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February 23, 2021

Secure Solutions for Accounting Firms: Accept Tax Prep Payments Online

Samantha Hubay

Written by:

Samantha Hubay

Secure Solutions for Accounting Firms: Accept Tax Prep Payments Online

Tax season has begun! To best serve your clients this year, it will be important to offer virtual options for everything from holding meetings to making payments.

At Electronic Merchant Systems, we’re equipped to help you accept payments for your tax preparation services from a distance. We offer secure, simple online payment processing solutions designed to help you offer the best experience possible.

There are two essential components of our online solutions: the Payment Gateway and Virtual Terminal. With this post, we’ll take a more in-depth look at each of these components and how they work. Let’s get started!


Payment Gateway

A Payment Gateway is the technology that captures and transfers payment data from your customer to your bank. The main purpose of a gateway is to guarantee that all information is transferred securely from your customer to you.

Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of what happens when your customer makes a payment through your Payment Gateway:

1. A customer pays for their accounting services online, over-the-phone, or in-person.

2. The payment gateway transfers the transaction information to your bank.

3. The gateway verifies which major credit card brand issued your customer’s card.

4. Your customer’s transaction information is routed to your payment processor.

5. Your processor sends the transaction request to the customer’s bank and the information to their credit card network.

6. Your customer’s bank analyzes the transaction for signs of fraud and confirms that they have enough credit to complete the purchase.

7. Your customer’s bank approves or declines the transaction and sends that information back through the credit card network to your bank.


As long as you have chosen an efficient payment processor, these steps can all be completed in a few business days or less.

Now that you know how a Payment Gateway works, let’s explore the features and functions of a Virtual Terminal.


Virtual Terminal

At Electronic Merchant Systems, we’re all about helping you not only securely complete transactions, but also improve efficiency and streamline your business operations. That’s why our Payment Gateways are equipped with innovative Virtual Terminal technology.

A Virtual Terminal is an interface built into a Payment Gateway.

It offers impressive technology that will empower you to run your Gateway as if it were a credit card terminal on your computer, tablet, or mobile device. Plus, the Virtual Terminal is browser-based, which means you can access this essential business tool on any web-enabled device. Highlights of the terminal include:

    • Cloud-based, real-time transaction processing
    • Full PCI-compliance, making it safe and secure
    • Unlimited users and permission-based employee access
    • Advanced reporting and data capture
    • Secure card storage for reuse
    • Recurring payments
    • Email invoicing and customized receipts

Keep reading to learn about the cutting-edge features available when you combine the technology we’ve covered in this post to implement a Payment Gateway solution supported by a Virtual Terminal.


Payment Gateway + Virtual Terminal = Advanced Features

All Electronic Merchant Systems Payment Gateways are supported by innovative Virtual Terminal technology, which will allow your accounting firm to take advantage of advanced features, including:

Customized Email Invoicing
Don’t waste time preparing and mailing invoices or calling customers for payment. Send a convenient invoice via email instead! Email invoicing allows you to increase your business agility by sending personalized invoices for quick and secure online payments.


Secure Vault for Storing Card Info
Safely store customer card information for future use with the Virtual Terminal’s Secure Vault. Simply create a profile for your customer and they’re set for simple future sales or billing. No more requesting credit card information for every sale! Plus, our account updater technology has the power to update customer card information, even without a request.


Recurring Billing Features
Create a recurring billing plan for any customer who is making scheduled payments. All you need to do is set the schedule and let the technology handle the rest.


Business Management Tools
Manage the most important aspects of your business online with the Merchant Console. This cloud-based program serves as the hub for your business and can be accessed on any web-enabled device. Through the Console, you can:

    • Review the status of email invoices
    • View and manage all transactions
    • Access intuitive reports, analyze sales trends, and identify your best customers
    • And more!

If your accounting firm needs an online payment solution for this tax season, look no further than Electronic Merchant Systems. We’re here to help your business and your customers! Contact us today to talk about enhancing your payment solution and your business.

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