American Express is one of several brands of credit cards that a merchant can accept at his/her business. AMEX is often added by a business owner to his/her merchant account for credit card processing because American Express cards are popular around the world.
The American Express Company has been in existence in one form or another since 1850. Currently, AMEX offers consumer and commercial credit and prepaid cards. AMEX cards have many designs, but the traditional AMEX design is a Roman Centurion and/or blue AMEX logo on a green or gold card that features an ornate border and background that bears a striking resemblance to a Federal Reserve Note from the United States. AMEX also offers co-branded cards through national and international retailers and other businesses. Between it and its partners, AMEX has more than 100 million cards in circulation.
Merchants benefit from accepting American Express cards in several ways:
– American Express is a well-known brand with a stable financial history.
– Merchants gain access to more than 50 million card holders in the United States. Many of these cardholders use only AMEX cards for their purchases and many have been loyal, long-term card holders.
– American Express users are people who often make high dollar consumer or commercial purchases. According to American Express, its card holders spend approximately three and a half times more than people who use Visa cards and four times more than people who use MasterCard cards. American Express cardholders in the United States also use a credit card for about 53 percent of their personal purchases.
– Merchants can choose between two types of fee plans — discount rate and flat fee. With the discount rate plan, a merchant is charged a preset rate based on the merchant’s business type and the face value of the sale. A separate transaction fee sometimes applies. Certain types of cards, such as prepaid cards, process at much lower rates and there are no monthly minimum charge requirements. With a flat fee plan, merchants pay one low monthly fee each month.
– American Express can be accepted no matter the type of processing a merchant has chosen for his/her business. Whether a merchant has a retail store, an outdoor stall or an online catalog, he/she can easily accept AMEX in card-present and card-not-present scenarios.