucks was among the first large retailers to offer ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/28/2014 Comments(0)

IRS BACKUP WITHHOLDING ALERT

Backup withholding is finally upon us and merchants who still have not submitted proper documentation to fix a TIN Federal Tax ID Number mismatch will begin receiving notifications as early as this week. Merchants who do not have matching information on file with their credit card processing companies will be subject to IRS backup withholding, withheld funds are remitted to the IRS. Your processor will be unable to return any amount remitted to the IRS due to backup withholding. Merchants will n...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/16/2014 Comments(0)

Great Competition is GOOD!

In business, there is a tendency to look at competition as a bad thing. The truth is, there are so many amazing benefits to having truly great competition: on the field, in the classroom and yes- even in the work place. Recently, we've had some industry giants enter the payments space and it would be a lie if we told you we 'barely noticed'- we noticed. We thought it would be a great time to revisit the flip side of heavy duty competition! Here are some of the amazing benefits of GOOD competitio...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/14/2014 Comments(0)

7 Tips To Reduce Credit Card Fraud Online

The more online transactions you process, the more risk you have in being exposed to fraud. Selling items online is convenient for your customers and increases sales for your business, but there is a risk involved and it’s much higher than in face-to-face transactions. When neither the card nor the customer is physically present at the point of sale, the merchant experiences the greatest exposure to disputes, chargebacks and fraud. The following security measures can help reduce fraud exposure f...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/18/2014 Comments(0)

Save Time: Ask the RIGHT Questions!

My daughter Sabrina is five years old and will be starting Kindergarten in the fall. Over the weekend, I purchased a shower curtain with a map of the United States; each state has a picture of a distinctive state quality on it. When asked if she knows where we live, she replied, “Vancouver, Washington.” I then asked if she could point to Washington on the map, she pointed to South Dakota. Before I could tell her that she was a few states away, I realized she was pointing to George Washington’s p...

Read More
Guest Blogger: Joanne Roberts 7/28/2014 Comments(0)

Live Like There is NO Tomorrow

Little Orphan Annie sang, "The sun will come out tomorrow, bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow- there'll be sun". Oh what a glorious thought that our tomorrows will be better and if we are lucky, that wonderful song may turn out to be true. The reality is that TOMORROW is never promised and if we are not careful, tomorrow can steal our today and our future! Many business owners, including myself, fall into the trap of putting things off until tomorrow. Our plates are so full that we often borro...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/7/2014 Comments(0)

Will the REAL Salesman Please Stand Up!

Most industries have issues with sales reps who are not real students of their profession at best or they are lacking in integrity at worst . They forget their real job: taking care of their customer and advising them to move in a direction that is best for the customer. The credit card processing industry is NOTORIOUS for endless cold calls, door to door sales people and a less than positive experience for business owners. At TMC, we are PASSIONATE about providing an integrity based, educatio...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/30/2014 Comments(0)

Clear the Confusion QUICK!

Have you ever felt as if you and the person you were speaking to were having two different conversations; at the same time? Being a successful business owner hinges on your ability to converse in such a way that everyone can clearly understand you and your mission! Poor communication can often be so disruptive that we lose customers, partnerships and more. When the communication gets cloudy, things start to unwind in a hurry! In the early 1950's, Abbott & Costello created a comic masterpiece...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/23/2014 Comments(0)

Taking the Next Step

Over the weekend, my son graduated from High School - it was a whirlwind of activities and emotions! Tyler's 'Next Step' is college and developing his plans for a bright future. It has been some time since many of us graduated but I think the concept of considering our 'Next Step' is one that we can embrace at any time! Enjoy the Accomplishment Whether we are graduating from school, finishing up a business task or closing a chapter in our life, we really need to take the time to recognize and en...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/9/2014 Comments(0)

The 5 Principles of Performance

Guest Blogger: Zig Ziglar Much of success is about performance. It’s about what we do and what we are able to inspire others to do. There are some simple performance principles I have learned in my life, and I want to share them with you. They really bring success, and what it takes to be successful, into sharp focus. They are also the basis for developing and maintaining an expectation of success. The Five Principles of Performance 1. We generally get from ourselves and others what we expect. I...

Read More
Guest Blogger 6/2/2014 Comments(0)

How YOU Doin' ?

If you have ever watched Friends, you know that Joey loved to say How YOU Doin’ ? On the sitcom, it was always a funny question with no real repercussions if the answer was not positive but in the every day life of small business owners across America, the question takes on a much more serious tone! How ARE you ‘doin’? Is your business performing the way you imagined? Is your entrepreneurial plan working out as planned? Do you still wake up each day EXCITED about the opportunit...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/19/2014 Comments(0)

Why PRICE Should NOT Be Your #1 Concern

Selecting a Merchant Services Partner for the RIGHT Reasons Lots of industries struggle with extreme competition. In some cases, there is so much competition that the impacted industry, products and services become somewhat ‘commoditized’. They are relegated to the long list of items and services providers who no longer care about your overall experience. Webster defines a commodity as: com·mod·i·ty noun \k?-'mä-d?-te\ : an economic good: as a produc...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/12/2014 Comments(0)

Get GOOD At Asking Questions!

We get the answers to the questions we ask- which means that asking the RIGHT questions can have a very dramatic impact on our daily lives! Ask a BAD question Why do bad things always happen to me? and your mind goes straight to work finding the answer! Ask a GOOD question How do I always end up in the right place at the right time? and your mind goes straight to work to find the answer. The magic part of this equation of course, is that WE decide what questions to ask and so by asking...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/5/2014 Comments(0)

Password Protection

What did we do before EVERYTHING had a password? How in the world did we stay safe from hackers and all the 'bad guys' trying to get into our stuff? Today, it seems that we have passwords for everything so many in fact, that we often suffer from password paralysis! According to The Telegraph, the average person uses 10 passwords a day! Personally, I have a hard enough time remembering my daily agenda- let alone 10 passwords! No matter how hard it is, we simply MUST find new and creat...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/28/2014 Comments(0)

It's All About Our Kids!

  When I was growing up, it was very common for our parents to take us to their work- in fact, we spent lots of time there and we learned how to do lots of cool and interesting things. Thinking back, I really loved the times my Dad would take us on trips to his suppliers. Just a week or two ago, I spoke to an older gentleman who gave me notepads, pencils and rubberbands when I was just a young girl- oh what memories! Working with our kids can be such a rewarding experience for all involved! On t...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/21/2014 Comments(0)

The POWER of POWERFUL Associations

We’ve all heard that the people we hang around with and the books we read will determine where we end up 5 years from now. So look around! How are you doing with your associations read any good books lately ? In the past couple of weeks, I have had the unique privilege of spending quality time with some outstanding individuals from all across the world. In fact, I caught myself wishing I could magically transport them all back to my home town during a recent dinner! Unfortunately, we cannot pull...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/7/2014 Comments(0)

7 Steps To Remembering Names

GUEST BLOGGER: BY LAURA HALE BROCKWAY Printed in Entrepreneur Magazine   There’s no easy way to admit this, but I am horrible with names. I shake hands with someone I’ve just met, the person says his or her name, and within 10 seconds I’ve forgotten the name. And since I’ve just started a new job, I am beyond frustrated with my memory problem. Grrrrr. As PR professionals, we all know the importance of building rapport and maintaining relationship with clients. That can be difficult when you can’...

Read More
Guest Blogger 3/31/2014 Comments(0)

Raising the Bar on Service

These days, it is a rare treat to experience true Excellence in service: in almost any industry. Mediocre is the service mantra of the day but the crazy thing is that MOST companies are advertising their focus on amazing service yet still falling flat when it comes time to truly deliver. The credit card processing industry is no exception to this rule and maybe that is why we have found that delivering TRULY Above & Beyond service is one of the best ways to set TMC apart from the competition...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/24/2014 Comments(0)

4 Steps To Making Great Decisions

Every day we make decisions that shape our lives; when you are a business owner, you 'get' the opportunity to make even more. Making strong, empowered decisions will lead you in the direction of your goals and aspirations. On the other hand, poorly made or rushed decisions can have devastating effects. Take something seemingly simple like selecting a merchant account for your business: The wrong choice comes with many challenges: Poor Service Contractual Obligations High Fees Surprise Fees The r...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/17/2014 Comments(0)

The Power of Partnerships

Few things can match the energy generated by Powerful Partnerships ! In the July 2007 issue of BusinessWeek SmallBiz, they stated that "a partnership is usually hatched in a state of inspired optimism when two or more seemingly like-minded individuals come together with an idea to create a product or service and develop it into a business". Consider Bill Gates & Paul Allen. Their partnership created one of the most recognized businesses on the planet; Microsoft. They combined their passion a...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/10/2014 Comments(0)

Removing Conflict & Confusion from Contracts

You don't need a law degree to navigate the fine print of most contracts however, you can certainly get yourself into hot water if you don't treat contracts with care! Whether you are entering a contractual obligation for things like; rent, building leases and vehicle purchases or you are doing what many brave business owners before you have done: signed a Merchant Services Contract Careful!!! - there are a few action steps that you can take to Remove the Conflict & Confusion from Contracts....

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/3/2014 Comments(0)

Disagreeing Agreeably

Jim Rohn was one of the all time greats so it is our pleasure to share some words of wisdom from the legend! Thank you Jim Rohn- for leaving us with so many great lessons! 5 Tips for Disagreeing Agreeably It's inevitable - at some point disagreements are going to come up in the workplace. As we all know, disagreements can get heated quickly and it can be difficult to put aside our opinions and biases in order to handle the situation diplomatically. However, there are several tried and true metho...

Read More
Guest Blogger 2/24/2014 Comments(0)

Improving Teams - Improving Results

Our blog this week was going to be focused on sales but after watching the Superbowl, we decided to tweak the topic a bit. Watching Coach Carroll talking about the win, I was struck by his focus and by the attitude he fosters and 'coaches' on his team and it reminded me of what our team has been focused on and how we are attacking the New Year. Sales? YES- when you are talking about taking care of a team and improving results you are speaking about sales as well as every other area of success! I...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/3/2014 Comments(0)

More Than Meets the Eye!

This past weekend, our entire team gathered together to review the past year and set our sites on an incredible 2014! The theme for this year's meeting was Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye trans·for·ma·tion /?træns f?r'me? ??n/ [trans-fer- mey-shuh n ] noun 1. the act or process of transforming. 2. the state of being transformed. 3. change in form, appearance, nature , or character. 4. Theater . a seemingly miraculous change in the appearance of scenery or actors in view...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/27/2014 Comments(0)

The REAL Power of Business

Many people equate business ownership with POWER . And, depending upon your defintion- I would have to agree. Small business owners have an opportunity to have an amazing amount of positive influence by leveraging the REAL POWER generated by their businesses and not the abuses we hear so much about on the news. Here are some examples of the kinds of POWER your team can generate when you are committed to making a powerful & positive difference! The POWER of Integrity Based Business Dealings W...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/20/2014 Comments(0)

How to HANG IN THERE

Many times, we find ourselves in certain predicaments.....you know; up a creek without a paddle, down to our last nickel and even up a tree like our little friend here. How do some people manage to overcome the insurmountable odds to acheive their dreams while others seem to give up at the first whisper of a challenge? 'Hanging In There' is one of the necessary skills you will need to develop if you are to achieve your goals and dreams. Here are a few time honored tips to get you and your busine...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/13/2014 Comments(0)

Find Your Niche'

It is impossible to be everything to everyone! Finding your unique niche' is incredibly important to the success of your company. LOTS OF COMPETITION If your industry is anything like the Credit Card Processing industry; you have a TON of competition. Your potential clients are looking for your product and or service, delivered in a manner that appeals to their needs. For some, just picking a product off the shelf is AOK. For others, they want more of a personalized experience. In a crowded fiel...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/6/2014 Comments(0)

Integrity: It Matters!!

INTEGRITY is one of 'those' words! You know- the ones that make a promise just by speaking them. Lots of people and businesses utter these promising words and yet so few really do what is necessary to deliver. As our Total Merchant Concepts team reflects on 2013 and makes plans for another incredible year, we want to share our commitment to service & Integrity with you! #1 We PROMISE to deliver on our internal promise to take care of our team #2 We PROMISE to deliver on each promise we make ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/30/2013 Comments(0)

Learning From the Latest Breach

Over the weekend, my 17 year old son made an observation that speaks to the recent Target breach as well as our attitude towards card breaches as a society. He said, "Mom- I drove by Target today and I was surprised! The parking lot was jam packed with people. The news said Target was responsible for compromising their credit cards- why are they still shopping there?" An innocent enough question with some very thought provoking considerations! Target's breach is just one in a long line of card b...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/23/2013 Comments(0)

The TMC Difference

It's that time of year- time for reflection! We met with our team and discussed the areas where we shine and the areas where we need to step it up. As you look at Your New Year, we trust that your team is taking the necessary steps to bring even more value and more service to the marketplace! Honest reflection can help all of us get better! Here are a few tips to help you and your team get ready for the fast approaching New Year! 1- Recognize Accomplishments! Nothing starts a meeting off better ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/16/2013 Comments(0)

Prevent ID Theft During the Holidays

It seems sad to have to be concerned with ID theft during this joyous time of year but the truth is, this is one of the most active times of the year for fraudsters! The credit card processing industry deals with fraud every single day but it also pays to consider fraud from a very personal standpoint. ID theft can be a crippling event in the lives of those affected so it pays to take some basic precautionary measures. We put together this information on the Top 10 Ways to Prevent ID Theft Durin...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/9/2013 Comments(0)

Accepting PayPal Cards

The credit card processing industry is in a constant state of change. Late last week, our processors announced the ability for our merchants to accept the PayPal card through the Discover network. Most merchants will have this ability automatically while some merchants on specific networks usually due to POS system types , will need to have some adjustments made to their set up in order to be able to accept the PayPal cards. It is important to note that a PayPal card MUST be physically present a...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/2/2013 Comments(0)

Prevent EMail Viruses!

There are few things as infuriating as finding that cyber criminals have slithered their way into your business. This past week, businesses in the UK and in the United States fell victim to an email virus known as 'ransomwear'. Unsuspecting staffers opened official looking emails and that's when the fun NOT began. Without proper backups and sometimes even WITH proper backups , valuable documents became unavailable; stalling business as usual. The virus is called 'ransomwear' because company's we...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/25/2013 Comments(0)

What's Your Back Up Plan?

Accepting credit cards is just a natural part of the check out process; so what happens when your processing system STOPS WORKING? It was a busy Sunday morning at a popular coffee stand when the barista realized she had a problem- her credit card machine was not working. She called the number on the side of the terminal and reached a very friendly after hours technician who did some trouble shooting and found that the phone line was no longer working. Calls to the coffee house were ringi...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/18/2013 Comments(0)

Thank You Veterans!!

Today is a day of celebration! We would not have the freedoms or liberties we have in The United States of America without our Veterans of yesterday, today and those to come!! America was a grand idea, based on Godly principals, personal freedoms and supreme sacrifice. Our Veterans deserve our highest respect for the price they have paid with their gifts of time, effort & in many cases, their blood. Take a moment today to thank a Veteran and pay your respects to these brave Americans who sta...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/11/2013 Comments(0)

Personal Responsibility- GET SOME!!

Shaggy's song: It Wasn't Me, is so ridiculously funny- it is sad. It also tells the story of what is happening in our society today. People are looking further and further away from the 'man in the mirror' to fix the challenges they face. Today, I want to take a look at how personal responsibility affects our world in the three areas that are the most familiar to me- I am certain you can relate! As a Mother, a Wife and a Business Owner, I deal with personal responsibility on a daily basis and be...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/4/2013 Comments(0)

Time For a Change!

Change is something that most people ......"LOVE"...... Daylight Saving Time is one of the easiest changes that people get to deal with each year but have you ever wondered why we change the clocks twice a year time to change the batteries in your smoke alarms as well! ? I did a bit of surfing on the internet and found a great site that covers a TON of information related to the history of Daylight Saving Time. So after you get done changing the time on your Credit Card Terminal see a list below...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/2/2013 Comments(0)

CVV2 - Explained

Credit card fraud is a 52.8 BILLION dollar industry so its no surprise that there are lots of tools available that are designed to prevent credit card fraud. The Card Verification Value CVV2 is the 3 digit code on the back of the credit card 4 digits on the front of AMEX cards . The 3 or 4 digit code is designed to add an extra layer of credit card fraud protection although many experts question its effectiveness. Knowing what the code is for and how the code is used can be a big help. The major...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/28/2013 Comments(0)

Exceptional Service

It is simply amazing how accustomed we have become to mediocre or poor service. As a society, we have come to expect lackluster service and are surprised when we find someone who cares enough to make their job worthwhile! Last week I called the Secretary of State's office to get a general question answered and was greeted by Heather. She was truly a breath of fresh air and at the end of our call I thanked her for her cheerful professionalism- she said that she wanted the person on the other end ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/21/2013 Comments(0)

Take Out The Trash!

Over the weekend, I had the opportunity to learn a few lessons while doing one of the most basic of things- TAKING OUT THE TRASH ! It happened innocently enough, the garbage had piled up and it was glaringly apparent that the time to empty the trash container was upon me! The guys were out of town so the task fell to yours truly; here is what I learned: Garbage Is a Natural By Product: We all produce some type of garbage! Whether we are tossing away used containers or emptying our minds of old o...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/14/2013 Comments(0)

What Really Matters

It is with a heavy heart that I write this week's TMC Blog. As a BUSINESS- each week brings a laundry list of plans and projects that need to be completed. This week, I want to use our Blog space to encourage our team, our merchants and our vendors to focus on What Really Matters . For those of you who have been following the AT/RT Cancer struggle of Miss Phoebe Fair Zig Ziglar's Great Grandaughter - you should know that she lost her struggle over the weekend; Phoebe was just 4 years old. You ca...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/7/2013 Comments(0)

Seattle Seahawks & Championship Teams

Congratulations to our Seattle Seahawks !! It was a great game against our Division rivals! As I was watching the game, I realized that BOTH teams are filled with amazing athletes. BOTH teams have great coaches and BOTH teams planned to win so what was the difference? In business, just like a great football team, there are elements that make the difference between winning and losing. Here are a few things to consider between now and YOUR next big game!! PURSUE a worthy goal! When you have a writ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/16/2013 Comments(0)

Remembering 9/11

This week, we remember the sacrifices made the day our nation came under attack. 9/11/01 We are so thankful to live in the United States of America. Our history rings strong with brave men and women who answer the call- who put their lives on the line in the moments of truth that define us. As you take a moment to reflect this week- here are a few links that you may choose to visit. 9/11 Memorial: http://www.911memorial.org/ 9/11 Time Line: http://timeline.national911memorial.org/ Flight 93 Memo...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/9/2013 Comments(0)

Looking For Efficiency

Efficiency is one of those concepts that simply must be implemented in our businesses to insure that we remain viable and productive in today’s competitive business climate. Just this past week, our team programmed over 100 terminals for new merchants and referral partners. We program alot of terminals but 100 in a week is more than we typically do. So it is not surprising that during that process, we found a couple of different ways to speed up the download process: we found new ways to become ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/19/2013 Comments(0)

Rock Climbing Business Lessons

We can learn so many things from almost every activity we engage in and Rock Climbing has lots of amazing lessons! We have a young lady on our team who is passionate about Rock Climbing and she will be leaving our team at the end of the month so she can pursue her passions. In honor of her decision, we decided to share a few lessons from the exciting sport of Rock Climbing! #1 KNOW YOUR TARGET Rock climbers- just like business owners- need to know their target! Starting out knowing exactly where...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/11/2013 Comments(0)

Accepting Responsibility

Accepting Responsibility — A Story of Bill Russell by Jim Rohn Most people dread accepting responsibility. That’s just a fact of life, and we can see it in operation every day. Yes, we can see avoidance of responsibility all the time in both our personal and professional lives. And here’s something else we can see just as often: we can see that most people aren’t as successful as they wish they were. Do you see there is a connection between these two very common phenomena? It’s in your best inte...

Read More
Guest Blogger 8/5/2013 Comments(0)

Cartoons & Conflict!

Conflict is one of those necessary elements of life that every creature gets to deal with. HOW we deal with whatever conflicts arise, determines the quality of our lives. One of my earliest recollections of conflict happened each Saturday morning as we sat in front of the TV waiting to watch the antics of Tom & Jerry! Talk about conflict! As Jerry flitted through each scene looking like he was having a blast, Tom was never far behind, reacting and planning his revenge. Funny isn't it? How mu...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/15/2013 Comments(0)

You Do The Math

Imagine you own a house and it needs paint. In days of old, you would open a Phone Book an antique method of looking up businesses and people's names , scan through the options and pick a few to call for a bid. The painting companies would show up usually and provide quotes for you. You lay all three next to each other on the kitchen table and find yourself scratching your head: didn't they all look at the same house? Today, you might do an Internet search or you might even use a service like An...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/8/2013 Comments(0)

Life: Outside Your Comfort Zone

This weekend, I was honored to witness the final touches on a multi-million dollar expansion project that is nearing its amazing finish. Our merchant stepped firmly outside of their 'Comfort Zone' so they could expand their vision, their business and their dreams. In order to reach our goals and dreams, often times we have to venture outside of our comfort zones because that is where life gets interesting! You might be thinking 'interesting'- GREAT! I do not need any more 'interesting' in my lif...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/30/2013 Comments(0)

Are You Versatile?

My friends tease me incessantly about my 'relationship' with Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. Even my son got in on the action when he purchased a life size, cardboard stand up of Mr. Johnson for my birthday. So what is it about "The Rock" that causes me to smile? Some think it is his mastery of his physical condition- nice - but no. Some think it is his charming can do attitude- close, but no. For me, it is watching someone make the most out of their gifts and their talents. It is being able to watch...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/24/2013 Comments(0)

Evaluating Your Associations

Evaluating Your Associations by Jim Rohn If you were to evaluate the major influences in your life that have shaped the kind of person you are, this has to be high on the list: the people and thoughts you choose to allow into your life. Mr. Shoaff gave me a very important warning in those early days that I would like to share with you.. He said, "Never underestimate the power of influence." Indeed, the influence of those around us is so powerful! Many times we don't even realize we're bein...

Read More
Guest Blogger 6/17/2013 Comments(0)

Our Passion Is Service

Best Customer Service! Stellar Service Guaranteed! Award Winning Customer Service! BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH!!! As consumers, we are all sick and tired of hearing the many promises of exceptional service, only to find that most companies fall painfully short in the service department. Think about it? When is the last time you experienced truly exceptional service and how do some companies manage to deliver when so many others fail miserably? Getting Your Team On Board In the movie ELF- our hero notice...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/3/2013 Comments(0)

Creating Opportunity

Creating Opportunity by Jim Rohn An enterprising person is one who comes across a lump of clay and sees the making of a wonderful sculpture. An enterprising person is one who drives through an old decrepit part of town and sees a new housing development. An enterprising person is one who sees opportunity in all areas of life. To be enterprising is to keep your eyes open and your mind active. It’s to be skilled enough, confident enough, creative enough and disciplined enough to seize opportunitie...

Read More
Guest Blogger 5/27/2013 Comments(0)

What Is Your Unique Skillset?

Understanding the strengths your team possesses is critical to the success of any company. In other words, having the right people in the right seats can make all the difference Each of us is wired to do a few things very well. If our daily tasks revolve around those few things, life is good! If, on the other hand, our daily tasks revolve around areas outside of our strengths, life can be tough. As business owners or managers, we simply must take the time to determine if the members of our team ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/13/2013 Comments(0)

Four Emotions That Can Lead to Life Change

The Four Emotions That Can Lead to Life Change by Jim Rohn Emotions are the most powerful forces inside us. Under the power of emotions, human beings can perform the most heroic as well as barbaric acts. To a great degree, civilization itself can be defined as the intelligent channeling of human emotion. Emotions are fuel and the mind is the pilot, which together propel the ship of civilized progress. Which emotions cause people to act? There are four basic ones; each, or a combination of severa...

Read More
Guest Blogger 4/29/2013 Comments(0)

Got Paper?

One of life's little irritations is being out of the necessary supplies to run your business. This blog is dedicated to thermal paper; the most common type of paper used in today's credit card terminals. What is Thermal Paper? We visited Wikipedia for the technical answer Thermal paper is a special fine paper that is coated with a chemical that changes color when exposed to heat. It is used in thermal printers and particularly in inexpensive or lightweight devices such as adding machines, cash r...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/22/2013 Comments(0)

Some Tax Time Humor

Sir Smiley here after a long hiatus- just in time for TAX DAY!! Please forgive my light hearted attempt at humor today, as we all work through Tax Day 2013. Many Americans think that taxes are too high and some think they should be raised but for today, I thought we would simply focus on the top 10 DUMB TAXES in history! We truly are lucky to be Americans and it feels good to contribute but imagine having to deal with these 'over the top' taxes!! If you would like to read the entire article- VER...

Read More
Sir Smiley 4/15/2013 Comments(0)

Green Business = Green Savings

So many businesses are throwing around the words “Eco-friendly”, “sustainability”, and “Going Green”, nowadays that it may seem like nonsense. Making your business environmentally friendly can be beneficial to more than just the planet however. There are so many things one can do to lower their impact on the environment while saving themselves a little extra “green” in the process. Changing your ways does not have to be a complete overhaul of how your company operates, instead, little things her...

Read More
Guest Blogger Lauren Reynolds 4/4/2013 Comments(0)

Scam Alert

Last week we talked about why businesses have to be approved to obtain a merchant account. Shortly after our Blog was published, a friend of mine Thank you Rosemary!! sent me the following article. Credit card fraud costs everyone a ton of money each year and it is important to understand the various ways that fraud can be perpetrated so we can protect ourselves! Recommendations for Avoiding Application Fraud AP, Canada, CEMEA, LAC, U.S. Acquirers, Issuers Visa is reminding clients to be vigilan...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/1/2013 Comments(0)

All Hands On Deck

Delivering EXCELLENCE requires an 'All Hands On Deck' attitude! We are super excited to introduce 5 new team members to our TMC referral partners and merchants! The process of training new people to represent your company or brand is not easy but it is something that business owners must get good at, if they want to continue growing their businesses! Here are a few of the things we have been working on to keep the promises we make to our merchants; we hope you get some value out of the informati...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/11/2013 Comments(0)

Let The Growth Continue!!

Like any plant, growth of the Chinese Bamboo tree requires nurturing - water, fertile soil, sunshine. In its first year, there are no visible signs of activity. In the second year, again, no growth above the soil. The third, the fourth, still nothing. The gardener's patience is tested and he begins to wonder if his efforts caring, water, etc. will ever be rewarded. And finally in the fifth year - behold, a miracle! The Chinese Bamboo experience growth, above the ground and what growth it is! 80 ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/4/2013 Comments(0)

Right People, Right Seat, Right Work

How is your team wired? If you are lucky like we are, you have people on your team who can and DO whatever is necessary to make things work the way they should. However, there is a big difference between a staff who does what they must and a staff who does what they LOVE ! In order to deliver on the promises of Excellence, Stellar Service and a Top Notch Experience- teams need to be filled up with the Right People , sitting in the Right Seats , who are doing the Right Work ! Defining your object...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/18/2013 Comments(0)

6 Billion Dollar Settlement

During the past 2 weeks, merchants across America received the 27 page legal notice regarding the 6+Billion Merchant Discount Antitrust Lawsuit - it was a riveting read! In this blog- we will hit the high points and make sure you know what actions you need to take. What was the lawsuit about? The case centered on allegations that Visa, MasterCard and some of the country's largest banks conspired to unlawfully fix swipe fees for merchants. The case also addressed the long standing regulation that...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/13/2013 Comments(0)

EMV Technology

Our credit cards are CHANGING !! It won't happen today and many of us will not go willingly but chipped credit cards are on the way! DEFINITION EMV stands for Europay, MasterCard and Visa, a global standard for inter-operation of integrated circuit cards IC cards or "chip cards" and IC card capable point of sale POS terminals and automated teller machines ATMs , for authenticating credit and debit card transactions. It is a joint effort between Europay, MasterCard and Visa to ensure security and...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/12/2013 Comments(0)

Keeping Employees Engaged

Dealing with employees can be one of the most rewarding aspects of small business ownership; it can also be one of the most taxing. At TMC, we have always been blessed with an incredible cast of characters! Our team consistently delivers excellence and they tend to bring their hearts to work each day. Don't get me wrong- we have our share of challenges and some of the normal drama associated with our work family, but for the most part, we have been blessed! Some recent changes in staffing, job d...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/11/2013 Comments(0)

Credit Card Disputes: Reducing Conflict

Conflict is a part of life and in the credit card processing world, we sure have our fair share of conflict! A 'Credit Card Dispute' happens when a customer is not happy with their purchase for any reason and they choose to contact their card issuing bank to reverse the credit card transaction. These disputes have many impacts on merchants and the credit card processing industry overall. Merchant Account Approvals: Because consumers have up to 6 months past any implied warranties to dispute a tr...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/4/2013 Comments(0)

Surcharge: Yes or No

In July of last year, we reported the changes that were coming with regards to the ability of merchants to ' surcharge' or add a fee when their customers paid with a credit card. See the article here For years, the practice was prohibited by Visa/MasterCard but just like the rest of the credit card processing industry, the landscape for surcharging has changed. THE REGULATIONS: CHANGED! In November 2012, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York preliminarily approved...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/28/2013 Comments(0)

MLK Jr: What Are You Doing For Others?

As we take the time to honor Martin Luther King Jr today, it seems appropriate to ask the question he once asked of those around him. What are you doing for others? There are nearly 28 million small businesses in the United States. Those small businesses employ nearly 50% of Americans. Can you imagine what would happen in our communities if every small business asked that question on a regular basis? There would be an amazing shift in how we treat others and our communities would forever be chan...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/21/2013 Comments(0)

Keeping A Journal

There are few things as therapeutic as writing everything down. For centuries, great treasures of words have been found in the journals of historical figures and those we love. Today, I would like to share an article by Jim Rohn that gives you several compelling reasons to start and keep a journal. Please enjoy this excerpt from his How to Use a Journal audio CD. Keeping a Journal-One of the Three Treasures to Leave Behind by Jim Rohn excerpted from his How to Use a Journal audio CD If you're se...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/7/2013 Comments(0)

Handling the End!

Now that we have escaped the dark prediction of the Mayans, we have another 'END' to contend with; the end of the year! In one week, we will say goodbye to 2012 and welcome a New Year. In other words, we have 7 days to tie up the last 365! Here are 5 steps to help you HANDLE THE END : 1- TIDY UP YOUR 'END OF YEAR' GOALS It is AMAZING what you can accomplish when the timeline is short! With one week left in 2012, take a look at what your goals were and tackle the ones that can be completed within...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/24/2012 Comments(0)

Let's Get Reconnected!

After the events of December 14th, 2012 in Newtown Connecticut- it seems difficult to make sense of the senseless violence in our world. Anger, hatred, opposing viewpoints and every other reason we have to be at odds with each other, just doesn't make the loss of 20 innocent children any easier to explain. Our weekly blog is typically dedicated to a business topic or industry related theme that can help the businesses we serve. Today, our blog will be about the state of Disconnection & Isola...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/17/2012 Comments(0)

The Future of Plastic

The credit card processing industry is changing rapidly. Last week, I had a merchant ask me if I thought there would be any major changes in the credit card processing in the next several years. My immediate response was OF COURSE - it is one of the reasons why we love the industry so much. We never get bored and we are always working to stay up to speed on the changes . I then went to my resources and found a good video on the use of plastic and the chip technology we are already helping our fi...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/10/2012 Comments(0)

Who Is In Charge?

Growing up, I was the oldest of my 5 siblings and if you asked me who was in charge, I would tell you that it was me; of course! But in our every day world, we sometimes believe that outside sources, other people and even the weather are 'in charge' of what happens in our lives. The following article was written by Jim Rohn and it really speaks to the question of Who Is Really In Charge? I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed 'thinking' I was in charge of my siblings so many years ago! Novembe...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/3/2012 Comments(0)

Finishing Strong

The time between Thanksgiving and New Years can often be so busy that we get very little done! Sounds crazy, but between the Holidays and the promise of a fresh '365', we sometimes miss the importance of finishing the current year off strong! This year, your team at TMC is focusing on making December the month of Strong Finishes and we would like to invite you to join us! Here are some of the things we are committed to achieving PRIOR to December 31, 2012. ALL STAFF EMAILS UP TO DATE ALL 1ST QTR...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/26/2012 Comments(0)

Bring on Black Friday

It seems hard to believe that we are just a few days away from our annual Thanksgiving Day celebration! After the family gatherings, the feasting & festivities and of course the mid afternoon naps! - many people begin the planning and preparation for BLACK FRIDAY ! Let's take a look at the origin of the term and some statistics. The day after Thanksgiving has been the unofficial start to the Christmas shopping season since the 1930's but the history of the Friday after Turkey Day began in 19...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/19/2012 Comments(0)

Dealing With Disputes

Keeping our customers happy can prevent disputes and save lots of time, energy & money! When a customer feels as if they did not get what they paid for or they do not recognize an item on their statement, they can initiate a chargeback or dispute so they do not have to pay for the charge. Disputes can be very costly for business owners and that is why we wanted to give you a few tips for making sure you are taking the steps necessary to keep your customers happy and prevent disputes! Deliver...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/13/2012 Comments(0)

TIME FOR A CHANGE

Change is something that most people ......"LOVE"...... Daylight Saving Time is one of the easiest changes that people get to deal with each year but have you ever wondered why we change the clocks twice a year? I did a bit of surfing on the internet and found a great site that covers a TON of information related to the history of Daylight Saving Time. So after you get done changing the time on your Credit Card Terminal see a list below and call our office if your terminal or device is not liste...

Read More
Sir Smiley 11/3/2012 Comments(0)

What's The Plan Stan?

What’s the plan, Stan? Just like someone doesn’t go into a marriage thinking of divorce; no one starts a business thinking it is going to fail. When the time is right to start a new business do your homework!! While planning for success, make sure to take everything into account that could impact your business both positively and negatively. Do you have a marketing strategy? Does your brick and mortar location take advantage of traffic patterns? Do you have enough capital to sustain the business...

Read More
Denise Walter 10/29/2012 Comments(0)

The Gift Card Season Begins!

It is that time of year: GIFT CARD season If your business currently has a gift card program- remember to place your holiday card orders NOW . If you are considering a gift card program; you should order your cards NOW . As we get closer to the Silly Season, the line gets longer for ordering gift cards. Here is a great artcle from Member Access Pacific with a few tweaks . Enjoy and happy giving !! Today’s consumers are turning their growing appreciation for gift cards into an all-out public embr...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/22/2012 Comments(0)

Working Overtime

Years ago, before our business venture began, we had grand visions of what being a business owner would be like. Go into the office, c heck in with the staff, meet a client for lunch, cut out early and spend the rest of the early afternoon on the river; relaxing. After we woke up from that glorious dream, we realized that business would be a bit harder than we first imagined: that was 16 years ago! Since that starry eyed view of business ownership so many years ago, I can tell you one thing for ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/15/2012 Comments(0)

EMail Etiquette Basics

  What am I? Your use me every day... I can be very efficient or easily turned into a time sucker... If screened properly I can provide valuable information... Left unscreened I can make your life a spam filled mess... EMAIL! Sometimes it pays to consider the basics of business communication. Most businesses use & rely on their email very heavily. However many business owners do not stop to think about the way that their email messages reflect on their businesses. Recently, I read an article...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/7/2012 Comments(0)

Forging Your Character

For many business owners contrary to popular belief CHARACTER is one of the pillars of successful businesses today! The Merchant Services industry has long been known for its lack of character- which is precisely why Dean and I began our venture over 16 years ago. Today, we still feel that Character counts in the business world and we are passionate about making sure that Character is always an intricate part of who we are as a company. It is interesting to note that many businesses tout Charact...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/23/2012 Comments(0)

iPhone 5: Waiting on NFC

My son has taken a real interest in mobile technologies, especially when it relates to our business and mobile payments. He is always sending me text messages with links to interesting articles and today, I would like to share one related to the recent release of the Apple iPhone 5 . It is also fun to mention that Tyler has graciously agreed to give his Father his older iPhone so he can figure out how to use the NEW iPhone 5 You have to LOVE that kind of family committment! . Before you read the...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/14/2012 Comments(0)

Be Smart With Your SmartPhone

I remember driving around in my parents' Lincoln Continental Valentino, at age 16. It was a magnificent car and it had a 'mobile phone' built in. I never actually used the phone, but I do recall driving around holding the handset complete with the spiral cord attachment and pretending that I was talking. My parents were Smart enough to recognize that prohibiting my use of that high tech device would save them some cash! Even with the restriction, I felt pretty cool. Probably not as cool as my 16...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/9/2012 Comments(0)

Are You Social?

Sir Smiley here- This week, the President of our company will be speaking at a business conference in Portland Oregon; her topic? Embracing Social Media I thought it might be good to learn a bit about the topic from the KING of Social Media; yours truly! That's right! There really is nothing more 'social' than a good old fashioned smile. We speak every language, cheer most everyone we see and we can lighten up a room just by showing up. Today Social Media refers to more than a smile but it is a ...

Read More
Sir Smiley 8/20/2012 Comments(0)

The Responsibility of Free Speech

Over 200 years ago, our founding fathers felt strongly enough about our personal freedoms, that they fought for them! Today, we live under the protections although somewhat splintered their passions afforded us. One of the greatest privileges we enjoy was granted to us in the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America: our freedom of speech : Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the fre...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/30/2012 Comments(0)

Surcharging

For years, Visa & MasterCard prohibited the practice of surcharging: tacking on an additional fee when customers choose to pay with their credit card. The recent 6 Billion Dollar Settlement has changed all of that. Merchants in most states can now assess a surcharge on their customers. The states that are still prohibited due to State laws are: CALIFORNIA COLORADO CONNECTICUT FLORIDA KANSAS MAINE MASSACHUSETTS NEW YORK OKLAHOMA TEXAS As a business owner, it is worth considering WHY Visa proh...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/23/2012 Comments(0)

Satisfaction Versus Loyalty

Simply telling people that "We have GREAT Customer Service" falls on deaf ears these days- why? Because the easiest thing in the world is to promise a GREAT Customer Service experience!! Do any of these situations sound familiar? Thank you for calling ABC Company, your business is VERY important to us- please HOLD. TRANSLATION: Thank you for calling ABC Company, your business is so important, that we are inadequately staffed to handle your call. You enter a business and wait to be greeted- sever...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/16/2012 Comments(0)

Seeing Your Organization as a Performance Chain

blog Wed, 07/04/2012 - 14:25 By Chris LaVictoire Mahai How can you drive the best possible outcomes for your customers and your business? The most successful organizations control their performance chain rather than letting their performance chain control them. Back up a second – what is a performance chain? I define a performance chain as all the tangible and intangible elements that have to move from the moment you trigger demand until you have cash in the bank; all the ins and out...

Read More
Guest Blogger 7/9/2012 Comments(0)

The Best Gift

Personal development has long been a very important part of my life. I believe it helps with the every day rigors of life; to me it is like a good multi vitamin! I just FEEL better when I am reading a book, working through a class or attending a seminar to focus on personal improvement. The following article touches on the benefits of taking care of yourself. It talks in depth about the importance of being in a place where we are prepared to be of maximum service. In other words, we ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/2/2012 Comments(0)

We're NOT Square

OK- so how fun is that new square thing? You have to take your hat off to innovators in the industry and appreciate the fact that they have helped keep the credit card industry Fresh & Exciting. But make no mistake, TMC is definitely NOT going square! The only challenge with the various 'One Size Fits All' or 'Simplified' solutions in any industry, is that they typically lack the personalized type of service that we have created our entire business model around. For years, business owners ac...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/25/2012 Comments(0)

9 Ways to Find Your Flow

I read an article recently in the TopPerformance newsletter May 2012 edition that really struck me as useful. So many times, we get bogged down in our daily work lives and lose our way. Perhaps this is why so many people have lost their passion for work or worse- for life! Finding our flow can really help us get back on track and accomplish those things that are the most important to us! For other editions of the TopPerformance newsletter go to: http://www.personalbest.com/Health-Wellness/Newsle...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/18/2012 Comments(0)

Embracing & Preparing For Change

I recently went to a co-worker’s baby shower. She received a card that read, A baby changes everything except its own diaper. The card got lots of laughs but it got me thinking about how people react to change. In my professional life I have worked in several different industries and each one was very unique in how it communicated upcoming policy adjustments to employees and customers. Some were better than others; how change is presented has a huge impact on how it is received. I have wor...

Read More
Denise Walter 6/11/2012 Comments(0)

Strategies For Business Success

This past week I spoke with two long time business owners who, like a lot of businesses across the country, are still struggling. Questions came up like, what do consumers really want? How do I price my products and services in this economy? And the toughest question; is small business ownership in America still 'worth it'. The conversations were thought provoking and made me look at our business and the way we are handling this tough time in America. Hopefully these strategies are useful to y...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/4/2012 Comments(0)

Become the Expert in Your Field

I always get so much great information out of my favorite magazine: SUCCESS This article is very helpful when you are looking for more ways to set yourself apart from your competition. Becoming the 'Go To Person' or Expert in your field is one of the very best ways to increase visibility and ultimately- your bottom line! Enjoy the article and then take some actions steps to become, the one they call! How to Become a Sought-After Expert 5 tactics for becoming a recognized expert Ever watched an “...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/21/2012 Comments(0)

How to Turn Nothing into Something

  One of my favorite Motivational Speakers is Jim Rohn. While he has passed, his words of wisdom live on. I hope you enjoy this selection! How to Turn Nothing into Something by Jim Rohn Have you ever wondered how to turn nothing into something? First, in order to turn nothing into something, you've got to start with some ideas and imagination. Now, it might be hard to call ideas and imagination nothing; but how tangible are those ideas? That is a bit of a mystery. I don't believe that ideas that...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/14/2012 Comments(0)

The word is INTEGRITY

Our blog today is dedicated to the word Integrity: a word that is easy to say and much more difficult to find! The word 'Integrity' is derived from the Latin word Integer, meaning untouched, hence, undivided, whole, equivalent. Webster defines 'Integrity' as: in·teg·ri·ty /?n't?gr?ti/ Show Spelled [in-teg-ri-tee] noun 1. adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty. 2. the state of being whole, entire, or undiminished: to preserve the integrity of the empire. ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/7/2012 Comments(0)

Dealing With Conflict

Conflict is a natural part of any business environment and most people have a difficult time dealing with conflict so what do we do? We get GOOD at dealing with conflict!! Here are some helpful insights- First Things First: INTERNAL CONFLICT Before we can deal with external conflict, we have to be able to get honest with ourselves. Internal Conflict can manifest itself by how we work, how we handle our internal dialogue and the personal bars we set in our own lives. When we engage in positive se...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/30/2012 Comments(0)

Let's Take a Quiz!

Success Magazine is one of our favorites here at TMC. Along with the many great articles on business success principals and building tips, they often have thought provoking tools that help us 'stay on course' as we seek to find our futures! Potential business owners and existing business owners alike, will find great value in the quiz listed below. We love the exercises that challenge and stretch our brains so we can continue gtetting better and better in our chosen field! DO YOU HAVE THE ENTRPR...

Read More
Sir Smiley 4/22/2012 Comments(0)

VISA'S NEW FEE: FANF (Fixed Acquirer Network Fee)

It is a good thing that accepting credit cards has proven to increase the amount of money that customers spend at most businesses! The complex pricing structure and numerous fees associated with the credit card processing industry, have always been a concern to businesses. Most merchants in the U.S. are about to repay some of the savings they realized from the Durbin amendment that became effective October 2011. Beginning with April 2012 processing volume, Visa is implementing new fees and incre...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/15/2012 Comments(0)

The UGLY Truth About Merchant Services

We do multiple training sessions each week for our referral partners across the country. Our goal is to arm our referral partners with a basic overview of the industry so they can be of service to their Members. Often times, we are asked what makes us different? Why will our referred Members/Clients/Merchants benefit by working with Total Merchant Concepts? The very best way to answer these questions is educating them about the Merchant Services Industry as a whole. Knowing what you DON'T want i...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/9/2012 Comments(0)

Technically Challenged

How are you with technology? For most of us, technology is something that resides peacefully in the background of our lives until one day- IT BREAKS ! Last week, we experienced one of THOSE days!! It started with the Internet slowing to dial up speeds the nerve! and then our phone system began to receive mysterious calls- we would answer and no one would be on the other end of the line until the big 'event' occurred and then..........there was silence. Now normally, silence can be a good thing b...

Read More
Sir Smiley 4/2/2012 Comments(0)

Is The Customer Always Right?

As a small business owner, I have always been told that 'the customer is always right'. As a consumer, I am well aware of the fact that many businesses do not live by this rule AND- it is in fact possible that I am NOT always right OUCH!! . So what is the answer? YES - the Customer is always right? NO - the Customer can certainly be wrong? Or does the answer lie somewhere between the two? Let's look at both sides and then we can all decide for ourselves!! ORIGIN: In order to determine the accura...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/26/2012 Comments(0)

Basic Fraud Prevention

Every time you turn around, someone's credit card is being compromised- CREDIT CARD FRAUD is organized crime A 52 Billion Dollar Industry and as business owners we need to take the necessary steps to protect our clients and our businesses. STOP fraud by being aware! Know the things you can do to prevent fraud BEFORE, DURING & AFTER the sale. Have a great week and let us know if you have any questions related to credit card fraud- we are here to help! ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/19/2012 Comments(0)

Building Teamwork

There are 120 hours in a 5 day work week and we spend 1/3 of those hours with our Co Workers. So it is no surprise that TEAMWORK is a huge topic of discussion within the business world. Here are 5 things you can do to increase, encourage and improve TEAMWORK - where you work! 1- Keep The Bar High Working in an atmosphere where Excellence is the name of the game- encourages staff members to perform at their best. Since each member's performance impacts the overall TEAM performance- setting high s...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/12/2012 Comments(0)

Fees Explained

Over the past two weeks, we have been discussing the fees related to the credit card processing industry. We walked through Interchange the base of the fee structure and the costs associated with Capturing, Authorizing & Settling the transactions we process every day. Today we look at all of those 'miscellaneous' fees that show up on our monthly merchant statements and we will count on our bicycle shop to give us some real life explanations of each one. Monthly Minimum Fee: fee which guarant...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/5/2012 Comments(0)

Authorization, Capture & Settlement

Last week we talked about Interchange- the base for all credit card processing. Today, we are going to discuss the process & fees related to Authorizing, Capturing & Settling credit card transactions. We will use our Bicycle Shop again today to give you a real life example of how this process works!! Let's start with definitions! AUTHORIZATION: When a credit card is processed, the first step in the approval process is AUTHORIZING the amount requested by the business owner. No money is ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/27/2012 Comments(0)

The Power of Social Media

We have recently made some COOL updates to our Facebook page www.Facebook.com/TotalMerchantConcepts and our team is currently investigating the impact that Social Media has on businesses- stand by for great tips, advice and offers coming in the very near future AND- enjoy this great article we found! By Anthony Godley in Social Networking What is social media, you ask? Think Facebook? Think YouTube or Twitter? Think fundamental shift in how businesses reach customers and how organizations connec...

Read More
Special Guest Writer 2/13/2012 Comments(0)

Get SERIOUS about PCI Compliance

Last week's 'Whopper of a Breach' article regarding the $200K in fines levied against a Burger King Franchisee, caused alot of our merchants to call in and ask more questions about PCI Compliance. Could this happen to me? Is my business compliant? Do I need to do anything else to make sure my customer's cards are protected? We have seen PCI Compliance go from an unknown, fee related issue to a very critical part of making sure businesses are insulated from breaches and fines. Instead of merchant...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/5/2012 Comments(0)

IRS Reporting

In February of last year, we discussed the IRS reporting requirements statute, which was added in November of 2009 to the Housing Assistance Tax Act of 2008. In a nutshell, this statute required all credit card processing companies to report the merchant services activities of all merchants beginning January 1st, 2011. Processors are also required to report the correct legal name, Tax Payer Identification Number and address of all merchants processing credit cards. It is imperative that the info...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/30/2012 Comments(0)

Excellent Service is Delivered With Passion

When I train our referral partners to send their members to our company, I make some HUGE promises related to the level of service they can expect from my team. I've even been accused of implying that my staff can 'Walk on Water'! Well they do not walk on water that position was filled over 2000 years ago , but there is a reason why I feel so comfortable making large promises regarding the service level of my team: THEY DELIVER ! Each of our staff members truly cares about the businesses they ha...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/22/2012 Comments(0)

Let's Go Mobile!

There are so many ways to process credit cards and it is important to understand what options are best suited for your business in today's marketplace. Mobile processing is getting lots of press today but it is imperative that you consider all of the factors before rushing in to accepting credit cards with your mobile device. The following questions/information will help you assess your need/desire to 'Go Mobile' ! #1- Why do I want to use my mobile device to process? This seems like a pretty ba...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/9/2012 Comments(0)

Welcome to 2012: Resolutions Anyone?

Welcome to 2012! A New Year has begun and for many it means time for resolutions and refocusing! Here at TMC, we are looking at ways to be of MORE service and add more value to those who partner with our company. We are excited to let you know that our merchants & referral partners are going to benefit from our renewed commitment and focus in some exciting business building areas! Here is a glimpse of things to come in the New Year! Excellent Customer Service: this is our PASSION at TMC and ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/1/2012 Comments(0)

Finding Our Sweet Spot

Do you remember when you first started your business? I sure do - I had visions of grandeur! ALL businesses would want to use our company, EVERY business owner would feel the passion we had for the business, we would have the PERFECT solution for EACH business that came our way and there was just one more thing- we all lived happily ever after. just like a Fairy Tale! Does that sound familiar to you? Business ownership is certainly not for the faint of heart and it turns out- it is no fairy tale...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/5/2011 Comments(0)

Black Friday 2011 Results

It's 'official'- the start of the holiday shopping season is off to a great start. According to the National Retail Federation, "Americans shrugged off economic gloom to post record Thanksgiving weekend sales of $52.4 billion, as shoppers prepared for "Cyber Monday" online deals. Sales over the long holiday weekend were up 16 percent compared to last year, marking the biggest dollar amount ever spent over the Black Friday period, the unofficial start of the Christmas shopping season, the NRF sai...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/28/2011 Comments(0)

Leave the Door Open

While 'Keeping Your Business For The Life of Your Business' is a lofty goal- it is one that we work very diligently on here at TMC. So when the unthinkable happens a merchant decides to go elsewhere for services , we always take the time to assess the situation to see if there are additional actions or steps we can take to prevent the loss of future merchants and to Leave the Door Open- so our ex Merchants can find their way home! Knowledgeable & Friendly Staff: Our staff has been specially ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 11/14/2011 Comments(0)

Stolen Credit Card Data

My favorite airline is Southwest! In addition to Excellent service, affordable airfare and a majority of staff members who LOVE their job, they also provide literary favors for those of us who love to read! Of course I am talking about the SkyMall & Spirit magazines. In the October edition of the Spirit magazine, they published the following information about Stolen Credit Cards: Stolen credit card numbers sell online for as little as 7 cents each. It's one crime that does pay, unfortunately...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/31/2011 Comments(0)

How Would You Like To Be Remembered?

Often times, I find myself so engrossed in work that I let the reason I'm working slip from my mind. It is pretty easy to do and if we do it often enough, we can lose touch with the reason we began a business got married, had children etc. . The short story below reminded me that I want my business to be remembered for a certain set of reasons and principles and it even made my ponder what I want others to think of me long after I process my final credit card! Enjoy the story- and ask yourself s...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/24/2011 Comments(0)

Branding Your Business

We have been doing some research on 'Branding' this week. One of the best articles I found is listed below- I hope it helps you with your business! Branding: Creating and Maintaining Your Company's Image Make no mistake. The process of developing, implementing, and maintaining a brand is a full-time job and an important one for the success of your business. "Branding" means a great deal more than simply choosing a name for your company or service. When you brand your business you create an emoti...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/17/2011 Comments(0)

Saving Money W/Durbin

There are TONS of fees in the credit card processing industry so now that the Durbin Amendment has gone into effect- we are happy to report that the government intervention into our industry is turning out to have one positive impact for our merchants! While the chaos and the added fees caused by the Durbin Amendment are making front page news and costing consumers lots of extra dollars, some merchants are going to see a reduction in the fees associated with the debit cards impacted by the Durbi...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/10/2011 Comments(0)

Smiling Is Contagious

I hate to brag- but today is a celebration of ME!! WORLD SHARE A SMILE DAY! At TMC, we like to spread happiness by adding a Smiley Face Sticker to every package and envelope that leaves our office. We even have the UPS Guy and the Postal staff asking- Where is the Smiley Face? Gotta Love It!! Things you can do today: Change your FaceBook Picture to a Smiley Face Wear a BIG Smiley Face on your Clothing Give everyone you meet a smile Drink your beverages out of a happy face mug You'll Find it @ Fr...

Read More
Sir Smiley 10/7/2011 Comments(0)

Customer Recovery & Retention

Most industries have a lot of competition. The merchant services industry, however, seems to have been dealt an extra measure! Over the years we have found that many merchants appreciate the additional service they have come to expect from our company and yet- they still have to deal with an endless supply of phone solicitors, door to door salesman and numerous mailers related to our industry. A long standing client recently called and invited me to come to his office to handle the 4 or 5 calls ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/3/2011 Comments(0)

How To Leverage Positive Feedback Online

I just read a great article on Positive Feedback and how to handle it effectively!! I hope you enjoy the article! How to Leverage Positive Feedback Online You just got the following message in your email in-box: "You guys are the best moving company I've ever dealt with. Everything went smoothly thanks to your hard work." What do you do? While many small businesses focus on handling negative online comments, far too few take the time to leverage positive feedback effectively. Here are six ways f...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/26/2011 Comments(0)

Shake It Off and STEP UP

Every once in awhile you hear a fun story that speaks to the adversity we deal with in our lives- this story has a great message! Shake it Off and Step Up A farmer owned an old mule that fell into a well. After assessing the situation, the farmer reluctantly concluded that neither the mule nor the well was worth saving. Instead, he called his neighbors together and enlisted them to help bury the old mule in the well and put him out of his misery. Initially the old mule was frantic, but as the di...

Read More
Sir Smiley 9/19/2011 Comments(0)

Keep Your Cash Flow- Flowing

It is critically important that your cash flow- flows! When setting up a merchant account, underwriting departments use a series of guidelines to 'approve' the account for credit card activity. Credit Worthiness Industry Risk Factors Financial Stability Prior Processing History Account Details billing time frames, delivery information, refund/return policies Merchants need to be fully aware of their approval parameters so monies are not diverted to a holding account. Credit card processing agree...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/13/2011 Comments(0)

We Will Never Forget

God Bless the friends and families of those whose lives were taken 10 years ago today. God Bless the friends and families of those who have lost their lives since; defending the freedoms of a great nation. God Bless our leaders and help them to make the types of decisions that will help America get back on track.   WE WILL NEVER FORGET TRIBUTE MORE INFO ON 9/11 ONE LAST TIME MUSIC VIDEO WHERE WERE YOU WHEN THE WORLD STOPPED TURNING MUSIC VIDEO GOD BLESS AMERICA MUSIC VIDEO- FAITH HILL   It is im...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/11/2011 Comments(0)

Remembering 9/11

10 years goes by in a flash! Tyler was 5 years old and we lived in Vancouver Washington at the time. Our home had two floors and I was sleeping upstairs when Dean ran up the stairs to tell me that the US was at war. It was a surreal moment- I carried Tyler's little sleeping body down the stairs and sat in front of the television- stunned like I imagine most Americans were. Tears streamed down my face as the reports came in of the people who were lost, the rescue workers who freely gave their l...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/7/2011 Comments(0)

SCAM ALERT- Don't Be A Victim!

SCAM ALERT - Don't be a victim! There seems to be a rash of credit card scams lately - the most common over the past few weeks is one that you can absolutely avoid. Here is the scenario: A customer walks into your business or financial institution and attempts to make a purchase/cash advance. When you run the card, you receive an error message - typically "Call" or "CIB" which stands for 'Call Issuing Bank' or possibly "Hold Card". The customer calls their "issuing bank" in an effort to re...

Read More
Shannon Fry 8/28/2011 Comments(0)

The Power of Perspective

I just finished saying- TGIF- when this story landed in my INBOX: I hope you enjoy it and I hope you have a GREAT PERSPECTIVE! The Power of Perspective by John G. Miller The QBQ! Guy I don't know about you, but from what I hear and read, people don't seem very happy nowadays. The economy is struggling, lots of folks are out of work, the stock market is dropping, and consumer confidence is in the tank. A brand new poll shows that 89% of Americans are unsatisfied with the way things are going in t...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/26/2011 Comments(0)

White Water Rafting FUN!

This past weekend- our team took a trip down the White Salmon River. I am happy to report that all of our staff members made it through the adventure unscathed- well almost We had 4 rafts full of our team- lots of fun, splashing and some hard paddling. When it came time to make the BIG decision- which was whether to risk a journey down Husum Falls or walk around- 2 of our 3 boats elected to take on the rapids!! The other two boats elected to walk around the falls: here is what happened- Boat #1-...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/21/2011 Comments(0)

Business Is GREAT!

Sir Smiley here with a VERY COOL STORY!! We can always use a good smile to start the week and this story should do the trick! A landscape gardener ran a business that had been in the family for two or three generations. The staff was happy, and customers loved to visit the store, or have the staff work on their gardens and make deliveries - anything from bedding plants to ride-on mowers. For as long as anyone could remember, the current owner and previous generations of owners were extremely pos...

Read More
Sir Smiley 8/14/2011 Comments(0)

US Credit Rating Decrease Affects Us All

I was in Reno Friday evening when I heard the news of our country's credit downgrade. Immediately, I began to wonder how the rating drop would impact the businesses that we work with and our economy overall. After some searching on the internet- I found this YouTube video under 3 minutes that explains the situation very well: WATCH THE VIDEO As business owners and those who service businesses, it is more important than ever to be confident and focus our attentions where we can make the biggest p...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/7/2011 Comments(0)

Proper Phone Etiquette

Sir Smiley here with a few tips on proper phone etiquette Before we get into it, answer the following question: The last time I called a business I- A- Got a Busy Signal B- Telecommuted to India or Mexico C- Was greeted by someone who HATED their job D- Got Lost in the Phone Tree E- Received Genuine, Caring Service It is surprising how many times the optimal answer E is not selected. The more technologically advanced we get - the more we seem to move away from those personal touches that really ...

Read More
Sir Smiley 7/27/2011 Comments(0)

Best Practices For Retail Merchants

As a small business owner, I find it necessary to revisit the basics from time to time. Staffing changes, busy schedules and daily routines often get in the way of the details that can save us money on the bottom line. This article is designed to be an overview for merchants who have retail, face to face credit card transactions. While it is true that accepting credit cards can increase business, being careless or too hurried when processing the cards can actually cost us money. You are su...

Read More
Cheri Perry 7/23/2011 Comments(0)

THE 5 HABITS OF SUCCESS

The Five Habits of Success by Paul J. Meyer and Kevin Rhea Develop and reinforce these five habits of success. When you do, you will not have to make new decisions every morning. You instinctively know what you are going to do and how you are going to do it! 1. The habit of positive thinking! Successful people have simply formed the habit of doing what failures do not like to do and will not do: They think positively! They have the habit of expecting to win, the habit of planning to win, the hab...

Read More
Guest Writer 7/5/2011 Comments(0)

Happy 4th of July

On July 4, 1776, we claimed our independence from Britain and Democracy was born. Every day thousands leave their homeland to come to the "land of the free and the home of the brave" so they can begin their American Dream. The United States is truly a diverse nation made up of dynamic people. Each year on July 4, Americans celebrate that freedom and independence with barbecues, picnics, and family gatherings. We would like to express our gratitude for living in America and for the many freedoms ...

Read More
Sir Smiley 7/1/2011 Comments(0)

Durbin Delayed Again

The federal reserve board met yesterday and put together their 'interim' final rulings on the Durbin Amendment. There was some movement on the proposed debit cap and a deadline extension was granted for the implementation of the Durbin Amendment itself. How frustrating for all parties involved to have this financial reform drag on and on- many questions still remain unanswered and the consensus is, that only time will tell what the real ramifications will be for consumers, merchants, processors ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/30/2011 Comments(0)

Making More Sales

As a business owner or manager, your aim is to generate profit for your business, and preferably lots of it. Before that can happen though, the business has to have revenue. Revenue comes from making sales Sales come from customers Repeat sales are made to satisfied customers Profits result when overheads and costs are less than sales revenue In order to continue to make profits, and for profits to increase, you can either reduce overheads or make more sales. Overheads can only be reduced so far...

Read More
Guest Writer 6/27/2011 Comments(0)

Durbin Amendment

Ready, Fire, Aim! Last week, the bill that would have given congress more time to evaluate the ramifications of the Durbin Amendment, was defeated. This means that congress now has just a few weeks to figure out how the Durbin Amendment will be implemented. Industry giants are frustrated, financial institutions are frustrated and consumers are left wondering how the 'financial reform' bill will affect them- the answer to that question is pretty simple: NO ONE REALLY KNOWS YET! Debit Card Questio...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/17/2011 Comments(0)

Dealing With Conflict

Conflict is a part of our every day lives; families, children, coworkers, business partners and even strangers have many reasons to find themselves in the middle of a 'conflict'. For some, conflict is an 8 letter word- one that conjures up feelings of discomfort and pain. For others, it is a word that is synonymous with growth and forward progress. Each month at TMC, we gather as a team and review the previous 30 days of work. We look for the things we did well, the areas that need improvement...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/12/2011 Comments(0)

Preventing Cyber Crime

The Internet is a wonderful thing and our team uses it every day! Unfortunately, the Internet is also a place filled with hidden dangers and all kinds of risks as it relates to security, privacy and protection of your personal and business data & computers. We thought you might appreciate and benefit from a few tips on how to prevent Cyber Crime- or at least minimize your personal risk! Click on the link below for some valuable information. PREVENTING CYBER CRIME ARTICLE We discuss credit ca...

Read More
Cheri Perry 6/5/2011 Comments(0)

Leasing: Let TMC Help You With the Math!

We just chatted with a business owner, who once loved her prior processor. The key phrase is once loved because we just helped her do the math on her equipment lease. Her old processor helped her out with a low monthly lease payment of $44 a month; which she has been happily paying for the past 10 years. Her processor has billed her a total of $5280 in payments for a credit card terminal we sold 10 years ago for $499. Can you hear the love leave the room? At Total Merchant Concepts, we rarely re...

Read More
5/19/2011 Comments(0)

PCI Compliance Nightmares

PCI Compliance is something that most merchants are familiar with these days. Each year, merchants are required to prove that they are handling credit card data properly, that their systems are secure and that the processes they have in place protect the card data. It all sounds good right? Protect card holder information, make sure everything is safe and secure.......but what happens when things go wrong? We have been fortunate at Total Merchant Concepts in that we have never had a merchant sus...

Read More
Cheri Perry 5/15/2011 Comments(0)

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to all of the Mommies, Moms, Mothers, Mamas & Grandmas out there! Every day is special when you are a Mom but TODAY is the one day per year set aside to really honor Mom- for all of the many things she does! Here are some fun facts about Mother's Day- This year, the average person will be spend $126.90 on gifts, flowers & meals for their Mom Americans buy 140 million cards for Mother's Day There are about 83 million Mothers in the United States Mother's Day is the 2nd ...

Read More
Sir Smiley 5/7/2011 Comments(0)

My Credit Card Was STOLEN- What Do I Do?

Last week, Sony announced it may have lost up to 77 million people’s personal information, including their debit and credit cards. Confidentiality and information integrity is always important but here are some timely tips: What to do if you think your credit or debit card is stolen Information provided from the State Department of Financial Institutions Consumers have strong protection if unauthorized charges are made on their credit cards. Typically in the U.S., cardholders are protected from ...

Read More
5/2/2011 Comments(0)

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY

Good Monday Morning! Sir Smiley here with a quick thought for the day: Genuine beginnings begin with us, even when they are brought to our attention by external circumstances or opportunities! ~William Bridges TMC will be posting some great information this week on rates and fees- a continuing education of sorts! Until then, enjoy your new beginnings as we launch into this fresh new week of spring! Sir Smiley- OUT ...

Read More
Sir Smiley 4/18/2011 Comments(0)

Sign Your Credit Cards

In our first online poll, we asked how you handled the signature panel on the back of your credit cards and the results are in: SIGN YOUR CARD they said to sign it 30% ? WRITE CID I'm not giving the crooks my signature! 40% SIGN & WRITE CID It was a tight fit- but I made it 17% LEAVE IT BLANK Nobody checks it anyway 13% So what is the 'RIGHT' answer? Technically speaking, Option #1 is the correct answer- let's look at all 4 options: #1- Sign Your Card- The signature panel on the back of your...

Read More
Cheri Perry 4/9/2011 Comments(0)

Smart Ways To Use Credit Cards

We process credit cards here at TMC and we are thankful when you choose to use your cards it keeps us employed! . But we wanted to take a moment to encourage the proper use of those credit cards so that your financial future can be bright! Check out the article Smart Ways To Use Credit for some excellent tips on the wise use of credit cards! It is our pleasure to provide these valuable tips; if you have any other questions please feel free to give us a call! 1-888-249-9919 Sir Smiley- OUT ...

Read More
SIr Smiley 3/27/2011 Comments(0)

5 Things to Avoid When Setting Up A Merchant Account

Learning what 'TO DO' when opening a merchant account is valuable information. Thank you to all of the people who shared their feedback on the article a few days ago. Now- on to the TOP 5 THINGS NOT TO DO when opening a merchant account. It may seem like common sense but let's get serious- we are all busy! Sometimes we choose to believe those smooth talking sales people and many times, we were right to believe. But there are times when we find out that we should have listened to that still, smal...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/23/2011 Comments(0)

Our New Baby!

What a GREAT day here at TMC! Martha brought her new baby boy, Lyric- in for a visit. Now I am no expert on babies but WOW- he sure is a cutie! Mommy looks fantastic and so very happy. Congratulations Martha- we are so happy for you! Sir Smiley ...

Read More
Sir Smiley 3/22/2011 Comments(0)

The Top 5 Things To DO When Looking For Merchant Account

I remember when Dean and I started our business nearly 15 years ago. The credit card processing industry was confusing then and it is even more so now! -Qualified -Non-Qualified -PCI -ACH -Batch Fee -Mimimums -Chargebacks...the list could go on and on! We thought you might appreciate a short list of the TOP 5 THINGS TO DO WHEN LOOKING FOR A MERCHANT ACCOUNT . Feel free to review the list and share it with those who are struggling to find a solid company in what can sometimes appear to be a sea o...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/19/2011 Comments(0)

HOW DO I CHANGE THE TIME IN MY TERMINAL?

Time to Spring Forward with every clock in your house, your office, your car, your watch do people still wear those? , your cell phone and YES- your Credit Card Machine! This is also a GREAT time of year to replace batteries in your smoke detector- a great tip from Cheri's Dad. Most POS Point of Sale systems and online processing options change the time automatically however, if you have a terminal, you will want to check out the list of Terminals and Directions to make the necessary changes! Si...

Read More
Sir Smiley 3/11/2011 Comments(0)

Earthquake in Japan

Our hearts and prayers go out to the people of Japan as they deal with the 8.9 Earthquake and subsequent aftershocks. We watched the first Tsunami and have heard that many other areas are under watches and warnings as the water makes the journey across the ocean. Hawaii was just placed under a warning which means they are expecting high water resulting from the earthquake and we just learned that there are now watches on both the Oregon & Washington coasts. It is in times like these that we ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/10/2011 Comments(0)

BEWARE OF THE SQUARE

It is exciting to see all of the new mobile technologies, but in an industry with over 52 billion dollars of credit card fraud per year, it pays to listen to the experts! VeriFone is a global leader in secure electronic payment technologies and we are encouraging you to read their letter regarding the SquareUp mobile device. Click on the VeriFone Letter link to read the letter! At TMC we are dedicated to providing our merchants and referral partners with SECURE options to handle their credit car...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/9/2011 Comments(0)

NEW ARRIVAL @ TMC!

We are so excited to share the birth announcement of little Lyric Lamar Calloway! Martha has been baking this baby for the last 9 months and this morning at 9:53am- she delivered a healthy baby boy! Lyric is 7lbs 14oz and 19 inches long! Congratulations Martha- we will miss you while you are out on Maternity Leave- be sure to bring Lyric in for a visit as soon as you feel rested!! Love Sir Smiley and the entire team here at TMC! ...

Read More
Sir Smiley 3/8/2011 Comments(0)

Facebook, Twitter, Linked In- Oh My! (2 of 2)

Last week, we talked about Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and the various different thought processes behind using each of the top 3 Social Media sites. This week I promised a few tips on simplifying the use of these many tools so let's get to it! There are many ways to keep Social Media from becoming an overwhelming and time consuming process. 1st Tip Find a Teenager!!- SERIOUSLY! Our kids have got this e-communication business down to a science and it would make sense to tap into that knowledge b...

Read More
Cheri Perry 3/6/2011 Comments(0)

Facebook, Twitter, Linked In- Oh My! (1 of 2)

Have you ever felt overwhelmed by all of the Social Media options that are available? Me too- so last week I attended a 'bootcamp' sponsored by Constant Contact and it really helped me understand the value of using Social Media to improve communication and relationships with the people we have the opportunity to work with- There are over 200 Social Networks that are currently being used. The top 3 are Facebook, Twitter & Linked In: let me share a bit of what I learned with you! -is considere...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/27/2011 Comments(0)

Rates & Terms Explained

Last week, I received a call from a longstanding merchant who asked me this question: What do all of the terms mean on my statement? I LOVED the question- especially coming from such a loyal merchant who admitted to reading very few statements since they hired us 9 1/2 years ago! So here is your answer my friend: Qualified Check Card Rate: This rate is applied to swiped cards that are attached to a checking account. The % is one of the lowest you will pay. Check Cards can be identified because t...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/20/2011 Comments(0)

A Few Words on Valentine's Day

Well today is the day for LOVE! Sir Smiley here to wish you a very Happy Valentine's Day from all your friends at Total Merchant Concepts! Today, Valentine's Day is one of the major holidays in the United States and it is a booming commercial success. According to the American Greeting Card Association, 25% of all cards sent will be Valentines; most of the cards displaying hearts to signify love. Electronic greetings are also becoming more and more prevalent so don't miss the opportunity to emai...

Read More
Sir Smiley 2/13/2011 Comments(0)

Happy Birthday Ronald Reagan!

100 Years ago today, Ronald Wilson 'Dutch' Reagan was born in Tampico Illinois. He would go on to be an athlete, a well known actor, a husband, a father and one of the most powerful leaders of our time. I was too young to vote for Ronald Reagan but I loved listening to him talk to our country! When asked what he wanted people to remember about his presidency, Ronald Regan said, "Whatever else history may say about me when I'm gone, I hope it will record that I appealed to your best hopes, and no...

Read More
Cheri Perry 2/6/2011 Comments(0)

New IRS Reporting Requirements

As we watch the first month of 2011 come to an end- it is important to remember that this New Year ushers in a new era regarding credit card payments and reporting to the IRS. The following is an overview of the IRS merchant transaction reporting requirements statute, which was added in November of 2009 to the Housing Assistance Tax Act of 2008: It is important to note that NO IMMEDIATE ACTION IS NECESSARY ON THE PART OF OUR MERCHANTS or OUR REFERRAL PARTNERS Beginning in 2011, our processing co...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/30/2011 Comments(0)

Mobile Payments

If you were watching the news last week, you heard about Starbucks launching their Mobile Payment application in over 7000 locations! The mobile app had been tested in lots of stores prior to that but this past week they felt it was time to turn it up a notch! I loaded the Starbucks application on my Blackberry and was quite impressed with the ability to not only add my Starbuck's gift card but I could also load the card from my Blackberry AND use the card on my phone at a local Starbuck's! Here...

Read More
Cheri Perry 1/22/2011 Comments(0)

Happy New Year

2 Weeks down just 50 more to go in 2011! Welcome to the New Year albeit a bit late from your friends here at TMC! Now that the holiday season is safely behind us and merchants everywhere have breathed a collective sigh of relief decent 4th quarter showing & all - it is time to set our sights on an incredible 2011. Here are a few of the things we are focused on in this New Year: PCI Compliance/Card Security: While card breaches were up in 2010, the actual number of cards that were compromised...

Read More
Sir Smiley 1/14/2011 Comments(0)

Ring The Bell!

This time of year, there are fundraising opportunities everywhere! Last week, our team had the opportunity to ring the bell for the Fort Vancouver Lions Club in conjunction with the Salvation Army and we had a blast! With a willing staff, candy canes and Christmas music we did our best to help the Salvation Army help others! Even my son now 14 , who rang his first Salvation Army bell at 5 years old, enjoyed the ability to give back. As you pass by the red buckets this year- consider adding a few...

Read More
Cheri Perry 12/17/2010 Comments(0)

The Blog Vacation Is Over

Greetings and Holiday Cheer from Sir Smiley and the entire team at TMC! During this VERY BUSY holiday season, a few things have taken a back seat to our daily chores; the blog is one example. So this morning, I checked the email and found this message from one of our very valuable merchants: Good Morning Everyone! I was just doing my monthly check of the TMC web site a little late I admit and found that there have been no blog entries since OCTOBER! Christmas is coming and I'm sure there are ood...

Read More
Sir Smiley 12/2/2010 Comments(0)

Here Come The Holidays!

Some people think that November is the start to the Holiday season but a quick trip down the center isle of your local supermarket will soon prove that HALLOWEEN is the sweet start of the silly season! This next week people will be busy filling up candy bowls, customizing their costumes and putting the final touches on their ghoulish party plans. Then we are off to the 'Big 3': Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years! As business owners, one of two things is happening right now: 1- You are winding...

Read More
Sir Smiley 10/24/2010 Comments(0)

Good News (Financially)

Some months back I was at a business conference and one of the presenters said that he had decided 'Not To Participate in the Recession'.  I LOVED that idea and the power it contained!   While the financial worries of the day are not completely behind us, there is some good news!  Here at TMC, we are seeing a solid flow of new businesses as well as steady increases in transaction volume by our existing merchants.  There are still signs that the economy has not completed its recovery but for the ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 10/14/2010 Comments(0)

New Phone System

Sir Smiley here and Guess What? We just upgraded our phone system! As our business grows and we are privileged to serve more and more merchants, finding ways to be more efficient is at the top of our priority list! Don't worry- no call Ques or extensive 'Press#...' options at TMC! Just a solid, robust phone system designed to make accepting your calls and calling you even easier! Here are just a few of the features we are excited about: #1- Since the new phone system is integrated with our...

Read More
Sir Smiley 10/7/2010 Comments(0)

Business Statistics & Heroes

For the past several days, I have been attending an Anthony Robbins Leadership seminar. As a small business owner, I use these types of events to 'recharge' my battery and gain helpful insights to continue growing and finding ways to be of even more service to our merchants and referral partners. Yesterday, I heard some powerful statistics that might interest you from a business stand point or from the stand point of a financial partner who provides services to businesses: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/30/2010 Comments(0)

Pin Pad Compliance

For months, we have been talking about PCI/PED Compliance and how security mandates are requiring changes to the equipment we use to process PIN Personal Identification Number  based debit transactions.  Now that the compliance deadlines have passed, many of our merchants are receiving compliant PIN pads in the mail and are being given the option to replace the equipment or discontinue the acceptance of PIN based debit cards.  Here are a few things to consider in order to make the best decision ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 9/23/2010 Comments(0)

Enjoy your Labor Day!

Sir Smiley here to wish you and your family the best 3 day weekend ever!    Our TMC team will be enjoying the day off with their families our 24 Hour help desk will still be available if you need assistance! . Please enjoy this walk through history as the folks from Wikipedia share the history of Labor Day with us: Labor Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the first Monday in September.  The first Labor Day was celebrated on September 5, 1882 in New York City.  It became a federal...

Read More
Sir Smiley 9/3/2010 Comments(0)

SIGN YOUR CARD!!

As businesses, we are paying TONS for credit card fraud prevention!  We need to remember that there are simple things we can do to prevent the improper use of credit cards, thereby reducing some of that darn credit card fraud!  I was reminded of this recently when I watched a customer get upset after being asked for ID even though the back of their card said SEE ID .  This past weekend, I saw a 'Better Signed Than Sorry' flyer at a local store call our office if you would like to have one of the...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/29/2010 Comments(0)

Slip Showing?

Slip Showing? This article was taken from the FTC's web site. Here at TMC we want to remind all of our merchants to be aware of the truncation laws so that you can protect yourself against fines and disgruntled customers! If you need any assistance with making sure the full card number is not listed on your receipts give our office a call at 1-888-249-9919 or email us: Service@TotalMerchantConcepts.com Federal Law Requires All Businesses to Truncate Credit Card Information on Receipts What’s on ...

Read More
Cheri Perry 8/25/2010 Comments(0)

Service Please?

A funny- lighthearted story about the little things that make a big difference! As I so often do these days, I took a lunch order from my lovely partner Christie "Have it your  way" Tadday. I drove down to *Big Burger Barn and placed my order. As I pulled up to the window, the young gentleman that greeted me took my money, and asked me "would you like some ketchup or salt for the fries?" A nice gesture, and one that is most-likely required by upper management. I listened to his offer, and counte...

Read More
Sir Smiley 8/17/2010 Comments(0)

Welcome to the TMC Blog!

The New & Improved TMC web site is here... Stay tuned for continued updates from the new TMC Blog! ...

Read More
8/13/2010 Comments(0)