Compare Merchant Accounts

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Compare Merchant Accounts

Merchant Account Comparison is the process experts use to weigh-up the services offered by merchant account providers. There are a number of factors to consider which obscure a direct comparison of all UK merchant services providers, from the type of service to contract length and the card turnover of the applicant business. The current state of the payment processing industry in the UK is quite complex, with myriad companies offering “the best rates” often via a range of tiered options. From an economic point-of-view, how do these options pan out in the real world?

Comparing Merchant Account Providers

Fees, reviews and ratings for the most popular providers. Are they the best and do they offer the lowest rates applicable for your business to process card payments? You’ll need to take in costs, fees and the whole spectrum of merchant services that apply to you to find out. It’s a painstaking process alright but we could do this for you and it’s a completely cost free service we offer. Use our interactive merchant services review and spend fewer than 60 seconds to get started.

Merchant Account Types

To perhaps oversimplify things a little, UK card processing services today can be arranged into two categories:

Casual and Pay-As-You-Go

Usually without a long-term contract, some merchant services providers will offer to process customer payments for a flat rate, often with no monthly fees. These can be ideal for small businesses or people starting off. However the transactions fees are high, which doesn’t suit businesses with card turnover above £1-2k per month. These providers can be further categorised by the type of payment processing options they offer. For example most will provide the ability to take online payments from customers, but not necessarily payments face-to-face or payments over-the-phone.

Merchant Accounts

Requiring a contract and variable fees often based on the volume of transactions, payment transaction types and which business sector you’re in, these merchant service providers are the old school. However, for a company with all but the most modest monthly transactions a merchant account is by far the cheapest option in the long-run. Although many merchant account providers are currently advertising “no setup fees”, they still have termination fees, monthly fees and further charges. Taking this into account for a company with over a given number or value of payment transactions per-month, the savings on cost-per-transaction outweigh the other fees.

Merchant Services Provider Comparison Chart


Payment Services

Paypal Paypal currently offer several solutions for taking customer payments aside from their well-known consumer buying/selling options. Aimed at both the casual business and those with regular monthly transactions.
Worldpay Worldpay offer a full-range of merchant services solutions at all scales of business including facilities for taking customer payments face-to-face, phone payments and online payments.
iZettle iZettle offer a range of options for taking customer payments face-to-face, via their e-commerce platform, iZettle Pro for Hospitality or bespoke configuration by arrangement.
Shopify Shopify offer three tiers of monthly plans together with options for online and in-person sales with additional fees for all payment providers other than Shopify Payments.
Square Square offer a simple pay-as-you-go setup with no monthly fees, however Square Reader, Terminal and Square Stand (without iPad) plus optional extras require a separate purchase.
Opayo by Elavon Opayo by Elavon offer simple pricing packages in three tiers, Flex, Plus and Corporate for online payments, with a range of Corporate or Small Business Solutions for virtual terminals. Opayo by Elavon also offer EPOS systems for face-to-face payments from customers.
Stripe Stripe offer a choice between integrated and customized packages for taking payments. The Customized option from Stripe is available for businesses with large payments volume or unique business models.
Paypoint Paypoint help over 28,000 retailers across the UK drive more footfall, save time, get valuable business insights and grow profitability. From EPoS to card payments, parcels to ATMs, we provide everything a modern convenience store needs with full support, training, free point of sale, great retailer deals and a freephone contact centre open 365 days a year.
Cardstream Cardstream is a global connector of payments with full end-to-end white label payment gateway to modular solutions, covering all your payment requirements.
Trust Payments

Trust Payments provide intelligent omnichannel payment solutions to accelerate the growth of your business. Let your customers pay the way they want to. Trust Payments complete omnichannel payments solution has customer convenience at its core.


“I cannot speak highly enough of IMS”

I cannot speak highly enough of the entire process especially the service and advice from Darren. Competitive pricing whilst tailor suiting to your needs Process for me was a little daunting and I had no idea how to proceed The communication by the team were excellent Thank you so much

Zoey - 14th Jan 2021

“Excellent service and knowledgeable”

Excellent service and knowledgeable I had a quotes from other card merchants much higher rates I got my account setup and card terminal within a week Definitely highly recommend Independent merchant service

Kai Mi Rice - 9th Jul 2020

“Great honest service “

Great honest service I would reccomend to everyone who s searching for a small company whom cares to put you first Thank you for being honest and help me in finding the best option for my business

Genaro Basilica - 26th Jun 2020