Thursday, November 29, 2007

Credit Card Processing

"A former consultant" wrote an entire post complaining about the credit card processing offered by MK.

If you wade through the normal "throwing money at the pink cash cow" BS, it seems that she had processed a credit card through propay that later turned out to be invalid. Apparently, even though they had already accepted it (the card) they refused to give her credit for the transaction and even sent her to some form of collections.

Having dealt with customer service at many places (cell phone, cable, dmv, web-hosting, etc.) I have no doubt that this could have happened.

I know that my wife has processed many transactions with this service and loves it. I don't know what kind of arrangement has been worked out between MK and ProPay, but often this sort of exclusive arrangement is made to offer a lower rate. I don't know if that is the case, but it does seem possible that if MK has at least x number of consultants using it, they all get a price break. It is also possible that MK just researched the best payment processing system for what MK does and set it up so that it is relatively intuitive.

My questions are:

Has anyone else had problems with ProPay?

Has anyone tried to use another vendor (notably Pay Pal)?

Does anyone know if there are rules about using another vendor other than ProPay?

Does anyone know if consultants get a price break (over non-consultants that use the same service).


  1. Personally I have had no problems with propay. I love the ease of it and the way the order from your website can be paid for right on line and all we need to do is total the amount and hit submit. Zap - it is done. Then you can transfer the money to your checking account, use it with your debit card, or apply it right to your order.

    To my knowledge we may use any service to process your cards. I know for awhile many directors were looking into different ones only to find out they were more expensive.

    What the poor consultant had happen to her with the charge not being honored, would have happened with any card company had the card that was used been stolen. It happens to others in other businesses - it is no fun but it has nothing to do with Mary Kay or propay.

    I am sure Mary Kay has some sort of deal worked out with propay but in turn they work it out so we have a good deal too. I have no problem with this. I had looked at one or to other options and it was at least 1% more than what I was going to have to pay for propay.

  2. I had a couple issues come up with Propay and expected to encounter problems. One issue was when I couldn't recover my password because it was going to an email account I had closed. I don't get many credit card payments--believe it or not--so I barely squeak by using Propay every 6 months. I signed up when Propay was still free. As far as I know, I remain on my original Basic free plan as long as I use the service once every 6 months.
    Anyway, I expected a hassle, but I used the online customer service chat and it was very helpful. I was able to access my account right away.
    Another time, I had inadvertantly charged a card twice for the same order. I was able to correct my error very quickly again using the online chat service.
    As far as I know, Mary Kay does have some type of agreement with Propay--just as they have one with UPS for a flat shipping rate. I don't know any specifics, however.
    Overall, I like Propay. My husband used PayPal for some transactions on ebay and he wasn't impressed. He actually told me to stay away from PayPal. So, I do. ;)

  3. See See See!!! Im so glad you validated this MK4me. I know women who saw anti mk sites and said that propay was too expensive
    I know about cc processing machines and the fee is much higher than propay. It would make
    sense to me that since propay has tons of business from MK that they would not charge as much as others.
    If I process an order for 300.00 on a credit card and they want 3.00
    big whoop!!!! People want to blame MK for things that are WORSE in other businesses and the start up for a franchise or your own storefront is WAY more than MK, Avon, etc!!! I knew a girl who ran a restaurant and they paid for the building stayein business 5 years,
    had to hand out fliers, worked 18 hour days and in five years she only broke even!!! I dare anyone to investigate and see that what MK has to offer (and I know they are not perfect) is the best compensation when it comes to direct sales.

  4. A bank will charge a monthly credit card processing fee, regardless of whether or not you process a card. Last time I looked it was around $50 a month, then the credit card processing fees. ProPay is cheap and easy. I have had no problems with them.

    I did have a consultant who... although warned, got one of those orders that was too good to be true. She called and asked me, I said don't do it - we have been warned that this is a scam, but she wanted to *see* if the card would process and if she could make the order happen. Sooooo she did, it did and then ProPay came back with the stolen card info and they did of course recover the amount processed and on top of that they charged her a fee for processing a stolen card. I think it was $50. (Thank God she did not order the huge number of fragrances or whatever...)

    I would not consider that a problem with ProPay.

    Some folks have had a problem signing up with the new changes, they changed the sign-up screens a little. Personally they have been great and last year when I maxed out my limit they bumped it up for me, and just do unasked this December. Anytime I have used their chat customer service it has been great.

    As far as I know there are no other rules about using another vendor, however since MK has negotiated a great deal with ProPay you are not supposed to be using your ProPay account for non-MK things. (Per PROPAY - this is not an MK decision.) If you do use another company, you would not be able to take advantage of credit card processing via your website.

    As far as non-consultants, if you go to you can look it up to see that we do get a deal through ProPay vs. non MK:

    I process around 12,000 a year (give or take a little) on ProPay and think it is great!

  5. i have not had a problem with propay. I dont process that many cc payments but the ones I have go smooth.
    I have been in long enough to remember when processing a credit card payment meant waiting for MK to send you a check for the amount of the payment. It did not take long but I like propay better because I can deposit the payment into my checking account on without having to wait for them to send it to me

  6. I thought Propay was such a great deal that I opened another account for my other (non-sales) business! The annual fee for this other account is slightly higher (for the same level) but the percentage rates per transaction are the same. Propay is a way better deal than what my bank could give me for processing credit cards.

  7. Personally I have not had a problem with propay. Although I don't do many cc and that is fine with me. I don't like people to use their cc because I think it is to tempting to use when you don't have the money.

    Anyway I use it every once in a while. I usually apply the balance when I place an order because then you are not charge the fee for moving it to your bank account.

    I had one of those scam orders that wanted perfume and they wanted a lot and I didn't do it I reported it as spam.

    Have a great evening

  8. Thanks everyone for your stories.

    Myst - are you saying $12,000 or 12,000 transactions?

  9. I have never had any problems. I am with mk4me and Myst. Actually all of you. You have pretty well covered it. I have used paypal, no problem there either. I love the ease of Propay with Mary Kay.

  10. not every bank will charge a monthly fee for your credit card processing. it's really important to have the right kind of merchant account for your business. i've never used ProPay, but I've used PayPal for many services outside of ebay and have had nothing but good results. the buyer/seller protection factor is excellent, and your buyers don't even have to have their bank accounts registered on the site anymore. even a debit card will do.

    if ProPay is giving that much hassle (as far as approving then declining transactions and not making good on THEIR mistake), there is really no reason to use them, when there are many other options out there. they may not be 100% free, but there are lots that have very low transaction fees. and less hassle!

  11. shannon, if you read, most of all is very posetive about pro pay. And it doesn't matter what Company, if you process a stolen card, there will be some fall out.

    Most consultants don't use special merchant accounts. Most checking accounts are personal accounts many with no fees.

    I just choose to use what is very afforable and easy to use, I don't mind that MK has arranged it. If there were something else just as good and less expensive I would consider it. but why should I change when I haven't found anything better?

  12. The post have clearly mentioned the problem of credit cards but I choose my credit card providers very carefully so they have no such problem on my Credit Card Processing, and usually I checked these type of transaction carefully to avoid such problems.

  13. I've been doing a little research for my wife on this subject. There is at least one other credit processing company which is more cost effective than ProPay. It is called GoPayment, run by Intuit. Intuit offers a whole line of products offering solutions for small businesses.

    GoPayment requires no monthly or annual fee. They send you a card reader for your smartphone or computer free of charge. Using the card reader, the transaction fee is 2.7%. Also, the maximum amount you can process is $1,250 per week. ProPay's standard allowance is $2,500 per month. Hopefully Mary Kay will offer more freedom to its consultants concerning this matter.

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    2. I know this thread is old but my wife sells MK and I am in the industry of electronic payments (credit card processing). For a small business processing $1500 or less per month in credit card sales then ProPay is fine. There are cheaper options (lower rates, no monthly or annual fees) but on such a small dollar amount it wont equate to enough savings to offset the convenience of just how integrated ProPay is to the MK websites... That said, my wife is not using ProPay because it's a competitor and I can't allow that out of principal alone (lol). I've customized a plan for her with no monthly or annual fees, no transaction fees a free card reader and rates from 1.69% + a workaround for her to offer online payments as well. It was a fair amount of work and engineering, not to beat the price - that's the easy part but to make it as convenient as ProPay is for the average MK sales person.

  14. I have had no problems with propay up to this point. I am pleased with the fees and linked with MK makes it easier to accept payments. I love it. Transaction fees with other places are just too much. with that being said, if a client ever needed a refund, you better make sure you have the $$$ to do it. Luckily i havn't had that issue. You have to be on your toes as a Consultant and make sure your customers are legitimate. One thing I like about propay is that they match the card with the details of the client to make sure it is an exact match. If any detail is off, it won't accept the card. I appreciate that about propay.

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