Are E-commerce Retailers High Risk Businesses?

E-commerce retailers may not realize that traditional merchant credit card processing banks might regard their businesses as “high risk” businesses. Such banks understand the high risk characteristics of internet businesses, and therefore will typically refuse internet merchant accounts to e-commerce businesses. Therefore, an internet merchant business being categorized as a high risk merchant is dependent on that business’ characteristics and history.

Common High Risk Characteristics of Internet Merchants

Internet merchants cannot physically authorize their customers’ identification during business transactions, unlike merchants with a ‘brick-and-mortar’ physical storefront. This puts e-commerce retailers at a higher risk for customer fraud or even high customer chargebacks where products are not returned.

Below is a list of common business characteristics or practices that may cause an internet business to be classified as a high risk merchant:

  • E-commerce start-ups will be a labeled as “high risk” due to a lack of credit history.
  • Online businesses that fail website compliance reviews will be considered high risk and refused internet merchant accounts. offers FREE merchant website compliance services to e-commerce retailers, ensuring internet merchant account approval.
  • Internet businesses that process high volumes of credit card transactions. ($25,000 a month or more)
  • E-commerce merchants that sell their products globally, and therefore require the ability to process multiple currencies.
  • Online businesses that offer free trials followed by a recurring monthly payment.
  • Online customers aren’t physically present to sign credit card receipts – this is commonly referred to as a card-not-present-transaction. Card-not-present-transactions put internet merchants at a higher risk of credit card fraud, as internet merchant customers cannot validate their credit card transactions at the time of purchase.

High Risk Internet Merchants Trust

Internet merchants that have been labeled high risk or have had their internet merchant accounts terminated can turn to specializes in high risk merchant services for online businesses, such as internet merchant accounts, website compliance reviews, or shopping cart software demonstrations.

Traditional merchant processing banks just don’t offer the level of expertise that offers to high risk internet merchants. Contact’s expert team today at 800-357-0001 to learn how our top-rated internet merchant accounts services can help your online business!

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