The 10 Best Pharmacy Merchant Account

Online pharmacy purchases have seen a rapid growth as more consumers are taking advantage of the convenience and cost effectiveness of purchasing their prescription medicines at home on the Internet. In the UK, from 2010 to 2016, there has been an increase of registered online pharmacy businesses from 46,000 to 61,000.

Just as there are legally operating online pharmacy businesses, there are also those that are illegal setups who are selling controlled drugs without a license.

According to the US National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP), 97 percent of online pharmacies violate pharmacy laws and practice standards. This puts consumers at risk of purchasing drugs that can be harmful.

As a result of the aforementioned cases, and the high chargebacks, opening an online pharmacy merchant account is extremely difficult as it is considered high risk.

Fortunately, these 10 merchant service providers are fully equipped and experienced to provide a customised solution for your online pharmacy. Take a look to see what would work best for you and your business.

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Connected.co

Situated in beautiful Santa Monica, California, Connected.co’s CEO, JW Epply is an accredited Certified Payments Professional (CPP) from the Electronic Transactions Association (ETA).

Known for developing the first payment gateway on the Internet, Connected.co services all high risk industries. Their motto is, “If it’s legal, we can get it approved!”

The Pros

Connected.co’s features include a state of the art electronic application process, creating a hassle-free experience. The application is also cloud-based, digitally capturing the merchants information and submitting it to their vast network of high risk banks both domestically and internationally. They also provide payment gateways, chargeback prevention, ACH processing, and payment service providers.

The Cons

There is no contract information available to the public at this time, but it’s to be expected that their pricing is largely attributed to business type, location and processing history. Also, the company does not provide a specific and dedicated customer support number, which is not something a merchant can do without.

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Web Merchant

Founded in 1997 and headquartered in Kingston upon Hull, UK, Web Merchant is platinum accredited partners with major UK, European, and Worldwide banks.

The Pros

Some of their benefits include powerful risk management tools, full reporting interface, adapted payment solutions. Sophisticated anti-fraud systems, multiple payment methods, PCI DSS specialism, transaction optimisation, 24/7 support, comprehensive anti-fraud solutions, multiple acquirers in one solution, payment solutions adapted to your needs.

The Cons

Web Merchant partners with a vast number of acquirers and banks and therefore makes it virtually impossible to know what offerings, fees, and services from the start. It is critical to know this information and not get hit with unexpected fees, courtesy of the acquiring bank. Also, due to the exorbitant costs of running a high risk merchant account, this industry is required the minimum processing of £10,000 per month.

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ccNetPay.com

Maintaining offices in London and Slovenia, ccNetPay’s primary portfolio consists of mostly European merchants.

The Pros

There are no service and sign-up fees, no transaction limits, no safety deposits, plus clients get a dedicated support staff for the life of the account.
Some of the supported features within the merchant account include: Server2Server API integration, Batch Processing, CVV, AVS, and 3D Secure, Real time reporting and management, Global Card Processing, Recurring Billing, Virtual Terminal, and over 150 supported currencies. A full range of built-in tools include fraud prevention tools and a virtual terminal for phone or mail orders.

The Cons

Although it was difficult to find any negative reviews, something to keep in mind is that there is a high risk registration fee charged by its acquiring banks.

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GSPay (Global & Secure Pay)

Headquartered in Gainsborough, North Lincolnshire in England, GSPay has specialized in the high-risk industry for six years.

The Pros

Advantages for high risk offshore merchant account clients include complete application programming interface, approval available in less than a week, easy setup, no initial deposits, no monthly fees, no application fees, no volume restrictions, multiple currencies support, transaction fraud scrubbing, and payouts are weekly.

The Cons

At this time, GSPay does not offer check processing solutions. This could be a problem as alternative payment solutions are always key to draw more customers. Also, they only take US dollars and Euros. This greatly limits the client base and inhibits expansion.

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EMA

With offices in both Riga, Latvia, and Milan, Italy, EMA is made up of a team of bankers with backgrounds in both IT and credit card processing that specialise in helping merchants find the best payment solution and facilitating the integration process.

The Pros

EMA makes specific suggestions so merchants interested in opening a pharmacy merchant account can do so successfully. Be aware that American Express transactions should not be accepted. Finally, although 70% of all deposits are made through eWallets, the larger investments are made with bank cards.

The Cons

They only offer an email contact form, and a phone number, but no live chat feature. Chat features are quick and convenient way for merchants to get their most important questions answered. Valuable time is wasted in simply using online contact forms and email.

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We Tranxact

Focusing on transparency in their rates and contracts, founder Rav Bains learned the reigns of providing exceptional customer service as a kid in his parents’ Birmingham fish and chip shop.

Founded in 2016, Birmingham,UK-based Web Tranxact is well-versed with the challenges in the pharmacy business and aims to offer customized solutions.

The Pros

Merchants can benefit from no PCI DSS fees, no authorisation fees, no minimum monthly services, no monthly contracts, Next Day settlement of funds, no rolling reserves, online reporting and analysis tools, and rates as low as 1.5% (dependent on application). Approvals are as soon as 2 hours.

The Cons

Some of the complaints found against We Tranxact were related to not being completely transparent about their fees. However, further clarification was given that the merchant bank they work with does increase their fees and this information is communicated to all merchants. All the same, it seems to be something out of We Tranxact’s control which can directly impact the merchant’s bottom line.

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Radiant Pay

London-based Radiant Pay is an agency offering payment solutions to merchants across all “legal” industries, including online pharmacy merchants. It is a leading payment solution provider in the UK, European, and Asian countries.

The Pros

Some of the advantages offered include quick approvals, partnership with banks around the world, round the clock support, affordable pricing plans, quick payouts, minimal transaction charges, no deductions from revenues, uncapped transaction volumes, multi-currency processing, low taxes, risk management solutions, and personalised consultations.

The Cons

Some complaints about the company have to do with sales agents imposing highly undesirable contract terms. It is best to read the fine print thoroughly before signing anything with this company.

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eMerchantBroker

Based in Los Angeles, California, eMerchantBroker offers high risk processing solutions. They do offer offshore merchant accounts for pharmacy businesses.

The Pros

EMB offers custom-made paid solutions, excellent customer service, approval rates between 24 and 48 hours, chargeback management tools, PCI-compliant payment gateways, as well as fraud filters.

The Cons

Very little information about the standard contract. This could only mean that the contract terms vary widely from merchant to merchant. There are early termination fees that are up to $295 for 1 year contracts and up to $595 for 3 year contracts.

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Instabill

Located in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Instabill was founded in 2001 by CEO Jason Field to help high risk merchants secure credit card payment solutions, including pharmacy businesses.

The Pros

Pharmacy merchant benefits include the following: easy person to person transfers, no debit/credit card or PIN use, a convenient storage solution on your PC or smartphone, traceable transactions to deter fraud.

The Cons

Due to Instabill’s focus on high risk accounts, it may feature tiered pricing, early termination fees, and PCI Compliance fees. Most complaints against Instabill are about the company’s fraud prevention policies. Merchants report cancellation of their merchant accounts or withholding funds.

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iPay Total

Founded in 2018 and headquartered in London, iPay Total is a payment processor that offers end-to-end high risk merchant solutions to pharmacy merchants around the world.

The Pros

Some features offered on pharmacy merchant accounts include: multi-bank processing (including offshore), secure payment gateway, chargeback alerts, chargeback disputes, ACH/Check 21 processing, repeat/recurring billing, fraud prevention and protection, and competitive processing rates (below 6%), as well as 24/7 support online or by phone.

The Cons

High risk merchant account contract terms are not disclosed to the public. iPay Total also claims to charge a set up fee of up to £4,500, an incredibly exorbitant and prohibitive amount, especially for small businesses starting out.

Provider of the Month

So what is the right way to start an online pharmacy business? Online pharmacy websites should feature a list of each medicine that is available for purchase. The site must also be SSL secured. A complete and appropriate description should be given for each medication as well.

The online pharmacy is required to have a registered pharmacist and all the necessary government and business licenses. The registered pharmacist must review the prescription before any delivery is made.

If you have all the above plus an additional documents as required by your merchant processor, you will be better positioned to apply for an online pharmacy account and get approval. With the rampant illegal practices in this field, it behooves you to prove yourself to be honest, legal, and transparent.