High Risk Merchant Accounts

What is a high risk merchant account?

When it comes to merchant services, mainstream providers and high street banks consider some businesses ‘high risk.’ This could be for a number of reasons, including the location of the business – whether it’s an offshore merchant account, for example – or if you’re operating in a high-fraud sector having experienced a number of chargebacks.

We will apply to the high-risk providers on behalf of our clients. Account providers generally refuse high-risk businesses; however, some offer high-risk merchant solutions.

Some industries that are often considered high risk include:

  • Travel agents - including timeshare or holiday clubs
  • Dating Services
  • Drug, supplement or herbal remedy shops
  • E-cig or tobacco shops
  • Payday loan companies
  • Gambling companies
  • Insurance firms
  • File or data sharing companies
  • Jewellers
  • Online auctions
  • E-wallets
  • Advertising services
  • Monthly membership/subscription based businesses
  • Debt management companies

Get in touch!

Click here

So what's the difference between a high-risk merchant services account and a standard one?

high risk industriesWhen applying to a high-risk merchant services provider – do you apply to a dedicated high-risk provider, or is it that some providers cater to this market? You may be asked to provide additional information to the bank or mainstream provider as a security precaution. This could include:

  • Set up fees – you may be charged higher set up fees when opening a merchant account, and you may also be charged an annual fee.
  • High transaction fees – the amount you pay on both credit and debit card transactions may increase.
  • Rolling reserve – you may be asked to deposit a ‘reserve fund’ when setting up your merchant account. This is designed to bridge the gap between taking payments and it reaching your business account.

If providers regard your business as high-risk , there are still plenty of options available to you. It’s important to review the monthly processing fees as well as the additional security questions listed above.

At Merchant Advice Service we compare providers pound for pound, rather than focusing just on rate, ensuring you as clients receive the best deals from high-risk merchant account providers.

High Risk Payment Gateways

High-risk credit and debit card-processing works in a similar way to face-to-face payments. If you require a high-risk merchant account gateway some of the same restrictions you come up against with high street bank and mainstream merchant providers will apply. However some offer high-risk merchant accounts ensuring safety and security for both you as a company and your customers.

Often high-risk merchant providers view applications on a case-by-case basis, so it’s important you present your application effectively. At Merchant Advice Service we work with businesses to develop these applications to secure best high-risk merchant account possible based on the needs of your business.

When focusing on high-risk gateway providers in particular we have a selection of options available to our clients these who specialise in this area. We deal with applications for payment gateway for high-risk businesses on a daily basis and can give you up-to-date, relevant and, most importantly, impartial advice.

So whether you are search the market for a better deal or simply assessing your options, we have your high-risk payment processing needs covered! If you want to find out which is the best high risk merchant account provider for you, get in touch today for a no fee, no obligation quote.

Request a Call Back

Would you like to speak to one of our high risk merchant specialists over the phone? Just submit your details and we'll be in touch ASAP.



Can I get a high risk merchant account with instant approval?


Finding the correct high risk merchant account provider can be tricky and often time consuming. The reason behind this is that the bank will assess the risk involved with processing payments for the merchant. The risk team will take a few days at minimum to assess the products sold, where they come from, terms and conditions etc. Once this process has been approved, the application itself is relatively straight forward.


What rates should I expect when applying for a high risk merchant account?


Rates may not be as eye watreringly high as you would expect, depending on the industry and monthly turnover of the business. We advise speaking with high risk industry experts, they will shop around for you and make sure your application is placed with the very best bank for your business set up. TIP – often if you have had a quote from a high risk merchant account provider elsewhere, you can use this for leverage when negotiating the terms of your deal before you sign.


Why choose an offshore merchant account for high risk businesses?


Offshore high risk merchant account provoiders can have benefits for certain types of businesses. This can range from rates to legislation. READ OUR GUIDE HERE.


Where to find high risk merchant account reviews?


The internet is flooded with comparisions and reviews of high risk merchant account providers. The facts are that each businesses is different – what might be right for one merchant won’t be for another. As a high risk business the account providers to choose from are limited. If you use an industry expert they will be able to advice you on what is right for YOUR business, and that’s the most important thing. Our advisors deal with high risk applications on a daily basis. Talk to us about your situation and we can point you in the right direction, first time around.


We often get asked for high risk merchant account tips and advice, each situation is completely individual. Pick up the phone and talk to one of our experts today, we will run through your requirements and can discuss the best merchant accounts for high risk industries both within the UK and worldwide.