We just got an e-mail from American Express that they are giving away $100 of free Facebook ads to promote Small Business Saturday on 11/27. It is for the first 5000 small businesses that sign up on their special Facebook page. I think it’s an AmEx created day, but they are really pushing it with incentives to their cardholders to use their credit cards at small business that day and giving away free advertising and marketing materials to small businesses. Here’s the link if anyone is interested: www.facebook.com/SmallBusinessSaturday
Pretty cool that they’re doing that, but I will never do anything to help promote AMEX. I already pay 3.5% + 5 cents (and another 9 cents to my processor) for the privilege of accepting their card.
If they really want to help small businesses they would reconsider the astronomical fees they charge us.
Piper, I’m sure you know that you can negotiate with AMEX over costs & fees…
I’ve never had any success in doing so, despite processing $20,000 per month with them between two locations. I was told I would get 3.0% at $50,000 per month :roll:
Amex is huge here because we are near a Delta hub, and the Delta Skymiles program is with Amex. Perhaps they know they’ve got me over the barrel.
No wonder you’re po’d at them - that’s some crazy sales for their cards!
I just signed up for my free $100 in ads. Got a postcard in the mail telling me to go to SmallBusinessSaturday.com/merchant which redirects you to AmEx’s Facebook page.
You input your business name, choose the ad text from one of four selections, choose from one of seven ad images and add a link your Facebook page. The ads run from Nov 12th through Nov 27th or until you use up the $100 allowance. They e-mail you the performance stats when it’s all over.
Seems like this offer is still available.
AmEx is doing this again. However, when signing up for this year’s ads their app asks for permission to access your facebook fan page as an admin so I didn’t finish the process. I’m worried they’ll spam my page or fans and that risk is not worth $100 to me.
I don’t do a whole lot of AMEX transactions, but I pay $7.95 a month to process my amex. That’s it. No transaction fees, percentages, cost-plus, anything.
Huh? You are paying a flat $7.95 per month to process AMEX transactions?
I hate to sound like a smart***, but are you sure? If that is true, that would be the deal of the century and tens of thousands of merchants that accept AMEX would love to know who your processor is and how you got such a deal.
Dang! You’re the second one this week that’s told me they didn’t want to sound like a smarta ss! The first one was concerning my ice maker, and after you read the information I’ve posted, I’ll accept your humble apology!!
That’s right. AMEX charges me a flat rate of $7.95 a month. I don’t do a whole lot of AMEX transactions, mostly VISA. I just changed my merchant account, and get cost plus on the other cards. They offered to run my AMEX, but I told them if they can’t beat the $7.95 to leave it alone.
I signed up through the AMEX website, got a merchant account from them, and then supplied the information to my VISA/MC processor.
The following is from the AMEX website. I’ve posted the link to the page as well. They have a discount rate plan, and a $7.95 flat rate plan:
From the AMEX link -
Restaurant Merchant - Account Pricing Plans
We offer two merchant account pricing plans to address your business needs. You don’t have to worry about picking the right one. We’ll automatically review your transactions and make sure you’re in the merchant account plan that most accurately reflects your transaction patterns.
The Discount Rate Plan
This plan charges you a small percentage on the face amount of each American Express sale. There is no set annual fee or monthly minimums and if you manage your account online, you will not pay a monthly fee. There may be other fees and assessments that you will be charged based upon special products or services or for non-compliance. Many of these can be avoided by correcting the actions that are causing you to not be in compliance.
The Flat Fee Plan
This plan charges you one flat fee of $7.95 per month for all American Express sales within that month as long as you remain eligible and don’t exceed any plan thresholds.
So what exactly does “as long as you remain eligible and don’t exceed any plan thresholds” mean? It doesn’t tell you on that website (that I could find).
Are you processing so few that $7.95/month works out better for them than the standard cost+ type thing? And then once you move above a certain amount it switches to standard pricing?
Ah, I see.
So, as I suspected. At best, it’s a 1.9% plan. As you go down in sales, the percentage gets much much higher. Do $2K in AMEX and you are paying almost 5%.
I knew there was no way AMEX was going to do anything that actually made it cheaper to take AMEX.
Is 1.9% so bad, with no transaction fees? I’m pretty new at this credit card thing, and my visa/mc processor hits me with a transaction fee, plus the visa/mc percentages.
Oh no, 1.9% for AMEX is really good. Don’t get me wrong.
I just see it as a gimmick for AMEX. They know that enough merchants are going to sign up and pay $7.95 just for the “benefit” of taking AMEX - even if they only process $1000 a year. That’s 9.5%.
It’s funny how if you ended up doing $5,001 in AMEX sales, you’d jump into the regular percentage scheme, which I’m sure is more than 1.9%.
I do find it interesting, however, that your processor doesn’t charge you any fees of their own for processing AMEX on your behalf.