Elavon Merchant Services

by James Brady

Elavon Merchant ServicesBased out of Atlanta, Georgia, Elavon Merchant Services (elavon.com) is one of the largest merchant service providers specializing in resturant and retail, e-commerce, airline, healthcare, and fuel fields. Elavon processes more than two billion transactions per year and has over one million merchants. One of the qualities that stands out with Elavon is their ability to conduct cross-boarder and multi currency processing as well as offer their services outside of the US. They also offer electronic check services, gift cards, and an e payment gateway that integrates with Authorize.net.

Better Business Bureau Rating

Elavon had been accredited with an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau with a total of 288 complaints in the past three years. However, 87 of those customers did not feel that Elavon’s response was satisfactory, 15 of those complaints were filed this year. The majority of the complaints filed cited billing/collection issues as well as problems with product/service. This is still a very small number of complaints when compared to their one million merchants. If the company’s one million merchant claim is true than that would mean only 0.02% have ever needed to escalate a complaint with the Better Business Bureau.

Sales and Marketing

One of the key marketing strategies of Elavon is their partnership with Costco. Costco acts as a sales and marketing wing for Elavon. As the seventh largest retailer in the world, catering to businesses that frequent there to buy wholesale products, the partnership was intended to drive in major business. Elavon also relies on inside and outside sales representatives. They use an independent agent program which is common with many large merchant service providers. Although common, agents tend not to have as much supervision as an inside sales representative and can work on a residual income basis making for a sometimes rushed and pushy sales experience. A partnership program is also offered where a business can apply to refer Elavon’s services within their business and business partners and receive payment if the referral signs with Elavon.

Rates and Fees Schedule

Elavon offers a 1.38% and $0.19 per transaction rate for a retail location if the consumer swipes a debit card or regular credit card. They use a ‘rewards’ type pricing structure instead of a three tier structure. In a rewards pricing structure only rewards type cards i.e. airline miles, cash-back, and points credit cards are offered at 1.99% and $0.19 per transaction. The same rate with a $0.25 transaction fee is offered for all other cards. A monthly minimum of $20 also has to be accrued in a month or else the difference is charged.


Before signing up with any merchant service provider we recommend that all business owners check out our step by step instructions to Finding the Best Merchant Account for their business needs. We believe this guide can help business owners of all types understand how to best negotiate their agreements and the sales tactics and tricks to be on the lookout for.

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